Great Britain. India Office.

Imperial gazetteer of India .. (Volume 17) online

. (page 43 of 51)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

and 73° 34' E., on the Southern Punjab Railway, in the north-eastern
corner of the State. Populatioii (1901), 2,558. It was named after the
late Colonel Charles Minchin, Political Agent in Bahawalpur, 1866-76.
The town contains a dispensary, has a large manufacture of saltpetre,
and is a great centre of the export trade in grain. The municipality
had an income in 1903-4 of Rs. 6,100, chiefly from octroi.

Mindon. - A\'estern township of 'I'hayetmyo District, Burma, lying
between 19" 3' and 19° 30' N. and 94' 30' and 94'' 56' E., with an



area of 70S square miles. 'I'he township, which is undulating in the
east and hilly in the Arakan Yoma country in the west, contains
251 villages. It had a population of 35,040 in 1891, and 30,350 in
1901. Emigration to the more fertile lands of the delta accounts for
the falling off during the decade. The head-quarters are at Mindon,
a village of 803 inhabitants, picturesquely situated on the Maton river
within a few miles of the Arakan Hills. The total number of Chins
is about 4,000. They inhabit the Arakan Yoma, which covers the
western half of the township. About 35 square miles were cultivated
in 1903-4, paying Rs. 29,000 land revenue.

Mingin Subdivision.— South-eastern subdivision of the Upper
Chindwin District, Upper Burma, containing the Mingin and Kvarin

Mingin Township. — South-eastern township of the Upper Chind-
win District, Upper Burma, lying on either side of the Chindwin river,
between 22° 36' and 23° 12' N. and 94° 22' and 94° 55' E., with an
area of 1,311 square miles. It consists throughout of low hills. The
population, which is almost wholly Burman, was 21,015 in 1891, and
19,941 in 1 90 1, distributed in 141 villages. The head-quarters are at
Mingin (population, 1,815), ^^ ^^i^ Chindwin river, about 80 miles below
Kindat. The villages lie on the Chindwin and its tributaries, the
Maukkadaw stream on the north and the Patolin on the south. The
area cultivated in 1903-4 was 37 square miles, and the land revenue
and thathameda amounted to Rs. 42,000.

Minhla Subdivision. — Subdivision of Thayetmyo District, Bur:na,
consisting of the Minhla and Sinbaungwe townships.

Minhla Township (i). — Northernmost township of Thayetmyo Dis-
trict, Burma, lying between 19° 30' and 19° 59' N. and 94° 24' and
95° 12' E., and extending from the Irrawaddy to the Arakan Yoma
in the west, with an area of 490 square miles. It contains 290 villages,
the most important of which is Minhla (population, 2,553), the head-
quarters, on the right or west bank of the Irrawaddy close to the
border of Minbu District. The population was 33,416 in 1891, and
42,120 in 1901. It is the only township of the District which has
increased considerably in population during the past decade. There
are nearly 6,000 Chins, who inhabit the hilly country to the west.
East of the Yoma, towards the Irrawaddy valley, the country is cut
up by many low hills. The area under cultivation in 1903-4 was
41 square miles, paying Rs. 36,000 land revenue. In 1902-3
capitation tax took the place of thathameda as the main source of

Minhla Township (2). — Central township of Tharrawaddy District,
Lower Burma, lying between 17° 53' and 18° 20' N. and 95° 37'
and 96° 4' E., and stretching from the Pegu Yoma westward to the


border of the Monyo township, with an area of 627 square miles,
for the most part flat and fertile. In 1891 the population was
75,068, and in 1901 86,939. Minhi.a (population, 3,537) is the
head-quarters, and the only town. The number of villages is 468.
The area cultivated in 1903-4 was 177 square miles, paying
Rs. 2,42,000 land revenue.

Minhla Town. — Head-quarters of the township of the same name
in Tharrawaddy District, Lower Burma, situated in 18° N. and
95° 44' E., near the centre of the District on the Rangoon-Prome
railway, 91 miles from Rangoon. Population (1901), 3,537. The
town is administered by a town committee, which consists of five
members. In 1903-4 the income of the town fund was Rs. 15,400,
and the expenditure Rs. 14,700.

