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of the District. The estuaries of the rivers, navigable for 92 miles,
offer shelter to coasting vessels during the stormy months of the
monsoon. In 1820, there were five seaports {bandar), viz. Degam,
Tankari, Ghandhar, Dehej, and Broach. Of these, only two, Broach
and Tankari, are still seats of trade. During the ten years ending
1847, the total value of sea-borne imports and exports averaged
£1,150,091. From 1856 to 1862, the corresponding returns fell to
£9 7°) 3 3 9- From 1865 to 1870, they amounted on an average to
,£634,369; while in 1874 they had fallen as low as £391,297, or about
one-third of the corresponding returns of twenty-five years before. In
1880-81, the imports were ,£155,104; exports, ,£449,898: total,
£"605,002. In the Broach District section of 28 miles of the Bombay,
Baroda, and Central India Railway, the chief engineering work is the
bridge over the Narbada. This structure consists of 67 spans, or a total
length of 4122 feet, with a maximum height of 120 feet from screw
to rail level, the screw being 60 feet below the river bed, or 72 feet
below low water in mid channel. The most important branch of
Broach trade is the export of cotton. To the total of 65,348 tons,
valued at £"1,637,965, exported during the year 1874, cotton con-
tributed £"1,376,508, or 84-03 per cent. In connection with this
cotton trade, 31 steam presses were employed in the District in 1874.

At present the capital by which the trade of Broach is carried on is
for the most part supplied from Bombay. In 1820, the Broach dealers
are said to have been representatives of mercantile houses in Bombay,
Surat, and Ujjain ; and now, in the majority of cases, they are agents
of Bombay firms. Except in the town of Broach, where there are a
few Parsis and Borahs, the capitalists are almost all Baniyas by caste.
Carriers and other unskilled town labourers earn from 6d. to 9 Jd. a day j
agricultural labourers, from 3d. to 4A& ; bricklayers and carpenters,


from is. 3d. to is. 6d. Female labourers are paid about one-third
than males. Lads of from 12 to 15 get about two-thirds less; boys
of from 10 to 13, who accompany carpenters and bricklayers, are
paid about one-fifth of the ordinary rate. The current prices ] ei
maund of 40 sers or 80 lbs. of the chief articles of food during 1881
were, for wheat, 6s.; for rice, 9s. 2jd. ; for Indian millet or jodr
(Sorghum vulgare), 4s. 3§d. j for Italian millet or bdjrd (Holcus
spicatus), 4s. 8£d. ; for gram, 5s. 3d.; for peas or dal, 4s. o|d.j for
barley, 6s. 3d.

History. — Though the English established a Factory at 15 roach for
trade purposes as early as 1616, it was not until after their capture of
the castle of Surat in 1759 that they had any political relations with
the native ruler. But soon after their accession to political power at
Surat, certain questions of revenue gave rise to a dispute with the ruler
of Broach, and in 1771 a force was sent from Surat against his capital.
This expedition, which was not begun till May, resulted in failure ;
but during the ensuing rainy season, the Nawab of Broach visited Bom-
bay, and agreed to pay to the English a sum of ^"40,000. This, how-
ever, he failed to do, and in November 1772 a second expedition was
sent against Broach. The city was taken with little difficulty, though
with the loss of General Wedderburn, the commander of the force.
The territory acquired by the capture of the city comprised 162 villages.
In 1783, the country under Broach, which by treaty and conquest had
by that time come to include the lands of Ankleswar, Hansot, Dehej-
bara, and Amod, was by the treaty of Salbai (Salbye) handed over
to the Marathas — the original conquest to Mahadaji Sindhia, and the
new acquisitions to the Peshwa. For nineteen years these territories
remained under Maratha rule, till in 1803, in consequence of the treaty
of Bassein, Sindhia's possessions in Gujarat were invaded by a British
force, and the city of Broach was again taken. No further territorial
changes took place till 1818, when, under the terms of the treaty of
Poona, three sub-divisions were added to the District. Since that date
the history of Broach has been marked by only two events — in 1823, an
outbreak of Kolis took place, and in 1857 a riot between the Parsis and
Musalmans. The first revenue settlement of the District took place in
1870-71 ; it will become open to resettlement in 1895-96.

