William Wilson Hunter.

The imperial gazetteer of India (Volume 7) online

. (page 26 of 57)
Online LibraryWilliam Wilson HunterThe imperial gazetteer of India (Volume 7) → online text (page 26 of 57)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

the tenure known as bhaydcJuh-a chdhwdr, though they cannot be

/HANG. 211

entirely assimilated to any of the common Punjab types. The
majority of tenants hold their land at will. Of the total area held
by tenants, only one per cent, is cultivated by tenants paying cash
rents, the general rate in kind being half produce. Money rents
where they occur vary from 6s. to £4, los. per acre. Good
irrigated wheat lands bring in £\, 8s., cotton lands from 12s. to
£1, 7s. Prices of food-grains ruled as follows on the ist January
1S83 : — Wheat, 20 sers per rupee, or 5s. yd. per cwt. ; flour, 17 sers per
rupee, or 6s. yd. per cwt. ; barley, 40 se?-s per rupee, or 2s. lod. per
cwt. ; gram, 29 sers per rupee, or 3s. lod. per cwt. ; maize, 45 sers per
rupee, or 2s. 6d. per cwt. ; j'odr, 34 sers per rupee, or 3s. 4d. per cwt. ;
bdjra, 29 sers per rupee, or 3s. lod, per cwt.

Commerce and Trade, etc. — The commerce of the District is incon-
siderable, and most of the trade is local. Grain is imported from the
banks of the Ravi and from Wazirabad in Gujranwala. Country cloth
is manufactured at Jhang and Maghiana, and bought up by the
Povindah merchants of Afghanistan. The District contains as many
as 8144 looms, and the annual value of the cloth woven amounts
to about ;^ioo,ooo. The estimated value of the imports is returned
at ^285,227, and that of the exports ^94,889. Manufactures of
leather and of gold and silver lace also exist. The chief roads are
those from Multan to Wazirabad, passing Sherkot, Jhang, Maghiana,
and Chiniot in this District ; and from Chichawatni in Montgomery
District on the Lahore and Multan line of railway to Chah Bhareri
leading to Dera Ismail Khan. A mail cart runs between Chichawatni,
Dera Ismail Khan, and Bannu. Total length of roads, 954 miles.
The Lahore-Multan branch of the Sind, Punjab, and Delhi Railway
passes near the south of the District, but nowhere intersects it. A
bridge of boats has been constructed across the united waters of the
Jehlam and Chenab, just below their junction. Both rivers are
navigable all the year round by the largest native craft. They are
crossed at various points by 28 ferries. Length of navigable rivers,
166 miles within the District.

Administration. — The total imperial revenue raised in the District
in 1873 amounted to ^49»302, of which sum the land-tax contributed
^42,115, or more than six-sevenths. In 1881-82, the imperial revenue
had increased to ^54,136, of which ^44,449 \vas derived from the
land. Stamps form the only other item of revenue of any importance.
In addition to the imperial revenue, a Provincial and a local revenue
are also raised, the estimated income from both being ^12,000.
Leases for grazing and for collecting sajji form considerable
items of pubhc income. The administrative staff usually comprises
a Deputy Commissioner and two extra- Assistant Commissioners,
besides the usual judicial, fiscal, and constabulary officers. In


1882, the regular police force consisted of a total of 396 officers and
men,' or, with the municipal and ferry police, 475 \ ^eing at the rate
of I policeman to every 12 square miles of area, and every 832 of the
population. The total number of persons brought to trial for all
offences committed in the District during the year 1882 amounted to
2543, of whom 1493 were convicted. The District jail at Maghiana
contained in 1881-82 a total population of 970 prisoners, with a daily
averaf^e of 307 inmates. Education was carried on during 1882 by
53 Government-inspected schools, attended by 2156 pupils. Inquiries
by the Education Department ascertained the existence also of a total
of 314 indigenous schools at which 2863 children were obtaining some
form of education. For fiscal and administrative purposes, the District
is divided into 3 tahsils and 25 police circles. The four municipal
towns of Jhang-Maghiana, Chiniot, Shorkot, and Ahmadpur had a total
revenue in 1881-82 of ;;^355i, or an average of is. lod. per head of
the population (37,213) wnthin municipal hmits.