Minicoy. — An island attached to the District of Malabar in the
Madras Presidency, lying in the Arabian Sea, in 8° 18' N. and 73° E,
The lighthouse on the southern end was finished in 1885. Politically
Minicoy appertains to the Laccadive group, but ethnologically and
geographically it belongs to the Maldive Islands. It is 6 miles long
by half a mile in breadth, and contains an area of about i| square
miles. Population (1901), 3,097. The physical characteristics of
Minicoy are similar to those of the other Laccadive Islands \ but
it contains no iottavi, or garden cultivation, and the coco-nut trees
are smaller, and there is more jungle interspersed among the

The people are probably of Singhalese extraction ; they are darker
and smaller than the other islanders ; their language is Mahl, and
they have a duodecimal numerical system. Though Muhammadans,
they are strictly monogamous, and the women take the lead in every-
thing except navigation. A girl's consent has to be obtained before
marriage, and she brings no dowry, but receives presents from the
bridegroom. There are three subdivisions among the people — the
Malikhans, the Malumis or Takkarus, and the Kohlus — -which corre-
spond to the three found on the other islands ; but, unlike the other
islanders, the Minicoy people are all congregated in one village, which
is divided into ten quarters or wards, in each of which the male and
female [populations are organized into separate clubs, each managed
by its own headman or headwoman and forming a unit for social
and political purposes. The fishing-boats are very well made, and
the men arc expert navigators. The islanders' chief trouble is the
food-supply. All the rice has to be imported, and the trade is prac-
tically monopolized by the chief Malikhans. The revenue is raised
by a poll-tax and taxes on fishing-boats, &c., and not by a monopoly
as in the other islands. Minicoy came into the possession of the
All Raja of Cannanore later than the other islands, probably not


till the middle of the fifteenth century, as a gift from the Sultan
of the Maldives, and this accounts for the difference in its adminis-
tration ^

Miraj State (Senior Branch).— State under the Political Agent
of Kolhapur and the Southern Maratha Country, Bombay, with an
area of 339 square miles. It consists of three divisions ; a group
of villages in the valley of the Kistna, a second group in the south
of Dharwar District, and a third in the midst of Sholapur District.
The State contains 5 towns, the chief being Mir.aj (population,
18,425), the head-quarters, and Lakshmeshwar (12,860); and 59
villages. The population in 1901 was 81,467, Hindus numbering
68,660, Muhammadans 8,778, and Jains 3,866. The portion of the
State which is watered by the Kistna is flat and rich ; the remaining
parts lie low and are surrounded by undulating lands and occasionally
intersected by ridges of hills. The prevailing soil is black. Irrigation
is carried on from rivulets, tanks, and wells. As in the rest of the
Deccan, the climate is always dry, and is oppressively hot from March
to May. The principal crops are millet, wheat, gram, sugar-cane, and
cotton. Coarse cotton cloth and musical instruments are the chief

Miraj was originally a portion of vSangi.i, from which it was detached
in 1808. In 1820 it was, with the sanction of the British Government,
divided into four shares, and the service of horsemen was proportioned
to each. Two of these shares lapsed in 1842 and 1845 from failure
of male issue ; the two others remain. The whole area of the State
has been surveyed and settled. The chief ranks as a first-class Sardar
in the Southern Maratha Country. He has power to try his own
subjects for capital offences. The revenue in 1903-4 was 3^ lakhs,
of which 2-7 lakhs was from land. Tribute of Rs. 12,558 is payable
to the British Government. The family holds a sanad authorizing
adoption, and follows the rule of primogeniture in matters of suc-
cession. Of the five municipalities in the State, Miraj and Laksh-
meshwar have incomes of Rs. 15,500 and Rs. 7,000 respectively.
There are 25 schools with 1,237 pupils. The police force numbers
235 men, maintained in 1903-4 at a cost of Rs. 23,400. There are
three jails, with a daily average of 55 prisoners. The State contains
three dispensaries, which afforded relief to 35,371 persons in 1903-4.
In the same year 1,789 persons were vaccinated.