Administration. — For administrative purposes, the District is divided
into 5 taluks or Sub-divisions, viz. Amod, Broach, Ankleswar,
Jambusar, and Wagra. The administration in revenue matters is
entrusted to a Collector and three Assistants, of whom one is a
covenanted civil servant. For judicial purposes, the District was
formerly included within the jurisdiction of the Judge of Surat. It now
contains 4 civil judges and 15 stipendiary magistrates, the average distance
in miles of villages from the nearest court being 1 2. In the year 1SS0-S1,


the total strength of the regular police force was 417 officers and men.
Of these, under the District superintendent, 2 were subordinate officers,
77 inferior subordinate officers, 22 mounted constables, and 315 foot-
constables, of whom 1 So were provided with firearms, and the remainder
with swords or batons. The cost of maintaining this force was ^7 68 3-
These figures show 1 man to every 3-49 square miles, as compared
with the area, and 1 man to every 7S4 persons, as compared with the
population; the cost of maintenance being equal to £5, 9s. per square
mile, or 5fd. per head of population. With the exception of accom-
modation provided for a few under-trial prisoners at the head-quarters
of each Sub-division, there is no prison in the District. All prisoners
are now conveyed by rail to the District jail in Surat. The District
contains 9 post-offices and 6 telegraph offices, one at each of the 5
stations on the railway, and a separate Government office at Broach.

The District local funds, created since 1863 for works of public utility
and rural education, yielded in 1880-81 a total of ^£18,552. There
are one city and two town municipalities at Broach, Jambiisar, and
Ankleswar. The total municipal receipts in 1880-81 amounted to
^9922; and the expenditure to ^"10,564, the incidence of taxation
being 3s. ijd. per head of population within municipal limits, 4s. ifd.
per head in Broach, and is. oj-d. in Jambiisar. The whole amount
of revenue raised in 1 880-8 1 — imperial, municipal, and local — was
^261,574, or 1 6s. per head of the entire population. Of this,
^224,278 was derived from the land revenue; ^9649 from excise,
and ^15,285 from the sale of stamps.

In the year 1880-81, there were 3 superior schools, with an attend-
ance of 377 pupils, and 214 Government primary schools, or 1 school
for every 2 inhabited villages, with an average attendance of 11,347
pupils, or 3 -5 per cent, of the total population. Of the total number, 7
were girls' schools. The whole cost of education to the State amounted
to ^6890. In Broach city there is 1 library and 2 local newspapers.

There are in all 15 fairs or places of pilgrimage, of which n are
reported to by Hindus, and 4 by Musalmans. Shukaltirth is annually
visited by about 25,000 pilgrims. At Bhadbhut and Karod, the number
varies from 50,000 to 100,000. The chief towns are — (1) Broach, with
a population (1881) of 37,281 ; (2) Jambusar, population 11,479; (3)
Ankleswar, population 9535 ; (4) Amod, population 5822.

Medical Aspects.— The District is as healthy as any part of Gujarat,
and the climate is much more pleasant than in those parts of the Pro-
vince situated farther from the sea. For a series of years ending with
1849, th e average rainfall was about 33 inches; between 1852 and i860,
the average returns are 41*60 inches; from i860 to 1870, 34 inches;
36-27 inches in 1872-73, and 3578 in 1873-74. According to the
Meteorological Report for 18S1, the general average rainfall at Broach


city is returned at 38-87 inches. Frosts are said to occur at
intervals of from 10 to 12 years, sometimes, as in 1835, sufficiently
severe to destroy the crops. The latter days of March and the month
of April are the hottest season in the year. At the end of April, west
and south-west winds begin to blow, and continue till October, when the
rainy season closes. In the following months, slight easterly winds
prevail, lasting till the end of December. There are 6 dispensaries, all
established within the last few years, and one hospital at Broach city.
During the year 1880-81, 25,751 persons in all were treated in the
dispensaries, of whom 25,612 were out-door and 139 in-door patients ;
while the civil hospital afforded relief to 330 in-patients and 7560 out-
patients ; and in the same year 6025 persons were vaccinated. The
total number of deaths registered throughout the District in the fourteen
years ending 1879 was 96,570, giving an average annual mortality of
6898, or a death-rate of 19-16 per thousand. In 1880, the total number
of deaths was returned at 10,326, or a death-rate of 31-5 per thousand.
During the same year the number of births was returned at 5861, of
whom 3104 were males, and 2757 females, giving a birth-rate of 16-73
per thousand of population. [For further information regarding
Broach, see the Bombay Gazetteer, vol. ii. pp. 337-569 (Government
Press, Bombay, 187 1). Also Mr. Stack's Memorandum on Current
Land Revenue Settlements, pp. 434-437 ; the Bombay Census Report
of 1 88 1 ; and the annual Administration Reports of the Bombay
Government from 1880 to 1883.]