Medical Aspects. — The District bears a good reputation for healthi-
ness. Small-pox and fever are the most prevalent diseases. The total
number of deaths recorded from all causes in 1881 amounted to 6470,
or 18 per thousand of the population. Of these, 2033, or 10-91 per
thousand, were assigned to fever alone. Government charitable dis-
pensaries have been established at Maghiana, Jhang, Shorkot, Chiniot,
Ahmadpur, and Kot Isa Shah, In 1881 they afforded reHef to 67,835
persons, of whom 1359 were in-patients. The average annual rainfall
for the 20 years ending 1881 is returned by the Meteorological Depart-
ment at 1 1 -1 8 inches. The rainfall in the latter year was 8-40 inches,
or 278 inches below the average. [For further information concerning
Jhang, see the Gazetteer of the District, published by authority of the
Punjab Government (1883-84). Also the Punjab Census Report for
1 88 1, and the various annual Administrative and Departmental Pro-
vincial Reports from 1880 to 1883.]

Jhang. — Central tahsil of Jhang District, Punjab, comprising an
irregular tract on either side of the river Chenab. Lat. 30° 35' to
31° 36' N., and long. 71° 39' to 72° 39' e. Area, 2347 square miles.
Population (1881) 171,713, namely, males 92,792, and females 78,921.
Average density of population, 73 per square mile. Muhammadans
numbered 137,121; Hindus, 32,168; Sikhs, 2417; and 'others,' 7.
Of a total assessed area in 1878-79, according to the last quinquennial
agricultural statistics published by the Punjab Government, 167,834
acres were returned as under cultivation, of which more than one-half,
or 89,038 acres, were irrigated, entirely by private enterprise. Of the
remainder, 682,700 were returned as grazing lands, 322,186 acres as
cultivable but not under cultivation, and 382,446 acres as uncultivable
waste. The average annual area under the principal crops for the five


years from 1877-7S to 1881-82 is returned as follows: — Wheat, 70,109
acres ; yWr, 1 6, 1 7 1 acres ; gram, 41 64 acres ; cotton, 13,172 acres ; and
vegetables, 3576 acres. Revenue of the ialisil^ ^19,660. The sub-
divisonal establishment, including the head-quarters staff, comprised in
1883 a Deputy Commissioner, two Assistant Commissioners, a tahsUddr^
and a munsif. These officers preside over 5 civil and 4 criminal
courts ; number of police circles (t/idfids), 6 ; strength of regular police,
140 men; village watchmen {chaukiddrs), 227.

Jhang. — Town and municipality in Jhang District, Punjab. Lat.
31° 16' 16" N., long. 72° 21' 45" E. Population (1881) 9055, namely,
4270 Hindus, 4636 jMuhammadans, 143 Sikhs, and 6 'others.'
The sister town of Maghiana, containing the civil station for the
District, lies 2 miles south of Jhang, and has a population of 12,574
persons, giving a grand total for both of 21,629. They form together
a single municipality, and may be regarded as practically one town ;
situated about 3 miles to the east of the present bed of the Chenab,
10 and 13 miles respectively north-west of its junction with the Jehlam.
Jhang itself lies on the lowland, a little apart from the regular lines of
trade ; and since the removal of the Government offices to Maghiana,
it has yielded its commerce and importance to its younger rival. The
town is traversed by a single main street, running east and west, lined
on either side with masonry shops built on a uniform plan. All the
streets and lanes are paved with brick, and well drained. Outside the
town are the school buildings with a pretty fountain, the dispensary,
and police buildings. The old town of Jhang was founded by Mai
Khan, a Sial chieftain, in 1462, and was for long the capital of a
Muhammadan State. It was situated south-west of the modern town,
and has been long since swept away by encroachments of the river,
although some traces of it are still discernible. The present town was
founded at the beginning of the 1 7th century, in the reign of the Emperor
Aurangzeb, by one Lai Nath, the ancestor of the present ' Nath Sahib '
of Jhang. On one side the approach to the town is almost barred
by unsightly sandhills, but on the other it affords a tolerably picturesque
appearance from numerous groves and gardens. (5(?^ Jhang District.)
Principal inhabitants, Sials and Khatris. Manufacture of country cloth,
bought up by the Povindah merchants of Afghanistan. Imports of grain
from Wazirabad and Mianwali. Municipal revenue of Jhang-Maghiana
in 1882-83, ^2475, or 2s. 3d. per head of population (21,872) within
municipal limits.