Miraj Town. — Capital of the State of Miraj (Senior Branch) in
the Southern Maratha Country, Bombay, situated in 16° 49' N. and
74° 41' E., near the Kistna river, a few miles south-east of Sangli.
Population (1901), 18,425. In 1761 the fort of Miraj with some

' An interesting account of Minicoy (Marco Polo's ' Female Island ') is to be found
in Blackwood's Magazine for February and March, 1889.

362 AflRA/ VVJIW

thdnas was assigned by tlie Peshwa Madhu Rao to Govind Rao
Patvardhan for the maintenance of troops. Miraj is a large trading
town, with two old dargdhs, built in 1491. It is administered as a
municipality, with an income in 1903-4 of Rs, 15,500. It contains
a high school and a dispensary.

Miraj State (Junior Branch). — State under the Political Agent
of Kolhapur and the Southern Maratha Country, Bombay, with an
area of 211 square miles. It consists of three divisions: a group
of villages adjoining the Bankapur tdluka of Dharwar District ;
a second near the Tasgaon tdluka of Satara District ; a third near
the Pandharpur tdluka of Sholapur District, which also includes four
indtn villages in Poona District. There are 3 towns, the largest
being Bhudgaon (population, 3,591), where the chief resides; and
31 villages. The population in 1901 was 35,806, Hindus numbering
32,484, Muhammadans 2,034, and Jains 1,288. The soil is generally
black. Indian millet, wheat, gram, and cotton are the chief crops ;
and coarse cotton cloth is the principal manufacture. The history
of this branch of the family is the same as that of the Senior Branch,
given above. The chief ranks as a first-class Sardar in the Southern
Maratha Country, and has power to try his own subjects for capital
offences. The family holds a sanad authorizing adoption, and -follows
the rule of primogeniture in matters of succession. The estimated
revenue is about 4 lakhs, and the expenditure nearly 3 lakhs. Tribute
of Rs. 6,413 is payable to the British Government. The police force
numbers 143. In 1903-4 there were three jails, with a daily average
of 23 prisoners. There are 30 schools in the State, attended by
991 pupils. Two dispensaries treat about 14.500 persons. In 1903 4
about 800 persons were vaccinated.

Miram Shah {Mlra/i S/id/i). — Head-quarters of the Northern
AN'aziristan Agency, North-West Frontier Province, situated in ^f
57' N. and 70° 7' E., in Daur (the Tochi valley), about 57 miles
west of Bannu. Its elevation is 3,050 feet above the sea, and it com-
prises three or four liamlets. It is now garrisoned by the Northern
Wazlristan militia.

Miranpur. — Town in the Jansath tahsil of Muzafflirnagar District,
United Provinces, situated in 29" 17' N. and 77° 57' E., 20 miles from
Muzaffarnagar town. Population (1901), 7,209. It is the home of
a family of Saiyids, descended from a member of the Chhatraurl
branch of tlie fanKxis Barha Sai)ids. Early in 1858 it was attacked
by the Bijnor rebels, but successfully held by British troops. Miran-
pur is administered under Act XX of 1856, with an income of about
Rs. 2,000. At one time there was a large local trade in rice, sugar,
salt, and grain ; but the opening of the railway has diverted trade to
KhataulT and Muzaffarnagar. Blankets are still made to a large extent,


and also coarse blue pottery and papier mache goods. There are two
small schools.

Miranpur Katra. — Town in Shahjahanpur District, United Pro-
vinces. See Katra.

Miran Shah.— Head-quarters of the Northern Waziristan Agency,
North-West Frontier Province. See Miram Shah.

Miranzai. — -Tlz/wJ/and town in Kohat District, North-West Frontier
Province. See Hangu.

