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Full text of "Census of India, 1901"

CENSUS OF INDIA, 1901 



VOLUME VI. 



B E N G A L. 



J^^VI?.T 1 



BEP O E T. 



E. y ^ AIT, F.S.3. 

OF THa INDIAN lWIL SBE'VICE, 

\ 

•S'TPEKIXTENDENT OF CENSUS 0PEBATI0N3, BENiiAL. 



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CALCUTTA: 

BENGAL SECRETARIAT PRESS. 
1902. 

\_Pnce~IncUan, En. 3 ; Englhh Jis. 6d.] 




BOUGHT WITH THE INCOME 
FROM THE 

SAGE ENDOWMENT FUND 

THE GIFT OF 

1S91 



4//-.^-'^/SA JA/Jtjjaj^ 




3 1924 071 145 571 




The original of this book is in 
the Cornell University Library. 

There are no known copyright restrictions in 
the United States on the use of the text. 



http://www.archive.org/details/cu31924071145571 



CENSUS OF INDIA, .19 






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^hc fotoer f robina^ of §m^ anf their 

Jfeui)at0rk0. 




P»^IIT 'I. 



tjt:e; r:ejpojrt. 



E. A. GAIT, F,s.s. 



OF THE INDIAN CIVIL SEBVICE, 

HONOBAST ANTHEOPOIOOICAI SECEETABT TO THE ASIATIC SOCIETY OP BENSAt AND 

SUPEBINTENDENT OP CENSUS OPEEATIONS, BENGAL. 




BENGAL SEOEETABIAT PRESS. 
1902. 



f\. \\.t\sl. 



Published at the Bengal Secretariat Book Depot, 
Writers' Buildings, Calcutta. 



In India — 

Messbs. Thaceeb, Spine & Co., Calcutta and Simla. 

Messes. Newman & Co., Calcutta? 

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Messbs. Thackbe & Co., Ld., Bombay. 

Messes. A. J. Combeidge & Co., Bombay. 

Mb. E. SEYUoTrs Hale, 53 Esplanade Boad, Fort, Bombay, and Calcutta. 

Tee Supebiniendent, Auebican Bafiisi Mission Pbess, Bangoon. 

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Bai Sahib M. Gulab Sinqh & Sons, Proprietors of the Mufid-i-am Press, 

Lahore, Punjab. 
Messes. V. Kaltanabama Itee & Co., Book-sellers, &c., Madras. 
Messes. D. B. TabafobevaIiA, Sons & Co., Book-sellers, Bombay. 

In England — 

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Messes. Sampson Low, Massion & Co., St. Dunstan's House, Fetter Lane, 

London. 
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Messrs. Eeoan Paul, Tbench, Tbubneb & Co., Charing Cross Boad, London. 
Me. B. Alebed Qttaeitch, 16 Piccadilly, London. 

Messes. P. S. £iNa & Son, 3 & 4 Great Smith Street, Westminster, London. 
Messes. H. S. Eing & Co., 66 Cornhill, London. 
Messes. Williams and Nobgate, Oxford. 
Messes. DbiQHIon Bell & Co., Cambridge. ^ 

On the Continent— 

Messbs. B. Feiedlanseb & Sohn, Berlin, N. W. Carlstrasse, 11. 

Mb. Otio Haebassowitz, Leipzig. 

Me. Eabl HieBs^mann, Leipzig. 

Mb. Ebnest Leboux, 28 Bue Bonaparte, Paris. 

Mb. Mabiinus Nijhofe, The Hague. 



GENERAL TABLE OF CONTENTS OF THE FOUR PARTS. 



PART I (VOLUME VI). 

THE REPORT. 
INTEODUCTION 

CHAPTEE I DiSTEIBUTION OP THE POPULATION 

" II — Vaeiations in the Population ... 

" III — MiGBATION 

" IV — Eeligion 

" V — -^"^li •■■ 

yi— Sex 

" VII — Maeeiagb 

" VIII — Inpiemitibs 

" I^ — Education 

„ X — Language 

XI — Caste ... 
„ XII — Occupations ... 
APPENDICES 





1 




39 




127 




... 151 




... 209 




235 




247 




... 279 




297 




311 




347 




461 




i 



PART II (VOLUME VIA). 
THE IMPERIAL TABLES. 

TABLE I — Aeea, Houses, and Population 
„ II — Vaeiation in Population since 1873 

„ III — Towns and Villages classified by Population ... 

„ IV — Population of Towns with vaeiation since 1872 

,, V — Towns abeanged Teeeitoeiallt with Population by Eeligion 

„ VI — Eeligions 

„ VII — Age, Sex, and Civil Condition ... 

„ VIII — Education 

„ IX — ^Education by Selected Castes, Teibes, ob Eaces 

X — Language 
„ XI — Biethplacb 

,, XII — Infiemities 

„ XIII— Caste 

XIV — Civil Condition by Age foe Selected Castes ... 
„ XV — Occupation 

^, XVI — Occupation by Caste ... 

XVII— Cheistians by Sect and Eace ... 
XVIII— Cheistians by Eace and Agb ... 



1 

5 

9 

13 

19 

26 

29 

59 

99 

113 

139 

187 

191 

291 

309 

475 

507 

517 



PART III (VOLUME VIB). 

PROVINCIAL TABLES {TEE THANA 18 HERE THE UNIT). 

TABLE I— Abba, Houses, and Population by Thanas with vaeiation since 1891 ... 1 
II— Eeligion BY Than AS with vaeiation since 1891 ... ... ... ... 17 

III_Showing foe each Thana the Castes, etc., of Hindus, Animists, Buddhists, 
and Muhammadans which conteibutb 1,000 OE MOBE peesons to the 
Disteict Population ... •.- ■■• ■■• ■■■ ■•■ ^^ 



PART IV (VOLUME VIC), 
THE ADMINISTRATIVE REPORT. 



CHAPTEE I — The TAsaNG of the Census 

II_Thb Compilation of the Eesults 
III— The Cost of the Census 
APPENDICES 



1 

52 



DETAILED TABLE OF CONTENTS OF PART L 



CHAPTEE I — DiSTBiBUTioN op the Population. page. 

General description of Bengal — Area, population and density — Houses and house-room — Towns 

and Tillages ... .,, ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 1 

Suhsidiary Tahles ... ... ... ... ... ,., ... ... ... 35 

CHAPTEE II — Vabiations in the Population. 

Preliminary discussion — West Bengal — Central Bengal — North. Bengal — ^East Bengal — South 

Bihar — North Bihar — Orissa — Chota Nagpur Plateau ... ... ... ... ... 39 

Suhiidiary Tables ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... .123 

CHAPTEE III— Migeation. 

Migration to and from Bengal — Migration within the Province — General conclusions ... ... 127 

Subiidiari/ Tables ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ,.. ... 145 

CHAPTEE IV— Eeligion. 

Distribution and variation since 1891 — Eaees and sects of Christians — The Muhammadans of 

Bengal — Hindu sects and godlings — Traces of Buddhism in Bengal ... ... ... 161 

iSubsidiary Tables ... ... ... ... ,,, ... ... ... ... 205 

CHAPTEE V— Age. 

Inaccuracy of age return — Mean age by religion and caste — Decline in the birth-rate— Local varia- 
tions in birth-rate — Monthly distribution of births — Birth-rate in towns ... ,,. ... 209 
Subsidiary Tables ... ... ... .,. ... ... ... ... .. 222 

CHAPTEE VI— Sex. 

General proportion of the sexes— Proportion in different religions and castes— Proportion at 

different ages — Decline in proportion of females — Causes influencing sex ... ... 235 

Subsidiary Tables ... ... ... .„ ... ... ... ... 242 

CHAPTEE VII— Maeeiagb. 

General features of statistics — Marriage amongst Hindus — Marriage amongst Muhammadans, 

Animists, Christians and Buddhists ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 247 

Subsidiary Tables ... ... ... ... ... ... ... .,. ... 264 

CHAPTEE VIII— Infiemities. 
Insanity — Deaf-mutism — ^Blindness — Leprosy ... ... ... ... ... ... 279 

Subsidiary Tables ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 294 

CHAPTEE IX— Education. 

Extent of literacy — Distribution by religion and locality — Comparison with 1891— English educa- 
tion—Comparison with other Provinces— Education by caste— Statistics of literacy as an 
index to social movements ... ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 297 

Subsidiary Tables ... ... ... ... ••• •• ... ... ... 305 

CHAPTEE X— Language. 

Value of the return — Classification of languages-rAryan family— Munda family— Dravidian family— 

Tibeto-Burman family — General conclusions ... ... ... ... ... ... 311 

Subsidiary Tables ... ... ••• ••■ ■■. ... ... ... ... 340 

CHAPTEE XI— Caste. 

Definition and origin of caste — Social precedence of castes— Distribution of main castes and varia- 
tions since 1872— Brief Ethnographic notes — Muhammadan castes and tribes — Nepalese castes 
and tribes ... ... ... ... ••• ... ... ... ... ... 347 

Subsidiary Tables ... ... ■•• — ••• ••• ... ... ... 459 

CHAPTEE XII— Occupations. 

Introductory remarks — Comparison with 1891 — General distribution of population by occupation — 
Occupations in towns— Workers and dependents — Occupations combined with agriculture — 
Occupation by religion and caste ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 431 

Subsidiary Tablet ... ... ■•• ■•• ••• ••• •■• ... ... 488 

APPENDICES i 



Introduction. 



The fourth regular Census of Bengal was taken with that of the whole of 

_. „ India on the Ist March 1901. A full account of 

Site of Censtts. it. • i i 

the procedure adopted in connection with the 

taking of the Census and the compilation of the results has been given in a 

separate report, but it may be interesting to note briefly a few of the more 

important facts connected with the operations. 

Owing to various circumstances, of which the dearth of literate persons is 

one of the chief, a Census is a matter of special 
MBt?ioT'"''"''°" '^^ ^'''" difficulty in India, and especially so in Bengal, 

where the population far exceeds that dealt with 
by a single Census Superintendent in any other country in the world, while 
the absence of a regular detailed survey necessitates very elaborate preliminary 
arrangements, in order to obtain a complete list of villages, and to portion 
them out amongst the difiEerent grades of Census Officers in such a way that 
there may be no cases of omission or overlapping. Special care has to be taken 
to obtain a full enumeration of the boat population, on the network of rivers 
in East Bengal, and of the wild tribes of the Chota Nagpur Plateau and other 
remote tracts. 

Owing to the general illiteracy of the population, the European method of 
giving to the head of each family a form or schedule on which to record the 
desired particulars for his household is impracticable in India, and the Census 
was taken, as on previous occasions, by persons specially appointed for the 
purpose, called Enumerators, each of whom dealt with a specified number of 
houses, usually about 40. But even so, the men available were seldom well 
qualified for their duties. They were, of course, literate, but their general 
education was usually of a very low standard, and in order to obtain correct 
entries in the difEerent columns of the Census schedules, it was necessary to 
drill them very carefully. "With this object in view a regular scale of Census 
Officers was appointed. The persons who were entrusted with the training 
of the Enumerators and the examination of the work done by them were called 
Supervisors and, on the average, there was one Supervisor to every 12 Enu- 
merators. The Supervisor was usually a non-official, and although he was 
selected with special reference to his educational fitness, and was of a much 
better stamp than the Enumerators, it was still necessary to supplement his 
written instructions by oral teaching, and to keep a careful watch over his work. 
For this purpose every district was parcelled out into charges, each under a 
Charge Superintendent, who was in almost all cases an official. The Charge 
Superintendents were, in their turn, subordinate to the District Magistrate and 
his Subdivisional Officers, who were assisted in the task of general supervision 
by such gazetted officers as had not been detailed to take immediate charge of 
the work in particular charges. Excluding Calcutta and the Native States, 
there were, in round numbers, 1,500 Charge Superintendents, 28,000 Super- 
visors and 384,000 Enumerators. 



The first direct step towards the taking of the Census was the numbering 
„ of the houses. A house was defined as the residence 

House nttmbeeino. i r m 

of a commensal family, and each such house was 
given a separate number. When all had been numbered, a statement showing 
the number of houses and of each grade of Census Officers was compiled 
and sent to the Provincial Superintendent, who used it to correct the rough 
indent for forms which had been previously sent to the Press. 

The next step was the preparation of the preliminary record, i.e., 

the entry in the enumeration-schedules of the 

The Peeliminaet Becoed. i- i j- n j* • 

necessary particulars regarding all persons ordinari- 
ly resident in each house. The information to be recorded included: — 
name, religion, sex, age, civil condition, caste, occupation, parent-tongue, 
birthplace, literacy or illiteracy, language io which literate, and certain 
infirmities. In order to obtain an accurate return, it was necessary that 
the Enumerators should be very carefully trained beforehand. This 
training was carried out during November and December. The Charge 
Superintendents were first thoroughly taught, either at head-quarters or by 
officers of the higher grades deputed for the purpose ; the Supervisors were next 
instructed by the Charge Superintendents, and the Enumerators by the Super- 
visors. Classes were held at which the rules were explained and schedules 
were filled in experimentally. The mistakes made in preparing these test 
schedules were corrected and explained on the spot. 