Jhangar. — Village in the Sehwan Deputy Collectorate, Karachi
(Kurrachee) District, Sind, Bombay Presidency. Lat. 26° 19' 20" n.,
long. 67° 45' 50" E. Population under 2000. Jhangar, situated to the
south of the Manchpar lake, is 12 miles south-west of Sehwan, with
which it is connected by road. School, dharmsdla^ and cattle pound.


Jhanidah.— Sub division of Jessor District, Bengal. Lat. 23° 22'
15" to 23° 47° N., long. %^° 57' 33" to 89° 24' 45" E. Area, 475 square
miles; towns and villages, 824; houses, 44,668. Population (1872)
286,461; in 1881, 326,835, of whom 115,897 were Hindus,
210,895 Muhammadans, and 43 Christians. Males numbered 160,754,
and females 166,081. Average number of inhabitants per square
mile, 688; villages per square mile, 173 ; houses per square mile, 96 ;
inmates per house, 7-3. This Sub-division contained in 1882-83, i
magisterial and revenue court, i civil court, and i small cause court ;
3 registration offices ; 3 police circles {ihdnds) ; a regular police force of
64 men, with a village watch numbering 588. The formation of this
Sub-division was due to the indigo riots in 1861.

Jhanidah. — Town in Jhanidah Sub-division, Jessor District, Bengal.
Lat. 23° 32' 50" N., and long. 89° 13' e. Situated on the river Naba-
ganga, 28 miles north of Jessor town. Large bazar, and trade in sugar,
rice, and pepper; communication chiefly carried on by means of the river,
w^hich, however, is gradually silting up ; a road connects the tow^n with
Chuadanga, a station on the Eastern Bengal Railway. A large tank
near Jhanidah was formerly the scene of frequent robberies and out-
rages. A bi-weekly market is held every Thursday and Sunday near
the bazar, at which the idol of Kali, in the market, receives a handful
of everything brought for sale. Population above 2000.

Jhanjhana. — Agricultural town in Shamli tahsil, Muzaffarnagar
District, North-Western Provinces. Lat. 29° 30' 55" n., long. 77° 15'
45" E. Situated on the plain, between the Jumna river and canal, 30 miles
west of Muzaffarnagar town. Population (1881) 5655, namely, Hindus,
31 15; Muhammadans, 2452; and Jains, ZZ. Area of town site, 76
acres. Occupies the site of an old brick fort ; canal distributary flows
close to the tow^i. Water-holes exist in the immediate neighbourhood,
and during the rains the whole country for many miles is flooded.
Fever, small-pox, and cholera are common diseases. Police station,
l)ost-office. A village police force and a few sweepers are maintained
under the provisions of the Chaukidari Act (xx. of 1856).

Jhanjharpur.— Village in Darbhangah District, Bengal. Lat. 26°
i5'5o"n., long. 86^ 19' 11" e. ; 14 miles south-east of Madhubani.
Famous for its brass utensils, particularly \\-\q pdnbattd or box for hold-
ing betel-leaf, and the gangdJoU or water-pot. Two bdzdrs ; large grain
market. Situated near the main road from Darbhangah to Purniah.
Temple of Rakalmala. Jhanjharpur formerly belonged to a family of
Rajputs. It is now the property of the Maharaja of Darbhangah, and
the appointed residence of the Rani on the occasions of her confine-
ment. Population (1872) 3940. Not returned separately as a town in
the Census Report of 1881.