Broach. — Sub-division of Broach District, Bombay Presidency.
Area (1881) 302 square miles; 1 town and 104 villages; occupied
houses, 23,011. Population (i88t) 110,561, or 366 per square mile.
Hindus numbered 64,382; Muhammadans, 30,531; and 'others,'
15,648. Almost the whole of this Sub -division is a flat rich
plain of black soil, stretching towards the north bank of the Xar-
bada, forty-three miles of whose course lie within its limits. The
remainder consists of a few islands in the bed of the river, and a
narrow strip of land on the southern bank, nearly opposite the city of
Broach. The supply of tank and well water is defective. Of the total
area of the Sub-division, 14 square miles are occupied by the lands of
alienated villages. The remainder, according to the revenue survey
returns, comprises 125,321 acres of occupied land; 10,406 acres of
cultivable waste ; 29,593 acres of uncultivable waste, and 20,182 acres
occupied by village sites, roads, tanks, and rivers. From the total
Government area of 135,727 acres, 19,974 acres have to be subtracted
on account of alienated lands in State villages. Of the balance of
115,753 acres, the actual area of cultivable State lands, 106,531 acres
were under cultivation, fallow, or under grass in 1S73-74. The
Government assessment, which was fixed in 1870-71, and remains

I 12


in force till 1 899-1 900, amounts to ^5 8 > 8 94 net, or an average of
1 os. 5§& per acre. The Sub-division contained 3 civil and 6 criminal
courts in 1883, with two police stations (thdnds) ; strength of regular
police, 207 men ; village watchmen {chaitkidars), 709.

Broach. Chief town of the District of the same name in Gujarat

(Guzerat),' Bombay Presidency; situated on the right bank of ^ the
Narbada (Nerbudda) river, about 30 miles from its mouth. Lat. 21 43'
N., long. 73° 2' E. ; area, including suburbs, 3! square miles; number
of' houses, 10,443; population (1881) 37,281, namely, males 19,404,
and females 17,877, classified as follows :— Hindus, 22,201; Musal-
mans, 10,847; Jains, 873; Parsis, 2088; Christians, in ; and
'others,' 1161; municipal revenue (1881) ^79 8 5> or IS - 3i d - P er
head of population ; municipal expenditure in same year, .£9256.

Seen from the southern bank of the Narbada, or approached by the
railway bridge from the south, the massive stone wall, rising from the
water's edge, and lining the river bank for about a mile, and the
buildings standing out from the high ground behind, give the town of
Broach a marked and picturesque appearance. The fortifications,
though by local tradition ascribed to Sidh Raj Jaisingji of Anhilwara
(12th century), were, according to the author of the Mirat-i-Sika?idri,
built in 1526 a.d., under the orders of Sultan Bahadur, King of
Ahmadabad. In the middle of the 17th century (1660), the walls are
said to have been destroyed by the Emperor Aurangzeb, and about
twenty-five years later, to have been rebuilt by the same monarch as a
protection against the attacks of the Marathas. Of late years, the
fortifications on the land side have been allowed to fall into disrepair,
and in some places almost every trace of them has disappeared. On
the southern side, where protection is required against the floods of the
river, the city wall is kept in good order. Built of large blocks of stone,
the river face of the wall, raised from 30 to 40 feet high, stretches along
the bank for about a mile. It is provided with five gates, and the top
forms a broad pathway. The circuit of the wall includes an area of f ths
of a square mile, which in the centre rises to a height of from 60 to 80
feet above the surrounding country. This mound, from the broken
bricks and other debris dug out of it, shows signs of being in part at
least of artificial construction. At the same time, the presence of one
or two small hillocks to the north of the city favours the opinion that it
may have been the rising ground on the river bank which led the early
settlers to choose Broach as the site for a city. Within the walls, the
streets are narrow, and in some places steep. The houses are generally
two storeys high, with walls of brick and tiled roofs. In the eastern
part of the town are some large family mansions said to have been built
in 1 790. In the suburbs the houses have a meaner appearance, many of
them being not more than one storey high, with walls of wattle and daub.