Everything possible was done to give the Enumerators a thorough know- 
ledge of their duties, but even so, experience on previous occasions had shown 
that numerous errors would still remain. The correction of these mistakes in 
the enumeration-schedules would have made them very unsightly. To avoid 
this, the original entries were made on plain paper, and the actual Census 
record was not prepared until the rough draft had been shown to, and corrected 
by, the Supervisors. The testing, however, was by no means confined to the 
Supervisors. Every single officer who could be spared was given a share in 
the operations, and for two days all Government offices were closed in order 
to set the whole staff free for the inspection of the work. 

The preliminary record was prepared in the Mufassal between the 20th 
January and the 10th February. In towns it was begun and finished ten days 
later. The period remaining before the 1st March was utilised in checking 
the entries as described above. 

The actual Census was taken between 7 p.m. and midnight on the 1st 

March. Each Enumera.tor visited in turn every 
house in his beat, and brought the record up to 
date by striking out the entries relating to persons no longer present, and 
entering the necessary particulars for all new-comers. In a few remote tracts 
this final revision was commenced a few hours earlier, so that it might be 
completed by nightfall. In the Tributary States of Chota Nagpur and in 
the greater part of Sikkim there was no final revision ; the preliminary record 
was there treated as the actual Census. Special arrangements, which need not 
be detailed here, were made for the enumeration of travellers by rail, road, 
steamer and boat, for wood-cutters in the Sundarbans and other forests, 
and for ports, large fairs, tea-gardens, &c. 



On the morning after the Census, the Enumerators repaired to a place previ- 
ously fixed by their Supervisors, and prepared an 
The PEOYisioNAL EEsuLTs. absttact showiug the number of houses, and of 

persons, male and female, in their blocks. These abstracts, after being 
checked by a second Enumerator, were posted by the Supervisor in a 
summary for his Circle. The Circle summaries were checked and posted 
in a Charge summary, which was sent to head-quarters, where the provisional 
totals for the district were compiled. The first district to communicate its 
totals was Balasore (on the second day after the Census), which was followed 
closely by Puri, Darbhanga, and other districts. The figures for the whole 
Province had been received and reported to Grovernment by the 10th March, 
or within nine days of the Census. The total population, as shown by these 
provisional figures, differed by only 2,982, or less than '004 per cent, from the 
result arrived at after detailed tabulation. The greatest degree of accuracy 
was attained in Puri, Backergunge and the 24-Parganas, where the preliminary 
totals differed from the final figures by only 2, 5 and 24, respectively. 

At previous enumerations, the information contained in. the schedules was 

extracted on "abstraction sheets" (one for each 
Peepaeation OF FINAL Tables, g^^j Table), which were divided by rules into 

spaces corresponding to the headings of the Table concerned. A separate 
sheet was used for each Enumerator's book of schedules, and a tick was made in 
the appropriate column corresponding to each entry therein. When the whole 
book had been abstracted the ticks were counted. The figures thus obtained 
were added up for the Police Circle (this was called tabulation), and the figures 
for the latter were compiled into a total for the district. 

On the present occasion this method was abandoned, under the orders of 

the Census Commissioner for India, in favour of 
what is known as the slip, or card, system. A 
separate slip containing all the prescribed details was prepared for each person 
enumerated, and these slips were then sorted for all the final Tables in turn. 
Each sorter was supplied with a set of pigeon-holes, which were labelled to 
indicate their contents. For instance, when sorting by caste, one pigeon-hole 
would be labelled "Brahman," another "Kayasth," and so on; all the slips 
on which Brahman was shown as the caste were placed in the pigeon-hole 
labelled "Brahman," and all those for Kayasths into the hole labelled 
" K^yasth." When the sorting for a Table had been completed, the slips 
in each hole were counted, and the result was noted on a form called the 
"sorter's ticket." The figures in the sorter's tickets were then posted in 
" tabulation registers," and added up to form the district total. This method 
of working out the results of a Census was invented by Herr Von Mayr in 
connection with the Bavarian Census of 1872, and has since been adopted 
by almost all civilised countries, including many of the colonies. It has many 
obvious advantages. It is much less complicated than the old method ; the 
work is more easily tested ; and by putting together and sorting at one time 
the slips for a large number of persons, the operation previously known as 
tabulation was entirely dispensed with. 

In order to reduce the amount of writing to be done, slips of different 
colours were used for the different religions, and symbols were printed on 
# * 



them to indicate sex and civil condition. The symbols used in Bengal were 
as follows :— 

Unmarried. Married. Widowed. 

Male 



Female 




D O 



The selection of the right sHp thus obviated the necessity of making any 
entry for religion, sex or civil condition. The labour of copying was still 
further reduced by the judicious use of abbreviations. 

In 1881, when the Tables were far less elaborate, the results were compiled 

in three central offices, while in 1891 the work was 

PeEPAEATION of slips. . Ill p 1 T ■ 

carried out at the head-quarters oi each district. 
On the present occasion the slips were usually written up in the districts, 
and they were then sent for sorting to six central offices. A certain amount of 
slip-copying, as it was called, was also carried out in the central offices, partly 
in order to give the officers in charge time to organize their establishments 
before the more difficult part of the work— sorting — began, and partly because 
in some cases there were special reasons why the slips could not conveniently 
be copied locally. This arrangement worked admirably, and within ten weeks 
of the Census almost the whole of the 78 million slips had been prepared. 
When the work was in full swing the number of men employed in the slip- 
copying offices exceeded five thousand. 

Ihe sorting took longer. There were in all eighteen Tables to be 

prepared ; and some of them, such as those con- 

SOEIING THE SLIPS. . 

nected with castes and occupations, were very 
complicated, and involved much correspondence with district officers and 
a great deal of local enquiry. The work, however, was practically finished by 
the end of September. 

Then followed compilation and revision, which, for the more elaborate 
^ Tables, proved to be by far the most tedious part of 

Compilation. ' '^ •' , ... 

the work. The Caste Tables in their original form 
were ready about the end of January 1902, and the Occupation Tables a 
month later. But the detailed examination of the statistics in the head-office 
and the checking of all entries which appeared doubtful, either because they 
differed widely from the results of the last Census, or because of discrepancies 
in the figures for males and females, which were purposely kept separate 
throughout the earlier stages of the work, or for any other reason, took up 
much time. The last of the Tables was thus not finally passed until after the 
end of May. 

Until the revision of the Tables was well advanced it was impossible to 

devote much time to the writing of the report, and 
on the 1st of July more than half of it still re- 
mained to be written. The Census Commissioner for India was anxious that it 
should be completed at the earliest possible moment, and with great efforts the 
actual writing of the report was completed by the 7th September, and the 
printing three weeks later^ or more than six months earlier than in 1891. It 
was impossible, however, in the stress of work to devote as much time as one 



could have wished to the careful revision of the proofs, or to the improvement 
of the style and arrangement of what was unavoidably a very hurried draft. 

The report has run to much greater length than I had intended, but in a 
great Province like Bengal it is impossible to deal fully with the statistics 
within the limits which are sufficient elsewhere. The population of Bengal is 
about a quarter of that of the whole of India, but the results of the Census of 
the other three-quarters are treated of in no less than twenty-two different 
Census Reports. In the Assam Report, for example, 20 pages are devoted to 
the variations in the population of that Province, which comprises about 
6 million persons. At the same rate, about 250 pages would be required for the 
78 millions of Bengal, but the actual length of the corresponding chapter of 
my report is only 88 pages. Nor is it merely a question of population. The 
local conditions in different parts of Bengal vary very greatly, and in respect 
of caste, language, religion, social customs and material condition, Bengal, 
Bihar, Orissa and Chota Nagpur differ from each other as much as do any 
two adjoining Provinces in the Empire. In the Himalayan district of 
Darjeeling and the Sikkim State, again, the population is drawn mainly from 
Nepal and Tibet, and the report would not be complete if the tribes there 
met with and the languages which they speak were left unnoticed. In order 
to curtail the report as much as possible, a great deal of interesting descriptive 
material which had been collected has been omitted. Several of the general 
discussions not immediately connected with the statistics, such as those regard- 
ing the popular religious beliefs, the origin and nature of caste, and caste 
precedence, have been inserted ia accordance with the request of the Census 
Commissioner for India. But'even here I have tried not to be too diffuse, and 
I have not by any means made full use of my material. The subject of caste 
precedence alone, if the numerous memorials received from the representatives 
of the different castes had been at all fully discussed, would have taken up more 
space than the whole Caste Chapter now does ; and, in the same way, the notes 
on Hindu Godlings might easily have occupied more pages than the whole of 
the Chapter on Religion as it now stands. 

After all a Census Report is, ia the main, a work of reference, and 
completeness is more important than brevity, especially in India, where there is 
no body of professional statisticians ready and eager to pounce on the raw 
material provided for them at the Census, and to make the required deductions. 
Unless the Census Superintendent himself analyses the figures and points to the 
conclusions to be drawn from them, they are in danger of being left unnoticed 
altogether. 

The total expenditure of all kinds on the present Census of Bengal has 

been less than Rs. 3,90,000, or under Rs. 5 
per 1,000 of the population, compared with 
Rs. 7,00,000, or rather more than Rs. 9-7 per 1,000 in 1891. This large 
reduction in cost is due, to a great extent, to the introduction of the slip 
system, ]but considerable savings have also been effected in other directions, 
by improved record-room arrangements, the employment of men on lower pay 
and strict economy at all points. 

In conclusion I have to express my gratitude' to the District Magistrates 

and other officers of the general Administration 

cKNowiE . ^^^ their cordial co-operation at all stages of the 

operations. Fully occupied, as they already were, with their ordinary duties, 

the Census must have been a heavy additional burden, and cannot well have 



been regarded otherwise than as an unmitigated nuisance. But in spite of 
this, with scarcely an exception, they gave it their ungrudging attention, and 
it was owing to their efforts that a very high standard of accuracy in the actual 
enumeration was attained. Nor did their labours cease when the Census was 
taken. In most districts the slips were copied locally, and the arrangements 
for, and supervision of, this operation took up much of their time. In the 
course of sorting the slips and compiling the final tables, numerous local 
references, both official and demi-oflScial, were unavoidably necessary, and the 
correspondence and enquiries in connection with these references must have 
formed an irksome addition to the ordinary office work, but in no case did a 
request for information fail to receive prompt and courteous attention. There 
were also innumerable special reports on religion, caste, marriage customs 
and the like, many of which involved a great deal of local enquiry and 
research. The general information contained in this volume is based mainly 
on the information thus obtained ; and, as already stated, a great deal of most 
interesting material has been received which I have not yet been able to 
utilize. 

I am under still greater obligations to the officers named in the margin, 

who were associated with me in the compilation 
Mr. Moberly. Qf ^jjg results, and of whose industry and devotion 

Babu Jamini Mohan Das. it is impossible to speak too hiffhlv. Mr. Howard 

„ Monmoiian Boy. -r, i i • i i • o 

Mr. Manmatha Nath Ghosh. at Dacca dealt With a population of about 15-J 

millions, and managed his huge office with entire 
success. The work was done very quickly and methodically, and a high 
standard of accuracy was attained. The same may be said of the work done 
by Babus Monmohan Roy and Jamini Mohan Das, whose management of the 
offices at Berhampur and Cuttack was all that could be desired. Mr. Moberly, 
at Patna, had an office nearly as large as that at Dacca and a very indifferent class 
of clerks. In spite of this disadvantage he laboured unceasingly, and was making 
good progress when his health gave way and he was obliged to go on leave. His 
place was taken by Babu Monmohan Roy, who had closed his office at 
Berhampur, and, in spite of failing health, brought the operations at Patna 
to a successful conclusion. Babu Srinath Chakravarti, my Personal Assistant, 
has worked assiduously throughout, and has managed the head-office very 
satisfactorily. He has a good head for figures, and has been of very great 
assistance to me. 

Lastly, I have to acknowledge my indebtedness to Mr. Chalmers, Superin- 
tendent of Government Printing, Bengal, for the close personal attention which 
he has always given to Census matters, and for the great help which he 
has given me at all stages of the work. The form of slip used for working 
out the results, which has been described above, was devised by him, after many 
different devices had been tried and rejected, and it was found to answer our 
requirements in all respects. It was adopted, not only by me for use in 
Bengal, but also by the Census Superintendents of Assam and several other 
Provinces. The arrangement of the form in which the different Tables 
should be printed was another matter in respect of which I am under special 
obligations to Mr. Chalmers. 



REPORT 

ON THE 



CENSUS OF BENGAL 1901. 



DISTBIBVTION OF THE POPVLATION. 



General Description of Bengal. 

