Thursday, August 5, 2010

Imperial Gazatte of India: Jhang

Physical Aspects
It is district in the Multan division of the Punjab lying between 300 35’ and 32 4 N, and 73 31 E, with an area of 6652 square miles. It is bounded on the north-west by district Shahpur, on the north-east by Shahpur and Gujranwala, on the south-east by Montgomery, on the south by Multan and Muzaffergarh and on the west by Mianwali. It consists of an irregular triangle, artificially constituted for administrative purposes from portion of three separate tracts.
The climate of Jhang is that of the South-West Punjab, the rainless tract comprising Multan, Montgomery, and Dera Ismail Khan, which is said to have the highest mean temperature in India between June and August. The dry air makes the District unusually healthy, except in the canal tracts, where it is malarious and trying to Europeans. The annual rainfall is light, ranging from 8 inches at Shorkot to 11 at Chiniot.
The Districts of Jhang and Montgomery were the scene of Alexander's operations against the Malli in 325 B.C., and Shorkot has been identified by some authorities with one of the towns captured by him during the campaign. After his withdrawal, the country seems to have come successively under the sway of the Mauryas (321-231 B.C.), the Greco-Bactrians {c. 190 b. c), the Indo-Parthians {c. 138 B.C.), and the Kushans or Indo-Scythians {c. A.D. 100-250). About A.D. 500 it was conquered by the White Huns, whose capital of Sakala should, according to recent authorities, be identified with Chiniot or Shahkot, a village in Gujranwala District, or with Sialkot. Their power was short-lived, and at the time of Hiuen Tsiang's visit (a. d. 630) the District was included in the kingdom of Tsehkia, the capital of which was close to Sakala. In the tenth century it was subject to the Brahman kings of Ohind and the Punjab, and under the Mughals it was included in the Subah of Lahore.
In modern times the history of Jhang centres in the tribe of the Sials, who ruled over a large tract between Shahpur and Multan, with little dependence on the imperial court at Delhi, until they finally fell before the power of Ranjit Singh. The Sials are Muhammadans of Rajput descent, whose ancestor, Rai Shankar of Daranagar, migrated early in the thirteenth century from the Gangetic Doab to Jaunpur. His son, Sial, in 1243 left his adopted city for the Punjab, then over- run by Mongol hordes. Such emigrations appear to have occurred frequently at the time, owing to the unsettled state of Northern India. During his wanderings in search of a home, Sial fell in with the famous Muhammadan saint Baba Farld-ud-din Shakarganj, of Pakpattan, whose eloquence converted him to the faith of Islam. He afterwards sojourned for a while at Sialkot, where he built a fort, but finally settled down and married at Sahiwal, in Shahpur District. It must be confessed, however, that his history and that of his descendants bear somewhat the character of eponymous myths. Manik, sixth in descent from Sial, founded the town of Mankera in 1380; and his great-grandson, Mai Khan, built Jhang Sial on the Chenab in 1462. Four years later, Mai Khan presented himself at Lahore, in obedience to a summons, and obtained the territory of Jhang as an hereditary possession, subject to a payment of tribute to the imperial treasury. His family continued to rule at Jhang, with the dynastic quarrels and massacres usual in Indian annals, till the beginning of the last century.
Meanwhile the Sikh power had arisen in the north, and Karam Singh Dulu, a chief of the Bhangi confederacy, had conquered Chiniot. In 1803 Ranjit Singh took the fort there and marched on Jhang, but was bought off by Ahmad Khan, the last of the Sial chieftains, on promise of a yearly tribute, amounting to Rs. 70,000 and a mare. Three years later, however, the Maharaja again invaded Jhang with a large army, and took the fort, after a desperate resistance. Ahmad Khan then fled to Multan, and the Maharaja farmed the territories of Jhang to Sardar Fateh Singh. Shortly afterwards, Ahmad Khan returned with a force given him by Muzaffar Khan, Nawab of Multan, and recovered a large part of his previous dominions, which Ranjit Singh suffered him to retain on payment of the former tribute, as he found himself too busy elsewhere to attack Jhang. After his unsuccessful attempt on Multan in 1810, the Maharaja took Ahmad Khan a prisoner to Lahore, as he suspected him of favoring his enemy, Muzaffar Khan. He afterwards bestowed on him a Jagtr, which descended to his son, Inayat Khan. On the death of the latter, his brother, Ismail Khan, endeavored to obtain succession to the Jagtr, but failed through the opposition of Gulab Singh. In 1847, after the establishment of the British Agency at Lahore, the District came under its charge, and in 1848 Ismail Khan rendered important services against the rebel chiefs, for which he received a small pension. During the Mutiny of 1857, the Sial leader again proved his loyalty by raising a force of cavalry and serving in person on the British side.
