§ Colonel WEDGWOOD
asked the Secretary of State for India whether the custom is developing in the Punjab of making assignments of public land revenue, called jagirs, to private grantees, many being rich men; and whether this mortgaging of the future resources of the State will be stopped pending the establishment of some form of self-government?
§ Mr. FISHER
The granting of jagirs, or assignments of land revenue by way of reward for public services, is an ancient Indian custom which is still common in native States. In the Punjab the local Government is empowered to make such grants, in recognition of meritorius public service, not exceeding the yearly value of Rs. 1,000 in each case, up to an aggregate of Rs. 5,000 in each year. The grants are for life, but may be continued by the local Government at half-rates to one of the grantee's descendants for his lifetime. They are resumable in the event of misconduct. The Local Government and the Government of India consider this method of reward to be of great political value. The Secretary of State does not propose to interfere with the practice.