The territory ruled by the Lieutenant-Governor of Bengal covers an area 

of 190,000 square miles and has a population of 
BAtrE^' ^''^'''''^'°''' ^'''' ^°"''' more than 78 millions. Its extent is thus half as 

great again as that of the United Kingdom, and its 
population is nearly double. It includes Bengal Proper with a population of 
41 millions, or about the same as that of the whole Madras Presidency includ- 
ing its feudatories; Bihar with 23 millions, or rather less than that of the 
Bombay Presidency with the Native States attached to it ; Orissa with four 
millions, or rather more than the population of Upper Burma; Chota Nagpur 
with five millions, or rather less than that of Lower Burma ; and, lastly, the 
Native States, viz., Kuch Bihar, Hill Tippera, Sikkim and the twenty-six Tribu- 
tary States of Orissa and Chota Nagpur. The aggregate population of these 
States approaches foilr millions, and is nearly half that of the Central India 
Agency. This great Province is bounded on the north by the Himalayas ; on 
the east by Assam and the range which divides Assam from Burma; on the 
south by Madras and the Bay of Bengal ; and on the west by the Central 
Provinces and the United Provinces of Agra and Oudh. It contains tracts of 
greatly varying physical features, including the alluvial plains of the Ganges 
and the Brahmaputra and the deltas of these great rivers, the crystalline 
plateaux of Chota Nagpur and the Tributary States and the hills stretching 
from their gouth-eastern extremity northwards to the Ganges at R^jmah^l, the 
narrow strip of alluvium comprising the Orissa Commissionership, and, lastly, a 
small tract of the Sub-Himalaya, the Sikkim State and its ceded area, which 
forms the greater part of the modern district of Darjeeling. The most distinc- 
tive feature of the Province is its network of rivers — ^the Ganges and Brahma- 
putra with their affluents and distributaries. These rivers are of use in many 
ways. They furnish an admirable and cheap means of transport ; they contain 
an inexhaustible supply of fish, and they bring down vast quantities of 
fertilising silt which they distribute over the surface of the delta. 

2. In Chota Nagpur and Orissa there is no evidence of any change 

in late geological times, but the rest of the 
Changes in eievation. ji-rovince has undergone great vicissitudes. It is 

supposed that there was formerly a continuous chain of hills connecting the 
Rajmahal range with the remains of the Peninsula system still in existence in 
Assam, and that the subsidence of this area was due to the same disturbances 
that resulted in the raising of the Himalayas. There are reasons for supposing 
that the Indus and Ganges were once connected, and it is thought that before 
these changes the waters of the Ganges and its tributaries found their way to 
the sea down the valley of the Indus. The Gangetic plain appears to have been 
formed from the silt of the great Himalayan rivers. There are no marine 
deposits on the southern face of the Himalayas, nor have any been brought to 
light by borings at Allahabad, Calcutta, and elsewhere. The Calcutta bore hole 
revealed ancient land surfaces at a depth of 30 and again at 382 feet, and it is 



2 CHAPTER I — DISTEIBUTION OP POPULATION. 



known that the soil of the Sundarbans has sunk considerably in quite recent 
times. It is thus probable that a great part of the Bay of Bengal was once dry 
land, and that the gradual raising of the surface of the country by the action 
of the rivers has been discounted by successive subsidences, which have been 
accompanied by upheavals elsewhere.* It is believed that the formation of the 
depression along which the Padma now flows was connected with the elevation 
of the Tippera Hills, and that the raising of the Madhupur jungle was contem- 
poraneous with the sinking of the country occupied by the Sylhet jhils.f 

3. The above changes, though interesting in themselves, belong to prehis- 

toric times. They are thus of less practical impor- 
Chanqes IN BivEE SYSTEM- THK ta,nce than the great alterations that have been 
^^^^*' taking place during the last three or four hundred 

years in the river system of the Province, From the dawn of history until 
probably some time in the 16th century the Bhfigirathi formed the main channel 
of the Ganges. In the eyes of the Hindus this river, and not the Padma, is 
still the sacred stream, and on its banks were situated the great capitals of Gaur 
(Lakhnauti), Pandua, Eajmahdl, Nabadvip, and Sdtgaon. Its earliest bed, 
known as the Saraswati, left the modern Hooghly at Sditgaon and pursued a 
more westerly course to a point near the place where the Damodar now joins the 
Hooghly. Large vessels sailed up this river in the 16th century. Its silting up 
led to the establishment of the port and town of Hooghly by the Portuguese in 
1637. The Damodar, it is said, formerly joined the Bhagirathi at Satgaon, 
and it is only since the middle of the 18th century that it left this course 
and burst into the old channel of the Bhdgirathi. Local traditions have 
preserved no record of the supplanting of the Bhagirathi by the Padma as 
main channel of the Ganges, and it is probable that it was effected very grad- 
ually .J The whole country below Eajmahal and Murshidabad was formerly 
pari of the true Ganges delta, where the river was split up into various chan- 
nels, all of which were busy depositing silt and so raising their beds and block- 
ing up their mouths. The process doubtless proceeded most rapidly in the 
Bhagirathi, which was then the main channel, and in time the river was obliged 
to seek another course by which to discharge the bulk of its accumulated 
water. In this way the Ichamati,§ the Jalangi, the Matabhanga, the Kumdr 
or Nabaganga, and the Gorai probably each in turn became the main outlet of 
the Ganges. The river tended ever eastwards, cutting right across the old 
drainage channels of the country, until at last it was met and stopped by the 
Brahmaputra.|| 

4. The Brahmaputra flowed round the foot of the Garo Hills east of 

the Madhupur jungle, and after discharging its silt 
HE EAHMAPTjTEA. .^^^ ^j^^ Sylhct jhils, uuitcd with the Megna. This 

is the course shown on the maps of Rennell's survey of 1785, and it was not 
till the beginning of this century that, having raised its bed and lost its 
velocity, it was no longer able to hold its own against the Megna, and being 
forced to seek another outlet for its banked-up waters, it suddenly broke 
westwards and joined the Ganges near Goalundo.^f It now competes with the 
Ganges in depositing its detritus in the eastern part of the Delta; and as the 

* There is evidence to show that the elevation of the Himalayas, if not still in progress, has only 
recently ceased. 

f Such alterations of level have occurred in historic times, e.g., the submergence of two thousand 
square miles in the ifann of Outch in 1819. The Assam earthquake of 1897 also resulted in some small 
changes of elevation. 

I The Padma is mentioned in the Ain-i-AJcbAri. It is also shown as a wide river in the map published 
in ' Da Asia,' by Ue Barros, who died in 1570. This map, however, is not very reliable. 

§ The Icbamati may be an older river which was cut in halves by the Padma, as there is a stream of 
the same name in Pabna on the north bank of the Padma. In Dhrubananda Misra's Kayastha Kanka 
which purports to contain Ballala Sena's rules for the Kayasths, the country of the Bangaja Kayasths, is 
said to be bounded on the east by the (old) Brahmaputra, on the west by the Madhumati, aad on the north 
hy the Jchdmati. The name Matabhanga also survives north of the Padma as the name of a Ihana in 
the Kuch Bihar State. 

II Mr. P G. Shillingford lias suggested that the Kosi formerly flowed into the Brahmaputra, and 
that on its junclion with the G-nnges the united mass of water opened up the passage now called 
the Padma, and the old channel of the Bhagirathi was then left comparatively dry. 

U These and other changes in the great rivers of the Gangetic plain are well described and explained by 
Fergu«son in his paper on "Some recent clianges in the Delta of the Ganges" — Journal of the Geological 
Society/, Vol. XVIII, page Sil. Keasons are there given for thinking that at a still earlier period the 
Brahmaputra had flowtd, as it now does, west of the Madhupur jungle, and that its diversion to the east 
was due to the elevation of that tract and the simultaneous subsidence of xhp land now covered by the 
Sylhet jhils. 



GENERAL DESCEIPTION OP BENGAL. 



quantity of silt brought down by it is estimated to be about twice as great as 

that borne by the Ganges, the coast line is thus being rapidly thrust forward. 

5. Along the Northern Frontier of Bengal numerous rivers debouch 

^ , , .from the Himalayas. These now discharge their 

The KAEiTOTi and MahInandX. ^^^^^^ ^^ ^^^.^^^ channels into the Ganges or the 

Brahmaputra, but it appears that formerly, when these great rivers were still 
160 miles apart, the Himalayan streams united to form a great independent 
river which fouud its own way to the sea. The elevated tract known as 
the Barind formed an obstacle which could not be pierced so easily as the more 
recent alluvium around it, and the outlet of the Himalayan streams was thus 
diverted to one side or the other. Sometimes when the trend of the rivers 
was eastwards they flowed down the channel of the Kara toy a, the memory of 
which is preserved in the Purdnas, though in some parts the traces of its course 
have now well nigh disappeared. It bore a high character for sanctity, and its 
mermaid goddess, whose image has been found among the ruins of Mah^sthan, 
was widely worshipped. Even now the old course of the river at Mahasthan 
is still a favourite place of pilgrimage. It is mentioned in the Joffini Tantra 
as the western boundary of the ancient kingdom of K^marupa, and it was 
along its right bank that Bakhtydr Khilji marched on his ill-fated invasion 
of Tibet. In the narrative of that expedition, it is described as being 
three times the width of the Ganges. It was no doubt the great river crossed 
by Hiuen Tsiang on his way to Kdmarupa and by Husain Shah on his invasion 
of the same country.* It is shown in Van den Broucke's map {cir 1660) as 
flowing into the Ganges. Its most recent bed, which is still in existence, joins 
the Atrai some thirty miles east of Pabna, and the latter flows into the 
.Jamuna,t as the present course of the Brahmaputra is called, about the same 
distance above the junction of that river and the Padma.f But in an alluvial 
country the course of the rivers, especially when they have a rapid current, is 
constantly changing, and it thus often happened that the Tista and its neigh- 
bours worked their way westwards and found an outlet on the other side of the 
Barind down the channel of the Mahananda. 

Though less famous than its rival, the Karatoyd, the Mahanandd appears 
to have had a greater influence on the recent ethnic distribution of the people. 
The Rajbansis are the main element in the population east of its course, 
while to the west they are scarcely found at all. East of this river Muham- 
madanism is the main religion, while to the west Hinduism is most prevalent. 
It is also a linguistic boundary, Hindi being spoken to the west of it and 
Bengali to the east. Prior to the Muhammadan occupation it was the dividing 
line between the Rarh and the Barendra country. Unlike the Karatoy^, the 
Mahananda is still a considerable stream. 

South of the Padma there is no trace of any river bearing the name either 
of the Karatoya or of the Mah9,nand^; but remembering that the former was 
called Bbangm^ti by the historian of Bakhty^r Khilji, it may perhaps be 
identified with the Matabhanga, which flows through Chuadanga almost due 
south o£ Pabna. The latter river had formerly an outlet towards the east of 
the Delta ; but owing to the gradual silting up of this tract, it subsequently 
left its bed and turning west occupied in turn parts of the channels of the 
Kumar Ichdm.ati, and Churni rivers, and eventually rejoined the Bhdgirathi 
not far from Chakdaha. It has been suggested that the Haringhatd was the 
original estuary of the Kardtoyd and its affluents, and it is possible that the 
Bhairab was the ancient channel of the Mahananda. Its tortuous course 
can still be traced on both sides of the Jalangi and the Matiibhanga, and 
it is only near the Padma, almost opposite the point where the Mahananda 
flows into it; that all upward traces of this old river disappear. 

* PoasiMv the Santosh and even the Manas joined it. There are the remains of a river eaUed Manas 
Jr. T?«Ti^^ur aud Bosra, and this may possibly indicate the former course of the river of that name which 
^owflows into the Brahmaputra above Goalpara in Assam. Tlie Pauranic name of the Kosi was Kausiki, 
^lAVr\ interesting to note that a Kaiad of this name was worshipped on the ba,nk of the Karatoya. 

+ Thf name nrobably indicates that the Brahmaputra has here ocoupied the bed o± a river called the 
TomLi; There IS still an affluent of the Atrai of this name, and in this country of constant fluvial 
cCges! its present insignificance is no argument against its having once been a large and important river, 
•''^^"f^'v," rp^sta which is really the modern Ear4toy&, though deprived of many of its affluents,^ flowed 
souttwest instead of south-east; at the time of Eennell's survey and joining the Atrai m Dinajpur fell 
into the Padma. It broke eastwards in the destructive iioods oi 1787. 



CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OP POPULATION, 



6. The history of the changes in these rivers* is of importance in 

connection with the ethnic distribution of the 
EaelyHistosyofthePeovince. people. For a correct appreciation of the distri- 
bution of the population by race and religion and of the caste distinctions that 
now exist, it is also necessary to know something of the history of the 
Province. A brief outline of the more important points is therefore given 
below. 

