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individual the sentiments he has sub- cation is well deserving of considerasequently avowed; namely, that the tion, as illustrative of the true spirit strictures upon public measures, which and progress of his opposition and afterwards appeared in the journal, disobedience. Forgetting altogether proceeded from “full confidence of the solemn pledge he had given to be the sincerity of the public professions guided in future by the spirit of the (namely those of Lord Hastings), by instructions he had received, and afwhich the Government of India invited fecting to understand the Governor the exercise of public comment on
General's address, before inserted, as their acts;" or the declaration he a virtual abrogation of those instrucpublished little more than a twelve- tions, he contended that the press in month after his letter to the Governor India was free, and, in justification of General, “ that the Calcutta Journal this assertion, he added, that, “in the was the only zealous and determined exercise of this freedom, he had venadvocate of free discussion, the only tured to call in question even the pochannel for the full, fair, and free ex licy and liberality of the Court of Diercise of public opinion, and that as it rectors, in some of its former, and had set out with the advocacy of free. still more of its recent acts, as applied dom of opinion (wbich was not the
to the immediate administration of case), so it had continued uniformly to Lord Hastings himself.” maintain what it first professed;" and
The mode in which the Governor that, “ neither the hope of reward, or
General treated this infringement of the fear of punishment, the prospect
his orders, accompanied by no apoof gain, or the dread of ruin, the logy, but by a species of insult, was by smiles of the few, or the neglect of
a lenient endeavour to reimpress upon the many; nothing, in short, but an the inind of the offender the certain honcst conviction, and a conscientious consequences of such proceedings in belief could ever prevail on its editor
regard to his own personal interests, to profess any other sentiments than and their evil influence in general. those which had uniformly been ex
He concluded with observing, Inpressed by him, and would be uni. dependently of other injurious conseformly maintained, as long as the quences to which an injudicious and liberty of the press should be left to perverted use of the discretion vested him in India, and he might be spared in the editors of newspapers may lead, to exercise it."*
it has the manifest tendency to raise A very short time elapsed before a question as to the expediency of the another attack was made in the jour- liberal measures sanctioned by Gonal upon the Madras Government,
vernment with regard to the press, and which was succeeded by a third. and to the revival of those restricWhereupon the editor was again ad- tions, which common prudence on the monished by the Governor General in part of the editors would render altoCouncil, who, expressing his regret at gether unnecessary.” observing the little impression made
Little more than a month after this by that indulgence which the editor correspondence, a letter was published had so gratefully acknowledged, warn
in the Calcutta Journal directly caled him of the certain consequence of culated to spread disaffection among again incurring the displeasure of the native troops, wherein the writer, Guvernment.
after complaining of the rate of exThe editor's reply to this coninuni- change at which the troops in the Ni.
zam's country were paid, attempted to * Pamphlet printed (but not published) for the show that the officers, through whom private information of the author's intends, 13 August 1821. It consists of 78 octavo pages, and
the pay was issued, derived an illicit prois enlled a Bris Statencil, &c
fit from selling or receiving the good
currency, which was sent there from the had in view the object of compelling Company's treasury, and issuing a base the Government, for some secret currency to the troops ; and he con- purpose of his own, to resort to cocluded wtb recommending that the Go. ercive steps; for on the 3d July 1821, vernment should openly deduct a cer- he had the temerity to state publicly tain portion of the pay of the troops, that a certain “infamous prospectus," instead of depriving them of it clan- (as he termed it) of a hostile newsdestinely. The Government was satis
paper, was circulated, post free, by fied with calling for the name of the authority of Government. Before the author of this groundless charge, but correspondence which took place in the editor was suffered to escape consequence of this act of the editor without notice.
was concluded, he published certain On the 6th Nov. 1819, appeared remarks upon the Bishop of Calcutta another letter, which being submitted (the pious, learned and amiable Dr. to the Advocate General, that officer Middleton) containing insinuations so gave it as his opinion that the pro- extremely disrespectful to his public duction was “a libel not only highly character, that his lordship felt it to offensive in its terms, but mischievous be his duty to complain to the Goverin its tendency.” Government ac nor General in Council. A justificacordingly determined that a prosecu tion of himself (though he confessed tion should be commenced against the his ignorance of the author of the editor. But in consideration of the remarks), and an avowal of his conprofessions made by him in a private viction that the discussion of the subletter to Lord Hastings, and the ur- ject “ might be productive of public gent intercessions in his favour, the benefit,” were the only effects of reproceedings were waived upon the monstrance on the part of Governeditor's consenting, 1st. to instruct Notwithstanding lenity and bis counsel to let the motion made forbearance had hitherto seemed only against him in the Supreme Court to produce fresh acts of contumacy, pass without opposition; 2dly. to ad- the Governor General made a further dress to the Governor General in effort to divert the offender from the Council an apology, comprehending, course he was pursuing. The sentiin distinct and unequivocal terms, the ments contained in the communicaprofessions contained in his private tion to the editor, deserve to be letter, for the purpose of the same recorded in illustration of the subject being read in court by the Advocate under consideration. General, as the ground of the instruc “ When certain irksome restraints tion to that officer to drop the pro- which had long existed upon the press secution. These conditions, notwith- in Bengal were withdrawn, the prosstanding the publication of the letter pect was indulged that the diffusion in question had been justified by the of various information, with able comeditor, in spite of the principles pro- ments which it would call forth, might sessed by him, and in direct opposition be extremely useful to all clàsses of to his subsequent declaration, that the our countrymen in public employfearless advocacy of freedom of opi- ment. A paper conducted with temnion had been uniformly maintained per and ability on the principles proin defiance of punishment, or even fessed by you, at the outset of your ruin, were complied with, and the pro- undertaking, was eminently calculated secution was accordingly dropped. to forward that view. The just expec
It would be tedious to specify mi- tations of Government have not been nutely the subsequent proceedings of answered. Whatsoever advantages the editor of this Journal, in which bave been attained, they have been it seems impossible to doubt that he ovorbalanced by the mischief of acri
monious dissentions spread through community. You will at once be apthe medium of your journal.