Jhansi. — A Division under a Commissioner in the North-Western


Provinces, comprising the three Districts of Jhansi, Jalaun, and Lalit-
PUR, each of which see separately. Situated between 24° 11' and 26°
26' N. lat, and between 78^ 14' and 79° 55' e. long. The Division con-
tains a large portion of the tract known as Bundelkhand. Area, 4983*6
square miles. Population in 1872, 934,934; in 1881, 1,000,457, being
an increase of 65,523, or 6*i per cent, in the nine years. Number of
towns (1881), 12, and of villages, 2140; houses, 155,319. Of the
total population of 1,000,457, males numbered 518,828, or 51*8 per
cent., and females 481,629, or 48*2 per cent. Average density of
population, 2007 per square mile ; towns and villages per square mile,
•43 ; persons per town or village, 465 ; houses per square mile, 31*1 ;
persons per house, 6*4. Nearly the entire population, namely 942,397,
or 94-2 per cent., were Hindus. Muhammadans numbered only 44,792 ;
Jains, 12,447; Sikhs, 100; Christians, 714; and Parsis, 7. Among
high-caste Hindus, Brahmans numbered 111,034; Rajputs, 72,131;
and Kayasths, 17,819. The most numerous caste in the Division are
the despised Chamars, 134,398, the other important castes according to
numerical superiority being — Kachhis, 82,612 ; Lodhis, 63,493 ; Ahirs,
61,470; Koris, 44,280; Kurmis, 37,651 ; Baniyas, 29,231; Gadarids,
25,725 ; Telis, 24,286 ; and Nais, 22,892.

Total adult male cultivators and agricultural labourers, 211,730, culti-
vating an average of 6J acres each. The total population, however,
dependent on the soil was 607,354, or 60*70 per cent, of the Divisional
population. The total adult male and female agriculturists numbered
340,279, of whom 32,011 were returned as landholders, 951 as estate
agents, 299,006 as cultivators, and 78,31 1 as agricultural labourers. Total
cultivated area, 2148*8 square miles; of these, 1997*2 square miles are
assessed for Government revenue, which in 1881 amounted (including
local rates and cesses paid on the land) to ;^i78,6i2, or an average
of 2s. 9d. per cultivated acre. Total rental paid by the cultivators,
;^354,428, or an average of 5s. ijd. per cultivated acre. The three
principal towns are Mau, population (1881) 15,981; Kalpi, 14,306;
and Lalitpur, 10,684. Total number of civil and revenue courts, 31 ;
criminal courts, 32. Number of police circles {f/idnds), 79 ; strength of
regular police, 813 men; village watchnien {chaukiddrs), 1430. Gross
revenue (1882-83), ^200,349.

Jhansi. — British District in the Lieutenant-Governorship of the
North-Western Provinces, lying between 25° 3' 45" and 25° 48' 45" n.
lat., and between 78° 22' 15" and 79° 27' 30" e. long. Jhansi forms
the central District in the Division of the same name. It is
bounded on the north by the Gwalior and Samthar States, and by
Jalaun District ; on the east by the river Dhasan, which separates it
from Hamirpur District ; on the south by the District of Lalitpur and
the Orchha State ; and on the west by the Datiya, Gwalior, and Khania-


dhana States. The District is much intersected by the surrounding
Native States. On the north, the States of Gwahor, Datiya, and
Samthar ; and towards the south and east, the Orchha State, and the
Hasht-bhdya jdgirs of Tori Fatehpur, Bijna, Pahari - Banka, and
Dhurwai, encroach on Jhansi, or are interlaced with it. Single villages
or groups of two or three villages belonging to one or other of these
States are scattered like islands throughout the District. In like manner,
several small patches of British territory are isolated from the rest of the
District, and completely surrounded by native territory. This inter-
mixture of alien villages has been productive of great administrative
difficulties, especially in years of famine. Area, 1567 square miles;
population (1881) 333,227 souls. The administrative head-quarters
are at the village of Jhansi Naoabad, close to the native town of
Jhansi, now belonging to Gwalior ; but the most populous town in the
District is Mau (Mhow).