7. The Province of Biharf is known to us from very early times. The 

ancient kingdom of Magadha comprised the country 
^^^^^- now included in the districts of Patna, Gaya, 

and Shahabad. Its capital was at Rajagriha, some thirty miles north-east of 
Gaya. North of the Ganges was Videha or Mithila, which included the modern 
districts of Darbhanga, Saran, Champaran, and North MuzafEarpur ; the south 
of the latter district constituted the small kingdom of Vaisali. To the east lay 
Anga, including Monghyr, Bhagalpur, and Purnea, as far as the Mahanand^ 
river. There are constant references to these countries in the MaMlhdrata. 
Magadha is even mentioned under the name of Kikota in the Rig Veda. It was 
in Mag-adha that Buddha developed his religion and that Mahdvira founded the 
cognate creed of the Jains. Soon after Buddha's death a Sudra, named Nanda, 
wrested the throne from the Kshattriyas and founded a new dynasty. 
He made his capital at the confluence of the Sone and the Ganges near 
the modern Patna. Chandra Gupta, a contemporary of Alexander the Great, 
overthrew this family and founded the Maurya dynasty. He successfully 
resisted Seleucus, one of Alexander's generals, and it was at his court that 
Megasthenes compiled his great work on India. Eis grandson, Asoka, estab- 
lished a hegemony over the whole of Northern India, including a great part 
of Bengal and Orissa. He was the great protagonist of Buddhism and sent 
his missionaries to every known country. In the fourth century the Gupta 
dynasty rose to power. Their capital also was at Patna, and their supre- 
macy was acknowledged by the kings of Bengal and Kdmarupa. They were 
Hindus by religion. In Hiuen Tsiang's time North Bihar was divided into 
Vriti to the north and Vaisali to the south, both countries stretching 
westwards to the Mahanand^. South of the Ganges were Hiranya Parvana 
(Monghyr) and Champa (South Bhagalpur, the Sonthal Parganas, and 
Birbhum). The rulers of both these kingdoms were probably Khetauris of Mai 
origin. In the ninth century the Buddhist dynasty founded by Gopdla included 
Magadha in its dominions, and eventually fixed its capital at Odantapurj. 
The last of this line was defeated in 1197 A.D. by Bakhtydr Khilji, whose 
soldiers destroyed Odantapuri and massacred the Buddhist monks assembled 
there. 

9. Very little is known of Bengal Proper until the rise of the Pdia 

dynasty. At the time of the Mahdbhdrata, North- 
BNGAi EOPEE. ^^^ ^_^^ Eastom Bengal formed with Assam the 

powerful kingdom of Prdgjyotisha, or Kdmarupa as it was subsequently 
called, and its ruler, Bhagadatta, was one of the great chiefs who fought in the 
battle of Kurukshettra, This kingdom stretched westwards as far as the 
Karatoya river. It was ruled by a succession of princes of Mongoloid stock, and 
was still flourishing when visited by Hiuen Tsiang in the seventh century. 
South-east of Pragjyotisha, between the Kar^toy^ and the Mahananda, lay 
Pundra or Pa.undravardhana, the country of the Pods, which, according to 
Cunningham, has given its name to the modern Pabna ; its capital may have 
been at MahasthAn on the right bank of the old Karatoyd river. This kingdom 
was in existence in the third century (B.C.) and Asoka's brother found shelter 
there in the guise of a Buddhist monk. It was still flourishing when Hiuen 
Tsiang travelled in India, and it is mentioned as a place of pilgrimage in the 
11th century .J 

* As pointed out in the Ain-i-Akbari the distribution of the Muhammadan i^irkars in Bengal depended 
on the courses of the Padma, Bhagirathi and Megna. The boundaries of the older Hindu divisions of the 
country were also determined with references to these rivers. 

t Excluding Malda and the Sonthal Parganas. Malda was always treated as a part of Bengal prior to 
the British occupation, while the Sonthal Parganas belongs more properly to Chota Nagpur. 

X Balldla Charitra, by Ananda Bhatta. Ballala Sena's wife went there, accompanied by a Brahman 
priest, to worship a phallic emblem, but the priest who received the offerings seems to have beeu 
a Buddhist. 



GENERAL DESCRIPTION OP BENGAL. 



10. East of the Bhd-girathi and south of Pundra lay Vanga (called 
Samatata by Hiuen Tsiang), which has given its name to the modern Province 
of Bengal. Its people are described in the Raghuvansa as living in boats, and 
they are clearly the ancestors of the Chanddls, who at the present day inhabit 
this part of the country. On the west of the Bhdgirathi lay Kama Suvarna 
(Burdwan, Bankura, Murshidabad, and Hooghly), whose king, Sashdnka or 
Narendra, the last of the Guptas, was a fanatical worshipper of Siva, and 
invaded Magadha and cut down the sacred hodhi tree early in the seventh 
century.* Lastly, there was the kingdom of Tdmralipta or Suhma comprising 
what now constitutes the districts of Midnapore and Howrah. The rulers of 
this country seem to have been Kaibarttas. 

11. During the ninth century the P^la dynasty rose to power in the 

^ country formerly known as Pundra and Ansa. 

The Pala AND Sena KiNes. ^ike the kings of Pundra, they were Buddhists, 
but they were tolerant towards Hinduism. They gradually extended their 
power westwards, and absorbed the greater part of Magadha, They were 
driven from Bengal Proper about the middle of the eleventh century by 
Samanta Sena, who, starting from Navadvip, gradually established his 
sway over Eastern and Southern Bengal. By degrees the whole of Bengal Proper 
as far east as the Karatoya and the Brahmaputra came under Sena rule. 

12. The Senas were Hindus and during their rule Buddhism was actively 
discouraged. The best remembered king of this dynasty is Ballala Sena, 
who reorganised the caste system and introduced Kulinism amongst the 
Brahmans, Vaidyas, and Kayasths. To him is attributed the division of 
Bengal into four parts, viz., Rarh, west of the Bb^girathi, corresponding 
roughly to Kama Suvarna; Barendraf between the Mahananda and the 
Karatoya, corresponding to Pundra ; Bdgri (Bagdi) or South Bengal, 
and Banga or Eastern Bengal. The last King, Lakshmana Sena, was still ruling 
at Gaur at the time of Bakhty^r Khilji's invasion at the end of the 12th 
century. He fled to Bikrampur in the Dacca district, where his descendants 
exercised a precarious sovereignty for another 120 years, J Many Brahmans 
fled with him, and this explains how Bikrampur has become one of the great 
strongholds of Brahmanism in Bengal. 

13. The earliest name for Orissa was KaHnga, a country stretching from 

the mouth of the Ganges to that of the Krishna. Its 
^"^**^' capital about half way down the coast was on the 

site of the modern city of Kalingapatam. Later the term Kalinga was applied 
only to the delta of the Godaveri: that of the Mah^nadi became known as 
Utkala or Odra. In the caves at Khandagiri are to be seen the earliest 
memorials of Buddhistic life, the latest of which date from about the first century 
of our era. The Mddala Panjikd, or palm-leaf records of the temple of 
Jagannath, speak of various invasions from the north and of a subsequent 
invasion, about 320 A.D,, of Yavanas from over the sea. These invaders, who, 
whatever their race, were staunch Buddhists, ruled for 160 years. They were 
expelled from Orissa by Yaydti Kesari, the founder of the Lion dynasty, which 
ruled until 1132 A.D. These kings were worshippers of Siva, and their 
progeniter is reputed to have imported 10,000 Brahmans from Oudh. It was 
they who built the temples at Bhuvanesvar, and during their rule Buddhism 
gradually gave way to Sivaism. The Lion kings were succeeded by the Chola or 
Gangetic line, who ruled till the middle of the 16th century, when the 
Brdhman apostate, Kald Pahar, conquered the country for the Pathan kings of 
Bengal. Under the Gangetic kings Vaishnavism became the State religion of 
Orissa. ' The chief monuments of their rule are the great Temple of Jagannath 
at Puri and the Sun Temple at Kanarak. 



* The capital of this country has been identified by Colonel Waddell with a suburb of Burdwan and 
by Mr. Beveridge with Jlangamati in the Murshidabad district. The latter view is the one whicb seems 
most likely to receive general acceptance. , ,, „ ■ . ■ , ^ , ., ,, 

t The name survives in the JJarind or elevated tract of old alluvium which extends over a considerable 
part of the modern districts of Rajshahi, Dinajpur, Malda, and Bogra. ,,.,,.. 

J Grhiyasuddin, son of Firuz Shah, maae conquests la Eastern Bengal and established himself at 
Sonargaon under the name of Bahadur Shah, where he struck coins in 1311. Thirty years previously 
Moshisuddin had been Governor at Sonargaon, but he became insubordinate and was overthrown by 
an imperial army assisted by the troops of the "Zamindar" Dhinwaj Kai, doubtless Dhinaj Madhab 
who IS supposed to be a great grandson of Lakshmana Sena, 



6 CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OP POPULATION. 



14. Bakhty^r KhUji, a Pathan General of Muhammad Ghori, conquered 

Bihar in 1197. Two years later he advanced to 

MuHAMMADAN PEEioD— CoN- bengal Eod took Dossesslon of Gaur and Nabadvip 

ATTEST OP BBNaAL AND BiHAE. ^.^j^^^^. ^ g^ruggle. He unsuccessf uUy invaded 

Tibet, and in his retreat lost the greater part of his army at the hands of the 
Meches east of the Karatoya. The greater part of Bengal gradually came under 
the control of the Muhammadan Governors who ruled at Gaur or Lakhnauti 
until 1338, when Muhammad Tughlak declared himself independent. 

15. Eight years before this date South Bihar had been separated from 

Bengal and annexed to Delhi. North Bihar 
EuLBEs OF BiHAE. apparently belonged to Bengal for some time 

longer, as the Bengal King Haji Ily^s is reputed to be the founder of Hajipur. 
In 1397 the whole of Bihar became part of the kingdom of Jaunpur, but 
a century later it was again taken possession of by the Emperors of Delhi, 
who continued to hold it except for a short time when the Bengal king Husain 
Shah and his son, Nasrat Shah, obtained temporary possession of the country- 
north of the Ganges. Under the Moghals the capital of the country was the 
town of Bihar in the south of the Patna district, and from this town the whole 
province took its name. 

16. From 1338 till 1576 Bengal was ruled by various lines of indepen- 

dent kings, mostly of Pathan origin. In the latter 
IN^PENDENT Kings OF Bengal. ^^^^ ^j^^^^, defeated Daud, who was_ then king, 

and Bengal was annexed to the Moghal Empire, to which it continued 
to belong until it passed into the possession of the East India Company. 
The capital was usually at Gaur or the neighbouring towns of Pandua and 
Rajmahal until 1608, when it was moved to Dacca. About a century later 
Murshid Kuli Khan made Murshidabad his head-quarters, and so it remained 
until the end of Moslem rule. 

17. In North Bengal the Khen dynasty ruled until the end of the 15th 
„ „ -I, century, when it was overthrown by Husain 

NoETH AND Sotjth-East Bengal, q-, i l' , ,i j. , xi i_ u 

Shah, but the country was not permanently held. 

Biswa Singh, the progenitor of the Koch kings, founded a new dynasty, 

whose rule extended from the Karatoyd as far as Central Assam, and it was 

not until 1661 that the country as far as Goalpara was permanently acquired by 

Mir Jumla. Previous to the 1 7th century the Chittagong Division and Noakhali 

were usually in the hands of the Tiparas or of the Maghs, and it was only 

after the transfer of the capital to Dacca that this tract was gradually annexed. 

18. Orissa (including Midnapore), which had been wrested from the 

Hindu kings by Kdla Pahdr, the General of 
*^^^^" Suldiman, King of Bengal, in 1567, remained in the 

possession of the Afghans until 1592, when Man Singh annexed it. It was 
placed under separate Governors, but Midnapore and Balasore were subsequently 
transferred to Bengal. In 1752 Alivardi Khan ceded the Province to the 
Mahrattas, in whose possession it remained until its conquest by the British 
in 1803. 

19. Chota Nagpur,* including the Tributary States of Chota Nagpur and 

Orissa, is called Jh^rkandin the Akbarnamah. The 
Chota Naqptte and Oeissa country was ruled by chiefs of various aboriginal 

Teibutaet States. , .. •',■, r^^ -, < ■, . , . ^^ , 8^""^ 

tnbes, the Cneros being predominant m Palamau, 
the Mundasin Ranchi, and the Bhuiyas and Gonds in the Orissa States. The 
south of Chota Nagpur Proper was annexed by Akbar and Palamau by Shdh 
Jahan. Tho remoter chiefs appear to have remained independent until theix- 
subjugation by the Mahrattas towards the end of the 18th century. 

20. During Muhammadan rule the authority of the Central Government 

varied with the character of the King or Governor 
EuS^NBENGri. ^^^"^""^"^^ for the time being. _ If he was energetic and master- 
ful, the whole Province accepted his authority, but 
if he was weak and indolent, the local rulers became practically independent. 
Chief among these were the Barah Bhuiyds of Eastern and Southern Bengal, 
of whom Eaja Pratdpdditya of Jessore and Isd, Khan of Khizrpur, who is 

* Chota Wagpur is a corruption of Chutia Nagpur. The name is derived from Chutia, near Eanohi 
the residence of the old Munda Rajas. 