prized that your license to reside in “Complaint upon complaint is con India is annulled, and you will be retinually harassing Government regard. quired to furnish security for your ing the impeachment which your loose quitting the country by the earliest publications cause to be inferred against convenient opportunity.” individuals. As far as could be re Notwithstanding this solemn warnconciled with duty, Government has ing, and the reiterated promises of the endeavoured to shut its eyes on what editor, in reply to this communicait wished to consider thoughtless aber- tion, to attend in future to the derations, though perfectly sensible of fined restrictions on the press, he the practical objection which attends continued to make his paper the rethese irregular appeals to the public. ceptacle of almost every species of Even if the matter submitted be cor- writing prohibited by the restrictions rect, the public can afford no relief, of Government; and at length divested while a communication to the con himself of that respect which he had stituted authorities would effect such hitherto professed towards the head redress; yet the idleness of recurrence of the Government, by indulging in to a wrong quarter is not all that sarcastic reflections upon the Goveris reprehensible, for that recurrence
nor General himself. This offence was is to furnish the dishonest conclusion passed over, though it was strongly of sloth or indifference in those bound maintained in the Council that misto watch over such points of the ge- chievous effects would proceed from neral interest. Still the Government bringing the person of the chief of wished to overlook minor editorial the Government into discussion with inaccuracies. The subject has a dif- impunity, whereby his authority might ferent complexion, when you, Sir, be weakened, and his administration stand forth to vindicate the principle brought into contempt. A proposiof such appeals, whatsoever slander tion to the effect of disabling the ediupon individuals they may involve ; tor from further defiance of the Goand when you maintain the privilege vernment, upon the publication of the of lending yourself to be the instru- well-known letter of Colonel Robison, ment of any unknown calumniator. was supported by all the members of Government will not tolerate so mis- council, except the Governor General, chievous an abuse. It would be with and was consequently negatived. undissembled regret that the Governor The fate of the officer just named, General in Council should find him. who was tried by a court-martial, and self constrained to exercise the chas ordered to quit the country, alarmed tening power vested in him ; never the editor of the journal, 1o, in a theless he will not shrink from its letter to Lord Hastings,* deprecated exertion where he may be conscien- the apprehended displeasure of his tiously satisfied that the preservation Lordship, by protestations of his of decency, and the comfort of society undisguised and deep regret” at the require it to be applied.” This inti occurrence; and by representing that mation followed : “ Should Govern it could bardly be possible the Goment observe that you persevere in vernment should visit a deficiency of acting on the principle which you judgment” in the editor, have now asserted, there will be no punishment that the law reserves only previous discussion of any case in for the highest degree of moral turpiwhich you may be judged to have tude.” In a subsequent letter,t he violated those laws of moral candour and essential justice, which are equal
* Dated 7 May, 1829.
† Dated 29 May, 1892, addressed to his Lord. ly binding on all descriptions of the ship's private secretary.