Mirganj Tahsil. — West-central tahsil of Bareilly District, United
Provinces, comprising the parganas of ShahT, Sirauli (North), and
Ajaon, and lying between 28° 24' and 28° 41' N. and 79° (/ and
79° 24' E., with an area of 149 square miles. Population increased
from 95,300 in 1891 to 103,198 in 1901. There are 158 villages and
one town, Shahi (population, 3,556). The demand for land revenue in
1903-4 was Rs. 1,50,000, and for cesses Rs. 26,000. The density of
population, 640 persons per square mile, is below the District average.
The shifting channel of the Ramganga winds through the south of the
tahsil; and the Dhakra, Dhora, and West Bahgul, after flowing from
the northern border, unite to form the Dojora. Mirganj is a level
well-cultivated plain, the greater portion of which is sufficiently moist
not to require artificial irrigation. It produces sugar-cane largely, and
sugar is refined in many places. In 1903-4 the area under cultivation
was in square miles, of which 17 were irrigated. Tanks or jhils
supply more than half the irrigated area. The new dam across the
Kull NadI will supply irrigation to the north of this tahsil.

Mirganj Town. — Town in the Gopalganj subdivision of Saran
District, Bengal, situated in 26° 25' N. and 84° 20' E. Population
(1901), 9,698. It is a large trading centre.

Miri Hills. — A section of the Himalayan range lying north of
Lakhimpur District, Eastern Bengal and Assam, between the hills
occupied by the Gallongs and the Ranganadi, and inhabited by the
Miri tribe. The Miris are of Tibeto-Burman origin, and have tall,
well-developed frames, with pleasant countenances of the Mongolian
type. Unlike their neighbours they have never given trouble to the
British Government, and large numbers of the tribe have now settled
on the Assam plains. A full account of the Miris will be found in
Colonel Dalton's Ethwlogy of Betigal.

Mirialguda. — Southern tahik of Nalgonda District, Hyderabad
State, separated from the Guntur District of Madras by the Kistna
river. Till 1905 it was also called Devalpalli. Including j'dglrs, the
population in 1901 was 78,545, and the area 768 square miles. The
population in 1891 was 87,130, the decrease being due to the transfer
of villages. The taluk contains 154 villages, of which 4 are Jdgir^
and Mirialguda (population, 3,660) is the head-quarters. The land



revenue in 1901 was 2-4 kikhs. Rice is extensivel}' irrigated from
tanks, channels, and wells. The new taluk of Pochamcherla, con-
j^tituted in 1905, received 35 villages from Mirialguda.

Mirjan. — \'illage in the Kumta fcihika of North Kanara District,
}3ombay, situated in 14° 30' N. and 74^ 28' E., about 5 miles north
of Kumta town. Population (1901), 1,500. It has a ruined fort said
to have been built by Sarpan Malik, probably a reminiscence of the
Bijapur title Sharif-ul-mulk. Mirjan has been supposed to be the
ancient Muziris mentioned by Pliny as the first trading town in India ;
but an alternative is to be found in Muyiri, the old name of Cranganur,
20 miles north of Cochin. Under the \'ijayanagar kings Mirjan was
held by local tributary chiefs.' Albutiuerque visited it in 15 10. It
subsequently passed to Bijapur, and later to the Bednur chief Sivappa
Naik. The Marathas seized it in 1757. It suffered from the depreda-
tions of Haidar, and was destroyed by Tipii. Fryer visited Mirjan in
the seventeenth century, and has recorded a description of it.

Mirpur Subdivision. — Subdivision of Sukkur District, Sind,
Bombay, consisting of the Mirpur Mathelo and Ubauro tdlukas.

