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for 875 rupees by Tannee Rai, a distant relative of the proprietors, and a resident on the estate, but not himself an owner before that time. From the period of the purchase to the present day the descendants of Tannee Rai held with the heirs of the original proprietors, and all paid Beegah-dam, but till sometime after the cession, the family of Tannee Rai remained superior. About the year 1820, the descendants of one of the old branches sued for a quarter share of the estate, and on inspection of the genealogical tree, and a reference to the law officers of the Court, obtained a decree in their favor. In this suit the real question was never brought forward, nor the circumstances explained, under which the Tannee Rai branch was introduced. This decree was never executed, but at the time of settlement, the holders of the decree claimed execution of it from the officer who was conducting the proceedings. They were of course referred back to the Civil Court for an order on the Collector to give possession under the decree, and at the same time a proceeding was held, setting forth all the peculiar features of the case for the consideration of the Court Now we are able to perceive in this particular case the origin of the tenure, and the means whereby a new branch was introduced amongst the community of proprietors, alien to the original stock, but still possessed of rights in reality far stronger than any of the others. The principle of the Civil Court's decision went to the exclusion of these, in fact, the rightful owners, and whose proprietary tenure had been sanctioned by the uninterrupted possession of upwards of 100 years. Similarly good reasons, no doubt, often exist, though the trace of them has been lost, for the numerous apparent anomalies, which exist in tenures of this description. The memory of the transaction had been maintained by its comparatively recent date, the high station of some of the parties concerned, and the existence of the Bazar, which was named in commemoration of it. Similar transactions which were not rendered equally illustrious, were doubtless often forgotten in the convulsions and revolutions of former times.
72nd. It is well to remark some of the incidents of this tenure, and the points wherein they vary from each other.
73rd. Sometimes the Sayer are divided according to hereditary shares, sometimes according to the Seer; the latter prevailing where the shares are acknowledged, the former where they are unknown.
74th. The sharers may themselves cultivate, or they may have the option of under-letting their Seer. This depends more than any thing else on the circumstances in life of the sharers. If they are respectable men, who do not cultivate themselves, or have other means of liveli
hood, they are accustomed to under-let their Seer; but not if they are themselves of the class of cultivators, and have no other means of occupation. In some instances each person pays the bach,h upon his Seer, whether it be cultivated or not; but in general he only pays upon what has been actually cultivated. The former custom is usual when the proprietor is at liberty to under-let his Seer.
75th. The managing proprietor, or Lumberdar of each Puttee, sometimes receives a fixed sum, or pecuniary allowance. This is the case in Sithwul, which has just been mentioned. Each manager there gets 25 Rupees, which is charged to the village expenses. Instances of this are at present rare, because the other unauthorized advantages possessed by the proprietor have generally caused the office to be much an object of desire; now that the situation has become elective, and held only at the pleasure of the community, it is probable that it will more frequently be remunerated by money payments.
76th. Generally the Zemindars are not allowed to extend their Seer without the consent of the community, but where there is much culturable waste land attached to the village, or cultivators are scarce, the rules on this head are little attended to.
77th. In all villages or estates held by communities, exertions have been made in the present settlement to specify and place on record the several peculiarities and incidents of the tenure, which have been referred to above. The members of the community have been called upon voluntarily to define these in a joint deed, executed by as many members of the body as could conveniently be brought together. The points alluded to in these deeds, are the mode in which the profits of the estate are to be divided, and the rules regarding the enjoyment of the Sayer, the cultivation of waste land, the management of Seer land, the rights, privileges, power and tenure of Lumberdars, or managing proprietors. As far as practicable, whenever a desire to that effect has been expressed, the non-proprietary cultivators and the waste land have been divided amongst the several sharers or families of sharers, so that whilst the joint responsibility is maintained, there still exists the greatest encouragement for the improvement of each several share.
78th. I have thus attempted to describe the principal sort of proprietary tenures; but before proceeding to any other branch of the subject, would briefly notice the topographical distribution of property which prevails in different parts of this district, and mention the mode in which the settlement proceedings bear in this respect on the state of property.
79th. The simplest form of an estate is, where an individual,
or community of individuals own the whole of a plat of ground lying within certain limits, and bearing a fixed name, as a Mouzah. This may from time immemorial have borne a single name, and be generally recognized as such, or it may contain within its area two or more Mouzahs, Uslee or Dakhulee, or both, whose separate boundaries have long been lost sight of, and which have become intermingled so as to form one village, probably bearing the double name.
80th. The estate however may comprise two or more such Mouzahs, and these may be situated together or at a distance from each other.
