Volume: 17, No: 01 ; January-2023
The persistent vandalism of the East India Company’s officers , under Outram and Jackson, was reported to the King, by his Mahals (Queens), agents and Officers-in-charge of the King’s properties at Lucknow. Moved by the repeated reports of wanton destruction of his properties, the King sent the following letter, from Matia Burj (suburb of Calcutta) to Lord Canning, the the Governor-General of India :
“Translation of a letter from the King of Oudh to the Honourable Governor-General dated 30th day of August, 1856.” (after some editing for better understanding and reference)
I beg to inform your Lordship that so many acts of violence, oppression, and indignity have been committed upon me that even one-tenth of them was never exercised upon any of the enemies of the British Government since the establishment of its authority in India.
“ANCESTRAL MONUMENTS PULLED DOWN ” – “FURRAH BUKSH TURNED INTO A KENNEL “
The taking possession of my ancestral Kingdom of one century’s standing is an infringement of solemn treaties. Thousands of my effects have been confiscated and destroyed. While the edifices, the building of which had cost Lacs of Rupees, and which were the monuments of my ancestors, have after they had stood for six generations, been pulled down. The magnificent building “Furrah Baksh” in which the Throne is placed and which had been erected exclusively for the entertainment of the British gentlemen, has been used as a dog kennel, and a stable. Guards have been placed over my private officials, even over the Moonshee Khanah, which contains not a single document related to public affairs, excepting only the Sunuds of the (British) Government, and the correspondence between the two States.
“GODOWNS BROKEN OPEN” – “ANIMALS AUCTIONED AT LOW PRICE”
The doors of my godown which were locked up, have been broken open, and the property contained therein has been spoiled. The animals, such as horses, elephants, and bullocks have been sold by auction at a very low price. Many other acts have been committed, the mention of which would be improper and tedious.
“DISTRESSED CONDITION OF LADIES “
I would never been willing to utter a complaint on the subject, but as independent of the past acts , every day, (since my arrival at Calcutta) witnesses some fresh occurrences or indignity derogatory to me and as I see no means of obtaining redress but by a representation to your Lordship, and as it is not the part of wisdom, to conceal one’s ailments so as to render a remedy impossible, I am compelled to intimate to your Lordship that such communications from my officers employed in Lucknow have reached me, as that a perusal of them has caused me uneasiness beyond description. They are herewith enclosed.
Your Lordship will learn on a reference thereto the distressed conditions of my Mahals (or Ladies). Under these circumstances I hope that your Lordship will (in equity and the true spirit of friendship, and out of respect to the obligation of treaties) be pleased to send an order by the Electric Telegraph directing the authorities at Lucknow to refrain from causing my houses to be vacated, and from committing such acts as may affect my honor and dignity. I beg your Lordship will be pleased to set my mind at ease by informing me of the nature of the answers which your Lordship may receive from those authorities.
Every difficulty may become simple through your attention, whereas every simple one may turn out difficult through your inattention.
LUCKNOWLEDGE is an initiative by Tornos. We do not intend to intrude your privacy and thus have an automated UNSUBSCRIBE system. At any point you may unsubscribe to our e-column or subscribe to it again through a link on our website. The above article is shared and in no way intends to violate any copy right or intellectual rights that always remains with the writer/publisher. This e-column is a platform to share an article/event/update with the netizens and educate them about Destination Lucknow.