Mirpur Town. -Town in the Bhimber district of the Jammu pro-
vince, Kashmir, situated in 33° 11' N. and 73^^ 49' E., at an elevation of
1,236 feet above sea-level. It lies 22 miles north of the British canton-
ment of Jhelum, and is said to have been founded about 200 years ago
by the Gakhars, Miran Khan and Sultan Fateh Khan. It stands on
high ground on the edge of the Kareli Kas, from which drinking-
water is easily procured. There are several rather picturesque temples,
the chief being the Sarkari Mandir, built by Maharaja Gulab Singh; the
Raghunalhji ; and the temple of l^iwan Amar Nath. The town con-
tains 550 shops, forming a long bazar running cast and west. Apart
from the shop-keeping class, Brahmans and Sikhs, of whom many are
settled in Mirpur, the inhabitants arc mostly of the artisan or menial
classes. There is a flourishing State school badly housed, and a dis-
l)ensary in a building wholly unsuited to the i)urpose. The town has
a neglected appearance. The streets are badly laid, dirty, and un-
drained, and no attempts have been made at conservancy. Trade is
brisk. It is mostly in the hands of Mahajans and KhattrTs. The chief
articles of export to British India are grain, ghl from the hills and
Punch, and minor forest products from Kotii, Punch, and Rajauri ; the
chief imports are salt, cloth, tea, and sugar.

Mirpur Batoro. — TT////-^'^ of Karachi District, Sind, Bombay, lying
between 24° 36' and 25^ V N. and 68° 9' and 68° 26' E., with an area
of 269 square miles. The population in 1901 was 37,1 16, compared
with 35,196 in 1891, dwelling in 62 villages, of which Mirpur Batoro is
the head-cjuarters. The density is 138 persons per square mile, and
this is the most thickly poi)ulated taluka in the District. The land


revenue and cesses in 1903-4 amounted to over 1-4 lakhs. 1 he taluka
lies on the east of the Indus, which forms its northern boimdary. It
is shaped somewhat Hke a parallelogram, and is an alluvial plain, the
northern portion being watered by canals fed directly by the Indus, and
the central and southern parts by distributaries of the Pinjari Mulchand
canals. The finest rice, known as siigdasi\ is grown here, owing to the
soil being very fertile. Jowdr and bdjra are also grown.

Mirpur Khas Taluka. — Tdhika of Thar and Parkar District, Sind,
Bombay, lying between 25*^ 12' and 35° 48' N. and 68° 54' and
69° 16' E., with an area of 457 square miles. The population rose
from 27,866 in 1891 to 37,273 in 1901. The taluka contains one
town, MIrpur Khas (population, 2,787), the head-quarters; and 135
villages. The density, 82 persons per square mile, is the highest in
the District. The land revenue and cesses in 1903-4 amounted to
^•T^ lakhs. 'I'he taluka is irrigated by canals, of which the chief is
the Jamrao. The Jodhpur-Blkaner Railway traverses it.

Mirpur Khas Town. — Head-quarters of the taluka of the same
name in Thar and Parkar District, Sind, Bombay, situated in 25°3o'N.
and 69° 2> E., on the Luni-Hyderabad branch of the Jodhpur-Bikaner
Railway, on the Let Wah canal, and also on the high road from
Hyderabad to Umarkot, 38 miles south-east of Hala, and 41 miles
east-north-east of Hyderabad via Tando Alahyar (17 miles distant).
Population (1901), 2,787. The local trade is in grain, cotton (said
to be the finest in Sind), and piece-goods, valued at 3-88 lakhs. The
annual value of the transit trade is estimated at 25-67 lakhs.
Mirpur is a comparatively modern town, having been built in 1806
by Mir Ali Murad Talpur, and has increased in importance since
the opening of the Jamrao Canal in 1900. A new suburb is now
being built on approved lines by the colonization officer of the
Jamrao Canal. It was the capital of Mir Sher Muhammad Khan
Talpur, whose army was defeated in 1843 ^Y ^i'" Charles Napier at
Dabba (Dabo) near Hyderabad. The town was constituted a muni-
cipality in 1901, and had an income in 1903-4 of Rs. 13,000. It
contains a dispensary and one primary school, attended by 84

Mirpur Mathelo. - Taluka of Sukkur District, Sind, Bombay,
lying between 27° 20' and 28"^ 7' N. and 69° 16' and 70° 10'' E.,
with an area of 1,720 square miles. The population rose from 48,068
in 1891 to 49,991 in 1901. The taluka contains 100 villages, (;f
which Mirpur Mathelo is the head-quarters. This is the most thinly
populated tract in the District, with a density of only 29 persons
per square mile. The land revenue and cesses in 1903-4 amounted
to 2-2 lakhs. The taluka^ which produces vao'sXXy joivdr^ is watered
by the Masa \Vuh. In the south lies a wide trdct of sandy ilesert.