81st. The ancestors of many of the Rajpoot communities were possessed of large tracts of land containing many villages. As their descendants multiplied, this tract of land was subdivided, and formed into separate Mehals. This subdivision sometimes was effected so as to assign whole Mouzahs to different branches of the family. It was seldom, however, especially when the subdivision was amongst many sharers, that the property could be so divided. In this case, perhaps, some entire Mouzahs were given to each branch of the family, and the inequalities thence arising were made good in the division of some Mouzahs held jointly by all, or else each Mouzah was divided so that every branch of the family should have a portion. The whole Mouzahs, or portions of Mouzahs, belonging to each branch, were collected together, and made into one Mehal, or estate. But in the Mouzahs held jointly, the division probably was not in distinct portions, but field by field, or as it is commonly called, Khet Bhut. Now these fields sometimes became the subject of sale from one person to another, and the purchaser might call the purchased field by the name of his own Mouzah. It thus happens that many Mouzahs in Tuppah Chowree, Pergunnah Deogaon, contain within them fields known by the name of other Mouzahs, perhaps two or three miles distant, and have attached to them fields in other Mouzahs at an equally great distance. In Tuppah Koobah, Pergunnah Deogaon, the case was still more involved by the circumstance, that sets of fields in scveral Mouzahs, belonging to different branches of the family, bore distinct names. This distinction existed sometimes in the Government records, and not in common usage, sometimes in both.
82nd. Now in all cases of this sort, the system of survey which has been followed is the most convenient which could have been devised. The professional survey gives the locality of the villages, or of the plots of ground constituting the site and the bulk of the village, whilst the native field maps give the several fields within the circuit of each village. These fields can be distinguished by different colors
according to the different Mehals to which they are attached; and the fair proportion of Jumma allotted to the Mouzah, may be readily assigned to each field, or knot of fields. The fragments of villages thus assessed may be grouped together in Mehals, so as to suit general convenience, and without any trouble to the revenue officers of the Government, or any risk to the interests of the Government.
83rd. It may be useful to attempt a definition of these two terms, a Mouzah, or village, and a Mehal, or estate.
84th. A Mouzah, or village, is one or more parcels of land called by a certain name, of fixed limits, and known locality, neither of which are liable to change. At the time of settlement, each Mouzah has a name and number assigned to it in the Government lists, and must so remain till the ensuing settlement, or till, for any special reason, it should appear fit, under express orders from the Government, to break up or alter the arrangement of the Mouzahs.
85th. A Mehal, or estate, consists of one or more Mouzahs, or a part or parts of one or more Mouzahs, covered by one engagement with the Government, or Durkhaust, and belonging to one individual or body of persons, who are jointly responsible for the Jumma assessed upon the whole. These are liable to constant variations, according as transfers of property may take place. An annual adjustment of Mehals at the time of making up the annual kistbundee if done with discretion, and under certain precautions, will be found very conducive to the comfort of the people, and the convenience of the Government officer.
86th. I would now proceed to notice the right possessed by non-proprietary cultivators, i. e. cultivators not under engagements with the V. p. 23, Gov. Government themselves, or through their representative. These may be divided into,
Genl's. minute of
First, Those having an hereditary and transferable right to hold their land at a fixed rate.
Second. Those having a right of occupancy at a fixed rate, either for a certain period or during their own lives, or those of their immediate descendants.
Thirdly,-Mere tenants at will.
87th. Under the first term I would include all holders of resumed Maaffees, with whom such an arrangement has been expressly concluded by the Collector at the time of settlement, and generally those who by purchase, gift, or special compact, have obtained rights of this nature from the Zemindars, such as Bisweedars, Sunkullupdars, the holders of land at reduced rates, or rent free, as security for loans, the holders of land on special terms in lieu of proprietary claims on the estate. These persons may be, as it happens, themselves cultivators or
may have cultivators under them. At the time of settlement the extent of land held by them, and the conditions of their tenure, have been clearly recorded. The proprietor is of course responsible to the Government for the Jumma fairly assignable to their holding, but he may sue them summarily for the amount, and on failure of payment may oust them or bring their tenures to sale. It may happen, and it frequently does happen, especially in Talookahs, that a whole Mouzah may thus be held as an under tenure by the old proprietors, who are responsible to the Talookdar and not to the Government, and who yet may manage the village concerns according to established custom as a proprietary body. The provisions of Act vIII. of 1835, which authorizes the sale of under tenures of this sort, on failure to pay the amount decreed in a summary suit, afford considerable facilities for the realization of the rents from tenures of this description.
88th. In the second class may be placed the former proprietors of estates sold by auction for arrears of rent, as regarded their Seer land-ousted proprietors, or old claimants of proprietary right, as regards the land they have long had in possession, and generally those who, whether actually resident in the village, or otherwise, may be proved to have long held the same land on the same terms for a course of years. The period which constitutes such prescriptive right has been no where settled. It has been held, that land so possessed since the cession may come within this class. A shorter period however might fairly be assigned, and probably the Civil Courts would recognize the term of twelve years as sufficient to constitute the claim. It is not unfrequently the case that tenures of this sort originate in contracts entered into by the Zemindars themselves, with cultivators whom they may engage to bring waste land into tillage.
89th. Now it is evident that all tenures of this kind are liable to adjustment at the time of settlement. No proprietor is at liberty to fix rates which should hold good beyond the term of his own tenure, or lease, nor would the settling officer be justified in recognizing rates which fall below the average of the Government demand, or the fair proportion of assessment which may be levied from the fields in question. It is sufficient that the fair rate fixed at the time of settlement should be invariable during its duration, and that the extent of land thus held, with the rate and right of permanency, should be clearly defined. Of course if the holders of this land extend their cultivation, and take other fields than those which they are recorded to possess, they do not carry their privileges with them, but must make their own terms with the Zemindars for their new requisitions. 90th. The most perplexing cases of this sort which are likely to