authorised adoption in favour of the rájá just deceased, and the governor-general, treating the case as that of a dependent principality held under a very recent grant from the British government, decided, with the assent of all his council, that the state should be incorporated with British territory. Dalhousie was also in favour of annexing Karauli, a Rájput state; but when the question was referred to the court of directors, the proposal was negatived.
Other cases in which Dalhousie affirmed the doctrine of lapse were those of the titular sovereignties of the Carnatic and of Tanjore, and that of the succession to the pension granted in 1818 to the ex-péshwa Bají Rao. In the first of these cases, Prince Azim Jah, uncle of the late nawáb of the Carnatic, a Muhammadan state, claimed to succeed to his deceased nephew in his titular dignities and emoluments. The claim was rejected on the unanimous recommendation of George Francis Robert, third baron Harris [q. v.], and the other members of the Madras government, who considered that the treaty of 1801, made by Lord Wellesley with the late nawáb's grandfather, was a purely personal treaty, and in no way bound the company to maintain the hereditary succession of the nawábs of the Carnatic; and, further, that the perpetuation of the nawábship, involving as it did the semblance of royalty without any of its power or responsibilities, was politically inexpedient and morally injurious, the habits of the nawábs tending to bring high station into disrepute, while they favoured the accumulation of an idle and dissipated population in the chief city of the presidency. Dalhousie's action in this case was confined to expressing his concurrence with the views and arguments of the local government, which were approved and acted on by the court of directors. The nawábship was abolished, and a liberal provision was made for Prince Azim Jah and for the dependents of the family.
The Tanjore case, which was not finally settled until after Dalhousie had left India, was that of a Hindu titular rájá dying without a male heir. The resident at Tanjore had recommended that one of the two daughters of the late rájá should be recognised as the heir to his titular dignities. To this Dalhousie objected on the ground that succession in the female line to the headship of a native state was not recognised by Hindu law or usage, and that it was inexpedient to recognise any such rule of succession in this case. His opinion was adopted by the court of directors who held that it was ‘entirely out of the question that we should create such a right for the sole purpose of perpetuating a titular principality at a great cost to the public revenues.’
The claim of Dhundu Pant Nana Sahib to succeed to the pension of his adoptive father, the ex-péshwa, was rejected by Dalhousie because it was clear that the pension was granted only for the life of Bají Rao, and that this was understood by Bají Rao.
There were one or two other cases of lapse, but those above mentioned were the only cases of any material importance, and it was upon them that was based the charge afterwards brought against Dalhousie that his annexation policy was one of the chief causes of the rebellion of 1857. His principal assailants were Sir John Kaye, the historian of the sepoy war, Major Evans Bell, and Sir Edwin Arnold. But these critics overlook the fact that the policy which they denounce did not originate with Dalhousie, but had been prescribed by the home government long before he became governor-general.
The annexation of Oudh, one of Dalhousie's latest acts, carried out under orders from the court of directors, was not caused by any failure of heirs, but by the long-continued and gross maladministration of that country, notwithstanding repeated warnings from successive governors-general. In this case it was not Dalhousie who recommended the extreme measure of annexation. In consideration of the loyalty towards the British government which had invariably characterised the rulers of Oudh, he advised the adoption of a measure which fell short, in name at all events, of the suppression of Oudh as a native state. While fully recognising the hopelessness of any real reform in the administration of Oudh, save by permanently vesting the whole of that administration, civil and military, in the hands of the company, he considered that the object in view might be attained ‘without resorting to so extreme a measure as the annexation of the territory and the abolition of the throne,’ and he accordingly proposed to notify to the king of Oudh that the treaty of 1801 and all other treaties between his predecessors and the British power were at an end; and that if he wished for their renewal, it could only be on a completely altered footing; and that unless he should consent to a new treaty, making over in perpetuity to the British government the entire administration of his territory, he would no longer be considered as under British protection, and the resident and the troops would be with-