British Garhwal Land Settlements by J.H. Batten -4
British Administration in Garhwal -26
History of British Rule/Administration over Kumaun and Garhwal (1815-1947) -42
History of Uttarakhand (Garhwal, Kumaon and Haridwar) -880
By: Bhishma Kukreti (History Student)
Batten had to pay attentions Traill for determining tax for a village. Batten got information about numbers of people, their economic conditions and land fertility of each village before land tax settlement.
Lowering Down Land Taxes
Garhwal Kings and Gurkha rulers were interested in tax collection but were least bothered for land reform. British administration took steps for encouraging farmers for taking farming a serious business.
Batten kept low tax for the villages affected by wild animals destroying crops and killing human. (Batten page 529)
Incentivizing ‘Paykast’ Farmers
‘Paykast’ was very unique system in Uttarakhand. There were villages where the farming was easy than other villages in a region. Many farmers after completing farm jobs in their villages used to take farming in other villages too. Many of such farmers were not owner of the land. Batten kept low tax on low productive land in Chandpur, Badhan, Chopdakot and Tallasalan Parganas so that farmers become prosperous and increase farming through ‘Paykast’ in nearby villages too. Batten personally visited those regions (Batten page 529).
Batten also offered new forest land for creating farms to ‘Paykast’ farmers. Batten wrote in his report that offering forest land for creating farm land would solve double objectives. First, the crop production will increase in new cultivated farms from forest land. Batten instructed that ‘Paykast’ could cultivate the Benami barren land (no owner of the land) of the village. Second objective was for reducing the forest land and reducing numbers of wild animals by occupying forest land for farming.
Batten forecasted that by allowing farmers for occupying new forest land farming would increase farm land by ten times.
Tax Settlement in Bhotiya Regions
Batten revised the tax pattern of Garhwal Kingdom and Gurkha System for tax in Bhotiya region. The tax on Bhotiya regions was more in Garhwal Kingdom and Gurkha System. The tax was more than reasonable in the region. Batten reported that even in the Traill settlement the tax is on higher side on unproductive villages. Batten suggested instead of Bees Nali system (seeds being sown) there should be tax on real business. Batten determined tax as per his new thinking of tax on real business. (Batten page 548)
Views of Batten for Joshimath Region
According to Batten report, nearby villages of Joshimath were more prosperous than other regions. Bhotiya used to purchase grains from Joshimath region for export or internal trading. By Hunting of Kasturi antipopes, the expert hunters used to get money. Kingdom and Gurkha had ‘Baj Bina’ tax on hunting by Baj bird. Woolen business was also money making business in Joshimath region.
Difficulties in Badhan Region
Badhan had different problems. Epidemics were the main problems in whole region. The epidemic was fatal too. The farm land was sufficient there but the human population was scanty. Sayanas offered wrong information to Traill settlement. (Batten, page 549)
Geographical Beauty of Nagpur Region
The geographical beauty of Nagpur attracted Batten. He reported that the geographical conditions and seasons of Nagpur region were equal to Europe. He mentioned that person cant forget the beauty of Snow bound Hills. Batten appreciated the region surrounding Mandakini River valley. Batten spent a night at Devarital lake bank. Batten criticized the dirty habits of Nagpur inhabitants for putting on same woolen dress for the whole year. Batten reported that Nagpur inhabitants allow spiky shrubs and plants including wild hemp growing surrounding their houses in rainy season. Epidemics were again problems for Nagpur region.
Batten kept the tax low as per the need of the region.
Copyright@ Bhishma Kukreti Mumbai, India, email@example.com 23/8/2016
History of Garhwal – Kumaon-Haridwar (Uttarakhand, India) to be continued… Part -881
*** History of British Rule/Administration over Kumaun, (Pauri, Rudraprayag, and Chamoli) Garhwal (1815-1947) to be continued in next chapter
(The History of Garhwal, Kumaon, Haridwar write up is aimed for general readers)
1-Shiv Prasad Dabral ‘Charan’, Uttarakhand ka Itihas, Part -7 Garhwal par British -Shasan, part -1, page 177-78
2-Batten, 1843, Report on the settlement of the district of Pauri Garhwal in the province of Kumaon 521, 529, 547, 548, 549
History of British Rule, Administration , Policies, Revenue system, over Garhwal, Kumaon, Uttarakhand ; History of British Rule , Administration , Policies Revenue system over Pauri Garhwal, Udham Singh Nagar Kumaon, Uttarakhand; History of British Rule, Administration, Policies ,Revenue system over Chamoli Garhwal, Nainital Kumaon, Uttarakhand; History of British Rule, Administration, Policies ,Revenue system over Rudraprayag Garhwal, Almora Kumaon, Uttarakhand; History of British Rule, Administration, Policies ,Revenue system over Dehradun , Champawat Kumaon, Uttarakhand ; History of British Rule, Administration, Policies, ,Revenue system over Bageshwar Kumaon, Uttarakhand ;
History of British Rule, Administration, Policies, Revenue system over Haridwar, Pithoragarh Kumaon, Uttarakhand;