The city of Broach was, according to local legend, originally
founded by the sage Bhragu, and called Bhragupui or Bhragu's city.
In the 1st century of the Christian era, the sage's settlement had given
its n ame— Barugaza— to a large Province, and had itself become one
of the chief ports in Western India. Two hundred years later, it was
the capital of a Rajput king ; and in the early part of the 7th century,
it is said by the Chinese pilgrim, Hwen Thsang, to have contained 10
Buddhist convents, with 300 monks and 10 temples. Half a century
later, Broach was a town of sufficient importance to attract some of
the earliest Musalman expeditions against Western India. Under the
Rajput dynasties of Anhilwara (746-1300 A - D -)> Broach was a flourish-
in- seaport. During the troubles that followed the overthrow of the
Anhilwara kings, the city would seem to have changed hands on more
than one occasion. But with the exception of two years (i534-3 6 )>
durino- which it was held by the officers of the Emperor Humayun,
Broach remained (1391 to 1572) under the Musalman dynasty of
Ahmadabad. About this time, the city was twice (1536 and 1546)
plundered by the Portuguese, who, except for its streets, 'so nanxw
most of them that two horsemen could not pass at the same time/
admired the city 'with its magnificent and lofty houses, with
their costly lattices, the famous ivory and blackwood workshops,
and its townsmen well skilled in mechanics— chiefly weavers, who
make the finest cloth in the world' (Decadas de Couto, v. 325). In
1573, Broach was surrendered to the Emperor Akbar by Muzafiar
Shah in., the last of the line of Ahmadabad kings. Ten years later,
Muzaffar Shah recovered the city, but held it only for a few months,
when it again fell into the hands of the Emperor of Delhi. In 16 16
a British factory, and in 161 7 a Dutch factory, were established at
Broach. In 1660, some of the fortifications of the city were razed
to the ground by the order of the Emperor Aurangzeb. In this defence-
less state it was twice, in 1675 and 1686, plundered by the Marathas.
After the second attack, Aurangzeb ordered that the walls should be
rebuilt, and the city named Sukhabad. In 1736, the Musalman com-
mandant of the port was raised by Nizam-ul-Mulk to the rank of Nawab.
In April 1771, an attempt on the part of the English to take Broach
failed: but in November 1772 a second force was sent against the
town, and this time it was stormed and captured. In 1783, it was
handed over to Sindhia, but was retaken in 1803 by the British, and
since that time it has remained in our possession.

In 1777, the town is said to have contained 50,000 inhabitants ; in
1812, 37,716. The census of 1872 returned 3 6,93^ I that of 1881, 37,2s 1.
The only classes calling for special notice are, among Hindus, the Bh.agav
Brahmans, who claim to be descendants of the sage Bhragu. The I
from the number and antiquity of their Towers of Silence, are supposed



to have settled at Broach as far back as the nth century. Formerly
shipbuilders and skilled weavers, they have suffered from the decay of
both trades. Many of them have migrated to Bombay, to improve
their circumstances; and the frugality of those that are left enables
them to keep out of pauperism. The Brahma Kshattris — a writer
caste— are influential and prosperous. The greater number and most
wealthy of the trading classes are Srawaks or Jains. The Musalmans
are for the most part in a condition of poverty.

Broach is one of the oldest seaports in Western India. Eighteen
hundred years ago, it was a chief seat of the trade then carried
on between India and the ports of Western Asia. In more recent
times, though the trade of Gujarat has never again centred in the
harbours of this District, Broach so far maintained its position,
that in the 17th century it sent ships eastward to Java and Sumatra,
and westward to Aden and the ports of the Red Sea. Later on, the
foreign trade of Gujarat collected more and more in Surat, until from
Surat it was transferred to Bombay. The cotton once exported from
Broach to China and Bengal, was sent through Surat and Bombay; and
as far back as 18 15, the Broach ports ceased to have any foreign com-
merce. They now possess only a coasting trade south to Bombay and
all the intermediate ports, and north as far as Mandvi, in Cutch. The
total value of the sea-borne trade of Broach in 1880-81 was ^601,467,
of which ,£154,026 represented the value of imports, and ^447,441
that of exports. The chief articles of trade are, towards the south,
exports — flowers of the mahud tree (Bassia latifolia), wheat, and cotton ;
imports — molasses, rice, betel-nut, timber, coal, iron, and cocoa-nut.
To the west and north the exports are — grain, cotton seed, mahud
flowers, tiles, and firewood ; the imports, chiefly stone for building.

In ancient times, cloth is mentioned as one of the chief articles of
export from Broach; and in the 17th century, when the English and
Dutch first settled in Gujarat, it was the fame of its cloth manufactures
that led them to establish factories in Broach. The kinds of cloth for
which Broach was specially known at that time would seem to have
been bdstds, broad and narrow dimities, and other fine calicoes. The
gain to the European trader of having a factory at Broach was, that he
might ' oversee the weavers, buying up the cotton yarn to employ them
all the rains, when he sets on foot his investments, that they may be
ready against the season for the ships.' About the middle of the 17th
century, the District is said to have produced more manufactures, and
those of the finest fabrics, than the same extent of country in any other
part of the world, not excepting Bengal. In spite of the increasing
competition of the produce of steam factories in Bombay, Surat, and
Ahmadabad, handloom weaving in Broach has within the last few years
shown signs of reviving.

