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excellent book on India, or the latest of the decennial reports on the moral and material progress of India. Only a few of them can be touched on lightly here. In the first place something must be said about the Indian Financial
system. financial system. The principal heads of Indian revenue, as shown in the figures annually laid before Parliament, are land revenue, opium, salt, stamps, excise, provincial rates, customs, assessed taxes, forest, registration, and tributes from Native States. The principal heads of expenditure are debt services, military services, collection of revenue, commercial services, famine relief and insurance, and civil service. But during recent years the services grouped as commercial, namely, post office, telegraph, railways and irrigation, have shown a surplus, and have been a source of revenue and not of expenditure. The most important head of revenue is the land revenue, a charge on the land which is permanently fixed in the greater part of Bengal and in parts of Madras, and periodically settled elsewhere.
The central government keeps in its own hands the collection of certain revenues such as those of the Salt Department in Northern India, the Telegraph Department, and the revenues of Coorg, Ajmere, and the North-West Frontier Province, besides certain receipts connected with the Army and other services. It also deals directly with the expenditure on the Army and the Indian Marine, on certain military works, on railways and telegraphs, on the administration of the three small provinces whose revenue it receives, and on the mint, and with the greater part of the post office expenditure and of the political charges.
The other branches of revenue are collected and the other branches of expenditure are administered by the provincial or local governments. But the whole of the income and expenditure, whether collected or borne by the central or by the local government, is brought into one account as the income and expenditure of the Indian Empire.
Since 1871 the relations between central and provincial
finance have been regulated by quinquennial contracts between the central and each provincial government. Under these contracts the whole, or a proportion, of certain taxes and other receipts collected by each provincial government is assigned to it for meeting a prescribed portion of the administrative charges within the province.
The provincial governments have thus a direct interest in the efficient collection of revenue and an inducement to be economical in expenditure, since savings effected by them are placed to their credit. But they may not alter taxation, or the rules under which the revenue is administered, without the assent of the Supreme Government. Subject to general supervision, and to rules and conditions concerning such matters as the maintenance of great lines of communication, the creation of new appointments, the alteration of scales of salaries, and the undertaking of new general services or duties, they have a free hand in administering their share of the revenue. The apportionment of revenue is settled afresh every five years, after a review of the provincial finance. Any balance which a provincial government can accumulate by careful administration is placed to its credit, but on occasions of extraordinary stress, as during the Afghan War, the central government has sometimes called upon local governments to surrender a share of their balances.
As has been said above, the governors of Madras and Bombay are assisted by executive councils. A lieutenantgovernor has no executive council, but has the help of a Board of Revenue in Bengal, Eastern Bengal and Assam, and the United Provinces, and of a Financial Commissioner in the Punjab and Burma. Madras has also a Board of Revenue. Each province has its secretariat, manned according to administrative requirements, and also special departments, presided over by heads, such as the inspector-general of police, the commissioner of excise, the director-general of education, the inspector-general of civil hospitals, the
Administrative staff of local governments.
sanitary commissioner, and the chief engineer of public
provinces. administrative posts.
The corresponding distinction in modern practice is between the regions which are under ordinary law, and the more backward regions, known as scheduled districts, which are under regulations made in exercise of the summary powers conferred by the Government of India Act, 1870 (33 Vict. c. 3) ?. In each province the most important administrative unit The
district. is the district. There are 249 districts in British India. They vary considerably in area and population, from the Simla district in the Punjab with 101 square miles to the Upper Khyndwin in Burma with approximately 19,000 square miles, and from the hill district of North Arakan with a population of 20,680 to Maimansingh with a population of 3,915,000. In the United Provinces the district has an average area of 1,500 or 2,000 square miles, with a population of 750,000 to 1,500,000. But in several provinces, and especially in Madras, the district is much larger. At the head of the district is the district magistrate, who The
district in the old regulation provinces is styled the collector and magiselsewhere the deputy commissioner. He is the local repre- his start.
and sentative of the Government and his position corresponds more nearly to that of the French préfet than to that of any English functionary 3.
See above, pp. 101, 102. • See above, p. 105, and East India (Progress and Condition) Decennial Report (1904), pp. 56, 57.
* See Strachey, 359. East India (Progress and Condition) Decennial Report (1904), p. 57.
He has assistants and deputies varying in number, title, and rank, and his district is sub-divided for administrative purposes into charges which bear different names in different parts of the country.
In most parts of India, but not in Madras, districts are grouped into divisions, under commissioners, who stand between the district magistrate and his local government.
If the district is, par excellence, the administrative unit of the Indian country, the village may be said to be the natural unit. It answers, very roughly, to the English civil parish or the continental commune, and it is employed as the unit for revenue and police purposes. Its organization differs much in different parts of India, but it tends to be a selfsufficing community of agriculturists. It has its headman, who in some provinces holds small police powers; its accountant, who keeps the record of the State dues and maintains the revenue and rent rolls of the village ; and its watchman and other menials. In Bengal the village system is less
developed than elsewhere. Municipal Under various Acts of the central and local Indian and district legislatures municipal and district councils have been estabcouncils. lished in the several provinces of India with limited powers
of local taxation and administration. This system of local government received a considerable extension under the
viceroyalty of Lord Ripon?. Judicial Reference has been made above to the four chartered high arrangements.
courts. But the term 'high court,' as used in Indian legislation ?, includes also the chief courts of those parts of British India which are outside the jurisdiction of the chartered high courts. These are the chief court of the Punjab, established in 1866, the chief court of Lower Burma, established in 1900, and the courts of the judicial commissioners for Oudh, the Central Provinces, Upper Burma, Berar and Sind. The Punjab chief court has at present six judges, the Lower Burma chief court four. The new province of Eastern Bengal and Assam remains under the jurisdiction of the Calcutta high court.
1 See Government of India Acts I, XIV, XV, and XX of 1883, XIII and XVII of 1884; Bengal Act III of 1884; Bombay Acts I and II of 1884 ; Madras Acts IV and V of 1884.
? See s. 3 (24) of the Indian General Clauses Act (X of 1897).
These non-chartered high courts exercise with respect to the courts subordinate to them the like appellate jurisdiction, and the like powers of revision and supervision, as are exercised by the chartered courts, and their decisions are subject to the like appeal to the judicial committee of the Privy Council. The procedure of the several civil courts is regulated by Civil
juristhe general Code of Civil Procedure, but their nomenclature, diction. classification, and jurisdiction depend on Acts passed for the different provinces. There is usually a district judge for a district or group of districts, whose court is the chief civil tribunal for the district or group, and who usually exercises criminal jurisdiction also as a sessions judge. There are subordinate judges with lesser jurisdiction, and below them there are the courts of the munsif, or of some petty judge with a similar title. The right of appeal from these courts is regulated by the special Act, and by the provisions of s. 584 of the Code of Civil Procedure as to second appeals. In the presidency towns, and in some other places, there are also small cause courts exercising final jurisdiction in petty cases.
The constitution, jurisdiction, and procedure of criminal Criminal courts are regulated by the Code of Criminal Procedure, diction. which was last re-enacted in 1898 (Act V of 1898). In every province, besides the high court, there is a court of sessions for each sessional division, which consists of a district or group of districts. The judge of the court of sessions also, as has been seen, usually exercises civil jurisdiction as district judge. There may be additional, joint, and assistant sessions judges. There are magistrates of three classes, first, second, and third. For each district outside the presiding