“ with a
speaks of his Lordship's “just though ragraph was inserted reflecting upon still indulgent construction of his pro- an appointment made by his successor, sessions, the sincerity of which the which that personage brought before editor trusts he will never have occa the council, and proposed to withsion to call in question;" and he con draw the editor's license of residence, cludes thus: “And I do with sincerity which was unanimously approved by pledge myself to exercise that addi- the Board, and carried into execution. tional scrutiny and caution which his This long narrative would be disLordship requires; and, having so proportioned to the slender details pledged myself, I shall, I trust, be afforded to other topics in this sketch conscientiously zealous to fulfil his of Lord Hastings' history, were it not expressed expectations. I beg, there- indispensible in order to facilitate a fore, you will do me the favour to clear perception of the subject, assure his Excellency the Governor and to justify his Lordship not only General that he may repose himself from the censure which has been aton my attention to these points.” tempted to be fixed upon him, but
It will hardly be believed that from the prejudice that may hereafter henceforward the articles published be raised against his character, from a in the journal surpassed in offensive- mistaken idea of his motives, language, ness of character the preceding exam and conduct, in regard to the emanci. ples; that two months after the so- pation of the Indian press. lemn declaration just quoted, there pose the motive of Lord Hastings, in appeared a violent attack upon a dis- removing the censorship, to be a mere tinguished officer by name, and a dis- thirst of applause, would betray an tinct charge against the Government egregious misapprehension of his chaof an undisguised and indefensible job racter; to conclude that his expresin an appointment given to him; and sions will bear the unlimited sense that a month afterwards, the editor ascribed to them by the editor of the made a distinct and unqualified decla- Calcutta Journal, and that his Lordration, that the resolutions and orders ship meant at once to assimilate the of Government imposing restraints on Indian press to that of England, is to the press in India, were, in point of refuse to the Marquess the common fact, and in point of law, mere waste benefit which ordinary experience and paper ;” and an order of Govern- discernment impart to the plainest ment, prohibiting the discussion of understanding; and to pretend that any particular topic, was to be re his conduct towards the conductors garded merely as a request, “to be of the press has been tyrannical and complied with or not, according to oppressive, is to be guilty of an abuse the reasonableness and the propriety of language which even disappointof the demand.”* This additional ment and mortification can in no deboldness produced only an additional
gree excuse. proof of the Governor General's for Whatever question may exist rebearance, and an additional warning specting that discretionary power ento the editor.
trusted to a Governor General of During the few months forming the India, which Lord Hastings was auremaining part of Lord Hastings' ad- thorised by law to employ, but did ministration, almost every number of not actually exert, it has no concern the journal contained some new at whatsoever with his Lordship’s contack on the measures and character of duct. The legislature doubtless deemed that nobleman. In less than a month the British subject secure from wrong, after his Lordship’s resignation, a pa- by the provisions of a statute,* which
• Calcutta Journal, 31st August, 1822.
# 81 Geo. 111. c. 70.
enacts, that, “ in order to prevent all portion must be the evils of an ill abuse of the power vested in the Go- regulated and licentious native press. vernor General and Council, in case Nor can the minds of the native poany person shall make a complaint to pulation be truly said to be in a conthe Supreme Court of any oppression dition to derive those benefits from or injury having been committed by the sudden and rapid diffusion of litehim or them, and shall verify the fact rature, which alone would render the by an affidavit, and execute a bond attemp: safe and justifiable. The Briwith another person, in such a penalty tish Government in India has always as the Court shall appoint, effectually acted on the wise and humane policy to prosecute the same, by indictment of adapting its laws to the state of or otherwise, in any competent court society, and has cautiously abstained in Great Britain, within two years from the introduction of the instituafter the return of the party against tions of a highly civilized society whom the same is made, then and among a less enlightened people. The in such case, the party complain. principle is at least as applicable to the ing shall, by order of the court, com- question regarding the native press as' pel the production of a true copy of to any other. In England, the laws the order of council complained of, relating to the press bave kept pace and examine witnesses touching the with the progress of public opinion, same.”
and with the institutions of a free To conclude this part of our sub- people. The minds of men have been ject, and to complete our view of the gradually prepared for the exaggeraconsequences of a free Indian press, tion and misrepresentation which must it may not be unacceptable to subjoin ever attend freedom of publication, a few remarks upon the effects of un and have become enabled to make restrained publication in the languages those discriminations which are essenof India, which proceed from an able tial to convert it to purposes of utility pen, and will perhaps in no other way and improvement. No language can reach the public eye:
convey in adequate terms how repug“No person will deny that essential nant to the ideas of the subjects of an benefits may be derived from the ope- Asiatic state is a free press, employed rations of a native press, duly regu as a means of controuling the Golated and conducted by intelligent and vernment : and suddenly to attempt, well intentioned individuals; nor can by that or any other means, to overany means be devised for more ef turn all previous habits of thinking fectually diffusing useful knowledge or acting on such subjects, would be amongst the population of this country a blind and hazardous neglect of all (India), than the cheap and periodical the sound and cautious lessons which circulation of tracts and articles of in- experience has taught us. telligence calculated to instruct and (To be concluded in our next.) improve the public mind, under the guidance of judicious and well quali- Effect of the native Press in India, in the Frent of
* See, however, a sensibly wrillen essay on the fied conductors. But in exact pro India, Quarterly Series, No. 1. p. 119.
Journal of a March from Mhow to Mirza- for Mundlaysir, to relieve the first bat
poor, by a Route never before travelled by talion 14th regiinent Madras Native InEuropeans.
fantry, on the 4th of March 1820, and arARRIVED at Mhow, the 15th Decem rived at Mundlaysir on the 6th instantber 1819. It appears a miserable place. distant from Mhow thirty-two miles. The Marched from Mhow with our right wing table land of Malwah terminates at Jaum,