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channel is very deep and the stream sluggish. From its banks being low, the lands in its neighbourhood are very subject to inundation, and when the rains are unusually heavy, the waters spread out into an immense lake, from fifteen to twenty miles long and from four to six miles wide. Boats of the largest burden can ascend the Tanggan considerably higher than Dinajpoor during the rains, and of 200 maunds burden to within six miles West of Dinajpoor, at any time during the year ; but its channel is not much frequented by boats higher than Rajnuggur of Dinajpoor, where a channel of the Poornababa, called the Bruhmanee, flows into it; boats of from 300 to 400 maunds can pass through this any time during the year and can approach close to Dinajpoor, thus saving an expensive land-carriage from the grain golas of the capital. This river abounds with fish and is farmed out by the proprietors to muchwas or fishermen, 100 families of whom locate themselves on its banks during the fishing season, between Gobeenuggur of Dinajpoor and the confluence of the river with the Mahanunda. Aligators abound, and frequently cause much damage to the fishermen's nets, the porpois is frequently seen even higher than Dinajpoor, and turtle are almost innumerable. The water is unwholesome, owing in a great measure, to its receiving many tributaries from jheels, overgrown with weeds.
The Poornababa.—This is a very tortuous stream and forms in several places the natural Eastern boundary of the Pergunnah ; in its character it much resembles the Tanggan, although it is not such a considerable stream ; and I have my doubts, whether it would be of any consequence from where it throws off the Bruhmanee, did it not receive large supplies of water from the Dheepa or Patrod and a small branch of the Altree, which flows into it, some distance above Dinajpoor; boats, however, of 1,000 maunds, can ascend it during the rains to Dinajpoor ; and I am informed, that rice boats of 300 or 400 maunds with some little difficulty, can pass up and down, during any time of the year. Where the stream enters the Pergunnah, the bed of the river is exceedingly muddy and the water shallow; so that when a boat happens to lodge on the mud, which is almost unfathomable to the boatmen's luggees, it is with difficulty got off again. The river separates into two channels from the village of Noonchoocha; the intermediate space, between these streams is entirely flooded during the rains, and forms an expanse of water from one to three miles wide, which leaves behind it, as the water subsides, horrible swamps
and marshes, the fostering parents of every thing unwholesome and disgusting. I passed a night among these, and was nearly devoured by insects. There is no mart on the river higher up than Rohunpoor where the great rice golah is situated.
Jungle.—Two-thirds of the Pergunnah is covered with jungle, to the East of Telasun, the residence of one of the Zumeendars, there is only grass, cane and bamboo jungle ; but to the North and West of this village, forest trees of various kinds, are thickly intermixed with the other jungle, there is also much brushwood, and several sorts of gigantic reeds; in many places the jungle is absolutely impenetrable, every kind of wild animal abounds, from the fierce tiger to the timid hare, and the sportsman is well rewarded, should he only have perseverence sufficient to trace them to their lairs.
Several noted sportsmen from Calcutta and the neighbouring Stations are well acquainted with this splendid ground ; and many are the savage denizens of the forest, that have fallen victims to their prowess, between the Tanggan and Poornababa rivers. The three Zumeendars make a very considerable profit, from the sale of the cane, reed, and grass jungle, especially from the two latter ; the grass jungle is cut in immense
quantities and carried to the mouth of the Tanggan, Poornababa, and Mahanunda, especially to the latter, where whole fleets of boats of all sizes, come to renew the chuppurs or roofs of their boats.
