Page:Journal of the Royal Geographical Society of London, Volume 1 (2nd edition).djvu/261

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Burnes' Yisit to the Court of o?ind?. 2?9 sheir bazbans or falconers, with hawks, some of which are of great value. The best are brought from Turkistan and the northern parts of Cabul. The princes show their distrust of one another in nothing so touch as in never leaving any of their number behind on a hunting excursion; great precaulions are also taken to prevent treachery or combination against themselves. Like all Asiatic governors, they never sacrifice present gains for future advantages; nor do they consider the interests of the people and their rulers as the same. ? Their internal policy is directed towards the accumulation of wealth, on which they consider the' grandeur and stability of their dynasty to depend. The enormous imposts and taxation resulting from this system have the effect of paralysing trade, and trampling down industry. The revenues are farmed to the highest bidders, who only enjoy their contracts by the grace of their mas- ters, and exert, in consequence, to the utmost, during their often brief administration, their powers of exaction and oppression. The advantage which :Sinde has, and which euables her to struggle against the curses of misrule and ignorance, is her inde- pendence of periodical rains. The government has no more sym. pathy with the farmer than the ryot, and is not deaf to appeals against him. The Mussuimen are all soldiers, and rarely lease- holders, and the revenues are thus, i?or the most part, in the hands of I-lindoos who are out of fayour at court; and the farmers are not, as is the case in Cutch, civil magistrates. Certainly thsre is no country adjoining our East India possessions which would better repay the fostering care of a mild and enlightened manage. merit than Sinde. The narrow policy of its governors does more to annihilate national prosperity than the whole combination of physical evils; and it is with a feeling entirely independent of a desire for our country's aggrandisement that we would wish to see the Indus once more the seat of a commerce and industry which had been planted there by European hands. Course of the Indus.--The investigations of late years have rectified many errors regarding the course of the Sindh or Indus, though the charts given by Colonel Potringer and Mr. Burnes, the latter from a sketch of the Indus, by Samuel Richards, in the Quarter-master-general's office, .Bombay, differ considerably in their details; and it appears that, at different periods of the year, the repletion or exsiccation of cross branches gives variable features to that part of the country which is below Bhukor. It is sup- posed to rise between the $Sth and $6th degrees of north latitude, whence it runs a little to the southward of west, for a distance of seven or eight degrees, forcing its way among the snowy moun- tains that separate Cashmere and Little Thibet. To the fortress of Attock, in latitude Ik? � N.,' it varies its course between Digitized by Google