GENERAL DESCRIPTION OP BENGAL. 7 



mentioned by Ralph Fitch, are the best known. The Rdjas of Vishnupur 
in Bankura, or Mallabhum as it was then called, and Burdwan were also prac- 
tically independent so lon^ as they paid the revenue assessed on their estates.* 
21.. The soil of the Ganges plain, consists partly of the older alluvium 

or hhdngar, a yellowish clay with frequent deposits 
°"" of kankar, and partly of the newer alluvium, which 

varies from sand and sandy clay in the upper course of the rivers to a fine 
silt consolidating into clay in the delta. Before the delta is reached the newer 
alluvium forms the low land or strath {khddar) through which the rivers flow, 
which is flooded in the rains and which has evidently been cut out from the 
hhdngar or older alluvium. In the delta, on the other hand, where the rivers 
have grown torpid, the silt is deposited in their beds and on their banks, which 
are thus gradually raised above the level of the surrounding country, until at 
last the river breaks through to the adjacent low land and repeats the process. 
In the delta therefore the newer alluvium is found above and not below the 
level of the surrounding country, and great marshes or Wis are often found 
within the enclosures formed by the high banks of rivers. In some parts a 
black loam is met with. This is an accumulation of decayed vegetable matter 
deposited in the marshes just referred to. 

East of the Bhagirathi the newer alluvium is everywhere prevalent 
except in the Barind in North Bengal and the Madhupur jungle in the 
south of Mymensingh. West of the Bhagirathi and in Bihar the hhdngar or 
older alluvium predominates, except near the course of the great rivers. On the 
Chota Nagpur Plateau there are extensive areas of rock, laterite, and gravel 
which are unfit for cultivation and, except in the valleys, the patches of fertile 
ground are small and infrequent. 

22. The climate of Bengal is distinctly tropical and the mean yearly 

temperature ranges from 80° at Cuttack to 74° in 
CiiMATE, Seasons and eain- Chota Nagpur. The mean temperature during the 
^^^'' cold weather months is about 64° and during 

the hot weather 83°. The highest temperature recorded in Calcutta in 
1901 was 108-2° on the 12th June, and the lowest 50*1° on the 20th and 25th 
January. The atmosphere, especially in the east and south-east, is extra- 
ordinarily humid. The rainfall is heaviest in Eastern Bengal and in the 
Himalayan Terai, where it often exceeds 100", and lowest in the southern 
districts of Bihar, where the average is only about 41". The early part of 
the year is usually almost rainless, but about the beginning of February 
atmospheric disturbances begin to occur which are generally accompanied by 
heavy showers of rain and occasionally hail. The rainfall gradually increases 
until June, when the local sea breezes give way to the steadier winds of the 
south-west monsoon which supplies the province with the greater part of its 
annual rainfall. t The monsoon current fades away in September and its 
departure is signalized by showers which sometimes continue into November. 
There is often a little rain again about the end of December. This is the 
ordinary course of events, which is also most beneficial to the crops, but it 
frequently happens that the total rainfall is below the average, or that its 
distribution is abnormal. In such cases much harm may be caused to the 
crops, resulting in extreme cases in total failure. The dghani or cold weather 
rice requires copious showers in May and a punctual commencement of the 
monsoon, but the sufficiency of the rainfall in September is the chief factor in 
producing a good outturn. For the early rice, Indian corn and millets, i.e., the 
hhadoi crops, the pre-monsoon showers are of most importance, while the rabi 
or spring rice, wheat, barley and pulses depend on the showers that follow the 
monsoon and the Christmas rain. 

23. The inhabitants of Bengal are for the most part agriculturists. The 

choice of crop is determined chiefly by the elevation 
Ageicultuee. ^f ^^g j^jj(j ^^^ tljg climatic conditions. The 

character of the soil is of less importance, but, speaking generally, rice does 

* In the Ain the revenue of Bengal as it stood in 1582, excluding numerous abwabs or special 
im-posts, was fixed at Ks. 1,06,85,944. This was levied from the raiyats in specie as the equivalent 
of the fourth share of the gross produce. In 1765, when the East India Company acquired the diwdni, the 
net amount of all revenue collected by authority in Bengal was Es. 2,56,24,223. 

+ The bulk of the rain comes from the Bay of Bengal, but parts of Bihar, Orissa and Chota Nagpur 
get a portion of their supply from westerly winds from Bombay. 



CHAPTER I — DISTEIBUTION OF POPULATION. 



best on clay, wheat on a rich loam, and barley on a more sandy soil, while maize 
will thrive on shallow rocky soils which would support very few other crops. 
Taking the Province as a whole, more than sixty per cent, of the entire culti- 
vated area is under rice, and in 1891 the estimated outturn amounted tp about 
sixteen and-a-half million tons of cleaned rice. The proportion of rice cultiva- 
tion is greatest in the deltaic districts, where the humidity of the climate 
and the swampy condition of the country are peculiarly favourable to its 
growth. Jute is the only other important crop which will thrive under these 
conditions; the area on which it is grown has more than doubled during the last 
twenty years, and in 1900 it is estimated that the gross outturn aggregated 
1,200,000 tons. Of this, about half was exported, the estimated value being 
rather more than 7 millions sterling ; the rest was consumed iri the Province, as 
will be explained further on. l^his rapid extension of jute cultivation is one 
of the great factors in the growing prosperity of Eastern Bengal. 

24. During the cold weather oilseeds of various kinds are extensively culti- 
vated in most districts, usually as a second crop on land that has already 
yielded a harvest of early rice. The average outturn of all kinds of oilseeds 
during the last seven years amounts to about six and a half million tons. Of 
this, about a third of a million tons, valued at two and a half millions sterling, 
was exported. In the dryer districts of Bihar, in addition to rice and oilseeds, 
E^irmted Outturn in 1900. "^^^at, barley, and maize are largely cultivated, and 
Tons. ^'^^ opium and indigo. The last-mentioned staple 
Wheat ... 572,600 grows Well in Bengal also, especially on the chars, 

Barley ... 440,200 ]5ut it is not a favourite crop with the cultivators 

Maize ... 673,300 j • j. ix.- j x j i t ■ xi 

Opium 2,220 ^od, owmg to this and to tailing prices, the area 

Indigo ... 2,400 planted with it is declining rapidly. In Bihar, too, 

the reduction in price has caused a decrease of about a quarter in the area under 
indigo as compared with 1893, and has led the planters to seek for some other 
crop to replace or supplement it. The exports of indigo in 1900 were valued at 
a little more than a million sterling, or barely a third of the estimated value of 
the exports in 1844. The revenue from the cultivation of opium, which is a 
Government monopoly, amounted to 274 lakhs of rupees in 1899, against 
nearly 549 lakhs in 1881. The cultivation of the sugarcane is common through- 
out Bengal, but the amount grown (estimated at 9,000,000 tons in 1900) is not 
sufficient to meet the local demand, and large quantities of beet-root sugar are 
imported. In Eastern Bengal sugar is manufactured from the juice of the 
date-palm: no figures are available as to the quantity of sugar thus obtained, but 
it is believed that the total outturn, though still considerable, has fallen off a 
good deal during the last 20 years. Tobacco is grown for home consumption 
in every district and in Rangpur, Jalpaiguri, Kuch Bihar and Darbhanga 
considerable quantities are produced for export. Much of it is taken to Nepal 
and some finds its way to Burma, where it is made up into cheroots. 

25. The silkworm is reared in Western Bengal and in the districts where 
the Presidency and Bajshahi Commissionerships meet. The industry was 
threatened with extinction, owing to diseases amongst the worms, but the 
subject has been carefully investigated and there now seems a fair prospect of 
the further spread of these diseases being prevented. The exports of raw silk 
in 1899 were valued at nearly 68 lakhs of rupees as compared with nearly 
49 lakhs in 1891. 

26. Tea is grown chiefly in the Duars of Jalpaiguri and in the Darjeel- 
ing district, and also, though to a smaller extent, in Chittagong, Ranchi, and 
Hazaribagh. The tea-gardens of Jalpaiguri attract crowds of coolies from the 
barren uplands of Chota Nagpur and the Sonthal Parganas. In Darjeeling 
most of the labour force is recruited from Nepal. The estimated outtm-n of tea 
in Bengal in 1900 was 46| million pounds, valued at £976,187, against 27;^ 
million pounds, valued at £800,000, in 1891. This rapid expansion of tea 
cultivation has now received a check, owing to a serious fall in prices, and 
the immediate future of the industry is far from reassuring. 

27. The prices of food-grains have risen everywhere during the past 

decade. At the Patna mart in 1900 rice sold at 

PbICES OFFOOD-GE.INS. ^^.gg^ ^^^^^ ^^ ^^.^3^ ^^^ ^^^^ ^^ ^^.^^ ^^^^^ ^^^ 

rupee, as compared with 18*23, 17' 30, and 23'33 seers respectively in 1891. At 
the Dacca mart only 13*15 seers of rice could be obtained for a rupee in 1900, 



GENERAL DE3CEIPTI0N OP BENGAL. 



against 16"63 seers ten years earlier, of wheat only 10*46 against 13'92 seers, 
and of gram, only 13" 19 against 15-38 seers. 

This general rise of prices has enriched the cultivating classes, but it 
has been the reverse of beneficial to the rest of the population. So far, 
however, as the labouring classes are concerned, the greater cost of living has, 
to a great extent, been met by a general rise in wages. In Bihar wages show 
an advance of barely 3 per cent, but in all other parts of the Province they have 
risen to the extent of at least 10 per cent. The increase is most marked in 
the case of skilled labourers. There has also been a movement of the 
labouring classes from Bihar where wages are low to Bengal Proper, where they 
are high. 

23. Buffaloes are bred in Purnea and Eangpur, sheep in Bihar, and goats 

throughout the Province. In Mymensingh numer- 
Pastdeb. p^g herds of cattle and buffaloes are grazed in 

the hdors or basins which are filled with water in the rains, but dry up in the 
cold weather. Large quantities of cheese (known in the market as Dacca 
cheese) are made and exported even as far as Turkey. But on the whole 
Bengal is not a pastoral country, and as a rule very little stock is bred except 
such as is required locally. The amount of grazing ground is generally very 
limited, and it is all that the raiyats can do to provide fodder for the cattle 
kept by them for ploughing and for milk. 

29. Dacca and Santipur were formerly famous for their fine muslins, 

and early in the century the value of muslins 
Manxjpactcees. exported to Europe, and especially to France, was 

very great. From Dacca alone the exports in 1817 were valued at a hundred 
and fifty-two lakhs of rupees. Ordinary cotton goods were also exported in 
large quantities, and as early as 1755 efforts were being made to induce 
weavers to settle in the neighbourhood of Calcutta. The introduction of 
machinery in Europe, however, not only killed the Indian export trade, but 
has flooded the country with cheap piece-goods, and has so seriously crippled 
the indigenous manufacture that many persons belonging to the weaver castes 
have been driven to abandon the loom for the plough. 

The manufacture of silk also is decadent, and the quantity exported in 

1899 was valued at only ten lakhs of rupees, against twenty-five lakhs in 1882. 
On the other hand, the number of jute mills is rapidly increasing, and in 

1900 there were 38 mills with nearly 14,000 looms and employing more than 
100 000 labourers compared with 21 mills with 5,000 looms in 1881. Nearly 
half the raw jute produced in Bengal is now consumed in these mills, and the 
value of gunny -bags, rope, and other goods exported in 1900 was over four 
millions sterling, against only one million twenty years previously. Other large 
industries are also springing up, such as paper milFs, iron foundries and pottery 
and machinery works, and for miles above Calcutta the banks of the Hooghly 
present a scene of industrial activity which bids fair in time to rival that of the 
krgest manufacturing towns in Europe. These mills are at present chiefly 
under European supervision and supported by European capital. _ It may be 
hoped that the natives of the country will follow the lead thus given them, 
and in the meantime a lucrative employment is opened out to the ever-growing 
class of landless labourers in Bihar. 

30. The chief mining industry is coal. Ihe principal coalnelds at 

S resent known are those of Karharbari or Giridih, 
laniganj, Jheria and Karanpura, They are esti- 
mated to contain 1,500,000,000 tons of coal. The Karharbari field lies in the 
valley of the Barakar and those of Kaniganj and Jheria in that of the 
Damodar; these have been made accessible by rail and are rapidly being 
developed, but the extensive Karanpura coalfields at the head of the 
Damodar valley are not yet worked owing to their distance from the existing 
lines of railway. There are also smaller fields still practically unworked 
at Ramgarh, Daltonganj, and Talcher. All the above coals are somewhat 
bituminous 'with a rather high percentage of ash. In the Darjeeling district 
near the Nepal frontier there is a narrow field of anthracite coal, but it is 
doubtful if it could be successfully extracted on a large scale. 

The first mine was opened in 1820, but it is only in recent years, since the 
establishment c^ through railway communication that the production of coal has 



10 CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OP POPULATION. 



advanced by leaps and bounds. There were 46 mines in 1872 and 73 in 1881, 
while in 1900 the number had risen to 280. The total output in 1872 was less 
than a third of a million tons; in 1881 it was still less than a million ; in 1891 
it was less than a million and three quarters, but by 1900 it had risen to close 
on five million tons, valued at nearly 10 millions sterling. The exports of coal 
in the latter year amounted to more than half-a-millioa tons, or more than 
four times the quantity exported five years earlier. 