Reed Charcoal.—The large reed grass is disposed of in large quantities to the blacksmiths of Maldah and its vicinity, and to those of Nuwabgunge and Gomastapoor, for the purpose of making charcoal ; the method of preparing it is as follows, and the people state that, the heat emitted from this charcoal is much more fervent than that of wood. The reeds are cut down when the stems assume a bright yellow color, and the tops have withered ; they are then tied in bundles as large as a man can carry, and boated off by the purchaser to his abode on the river banks; as required for use the bundles are steeped in the river until the reed becomes in some measure decomposed; they are then removed from the river and placed in an upright position for the water to drain off; when they become nearly dry, they are half-burned and in this state are used as charcoal. I have been thus particular in stating the uses to which this reed and grass jungle is applied, as the Zumeendars of Shikarpoor, pay a large part of their malguzari from the profits arising from the sale. During the time of survey, viz., March and April 1848, where the jungle was very dense, it was deemed necessary to issue orders to burn it down; but I shortly after received urzees and personal visits from the Zumeendars and Mustajies, who deprecated the measure, stating how ruinous it would be to them were my orders carried into effect; of course these orders were at once cancelled and an arrangement made with the proprietors, that they were to clear the way for my parties.
Thannah.—This Pergunnah is under the Police jurisdiction of Thannah Jugdullah ; a Chowkee of which is placed in the town of Bangabaree.
Area of Shikarpoor of Maldah.—The total area by survey of Pergunnah Shikarpoor of Maldah is...
20,816 0 25 British acres. Detached lands to be added,
10 000 Included lands to be deducted,
0 0 0
Assessment.--The rate of assessment will be found in the General Statistical Return.
Nos. 13, 14 and 15, Pergunnahs Wuzeerpoor, Basdoul-Pultapoor, and Pultapoor. There are compact portions of these Pergunnahs, especially of those of Wuzeerpoor, Basdoul-Pultapoor ; nevertheless the lands are very much intermixed, and as there are only two proprietors and they all belong to one Thannah, I have included them under one Statistical head.
These Pergunnahs are bounded on the North and East by the district of Dinajpoor and Pergunnah Bungaan of Rajshahee, on the South by Pergunnah Chundlaie, and on the West by Pergunnahs Sheershahabad and Shikurpoor.
Roads. There are two very good Kucha roads, viz., the Dâk road from Rampoor Bauleah to Dinajpoor, and Darjeeling; from Byrgachee Dâk bungalow and the Ganges to the Northern boundary of this District, this road maintains nearly a due Northerly direction ; there are four exceedingly pretty well built and commodious Dâk bungalows on this road, between the Ganges and the Northern boundary, a distance of nearly forty miles, viz., Byrgachee, which is distant from Bauleah, a little more than 15 miles ; Digrynee from Byrgachee, 104 miles ; Nizampoor from Digrynee, 10} miles ; Parbatteepoor from Nizampoor, 12 miles, and from Parbatteepoor to the boundary, six miles, beyond which at about 24 miles distance, in the same direct line stands the Bameepoor Dâk bungalow ; there are three other bungalows between the latter and the station of Dinajpoor. This road is a continuation of that from Calcutta to Darjeeling, and is passable at all seasons of the year for palkee travellers ; but the public letter Dâk does not run along it ; that proceeds from Moorshedabad, viá Kamra, crosses the Ganges near Toortupoor indigo factory, from thence to Maldah and Dinajpoor.
By the latter route, the distance is increased about twenty miles ; but the road is always safe
The second road alluded to, is a circuitous one, from Rampoor Bauleah via Nuwabgunge and Gomastapoor on the Mahanunda to Rohunpoor on the Poornababa, where there is a Dak bungalow communicating by a cross country road with Parbutteepoor Dâk bungalow, on the direct line ; in the fine weather this road is very good, and a buggy can be driven all the way from Gomastapoor to the Dâk bungalow.
Towns.—There are only two places of note in these Pergunnahs, viz., Gomastapoor of Pergunnah Wuzeerpoor, and Rohunpoor Maiegunge of Pergunnah Basdoul-Pultapoor. The former is a very fine village having a large bazaar; a haut also assembles here twice a week, viz., on Wednesdays, and Sundays ; the haut extends into the village, but the principal business appears to be transacted under the shade of a splendid Banian tree in the immediate vicinity of the bazaar ; the stems of this noble tree are about 20 in number, and average from 90 to 100 feet in height; and although not the greatest in diameter I have seen in this District, their great height, renders the appearance of the tree truly magnificent; Chuppai Thannah is also situated in this town, and there is a newly constructed rice gola in its vicinity. Many blacksmiths have located themselves here ; I have counted no less than 40 pairs of bellows at work at the same time ; all the smiths work under two immense chuppurs, and I was led to suppose from this, that the whole belonged
to one person ; but on inquiry, I found that there were several proprietors; the articles forged, are chiefly tools for husbandry and culinary utensils; the work is much ruder than I expected to find it.