The presence of numerous mounds, especially in the south of the District, testifies to the former existence of a large and settled population. The remains which have received most attention are those at Shorkot, consisting of a huge mound of ruins surrounded by a wall of large-sized bricks. Most of the pre-Muhammadan coins that have been found here are of the Indo-Scythian period. The finest building in the District is the Shahi Masjid at Chiniot, built in the reign of Shah Jahan.
The population of the District at the last three enumerations was: (1881) 390,703, (1891) 432,549 and (1901) 1,002,656. It increased by no less than it2 per cent, during the last decade almost entirely owning to the opening of the Chenab Canal and the colonization of the canal tract. The District is divided into six tahsils: Jhang, Chiniot, Shorkot, Lyallpur, Samundri, and Toba Tek Singh. The head-quarters of each are at the place from which it is named. The towns are the municipalities of Jhang- Maghiana, the head-quarters of the District, Chiniot, and Lyallpur. The table on the next page gives the principal statistics of population in 1901.
Muhammadans form 68 per cent, of the total population, Hindus 24 per cent., and Sikhs 7 per cent. The density is only i5o-7 persons per square mile, which is considerably below the average (209) for the British Punjab. The language of the nomad tribes who originally inhabited the Bar is called Jangli, a form of Western Punjabi. Every variety of Punjabi is represented among the colonists.
The most numerous tribe is that of the Jats, who number 231,000, or 23 per cent, of the total population. Next to them in numerical strength come the Rajputs, numbering 90,000, and then the Arains with 62,000. Other important agricultural tribes are the Balochs (29,000), Khokhars (24,000), and Kambohs (11,000). The Saiyids number 10,000. The Aroras (68,000) are the strongest of the com- mercial classes, the Khattrls returning 21,000. The Brahmans number 9,000. Of the artisan classes, the Julahas (weavers, 40,000), Kumhars (potters, 32,000), Mochis (shoemakers and leather-workers, 29,000), Chamars (shoemakers and leather-workers, 23,000), Tarkhans (carpenters, 23,000), and Lobars (blacksmiths, 10,000) are the most important; and of the menials, the Chuhras and Musallis (sweepers and scavengers, 105,000), Machhis (fishermen, bakers, and water-carriers, 21,000), Nais (barbers, 13,000), and Dhobis (washermen, 10,000). Other castes worth mentioning in view of their numerical strength are the Mirasis (village minstrels, 16,000) and Fakirs (mendicants, 13,000). About 49 per cent, of the people are supported by agriculture.
The Church Missionary Society began work in the District in 1899, and has two stations, at Gojra and Toba Tek Singh. A considerable number of native Christians are scattered through the villages of the colony. At the last Census (190 1) the number of Christians in the colony was 8,672. The Church Missionary Society owns two villages: Montgomerywala, the larger, where there is a native church, with a population of 1,021; and Batemanabad, with a population of 337. The Roman Catholics hold the villages of Khushpur, founded in 1899 (population, 1,084), and Francispur, founded in 1904. The American Reformed Presbyterians have a mission at Lyallpur established in 1894, and they were followed by the American United Presbyterians in 1896. A few Salvationists are settled at Lyallpur and the neighboring villages.
The soil is an alluvial loam, more or less mixed with sand; but agricultural conditions depend not on distinctions of soil, but on the facilities afforded for irrigation, and less than one per cent, of the cultivation is unirrigated. At the same time the District, while not dependent on the rainfall, benefits largely by seasonable rain, which enables cultivation to be extended by supplementing the supply available from irrigation, and also secures an abundant supply of fodder.
More than half the area of the District, or 3,531 square miles, is the property of Government. Of this area, nearly two-thirds is leased to crown tenants in the Chenab Colony, and a large portion of the remainder will soon be commanded by the Jhelum Canal and leased to tenants. The Thai alone will thus remain uncultivated. Nearly all the proprietary villages are held by communities of small peasant owners. The area in square miles under each of the principal food- grains in 1903-4 was: wheat, 1,333; great millet, 170; and maize, 143. The principal non-food crop is cotton (354). Oilseeds covered 188 square miles.
