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those very powers from which I primarily derived my authority, and which were required for the support of it. My exertions, though applied to an unvaried and con sistent line of action, have been occasional and desultory; yet I please myself with the hope, that, in the annals of your dominion, which shall be written after the extinction of recent prejudices, this term of its administration will appear not the least conducive to the interests of the Company, nor the least reflective of the honor of the British name: and allow me to suggest the instructive reflection of what good might have been done, and what evil prevented, had due support been given to that administration which has performed such eminent and substantial services without it."
And the said Hastings, further to render the au thority of the said Court perfectly contemptible, doth, in a strain of exultation for his having escaped out of a measure in which by his guilt he had involved the Company in a ruinous war, and out of which it had escaped by a sacrifice of almost all the territories before acquired (from that enemy which he had made) either by war or former treaties, and by the abandoning the Company's allies to their mercy, attribute the said supposed services to his acting in such a manner as had on former occasions excited their displeasure, in the following words. “ Pardon, Honorable Sirs, this digressive exultation. I cannot suppress the pride which I feel in this successful achievement of a measure so fortunate for your interests and the na. tional honor; for that pride is the source of my zeal, so frequently exerted in your support, and never more happily than in those instances in which I have de parted from the prescribed and beaten path of action,
and assumed a responsibility which has too frequently drawn on me the most pointed effects of your displeas
But however I may yield to my private feelings in thus enlarging on the subject, my motive in introducing it was immediately connected with its context, and was to contrast the actual state of your political affairs, derived from a happier influence, with that which might have attended an earlier dissolution of it”: and he did value himself upon “ the patience and temper with which he had submitted to all the indignities which have been heaped upon him” (meaning, by the said Court of Directors) “in this long service"; and he did insolently attribute to an unusual strain of zeal for their service, that he "persevered in the VIOLENT MAINTENANCE OF HIS OFFICE.”
X. That, in order further to excite the spirit of disobedience in the Company's servants to the lawful authority set over them, he, the said Warren Hastings, did treat contemptuously and ironically the supposed disposition of the Company's servants to obey the orders of the Court of Directors, in the words following. “The recall of Mr. Markham, who was known to be the public agent of my own nomination at Benares, and the reappointment of Mr. Francis Fowke by your order, contained in the same letter, would place it [the restoration of Cheyt Sing] beyond a doubt. This order has been obeyed; and whenever you shall be pleased to order the restoration of Cheyt Sing, I will venture to promise the same ready and exact submission in the other members of the Council." And he did, in the postscript of the said letter, and as on recollection, endeavor to make a reparation of honor to his said colleagues, as if his expressions aforesaid
had arisen from animosity to them, as follows. “Upon a careful revisal of what I have written, I fear that an expression which I have used, respecting the probable conduct of the board in the event of orders being received for the restoration of Cheyt Sing, may be construed as intimating a sense of dissatisfaction applied to transactions already past. — It is not my intention to complain of any one.”
XI. That the said Hastings, in the acts of injury aforesaid to the Rajah of Benares, did assume and arrogate to himself an illegal authority therein, and did maintain that the acts done in consequence of that measure were not revocable by any subsequent authority, in the following words. “If you should proceed to order the restoration of Cheyt Sing to the zemindary, from which, by the powers which I legally possessed, and conceive myself legally bound to assert against any subsequent authority to the contrary derived from the same common source, he was dispossessed for crimes of the greatest enormity, and your Council shall resolve to execute the order, I will instantly give up my station and the service.”
XII. That the said Warren Hastings did attempt to justify his publication of the said libellous letter to and against the Court of Directors by asserting therein that these resolutions (meaning the resolutions of the Court of Directors relative to the Rajah of Benares) “were either published or intended for publication”: evidently proving that he did take this unwarrantable course without any sufficient assurance that the ground and motive by him assigned had any existence.
XX. - MAHRATTA WAR AND PEACE.
I. That by an act passed in 1773 it was expressly ordered and provided, “ that it should not be lawful for any President and Council of Madras, Bombay, or Bencoolen, for the time being, to make any orders for commencing hostilities, or declaring or making war, against any Indian princes or powers, or for negotiating or concluding any treaty of peace, or other treaty, with any such Indian princes or powers, without the consent and approbation of the GovernorGeneral and Council first had and obtained, except in such cases of imminent necessity as would render it dangerous to postpone such hostilities or treaties until the orders from the Governor-General and Council might arrive.” That, nevertheless, the President and Council of Bombay did, in December, 1774, without the consent and approbation of the Governor-General and Council of Fort William, and in the midst of profound peace, commence an unjust and unprovoked war against the Mahratta government, did conclude a treaty with a certain person, a fugitive from that government, and proscribed by it, named Ragonaut Row, or Ragoba, and did, under various base and treacherous pretences, invade and conquer the island of Salsette, belonging to the Mahratta government.
II. That Warren Hastings, on the first advices received in Bengal of the above transactions, did condemn the ame in the strongest terms, - declaring that “the measures adopted by the Presidency of Bombay had a tendency to a very extensive and indefinite scene of troubles, and that their conduct was unseasonable, impolitic, unjust, and unauthorized.”
And the Governor-General and Council, in order to put a stop to the said unjust hostilities, did appoint an ambassador to the Peshwa, or chief of the Mahratta state, resident at Poonah; and the said ambassador did, after a long negotiation, conclude a definitive treaty of peace with the said Peshwa on terms highly honorable and beneficial to the East India Company, who by the said treaty obtained from the Mahrattas a cession of considerable tracts of country, the Mahratta share of the city of Baroach, twelve lacs of rupees for the expenses of the said unjust war, and particularly the island of Salsette, of which the Presidency of Bombay had possessed themselves by surprise and treachery. That, in return for these extraordinary concessions, the articles principally insisted on by the Mahrattas, with a view to their own future tranquillity and internal quiet, were, that no assistance should be given to any subject or servant of the Peshwa that should cause disturbances or rebellion in the Mahratta dominions, and particularly that the English should not assist Ragonaut Row, to whom the Mahrattas agreed to allow five lacs of rupees a year, or a jaghire to that amount, and that he should reside at Benares. That, nevertheless, the Presidency of Bombay did receive and keep Ragonaut Row at Bombay, did furnish him with a considerable establishment, and continue to carry on secret intrigues and negotiations with him, thereby giving just ground of jealousy and distrust to the Mahratta state. That the late Colonel John Upton, by whom the treaty of Poorunder was negotiated and concluded, did declare to the Governor-General and Council,“ that, while Ragonaut Row resides at Bombay in expectation of being supported, the ministers