Physical Aspects. — Jhansi forms a portion of the hill country of
Bundelkhand, sloping down southward from the outliers of the Vindhyan
range to the tributaries of the Jumna (Jamuna) on the north. The
south of the District is composed of long and narrow ridged hills
which run parallel with one another from north-east to south-west.
Through the intervening valleys the rivers flow down impetuously over
ledges of granite or quartz. The rocky crests lie bare and exposed,
but the shoulders are covered with low underbrush, and the bases
with considerable trees. The principal chain in the District is that on
which the fort of Karar is situated. It rises in Garotha pargaftd^ and
runs parallel with the Betwa river, till it is finally lost in the clusters
of hills in the neighbourhood of Barwa Sagar. Northward of the hilly
region stretches an intermediate strip of broken country, dotted with
isolated heights, and deeply excavated near the banks of the larger rivers
by short watercourses which drain the surrounding table-land. Here the
rocky granite chains gradually lose themselves in clusters of smaller
hills, amongst which are situated a series of magnificent artificial lakes,
partially surrounded by the overhanging heights, and enclosed on their
open sides by embankments of solid masonry. Some of them belong
to the same age as those in the District of Hamirpur, having been
constructed about 900 years since by the Chandel Rajas of Mahoba ;
but others date back no further than the 17th or i8th century, and are
the work of Bundela princes. The principal of these lakes are the
Barwa Sagar, situated twelve miles east of Jhansi ; the Arjar lake, about
eight miles east of Barwa Sagar ; and the Kachneya lake, about eight
miles east of Arjar on the road to Mau.

The northern pordon of Jhansi consists of the level plain of Bundel-
khand, distinguished for its deep black soil, known as 7?idr, and admir-
ably adapted for the cultivation of cotton. The District is intersected


or bounded by three principal rivers — the Pahuj, the Betwa, and the
Dhasan, all of which are liable to be flooded in the rainy season ; and
on these occasions Jhansi is almost completely cut off from communi-
cation with the outer world. There are many minor streams, most of
which are feeders of the Dhasan. Government forest lands occupy
about 23,000 acres. The principal forest tract, and the only one in
which teak and timber trees of any size are found, is the Babina jungle,
lying along the banks of the Betwa in the southern portion of pargand
Jhansi. There are four other patches of scrub jungle along the eastern
boundary of the District, near the Dhasan, the principal trees, or rather
bushes, being the khair (Acacia catechu), reiingd (Acacia leucophloa),
and dhdk (Butea frondosa). In addition to the forest tracts, there are
nine grass preserves, or rwids^ the produce of which is annually put up
to auction by the Forest Department. The wild animals common to the
District include the tiger, leopard, many varieties of deer, the hyena,
'.volf, lynx, and wild dog. Among birds are the bustard, partridge,
grouse, quail, plover, and the usual species of wild goose, duck, and

History. — The Parihars, a Rajput tribe, are pointed out by tradition
as the earhest Aryan immigrants into Jhansi, where they still possess
24 villages. But nothing is known with certainty as to the history of
this District before the period of Chandel rule, about the nth century
of our era. {See Hamirpur.) To this epoch must be referred the
artificial reservoirs and architectural remains of the hilly region. After
the overthrow of the Mahoba dynasty, the Chandels were succeeded in
this portion of their dominions by their servants the Khangars, who built
the fort of Karar, now lying just outside the British border, on an
intrusive spur of the Orchha State. About the 14th century, the
Khangars in their turn fell before the first fierce irruption of the Bun-
delas, a spurious Rajput tribe, who poured down upon the plains from
the southern mountains, and placed their earliest capital at Mau (Mhow).
Thence they attacked and conquered the fortress of Karar, and
gradually spread themselves over the whole region which now bears
their nam.e. The great Bundela leader, Rudra Pratap, from whom
most of the distinguished families in Bundelkhand trace their descent,
founded the city of Orchha, which thenceforth became the capital of
his race. Under his descendants, the District long practically main-
tained its independence of the Musalmans, though the Orchha Rajas
from time to time made formal payments of tribute to the court of