The construction of the Chenab Canal has entirely revolutionized the agricultural conditions of the uplands between the Chenab and Ravi, and the Jhelum Canal is doing the same for the Bar north of the Jhelum. Thus the District, once one of the most sterile and thinly populated, is now one of the first in the Punjab, in both cultivation and population. The experimental farm at Lyallpur, established in 1901, is chiefly utilized for the study of Punjab crops, and their improvement by cross-fertilization and selection ; but it has hardly been in existence long enough to produce any result as regards the quality of the crops generally grown in the District. In spite of the important part played by wells in the cultivation of the lowlands, loans for their construction are not popular. Twelve lakhs were advanced under the Land Improvement Loans Act during the five years ending 1 901 ; but these advances were taken almost entirely by incoming colonists, to pay expenses due from them to Government under a system which has now been given up.
Before the introduction of canal-irrigation, the population of the Bar was largely pastoral. The breed of cattle, however, was never greatly esteemed, and the large numbers now required for agricultural purposes are purchased from outside the District. Cattle fairs are held at Jhang and Lyallpur. The District is famous for its horses, and a good deal of horse-breeding is carried on. The Remount department keeps nine and the District board seven horse stallions, and the District contains more than 1,000 branded mares. Ten donkey stallions are kept by the Remount department and four by the District board. Important horse fairs are held at Lyallpur and Jhang. A large number of camels are bred, and many of the colonists are bound by the conditions of their grants to furnish camels for transport work when required. Sheep and goats are kept in large numbers.
Of the total area cultivated in 1903-4, 2,799 square miles were irrigated, 453 square miles being supplied from wells, 23 from wells and canals, 2,319 from canals, and 4 from streams and tanks. In addition, 154 square miles, or 5 per cent, of the cultivated area, are subject to inundation from the rivers. The great mainstay of the District is the Chenab Canal. The greater part of the country irrigated by this canal was originally Government waste, and now forms part of the Chenab Colony, which occupies nearly half the total area of the District. In the colony canal-irrigation is but little supplemented by wells, and the old wells in the canal tract have mostly fallen into disuse. The District contains 15,980 masonry wells, chiefly found in the riverain lands, all worked with Persian wheels by cattle, besides 332 lever wells, water-lifts, and unbricked wells.
The District is devoid of true forests; but the Government waste, not included in the colony, which is under the control of the Deputy- Commissioner, is still extensive. The largest area is the Thai desert, in the Sind-Sagar Doab, which covers about 400 square miles. A great deal of tree-planting has been done in the colony.
The only mineral product of any importance is the stone quarried from the Chiniot hills.
The town of Chiniot is famous for its carpentry and wood-carving and ornamental articles of furniture are made of brass inlay and marquetry. Good saddlery and locks are made at Jhang and Maghiana, and a great deal of cotton communications. Cloth is woven throughout the District. Preparing raw cotton for export is a flourishing business; and the District contains 10 cotton-ginning factories, 6 cotton-presses, 5 combined ginning and pressing factories, a combined ginning factory and flour-mill, a combined press and flour-mill, an iron foundry, and a flour-mill. The iron foundry and the flour-mill, which are situated at Lyallpur, were closed in 1904, but the rest of the mills and factories mentioned employed 1,220 hands in that year. They are all situated within the Chenab Colony and also within the new Lyallpur District. Three of the ginning factories and one of the presses are at Chiniot Road, a small town that has sprung up at the railway station nearest Chiniot; and two of the combined ginning and pressing factories and the combined press and flour-mill are at Toba Tek Singh, while the rest are divided between Lyallpur and Gojra.
The town of Lyallpur is one of the chief centres of the wheat trade. in India, and the District exports large quantities of wheat, cotton, oil- seeds, and other agricultural produce. Iron, timber, and piece-goods are the chief articles of import.