B UBAK—B UDA UN. , , g

With the exception of a stone mosque constructed out of an older
Hindu temple, the city contains no buildings of interest. To the west
are the groves of the well-wooded suburbs of Vajalpur, and northwards
a group of two hills relieves the line of the level plain, while on the
north-east rows of tamarind trees mark where a hundred years ago was
the Nawdb's garden, with 'summer pavilions, fountains, and canals.' To
the east are the spots that, to a Hindu, give the town a special interest,
the site of King Bali's sacrifice, and the temple of Bhragu Rishi. About
200 yards from the bastion at the north-west corner of the fort is
the tomb of Brigadier David Wedderburn, who was killed at the siege
of Broach on 14th November 1772. About two miles west of the fort,
are a few large and massive tombs, raised to members of the Dutch
Factory. Beyond the Dutch tombs are the five Parsi Towers of Silence :
four being old and disused, and the fifth lately built by a rich Parsi
merchant of Bombay. The city has been surveyed with a view to pro-
tect the rights of both the Government and the public. The drinking
water used by the inhabitants of the intramural parts of the town comes
almost entirely from the Narbada. There are but few wells in the city ;
and, unlike Surat and Ahmadabad, the custom of having cisterns in
dwelling-houses for the storage of rain water is not general.

Blibak. — Town and railway station in Sehwan taluk, Karachi
(Kurrachee) District, Sind, Bombay Presidency; 9 miles west of the
town of Sehwan. Lat. 2 6° 26' 30" n., long. 67 45' 15" e. Population
(1881) 2836. Municipal revenue in 1880-81, ^305 ; incidence of
taxation about 2s. ijd. per head; expenditure, £246. Post-office,
school, and police station. Carpets of good quality are manufactured.
Owing to floods caused by the overflow of the Manchhar Lake, the
zanunddrs have been of late years considerably impoverished. To
resist these encroachments, the town has been surrounded by a ditch.
The public health has been affected in consequence, and in 1869 Bubak
suffered severely from cholera. The railway station is distant 3 miles
from the town.

Bud-Bud. — Village and police station in Bardwan District, Bengal.
Lat. 23 24' 30" n., long. 87 34' 45" e.

Budaun (Buddon).— British District in the Lieutenant-Governorship
of the North-Western Provinces, lying between 27 39' and 28 27' x.
lat, and between 78 19' 15" and 79° 41' e, long. ; area, 2001 -8 square
miles; population in 1881, 906,451 souls. Budaun forms the south-
western District of the Rohilkhand Division. It is bounded on the
north-east by Bareli (Bareilly) and the State of Rampur, on the north-
west by Moradabad, on the south-west by the Ganges, and on the east
by Shahjahanpur. The administrative head-quarters are at the town of

Physical Aspects. — The District of Budaun does not materially differ


in its main features from the other portions of the great Gangetic
plain. It stretches, with little diversity of surface or scenery, from the
valley of the Ramganga on the east, to the sacred river which forms its
boundary on the west, in an almost unbroken succession of ancient
alluvial uplands. But although its level face is seldom interrupted by
any elevation greater than a shifting sandhill, yet a closer view discloses
minor varieties of soil and productions which at first sight escape the
eye in surveying its somewhat monotonous flats. The District is
divided into two nearly equal portions by the river Sot, on whose banks
the town of Budaun occupies a picturesque eminence, crowned by
mouldering battlements of early architecture. The north-eastern of
these two regions forms the dividing range between the Sot and the
Ramganga, and the soil as it approaches the former stream falls away
into huge gaping ravines, through which the surface drainage cuts itself
an ever- widening course into the channel below. A large part of this
tract still abounds in heavy jungles of dhdk and wild date, the remnant
of that famous forest which once surrounded Aonla in Bareilly
District, and into which the armies of the Mughal Emperors dared not
penetrate. The estates situated in the heart of this wild region bear
the name of the Bankati villages. Similar patches of dense brushwood
may be found scattered here and there in other parts of the District.
South-west of the Sot lies the central upland tract, a highly cultivated
plain, comprising the richest agricultural land in Budaun. The jungle
is, however, rapidly decreasing in area, owing to the demand for

Online LibraryWilliam Wilson HunterThe imperial gazetteer of India (Volume 3) → online text (page 14 of 56)