In the early part of the 17th century, the Orchha State was governed
by Bir Singh Deo, who built the fort of Jhansi. He incurred the
heavy displeasure of Akbar, by the murder of Abul Fazl, the Emperor's
favourite minister and historian, at the instigation of Prince Salim,


afterwards known as the Emperor Jahangir. A force was accordingly
sent against him in 1602, the country ^was ravaged and devastated, but
Bir Singh himself contrived to escape. On the accession of his patron,
Salim, in 1605, he was naturally pardoned, and rose into great favour.
But when, on the death of that Emperor in 1627, Shah Jahan mounted
the throne, Bir Singh revolted. His rebellion was unsuccessful ; and
although he was permitted to keep possession of his dominions, he
never regained all his former power and independence. During the
troubled times which succeeded, Orchha was sometimes in the hands
of the Musalmans, and sometimes fell under the power of the Bundela
chieftains, Champat Rai and his son Chhatar Sal. When, in 1707, the
last-named national leader obtained from Bahadur Shah a confirmation
in the possessions which he had conquered, the present District of
Jhansi was included in the grant. But even after this nominal paci-
fication, the Muhammadan subahddrs continued to make irruptions into
the Bundela country; and in 1732, Chhatar Sd.1 found it expedient to
call in the aid of the Marathas, who were then invading the Central
Provinces under their first Peshwa, Baji Rao. The Marathas, never
slow to insinuate themselves where opportunity offered, came to his
assistance with their accustomed promptitude, and were rewarded on
the Raja's death, in 1734, by a bequest of one-third of his dominions.
The territory so granted included portions of the modern Division of
Jhansi, but not the existing District itself. In 1742, however, the
Marathas found a pretext for attacking the Orchha State, and annexing
that amongst other territories. Their general founded the city of
Jhansi, and peopled it with the inhabitants of Orchha.

The District remained under the power of the Peshwas for some
thirty years, but after that period the Maratha viceroys made themselves
independent in all but name. Seo Rao Bhao was suba/iddr, or governor,
when the British first began to interest themselves in the affairs of
Bundelkhand. By saiiad^ dated February 8, 1804, British protection
was promised him ; and this arrangement was confirmed by treaty in
October 1806. Seo Rao Bhao died in 18 14, and was succeeded by
his grandson, Ramchand Rao. In June 181 7, the Peshwa ceded to
the East India Company his rights over Bundelkhand ; and in November
of the same year, the Government acknowledged the hereditary title of
Ramchand Rao and his descendants to all their existing possessions.
In 1832, the title of siibahddr was changed for that of Raja. Ramchand
Rao proved a weak and inefficient administrator, his revenues fell con-
siderably in amount, and his territories were overrun and plundered by
the native tribes beyond the Pahiij. Much injury was inflicted upon
the cultivators, who have scarcely yet recovered from their losses at this
period. Ramchand Rao died without issue in 1835. Four claimants
npi)earcd for his territories, and the British Government recognised his


great-uncle, Ragbundth Rao, the second son of Seo Rao Bhao, as heir
t'o the principality. Under his administration, the revenue fell again to
one-fourth of the sum which it had produced even during the manage-
ment of his predecessor. His extravagance and debauchery compelled
him to mortgage part of his territories to the Gwalior and Orchha States.
He died heavily in debt, and without legitimate issue, in 1836.

Four claimants again presented themselves for the vacant succession,
and a commission was appointed by the British Government to investi-
aate their claims. Meanwhile, the Political Agent in Bundelkhand
assumed the administration," in the interests of civil order. The
decision of the commission was given in favour of Gangadhar Rao,

Online LibraryWilliam Wilson HunterThe imperial gazetteer of India (Volume 7) → online text (page 26 of 57)