The Wazirabad-Khanewal branch of the North-Western Railway runs through the middle of the District, and carries the heavy export of agricultural produce from the Chenab Colony. The Southern Jech Doab Railway, which crosses the Chenab 10 miles above Jhang, joins the former line in the south of the District. It carries the produce of the villages irrigated by the Jhelum Canal, and places the town of Jhang in communication with the main line. The total length of metalled roads is 15 miles and of unmetalled roads 1,795 miles. Of these, 5 miles of metalled and 58 miles of unmetalled roads are under the Public Works department, and the rest are maintained by the District board. The Jhelum is crossed by nine ferries, and the Chenab by nineteen above and below its confluence with the Jhelum, There is but little traffic on these rivers.
There is no record of famine in Jhang District. Although the various droughts which have visited the Punjab in the past must have caused great mortality in cattle, famine on a large scale was impossible owing to the absence of unirrigated cultivation and the sparseness of the population. The construction of the Chenab Canal has now not only made the District able to support a large population in perfect security, but has turned it into the principal granary of the Province.
The District is in charge of a Deputy-Commissioner, aided by three Assistant or Extra- Assistant Commissioners, of whom one is in charge of the District treasury. The District, as now constituted, is divided into three tehsils, each in charge of a tehsildar.
The Deputy-Commissioner as District Magistrate is responsible for criminal justice. Judicial work is under a District Judge, and both officers are supervised by the Divisional Judge of the Shahpur Civil Division, who is also Sessions Judge. There are three Munsifs, two at head-quarters and one at Chiniot, and one honorary magistrate.
Cattle-theft is the commonest form of serious crime.
The Sial chiefs of Jhang appear to have taken a fourth of the produce in kind as their share. In 1831 Sawan Mai's rule over the Multan Province began. His system of combined cash and kind rents enhanced by numerous cesses is described in the article on Multan District. The Kalowal tract, which lay west of the Chenab, was administered by Raja Gulab Singh; and as he exacted as much as he could in the shortest possible time, the development of this part of the District was greatly retarded.
In 1847-8 the first summary settlement was made before annexation. The basis was a reduction of 20 per cent, on the realizations of the Sikhs. At first the revenue was easily paid, but the sharp fall in prices which followed annexation caused great distress, and even desertion of the land. The second summary settlement, made in 1853, resulted in a reduction of 18 per cent. In Kalowal the first assessment had broken down utterly, and was revised in three days by the Com- missioner, Mr. Thornton, who reduced the demand from one lakh to Rs. 75,000 in 185 1. In 1853 he remitted Rs. 12,000 more, and the remaining Rs. 63,000 was easily paid.
In 1855 the regular settlement was begun. Government land was demarcated, a process simplified by the readiness of the people to part with their land and its burdens on any terms. The demand was fixed at 2 lakhs, while Kalowal (now in the Chiniot tehsil, but then a part of Shahpur District) was assessed at Rs. 33,000. Generally speaking, the demand was easily and punctually paid. A revised settlement was carried out between 1874 and 1880, fixed assessments being sanctioned for the flooded lands of the Chenab and Jhelum, and a fluctuating assessment for the Ravi villages, since transferred to Multan District. In certain parts of the District each well was assessed at a fixed sum. The total demand was 3-5 lakhs, an increase of 26 per cent. The rates of last settlement ranged from R. 0-8-0 to Rs. 1-6-4 ^^ ' wet ' land, the ' dry ' rate being R. 0-8-0.
During the currency of this settlement the enormous Government waste between the Chenab and Ravi rivers, known as the Sandal Bar, almost the whole of which is at present included in Jhang District, has come under cultivation by the aid of the Chenab Canal. The present revenue rate in this tract is 8 annas per acre matured. The extension explains the recent enormous rise in the land revenue demand, which was 2 2-3 lakhs in 1903-4, almost the whole of the fluctuating demand being realized from the new cultivation in the Sandal Bar. The ad- ministration of the Government land was under a separate Colonization officer until 1907, but the old proprietary villages of the District came again under settlement in 190 1. It was estimated that an increase of Rs. 1,12,000 would be taken; but this will probably be largely exceeded, owing to extensions of the Chenab Canal and to the introduction of canal-irrigation on the right bank of the Chenab from the Jhelum Canal.
The District contains the three municipalities of Jhang-Maghiana, Chiniot, and Lyallpur, and the three ' notified areas ' of Ahmadpur, Shorkot, and Gojra. Outside these, local affairs are entrusted to the District board. The income of the board, derived mainly from a local rate, was 3 lakhs in 1903-4, and the expenditure 2-5 lakhs. The largest item of expenditure was public works.