Rohunpoor Maiegunge is situated at a short distance from the confluence of the Poornababa and the Mahanunda ; this is the most celebrated rice mart in this part of the country ; boats as far West as Cawnpoor on the Ganges and Agra on the Jumna, Came for supplies to this mart; those of very large burden repair their chuppurs or hulls at the mouth of the Mahanunda, when the water is shallow in this river and send up smaller boats for their cargoes ; but at nearly all seasons of the year, boats of very large size can ascend to the mouth of the Poornababa.
Muheepoor of Pergunnah Basdoul-Pultapoor is also a very flourishing town; but it is detached in Chandlaie of Maldah, and is situated on the Eastern bank of the Mahanunda.
Soils.—The soils are Muteear, Dorus and Baloo ; the two former are very productive and yield rich crops of rice, boro rice, mustard-seed, hemp, lin-seed, pulse of various kinds, the field pea, barley and a little wheat.
The whole surface of these Pergunnahs undulates considerably, and they are very thinly inhabited, except in the neighbourhood of the Mahanunda, which the people attribute to a fearful visitation of the cholera about the year 1816; the present inhabitants state, that the whole population of many villages were swept away ; and the half inhabited appearance of those at present occupied, would lead to some conclusion of the kind; the huts appear very generally to have been built of mud, as in almost every village you see many of these domiciles, having merely the bare walls standing, the habitants of which were swept away by the ruthless destroyer. I found two or three small beds of kunkur lime-stone in these Pergunnahs.
Jheels. There are several very extensive jheels, that adjoining the Poornababa, called Beel Telbora is the largest ; it occupies nearly 2000 acres ; as the waters subside annually, rice of several kinds especially boro is cultivated in all available places. The Telbora also as a fishery, affords a good livelihood to several families who ply their occupation in canoes of the rudest construction. There are several other jheels ; altogether about 4,000 acres are occupied by them.
Jungle.—Wuzeerpoor contains about 8,300 acres of jungle, principally reed and nul grass, here and there intermixed with trees, brushwood and cane. Basdoul-Pultapoor has 10,400, and Pultapoor 3,800 acres of jungle, making a total of 22,500 acres in the three Pergunnahs.
Wherever it is possible, boro rice is sown broad-cast, without tillage in the jungle, and produces excellent crops, which, however, are much destroyed, by the almost innumerable wild hogs; the cultivators seem to care but little about this, and are satisfied if half the produce is left for them ; large herds of cattle almost unattended, graze in these jungles, and gwalas are frequently seen with large herds of buffaloes ; these last appear to be the only domesticated cattle that thrive here. Tigers and several other kinds of wild animals swarm ; the beautiful sambur is sometimes found. The deer and
hog are so numerous, that tigers seldom attack men ; however, I knew two instances whilst encamped in this neighbourhood, in the latter I had the satisfaction of killing the tiger ; it was a very large one and had destroyed 13 men and women belonging to the village of Hoogla ; he first made his appearance in the neighbourhood in 1843, at least he then commenced his attacks on the human species; his last victim was a very fine
young woman, who was assisting her husband in cleaning some pulse, near some grass jungle, of a mile to the eastward of the village. I was encamped close by, and on hearing of the circumstance went, accompanied by a friend, to the spot ; we found the tiger lying beside the body which he had not torn, having only sucked the blood ; after a long fight and many charges, we killed him and restored the body of the unfortunate young woman to her relatives. In the first instance the tiger was killed also, the people of the neighbourhood were exceedingly grateful.
Thannahs.—These Pergunnahs are under the Police jurisdiction of Thannah Rohunpoor, Chowkees of which, are located in Parbutteepoor and Subdlelpoor,
Assessment.-The rate of assessment is noted in the General Statistical Return.