31. A certain amount of iron ore is worked, chiefly at Bardkar near 

Asansol, where there are iron works at which pig- 
Othee Mineeais. -j,^j^ p£pgg ^^^ various kinds of castings are turned 

out. The total quantity of iron ore extracted in 1900 was 57,000 tons, or nearly 
three times the quantity obtained ten years previously. This industry, however, 
is still in its infancy ; its ultimate success depends in a great measure on the 
coking qualities of the Bengal coal. The coke hitherto made at Barakar is of 
inferior quality, but it has not yet been manufactured according to modern 
methods. The coal of Giridih and Jheria, on the other hand, is said to furnish 
an excellent, hard coke. 

Mica is found in various parts of Bihar and Chota Nagpur, and there are 
numerous mines, chiefly in the Hazaribagh district. The total output in 1900 
was 429 tons, valued at £28,000, or nearly five times the quantity obtained 
ten years previously. Soap-stone is found in Manbhum, aad is made into 
cups, images, and the like, but the industry is small and decadent. The saltpetre 
of Indian commerce is obtained mainly from the Patna Division and Monghyr. 
It occurs as a natural efflorescence on the surface of the ground, and its 
manufacture affords employment to thousands of the caste (Nunia) to which it 
gives its name. The quantity recorded as having been produced in the Province 
in 1900 is estimated at 160,000 hundredweight, valued at £80,000, or rather 
less than the outturn in 1891. Fuller's earth is obtained in the Bhagalpur 
Division; granite in Gay a; lime-stone, sand-stone, and laterite in parts of Bihar, 
West Bengal, and Orissa; and slate in Monghyr, but the quantity of these 
minerals hitherto extracted is small, and accurate statistics are not available. 
Brick, fire and pottery clays are found in various parts, the finest being that of 
Raniganj, which is used in the pottery works of Messrs. Burn & Co. for the 
manufacture of stoneware, glazed drain-pipes, bricks, tiles, etc. 

32. In 1872 there were less than 900 miles of railway in the whole of 
Eailwats Bengal, viz., 176 miles on the Eastern Bengal 

State Eailway (Eastern Section 149 miles and 
Southern Section 27 miles) and 731 miles on the East Indian Eailway, includ- 
ing (1) the main line to Chausa 418 miles, (2) the loop line 250 miles, and (3) 
branches 53 miles. During the next nine years, 407 miles were constructed, 
the chief items being 230 miles on the northern section of the Eastern Bengal 
Railway and the first 70 miles of the Tirhut State Railway; the Darjeeling- 
Himalayan Railway was also commenced. Between 1881 and 1891 progress 
was much more rapid. More than 350 miles were added to the Eastern Bengal 
Railway system, including 158 miles on the Bihar section and 86 miles on 
the Dacca section. An addition of 253 miles was made to the Tirhut State 
Railway, and the first 140 miles of the Bengal-Nagpur Railway were con- 
structed. The Bengal Central Railway (125 miles) was commenced and finished, 
and also that portion of the Bengal and North-Western Railway (112 miles) 
which runs through this Province. The total length of the railway lines 
completed during the decade was 1,051 miles. In the decennium that has just 
passed no less than 1,614 miles of railway have been opened. The largest 
addition consists of 524 miles on the Bengal-Nagpur Railway, which has 
brought Midnapore, Singhbhum, Manbhum, and the X)rissa districts into direct 
railway communication with Calcutta. The East Indian Railway has added 
320 miles to its length, chiefly on the Gaya-Mogulserai (107 miles) and South 
Bihar (79 miles) branches. The other important additions include the Tirhut 
State Railway (203 miles), the Assam- Bengal Railway (159 miles), and the 
Bengal-Duars Railway (102 miles). An interesting feature of the decade was 
the construction of light railways between Howrah and Amta, Howrah and 
Sheakhala, and Ranaghat and Krishnagar. It seems probable that these lines 
are the precursors of many others linking- up important trade centres with the 
existing railway gystems. 



GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF BENGAL. 11 



These improved communications not only open out new markets for produce, 
and thereby raise prices and increase the profits of the cultivators, but they 
also facilitate migration, arid thus tend to relieve the pressure of population in 
the more thickly-populated tracts. Districts along the line of march to the 
great places of pilgrimage, such as Puri and Gaya, are no longer so liable as 
they were formerly to the importation of epidemic disease, but on the other hand 
disease can be carried to a much greater distance than was formerly the case.* 

33. The construction of canals as a means of irrigration dates from 

1868, when the Sone, Orissa, and Midnapore canal 
^^^^^- schemes were commenced. The Sone Canals draw 

their water from the Sone river and run through the west of Patna and Gaya and 
the northern and central part of Shahabad. The main canals were completed by 
1881 ; three quarters of the branch canals and distributaries were ready by the 
same date, and the remainder by 1891. The Orissa Canals draw their water 
from the Mah^nadi, Brdhmini, and Baiturni rivers, and serve the deltaic coun- 
try between the railway line and the coast. Three-fifths of the whole system 
had been completed by 1881. The Midnapore Canals are dependent on the 
Cossye river. There are canals in Saran and Champaran also, but these are 
on a comparatively small scale. These projects cost in all more than six 
crores of rupees. The Sone Canals were originally estimated to be capable of 
irrigating a million acres, the Orissa Canals about half a million, and the 
Midnapore Canals about one-eighth of a million acres. The area actually 
paying water-rate, however, has in no case reached even half these estimates, 
except in 1896, when the Sone Canals carried water to 555,126 acres. From the 
experience then gained it would seem that this is about the maximum area 
that they are capable of irrigating in a year of severe drought. 

The benefit to the country resulting from the construction of these canals 
cannot be gauged by the direct financial results, which are disappointing, 
especially in Orissa, where the receipts seldom cover the actual working 
expenses.f They have, however, added greatly to the annual yield of the land 
watered by them; in some parts a great rise in rents has taken place, and 
cultivation has been extended to areas which were previouslj^ uncultivable waste; 
and in a famine year the direct saving to Government is enormous, It is 
estimated that in 1896 the Sone Canals added at least 230,000 tons to the stock 
of food-grains in Bihar and saved to Government at least a third of their capital 
outlay. It has recently been decided to construct a similar, but less costly 
system of canals for the protection of the cultivated area in the submontane 
tracts of North Bihar, where the numerous streams and the rapid fall of the 
country make irrigation comparatively easy. 

34. Though primarily constructed with a view to irrigation, the larger 

Miles canals are also of use as a means of transport, the 

K"HTdlC 1 29 ^'^^^^ length available for navigation being nearly 

Calcutta and Eastern C^ii- 500 miles. There are also several canals which were 

als ... ■■• ^7 constructed solely for navigation purposes, and a 

Orissa Coast Canal ... 1025 ^.^j^gi^e^^^ie expenditure is incurred annually in 

Total ... 1784 keeping the Bhdgirathi and other rivers in the 
Nadia district open for boat traffic. During the 

* It is impossible to illustrate the effect of railways on the population by any graphic method owing to 
their two-fold operation. There can be no doubt as to the great benefit that a tract denves from the 
construction of a railway through it, but it does not foUow that this benefit will be reflected by an im. 
mediate growth of the population. Very frequently the tendency is the other way. The cultivator benefits 
bv the rise in prices, but there is no wasteland available for new settlers, while on the other hand the^ 
landless labourer is enabled to move more easily and for shorter periods to places where there is a greater 
demand for his services. Thus the construction of the railway through Orissa has stimulated the emigra- 
tion of Oriyas to Bengal, without attracting to Orissa any new cultivators, or in fact any one at all, except a 
a few railway officials. Again, the variations in the population are not necessarily dependent on the 
railway There has been a loss of population along the new line of railway from Patna to Gaya and 
throueh the south-east of Midnapore. On the other hand the Chandpur subdivision of Tippera which 
has been tapped by the Assam-Bengal Eailway shows an increase of 30 per cent, since 1891. In none of 
these cases can the variation be attributed to improved communications. The growth of the Chandpur 
subdivision was equally rapid in the two previous decades when there was no railway, while the decrease in 
Gaya and the part of Midnapore through which the railway runs is due to fever and plague more than to. 

eilugrationj^_^ ygcent j-eport on the settlement of Orissa, Mr Maddox reckoned that the increase of land 
revenue due to the canals was between a quarter and half a lakh. He estimated that a further sum of a 
third of a lakh is saved yearly on account of remissions which would be required from time to time if 
the canals and embankments were not in existence. On the other hand, he calculated, that the people of 
the Orissa Division benefit by the canals to the extent of 40 lakhs of rupees a yeai. 

B 2 



12 



CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OF POPULATION. 



of 
on 



last few years operations have been in progress for improving the Ml route 
between the Madhumati and Kum^r rivers, with a view to providing a channel 
that will eventually be suitable for the passage of • large steamers throughout 

the year. 

In addition to canals for providing water artificially, numerous embank- 
ments are maintained by Grovernment as a protection against floods. Of these, 
the best known are the Orissa embankments with a total length of nearly seven 
hundred miles, the embankments of the Bhagirathi and Damodar, and those 
on the seacoast of Midnapore. 

35. There are nearly 40,000 miles of roads in Bengal. In the province 

as a whole, this gives about one mile of road 
^°^^^- to every four miles of area, but the circumstances 

difEerent localities vary a great deal. In the Patna Division there is 
the average one mile of road for every two miles of area, and the ratio 
is also high in the Presidency, Bhagalpur, and Rajshahi Divisions. In the 
Dacca and Chittagong Divisions, on the other hand, where the network of 
waterways dispenses to a great extent with the necessity for roads, and in the 
sparsely populated tracts of Chota Nagpur, the mileage is less than half 
the provincial average. Nearly 7,000 miles of road were constructed during 
the decade preceding the present census, chiefly as relief works during the famine 
of 1896. The total length of metalled roads is 4,606 miles, or nearly 10 per 
cent, more than in 1891. 

36. The people of Bengal are mainly agricultural and the outturn of 

the crops grown by them is dependent on the 
Famines. amount and distribution of the rainfall. It follows 

that any serious failure in the latter must have a very disastrous effect _ on the 
community as a whole. In former times when railways did not exist and 
roads were few, the privations of the people in famine years were terrible. 
It was estimated at the time that in the famine of 1769 about a third of the 
inhabitants of Purnea died of starvation, and the loss of life in other districts 
also was appalling. As the efficiency of our administration increased and 
communications improved,* the efforts of Government have been directed with 
constantly growing success to reduce to a minimum the sufferings of the people 
during famine by providing employment for the able-bodied and gratuitous 
relief for the infirm and afficted. And, as already stated, canals have been 

constructed in some parts to meet 
deficiencies in the rainfall by 
providing an artificial supply of 
water. The only districts which are 
considered free from all danger of 
famine are the 24-Parganas, Darjeel- 
ing and the districts of Eastern 
Bengal. In all other parts of the 
Province large areas are more or less 
liable to this calamity, but the extent 
to which relief is needed varies consi- 
derably, according to the character 
and density of the population and 
the nature of the neighbouring country. The classes that suffer most are the 
landless labourers and the petty artizans ; the actual cultivators have usually 
a reserve of grain sufficient to save them from starvation. 

37. During the decade preceding the census of 1901, relief operations on 
a considerable scale were necessary in 1891-92, in 1896-97 and again in 1899- 
1900. In the year 1891 the early close of the monsoon and the absence of the 
cold weather rains caused much damage to the winter rice and rabi crops, and 
relief operations were necessary in parts of Muzaff9,rpur, Darbhanga, Monghyr, 
Bhagalpur, Purnea and Dinajpur. The largest number on relief works on any 
one day was 83,016, and on gratuitous relief 4,699; the total cost of the relief 
operations was rather less than five lakhs of rupees. In 1899 the monsooi^ 

* The importance of good communications as a palliative of famine is best illustrated by the experience 
of me Orissa lamine of 1S66, when the south-west monsooB prevented the supply of food to the starving 
people until hundreds of thousands had died. ' ' m 



Division. 


Total 
area. 


Area 

liable 

to 

famine. 


Population 
ot area 
liable to 
famine. 


Maximum 
number 
of persons 
likely to 
require 
relief in 
severe 
famine. 


Burdwan 
Presidency .:. 

EaJBhahi 

Patna 

Bhagalpur 

Qrissa 

Ohota Nagpur 


13,949 
12,066 
17,366 
23,686 
20,611 
9,841 
26,963 


7,419 
1,356 
9,863 
16,796 
13,629 
4,342 
26,968 


3,130,631 
2,566,241 
6,143,791 
11,091,272 
6,702,598 
1,896,149 
1,900,429 


164,507 
131,137 
287,097 
710,382 
339,680 
248,986 
287,476 


Total ... 


121,372 


83,386 


33,930,117 


2,169,664 



GENEEAL DESCRIPTION OF BENGAL. 