A a J


Mirpur Sakro. — Tdluka of Karachi ]3istrict, Sind, Bombay, lying
between 24'' 14' and 24° 51' N. and 67° 9' and bf 55' E., with an
area of 1,137 square miles, of which nearly half is kalar land. The
population in 1901 was 27,600, compared with 26,064 in 1891. There
are 74 villages, but no town. The village of Mirpur Sakro is the
head-quarters. The land revenue and cesses in 1903-4 amounted to
Rs. 60,000. The western half of the tdliika is almost entirely un-
inhabited and uncultivable. Towards the sea, tidal creeks break the
coast-line and form extensive mangrove swamps. Irrigation is derived
chiefly from the Baghar canal, with ten branches, and from two smaller
canals. The chief crops are barley, rice, bajra^ and til.

Mirta. — District and head-quarters thereof in Jodhpur State,
Rajputana. See Merta.

Mirzapur District. — District in the Benares Division of the
United Provinces, lying between 23° 52' and 25° 32' N. and 82° 7'
and 83° 33' E., with an area of 5,238 square miles. It is bounded
on the north by Jaunpur and Benares ; on the east by the Bengal
Districts of Shahabad and Palamau ; on the south by the Surguja
Tributary State and the State of Rewah ; and on the west by
Allahabad. The District of Mirzapur extends over a larger area
than any other in the United Provinces, except those situated in
the Himalayas, and exhibits a corresponding diversity of natural
features. The northern portion, with an area of about 1,100 square
miles, forms part of the Gangetic plain, extending
asoects ^"^ either bank of the great river. South of the

Ganges the outer scarp of the Vindhyas forms an
irregular rampart, sometimes advancing to the bank of the Ganges,
and sometimes receding to 10 miles or more away. The Vindhyan
plateau stretches from the northern scarp for a distance of 30 or 40
miles to the Kaimurs, which look down on the valley of the Son.
The eastern portion of the plateau forms part of the Benares Estate,
and a considerable area is set aside by the Maharaja as a game
preserve. The scenery in this tract is among the wildest and most
beautiful in the District, and the portion where the hills meet the
plains is especially picturesque. The Karamnasa descends by a suc-
cession of falls, including two known as the Latifsah and Chhanpathar,
which, from their beauty, are deserving of special notice. The tribu-
tary stream of the Chandraprubha leaves the plateau by a single
cascade, called Deo Dhari, 400 feet in height, whence it passes
through a gloomy and precipitous gorge, 7 miles long, over a huge
masonry dam to the open countr)- beyond.

After passing the crest of the Kaimur hills, a more rugged, imposing,
and elevated range than the Vindhyas, an abrupt descent of 400
or 500 feet leads down into the valley of the Son. The easiest


pass is the Kiwai ghat above Markundl on the Ahraura-Chopan
road. The basin of the river lies at the foot of the hills, with
occasional stretches of alluvial land on either bank. South of the
Son is a wilderness of parallel ridges of rocky hills, of no great
height, but exceedingly rugged and clothed with stunted forest.
Excepting a few level patches and valleys, with the large basin of
Singrauli in the south-west and the smaller area round Dudhl in the
south, hills cover the whole area.

The two main rivers are the Ganges and Son, which flow from
west to east across the northern and central portions of the District
respectively. The east of the Vindhyan plateau is drained by the
Karamnasa and its tributaries, the Garai and Chandraprabha, and
the centre by the Jirgo and small streams, all of which flow from
south to north. The drainage from the northern slopes of the
Kaimurs, however, passes into the Belan, which has a course from
east to west. South of the Son the chief rivers are the Riband
and Kanhar, which flow north to join that stream. There are few
lakes or marshes, Samdha Tal, in the Korh tahsll, being the largest.

Mirzapur presents an unusual variety of geological formations.
The northern portion is Gangetic alluvium, while the plateau which
lies south of it consists of upper Vindhyan sandstone and shale.