The regular police force consists of 834 of all ranks, including 149 municipal police, under a Superintendent, who usually has 3 inspectors under him. The village watchmen number 815. There are 11 police stations, 3 outposts, and 10 road-posts. The District jail at head-quarters has accommodation for 302 prisoners.
The percentage of literate persons in 1901 was 3-6 (6-3 males and 0-3 females), the District standing seventeenth among the twenty-eight Districts of the Province in this respect. The proportion is highest in the Jhang tehsil. The number of pupils under instruction was 2,243 in 1880-1, 4,686 in 1890-r, 6,108 in 1900-1, and 8,275 in 1903-4. In the last year the District possessed 5 secondary, 98 primary (public) schools, and one 'special' school, with 19 advanced and 210 elementary (private) schools. The proportion of girls is unusually large, there being 611 female scholars in the public, and 535 in the private schools. The only high school in the District is at Jhang town. The total expenditure on education in 1903-4 was Rs. 46,000, the greater part of which was met from Local funds and fees. Besides the civil hospital and branch dispensary at Jhang-Maghiana, the District has 12 outlying dispensaries. In 1904 the number of cases treated was 132,374, of whom 2,201 were in-patients, and 6,395 operations were performed. The expenditure was Rs. 24,000, the greater part of which was contributed by Local and municipal funds.
The number of persons successfully vaccinated in 1903-4 was 30,073, representing 30 per 1,000 of the population. Vaccination is compulsory only in the municipality of Jhang-Maghiana.
[D. C. Ibbetson, Jhang District Gazetteer (1883-4) and L. Leslie Jones; Chenab Colony Gazetteer (1905) E. B. Steedman, Jhang Settlement Report (1882).]
Jhang Tehsil. — Tehsil of Jhang District, Punjab, lying between 31° o' and 31° 47' N. and 71" 58'' and 72° 41'' E., with an area, since the formation of Lyallpur District in 1904, of 1,421 square miles. The Jhelum enters the tehsil on the north-west and the Chenab on the north-east, and they meet towards the south. The population in 1901 was 194,454. It contains the town of Jhang-Maghiana (population, 24,382), the head-quarters, and 448 villages. The land revenue and cesses in 1905-6 amounted to Rs. 2, 56,000. The tehsil extends into the Chenab Colony on the east; and a strip of the Sandal Bar, still in its pristine state, lies between the rich villages of this part and the cultivated lowlands on either side of the Chenab. Beyond these, waste alternates with cultivation, due to the farthest extensions of the Jhelum Canal, until the Jhelum lowlands are reached, studded with prosperous villages, situated among palm groves. The western border lies within the sandy desert of the Thai.
Jhang-Maghiana. — Head-quarters of the District and tehsil of Jhang, Punjab, situated in 31° 18'' N. and 72*^ 20'' E., on the Jech Doab extension of the North-Western Railway. Population (1901), 24,382, of whom 12,189 are Hindus and 11,684 Muhammadans. The towns of Jhang and Maghiana lie two miles apart, connected by metalled roads, but form a joint municipality. The Chenab flows at a distance of about three miles to the west ; but in the hot season the Kharora branch of the river runs close past both towns, and with its fine avenue of trees, three miles long, and handsome masonry bathing ghats, adds a peculiar beauty to the neighborhood. The country round is well wooded, and fine gardens abound. An inundation canal leaves the Kharora branch of the Chenab near Jhang, and, passing round Maghiana, empties itself into the same branch after a course of 5 miles. Maghiana lies on the edge of the highlands, overlooking the alluvial valley of the Chenab, while the older town of Jhang occupies the lowlands at its foot. Jhang is said to have been founded in the fifteenth century, and to have been destroyed by the river and refounded in the reign of Aurangzeb. It was taken by Ranjit Singh in 1805. The Government offices and establishments have now been removed to the higher site, and commerce has almost deserted Jhang, which is no longer a place of importance. Jhang-Maghiana was constituted a municipality in 1867. The income during the ten years ending 1902-3 averaged Rs. 46,800, and the expenditure Rs. 44,200. In 1903-4 the income was Rs. 49,700, mainly derived from octroi; and the expenditure was Rs. 50,200. Maghiana has a considerable trade in grain and country cloth, and manufactures leather, soap, locks and other brass-work. There is a civil hospital at Maghiana, and a high school and a dispensary at Jhang.

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