13 



was very capricious in parts of Chota Nagpur and Orissa. There was excessive 
rain in July but exceptionally little in August and September. The crops were 
very short throughout the area affected, but actual famiue supervened only in 
about half Ranchi and a small part of the Palamau district. The famine of 
1896-97 was far miore serious. The causes of the crop failure were a very un- 
favourable distribution of the rainfall early in the season and the entire absence 
of rain after the early part of September 1896. There had been a very poor crop 
of winter rice in 1895, and in 1896 it was again this crop that sufiered most. 
The brunt of the famine .fell upon the districts of Champaran, Muzaffarpur, 
Darbhanga and Saran, and especially upon the tracts near the Nepal frontier, 
where the proportion of rice cultivation is greatest. The population is here 
dense, the tenantry are depressed, and the proportion of landless labourers is 
very high. West of Darbhanga the distress was less marked ; it was severe 
only in parts of the Supaul and Madhipura subdivisions of Darbhanga and 
Purnea escaped altogether. In South Bihar the stress of famine was confined 
to parts of the Bhabua and Sasaram subdivisions of Shahabad. Elsewhere 
the protection afforded by the Sone Canal system, and the ahars or reservoirs 
constructed by the cultivators themselves, helped to avert a serious crop failure. 
In the Chota Nagpur plateau, Palamau, Hazaribagh, Manbhum, and two tracts 
in the Sonthal Parganas were seriously affected. In West Bengal, Bankura 
alone suffered severely, while in Central Bengal the crop failure was most 
marked in a lowlying tract known as the Kalantar, situated partly in Mur- 
shidabad and partly in Nadia, and in the Satkhira subdivision of Khulna. 
The famine in Orissa was confined to some parts of Puri, chiefly in the neigh- 
bourhood of the Chilka Lake. 

38, Relief works were opened in November 1896, and by the close of the 

year 44,901 persons were employed on them. 
In March 1897 the distress deepened rapidly and 
the numbers on relief rose steadily until the 
monsoon had fairly set in, when they again 
quickly diminished, and during September and 
October all famine operations were brought to a 
close. The net result of relief operations reduced 
to terms of one day shows that over 61 million 
persons attended the works, and over 71 millions 

received gratuitous relief. The total expenditure was nearly 110 lakhs of 
rupees, in addition to advances to cultivators aggregating nearly 3 lakhs, 
donations of nearly 20 lakhs from the charitable relief fund, the outcome of 
voluntary subscriptions in this country and England, and private relief by 
zamindars and others. Foremost amongst the latter was the late Mahd,raja 
Bdh^dur of Darbhanga, who spent more than 3A lakhs on relief operations 
and distributed nearly 6 lakhs in advances. The effect of the famine on 
the population will be discussed when dealing with the variations that have 
occurred during the decade, but it may be stated here that everything 
tends to show that although much suffering was unavoidable, the number of 
actual deaths from starvation must have been very small indeed, and that, 
having regard to the wide-spread nature of the calamity, a far greater measure 
of success was attained than on any previous occasion. 

39. For administrative purposes Bengal is divided into nine large tracts 
^ ^ -n officially called Divisions, each of which is super- 
PoLmcAi, Divisions or BBKa.L. ^^43^^/^ ^y a Commissioner. Of these, five are 

within the limits of Bengal Proper, and two are in Bihar, while Orissa and 
Chota Nagpur each forms a separate Commissionership. The average area of 
a Commissioner's Division is rather less than 17,000 square miles, and the 
average population a little more than 8 millions. These Divisions are again 
subdivided into districts, each under a Magistrate and Collector or Deputy 
Commissioner. Including Angul and the Chittagong Hill Tracts the total 
number of districts is 47. The largest districts are Hazaribagh and Ranchi each 
of which is about half as large again as Wales. The greatest number of people 
is found in Mymensingh whose population of nearly 4 millions does not fall far 
sbort of that of the whole of Upper Burma. The average area of .a district 
exceeds 3,200 square miles, and the average population is more than \\ piiUionss, 





Nttmbees OS— 


MONJH. 


Belief 
works, 


Gratuitous 

relief. 


March 

April 

May 

June 

July 

August 


302,789 
865,612 
402,346 
384,252 
166,429 
81,987 


225,748 
312,956 
426,869 
457,782 
395,505 
253,789 



14: CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OF POPULATION. 



The number of districts in a Commissioner's Division varies from four in the case 
of Dacca, Chittagong and Orissa, to seven in the Rajshahi and Patna Divisions. 
The latter with its population of over 15 millions or about that of the Bombay- 
Presidency excluding Sindh, is overgrown, and its partition is a reform that 
cannot be much longer delayed. The Feudatory States attached to Bengal 
comprise Kuch Bihar, Hill Tippera, Sikkim and two groups of Tributary States 
known respectively as the Tributary States of Orissa and Chota Nagpur. The 
former group includes seventeen, and the latter nine. States. 

40. The political divisions of the present day are not always conterminous 

with those indicated by the physical features of 
^ Units adopted foe censtts ^]^q country Or the ethnic distribution of the people. 

This is especially the case in respect of Commis- 
sioners' divisions. There is no natural dividing line between the Patna and 
Bhagalpur Commissionerships, while the latter includes Malda, the greater part 
of which is in all respects similar to the adjacent districts of the Rajshahi 
Division to which it formerly belonged, and the Sonthal Parganas, which 
appertains both physically and ethnically to Chota Nagpur, It is, again, 
impossible to distinguish between Noakhali in the Chittagong Division and the 
adjoining district of Backergunge in the Dacca Commissionership, 

It often happens also that the districts of our administration contain 
divergent features. The Mahanand^ is the true ethnic and linguistic boundary 
between Bengal and Bihar, but nearly a quarter of the Purnea district lies to the 
east of that river. The Himalayan district of Darjeeling includes a consider- 
able tract in the plains, and the southern boundary of Gaya and Shahabad is well 
within the limits of the Chota Nagpur Plateau, In discussing the results of the 
census, it is for several reasons inadvisable to break up districts. The district 
is the unit of our administration, and it is desirable that the results of the 
census should be viewed for each such unit as a whole. Moreover, in the 
census returns of birthplace, only the district of birth is given, and it is thus 
impossible to distribute the population according to any smaller area. In the 
case of Commissioners' Divisions, however, the same objections do not apply. 
In the Imperial Tables the districts have been grouped according to Com- 
missionerships, but in the subsidiary tables in the body of this report they 
will usually be arranged by the following natural Divisions, viz. — 

(1) West Bengal— The Burdwan Division. 

(2) Central Bengal — The Presidency Division, excluding Khulna. 

(3) North Bengal — The Eajshahi Division, Malda, Kuch Bihar, and 

Sikkim. 

(4) East Bengal—The Dacca and Chittagong Divisions, Khulna and 

Hill Tippera. 

(5 J North Bihar — Muzaffarpur, Darbhanga, Champaran, Saran, Bhagal- 
pur, Purnea. 

(6) South Bihar — Patna, Gaya, Shahabad, Monghyr. 

(7) Orissa — The Orissa Division, excluding Angul, 

(8) Chota Nagpur Plateau— The Chota Nagpur Division, the Sonthal 

Parganas, Angul, and the Tributary States of Orissa and 
Chota Nagpur. 

41. "West Bengal thus corresponds to the ancient R^rh; it includes all 
^ 2 the districts of Bengal Proper west of the Bhagi- 

8T ENGAL. ratW, tho earliest known channel of the Ganges, 

and is peopled mainly by castes closely allied to the tribes of Chota Nagpur 
such as the B^gdi, B^uri, Kora, Mai, Kaibartta, and Sant^i. It is also the 
home of several distinctive castes with claims to a higher rank in the hierarchy 
of Brahmanism, such as the Aguri, Sukli, Sadgop, Kdstha, and Raju. The ethnic 
difEerences due to the old river barrier of the Bhdgirathi are still recognised 
by Hindus, and to this day Brahmans, Baidyas and Kayasths, and various 
lower castes, such as Ndpits, Sutradhars, and Kamdrs, who trace their origin 
to Rdrh, will not intermarry with persons of the same castes who hail from 
Banga and Bdrendra.^ 



GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF BENGAL. 15 



Though outside the Ganges delta, the eastern portion of this tract is low and 
of alluvial formation. Further west, laterite begins to predominate, and the 
surface rises and becomes more and more undulating and rocky until at last it 
merges in the uplands of Chota Nagpur. 

42. Central Bengal, which is bounded on the west by the Bh^girathi, on 

the north by the Padma, and on the east by the 
Centeal Bbngal. ^ Madhumati, was formerly the Ganges delta, but it 
has gradually been raised above flood level, and the great rivers which 
formerly flowed through it, depositing their fertilising silt, yielding an ample 
supply of wholesome drinking-water and draining it, have shrunk to insigni- 
ficance. Their mouths have been silted up and their beds are often higher 
than the surrounding country, which they are no longer able to drain. The 
country has thus become less healthy, and is far less fertile than it was 
formerly. The district of Khulna, which lies within the boundaries of 
Central Bengal, as defined above, is an exception to these conditions and 
still forms part of the tru(5 delta. It has therefore been excluded and treated 
as a district of East Bengal. Ethnically Central Bengal possesses comparatively 
few distinctive features save that its southern portion is the main habitat of the 
Pods who are closely allied to the Chanddls, and who, with thems are probably 
the descendants of the first of the Mongolian invaders from the north-east. The 
Kaibarttas and Bagdis have overflowed from West Bengal and the Chanddls 
from the east. 

43. North Bengal, or Bengal north of the Padma, corresponds very 

closely to the ancient Barendra. The greater part 
NoETH Bengal. j^ ^^ alluvial formation, but it contains in its centre 

the Bdrind, an elevated tract of 9M«s«-laterite belonging to the same forma- 
tion as the Madhupur jungle and the western part of Burdwan. The alluvial 
portion suffers, as does Central Bengal, from obstructed drainage due to 
the silting up of its rivers and the gradual raising of their beds above the 
general level of the country. In the north are the Himalayan State of Sikkim 
and the territory acquired from Sikkim, which now forms the greater part 
of the district of Darjeeling. These two tracts should, strictly speaking, be 
placed in a division of their own, but their population is so small (barely a 
quarter of a million) that it is not worth while to treat them separately. 
Malda now forms part of the Bhagalpur Division, but, as explained above, the 
greater part of it is in all respects an integral part of North Bengal. North 
Bengal is the home of the Mech and Koch tribes, the last of the invaders from 
the north-east, whose nominal strength is still nearly a million and-a-half, in 
spite of the fact that large numbers have embraced Muhammadanism. 

44. East Bengal, or the districts of the delta and the country east of the 

Jamuna, with its numerous rivers, is the most fertile. 
East Bengal. healthy, and progressive portion of the Province. 

It is mainly alluvial, but in the south-east the hill range that divides Assam 
from Burma projects into it, and Hill Tippera, the Chittagong Hill Tracts, and 
parts of the districts of Tippera and Chittagong rest upon this formation. 
On the confines of Dacca and Mymensingh, the Madhupur jungle, a tract 
with a stiff clay soil resembling that of the Bdirind, rises above the alluvium. 
The most marked characteristic of East Bengal is its extraordinarily large 
number of Muhammadans, nearly two-thirds of its population being followers 
of the Prophet. Its principal caste is the Namasudra or Chandal, whose home 
is in the swamps of the delta, and whose numbers, in spite of wholesale conver- 
sions to Muhammadanism, still exceed a million. To the north are found 
various Koch and Garo tribes and to the south-east Tiparas, Kukis, and 

45. The division of Bihar into north and south with the Ganges as the 

boundary is based mainly on physical consid- 

NoETH AND Soui;h Bihab, erations.* The country north of th?it river is 

a flat alluvial formation, rising very gradually towards the foot of the 

Himalayas, and it enjoys in ordinary years a comparatively copious rainfall, 

#m,<r,lT«ir lies on both banks of the Ganges, but the inconTenience of breaking up districts has led 
to the incluMobot the whole area in North Bihar. For the same reason the part of Mpnghyr north of th^ 
Ganges has been treated as part of South Bihar. 



16 CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OP POPULATION. 



increasing towards \,he north. South Bihar contains a strip of alluvium 
on the bank of the Ganges, but further south the soil changes and the 
surface becomes more undulating, and gradually rises until the Chota Nagpur 
plateau is reached. North Bihar is the great centre of indigo cultivation, and 
possesses many tracts of great natural fertility. On the other hand, it is peculiarly 
liable to failure of crops in seasons of deficient rainfall. In South Bihar a large 
area is protected by the Sone Canal system, and elsewhere the undulating 
surface enables the raiyats to construct small reservoirs on their own account 
from which to water their fields. The country is thus comparatively secure 
from famine. Ethnically there is no great difference between North and South 
Bihar, so far as the tracts near the Ganges are concerned, but further away, the 
people of South Bihar show unmistakable signs of their connection with the 
Dravidian tribes of Chota Nagpur, while in the north of North Bihar there has 
evidently been an intermingling with the Himalayan tribes, and in the extreme 
east there is a strong admixture of the Koch element. 

