Page:A Brief History of the Indian Peoples.djvu/192

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1 88 THE FOUNDATION OF BRITISH RULE IN INDIA. Haidar Alf, Hastings was generally, although not always, able to compel assent to his views. Hastings' Policy to Native Bulers. — His relations with the Native powers, like his domestic policy, formed a well- considered scheme. Hastings had to find money for the Court of Directors in England, whose thirst for the wealth of India was not less keen, although more decorous, than that of their servants in Bengal. He had also to protect the Company's territory from the Native powers, which, if he had not destroyed them, would have annihilated him. Beyond the Bengal frontier a group of Muhammadan viceroys or governors of the old Mughal Empire had established independent States, the most important of which was Oudh. Beyond this group of Muham- madan States, the Marathas were practically the masters of Northern India, and held the nominal Emperor of Delhi as a puppet under their control. The wise policy of Warren Has- tings was to ally himself with the independent Muhammadan States, that is to say principally with Oudh, just beyond his own frontier. If he could make these Muhammadan States strong, he hoped that they would prevent the Marathas from pouring down into Bengal. But these Muhammadan States were themselves so weak that this policy only obtained a partial success. In the end Warren Hastings found himself compelled to advance the British territories further up the Ganges, and practically to bring the Muhammadan States under his own control. Hastings makes Bengal pay. — Warren Hastings had in the first place to make Bengal pay. This he could not do under Clive's dual system of administration* When he atiblished that double system, he cut down the Nawab of Bengal's allow- ance to one-half, and so saved about £160,000 a year. As a matter of fact, the titular Nawab, being then a minor, had, ceased to render even any nominal service for his enormous income. Clive had himself reduced the original £600,000 to £450,000 on the accession of a new Nawab in 1766; and the grant was again cut down to £350,000 on a fresh succession in 1769. The allowance had practically been of a fluctuating and personal character. Its further reduction in 1772 in the case of the new child-Nawab had, moreover, been expressly ordered by