46. Orissa lies between West Bengal and Madras, the Chota Nagpur 

Plateau and the Bay of Bengal. The whole area 
is alluvial, and it possesses a language of its own 
and a system of castes differing alike from those of Bengal and of Madras. To 
the north and south there is no well-defined boundary separating Orissa from 
Bengal on the one side and from Madras on the other, and formerly the 
Province included part of the present district of Midnapore in Bengal and 
Ganjam in Madras. Even now Oriya is spoken over a considerable area in 
the northern districts of Madras, and has largely modified the Bengali of South 
Midnapore, while the distinctive Oriya castes are well represented for a 
considerable distance beyond the present political boundaries. To the west 
the change from alluvium to gneiss marks the boundary between Orissa and 
the Chota Nagpur Plateau, and the inhabitants of the latter tract, though 
doubtless very closely allied by origin, are distinguished from the inhabitants 
of the low country by their comparative want of civilisation and freedom from 
the trammels of the Brahmanical hierarchy. 

47. The Chota Nagpur Plateau comprises the districts of the Chota 
n T^ X, Nagpur Division, the Sonthal Parganas, Aneul, and 

the iributary States ot Orissa and Chota Nagpur. 
The whole area belongs to the same geological formation, and consists of a 
rugged tract of hill and jungle and there are frequent changes in elevation, and 
deep river valleys often separate the hills. Speaking generally the level rises 
towards the north and west, but some of the highest peaks are in the south.* 
It is the home of numerous non-Aryan tribes who were never properly 
subjugated either by the early Aryan invaders or by the Path^n and Moghal 
Emperors, or indeed by any outside power until the advent of the British. 
They have thus preserved in their mountain fastnesses an individuality in 
respect of tribal organisation, religion and language, which their congeners in 
the plains have long since lost.f They are gradually abandoning their tribal 
dialects in favour of the nearest Aryan form of speech — Hindi to the north and 
west, Oriya to the south, and Bengali to the east, but a large number still 
speak their own languages. These axe divided by philologists into two great 
families — the Munda and the Dravidian, but the distinction is merely an 
indication of some earlier political condition similar to that which is now 
leading to the adoption of Aryan languages, and does not represent any 
corresponding divergence in physical type, which has been proved by 
Mr. Risley's measurements to be fairly uniform throughout. 



* The word plateau is used for want of a better designation for tMs tract of elevated country but it 
IS not intended to imply that the area referred to forms an open tableland like that to the north of Cane 
Oolony. i-here are three plateaux in stricter acceptation of the term, one in Ranchi and two in 
Mazanbagh. iilsewhere the country is often very broken and there are numerous ranges orsronns 
of steep faiHs intersected by deep ravines and occasionally by open valleys. ^ 

t- Some of the present inhabitants of the plateau have traditions of former rule in the plains Th» 
Orions for instance, say they were driven from the south of Shahabad by the Muhammadans— some to 
the north-west of the Chota Nagpur plateau and some to the K4jmahal Hills, where they became known 
as Mal^ or Sauna. The Cheros too claim to have ruled in Shahabad. Among the castes of the plains of 
pure aboriginal descent may be mentioned the Musahars, who are identified by Mr. Eisley with thn 
Bhuiyas. Instead of seeking their independence in the hills, they remained and submitted to foreisn 
rule, and were rewarded with the opprobrious epithet of Musahar, or rat-eater. ^ 



AEEA, POPULATION AND DENSITY. 



17 



Area, Population and Density. 



48. The general statistics of the area and population of each district 
- _ will be found in Imperial Table I. Table I 

* 6ENEBA.L SsUilBES. . .■> n'-11 j ' \ ' -t 

in the Provincial volume containB similar 
information for thanas, and at the end of this chapter there are three 
subsidiary tables, showing (I) the density of the population, (II) its distribution 
between towns and villages, and (III) the average number of persons per 
house. The discussion in this chaptet will be confined to a consideration of 
the population as it stood on the 1st March 1901, the day when the census was 
taken. The variations that are disclosed by a comparison with the results of 
previous enumerations will be considered in the next chapter, and as this aspect 
of the question is the one which possesses the greatest practical importance 
such descriptive matter as may be necessary to elucidate the statistics will be 
held over for incorporation in that chapter. 

The area and population of each natural division as described in para- 
graph 40 above are noted in the margin. The 
Chota Nagpur Plateau has by far the largest 
area but it is very sparsely inhabited and its 
population is exceeded not only by that of 
East Bengal, which stands first in this respect, 
but also by that of North Bihar and North 
Bengal. 

The greatest density of population, viz., 
775 persons to the square mile, is found in 
Central Bengal. Then follows North Bihar 
with 636, and then West Bengal with 691 and 
East Bengal with 514. The low position of the last mentioned tract is owing to 

the inclusion of the Chitta- 

Diagram thomng the okniity of Population in Bengal and certain 
other countries. 
NUMBER OF opoooooooooooooo 



LocALiir. 


Area. 


Population. 


FItOTXNCE ... 


189,837 


78,49SM0 


West Bonftal ... 


13,949 


8,240,076 


Central „* 


9,988 


7,739,985 


North ,. 


23,.'i80 


10,006,177 


East 


32,976 


16,968,087 


South Bihar 


16,082 


7,716,418 


North „ 


21,746 


13,831,120 


Orieea 


8,160 


4,161,239 


Chota Nagpur' 


64,565 


9,851,S08 


Plateau. 







Exclusive ol Sundarbans. 



PERSONS PER Sq. MILE 



— — cMCMroK?'q-^'o»ococot~h:oo 



BENGAL 

BRITISH TERRITORY 

WEST BENGAL 


1 


^ 


^ 


1 


I 


1 


1 




1 


5 


ii 


5 


— 


— 


— 


— 


NORTH BENGAL 
EAST BENGAL 


s 


s 


s 


a 


s 


= 


= 


~ 











— ' 


— 


= 






— 


— 


^* 


^^ 


^H 


^M 








^^ 




^^ 


^^ 


NORTH BIHAR 


H 


H 


H 


H 


H 


H 


M 






■ 


■ 




■ 








SOUTH BIHAR 


H 


■1 


H 


■i 


■1 


■ 


^ 






■ 


1 










1 


OFtlSSA 


M 


^ 


■1 


m 


■1 


■1 


■1 






■ 


1 












CHOTA NAGPUR PLATEAU 


■ 


■ 


H 




























UNITED PROVINCES 


^— 


^ 


^_ 


^ 


^— 


^ 


^ 




















^^ 


^1 


^^ 


^^ 


^ 


^^ 


^^ 






PUNJAB 


^_ 


^ 


^ 


^ 


' 
























^^ 


^^ 


^^ 


^^ 


MADRAS 


^^ 


1 


^^ 


^_ 


^^ 


_ 






















^M 


^^ 


^M 


^H 


^^ 




BOMBAY 


n 


■i 


■■ 




























ENGLAND AND WALES 


" 


■ 


" 


" 


■ 


" 


■■ 






1" 














GERMANY 


■i 


■i 


■■ 


M 


■i 


■ 





















gong Hill Tracts and Hill 
Tippera, which differ 
altogether from the rest 
of East Bengal and 
should, strictly speaking, 
form a separate division 
of their own. If these be 
excluded, the density of 
population in East Bengal 
rises to 701 persons per 
square mile, which exceeds 
that of any division except 
Central Bengal. Then 
follow in close proximity 
South Bihar with 511 and 
Orissa with 508 and then 
North Bengal with 428 
persons per square mile. 
North Bengal has suffered 
from the inclusion of Sikkim, Darjeeling, and the newly acquired part of 
Jalpaiguri. If these areas be left out of account its density rises to 551 per 
square mile. The Chota Nagpur Plateau with less than a third of the average 
density of North Bengal, stands at the bottom of the list. The relative density 
of various parts of Bengal and of certain other provinces and countries is shown 
in the matginal diagram. 

49. The pressure of the population on the soil is far from uniform and a 
reference to the map* of Bengal at the commencement of this chapter will show 
that there are great variations even between districts of the same natural division. 

* According to the map, the 24-Parganas with 986 persons to the square mile, is more thickly 
populated than any district in Bengal, except Howrah, but this is not really the case. The area on which 
the calculation was made is that shown in the records of the Jurisdiction Department of the Secretariat, 
and is exclusive of an extensive tract in the Sunderbans. The population of this tract, however, is included 
in the figures for the 24-Parganas, and if its area be similarly included, the density par square nule 
falls to 415. 



Note. — For the purpose ot this diagram, Hill Tippera and Chitlagrong H 
Tracts have been excluded from the calculation of density in East Bengal and Sikki 
from that of North Bengal. 



Hill 
im 



18 



CHAPTEE I— DISTRIBUTION OF POPULATIOIT. 



The density of the population in Rangpur exceeds by more than 50 per 
cent, that of its neighbour Dinajpur and the disproportion in the case of 
Darbhanga and Bhagalpur is even greater. Nor are the conditions of each 
district uniform throughout, and the circumstances affecting density are fre- 
quently quite independent of district boundaries. It will, therefore, be desirable 
to consider the figures for each natural division in some detail, but before doing 
so we may glance briefly at the general results for districts taken as a whole. 

The greatest density of population is found in Howrah, where there 
are 1,668 persons per square mile.* Even if Howrah City and Bally be 
excluded the figure still stands at 1,351. Its nearest rival is Dacca with 952 
persons to the square mile, and then follow Muzaffarpur and Saran with 917 
and 907 respectively, Hooghly with 881, Darbhanga with 873 and Tippera 
with 848 and Faridpur with 849. The scantiest population is found on the 
outskirts of the Province in Changbhakar and-Korea to the west. Sikkim to the 
north, and the Chittagong Hill Tracts to the east ; in none of these does the 
density exceed 24 persons to the square mile, 

60. In West Bengal the density is greatest in the metropolitan district 

of Howrah; then follows Hooghly, and then 

EST BNGAL. Burdwau, Midnapore, Birbhum, and Bankura. 

Howrah is a small district and the conditions throughout are very uniform, 

Dumjor thana, which adjoins 



WEST BENGAL 



REFERENCES 

UNDIR ISO PER S«i| KILE 
151 TO 230 



Howrah town, is the most thickly 
inhabited, but no police circle 
in the district has less than 1,219 
persons to the square mile. The 
Hooghly district is alluvial and 
the soil is fertile. But it is also 
indebted to some extent to the 
neighbourhood of the metropolis. 
Excluding the Hooghly and 
Serampore thanas the density is 
greatest in the south and decreases 
gradually towards the north and 
west, where alone does it fall 
below the high ratio of 800 to the 
square mile. Speaking generally, 
the eastern part of Burdwan, 
which has an alluvial soil, is more 
thickly peopled than the western, 
which rests on the laterite, but 
the development of the coal mines 
in the extreme west has led to a 
rapid growth of the population 
there, and Asansol, with 839 
persons to the square mile, is now 
the most densely peopled thana in 
the district. The fewest inhabitants are to be found in Kaksa and Auegram, 
which have a laterite soil but no coal-mining industry. 

In Midnapore the pressure of the population is greatest along the bank of 
the Eupnarayan and the estuary of the Hooghly, the maximum density being 
found in Tamluk, where there are, 1,156 persons to the square mile. The town 
after which this thana is named was once a famous seaport ; the sea has long 
since left it, but it is still a place of considerable importance as the centre of 
the boat traffic on the Rupnarayan. Further inland the soil is still fertile, but 
the climate is bad, and the population gradually decreases. The oitern half 
of the district has a laterite soil ; the cultivable area is small, and the population 
steadily diminishes until, in the extreme west, on the confines of Singhbhum 
and Mayurbhanj, it is less than a quarter as dense as it is in Tamluk. 

* In subsidiary Table I, at the end of this chapter, the population of cities has been excluded, but in 
mentioning in the text the density of population in a district, the whole area, urban as well as rural, is 
taken. In the case of thanas, however, the figures refer only to the rural area, and towns lying within 
the boundaries of the thana are excluded. 




251 TO »00._., 

401 TO S00.._, 

501 TO 600... „..,,.. 

601 TO 700 „...„.. 

701 TO SOD,_.^_..,.. . 

8DI TO 1000. .„ 

1001 AKD OVER_,„„.. 



1 






AREA, POPULATION AND DENSITY. 



19 



CENTRAL BENGAL 



In Birbhum the local variations are slight, but the north of the district, 
where the soil is alluvial, and the proportion of cultivable land is highest, is 
more closely inhabited than the rest. Bankura has a very sparse population 
in the south and west, where the land is undulating, rocky and barren ; 
towards the east, in the Vishnupur Subdivision, where the soil is alluvial and the 
conditions resemble those of South Burdwan, its population is more than 
twice as dense as it is in the south of the district. 

51. In the 24-Parganas, the pressure of the population is greatest in the 

riparian l^hanas, in most of which the density 

Central Bengal. exceeds 1,000 to the Square mile. In the other 

non-Sundarban thanas it ranges from 602 in Bhangar to 1,105 in Magra Hat. 

In the Sundarbans, owing to the 
large tracts of waste to the south 
the number of persons to the 
square mile is very small.* The 
Kushtia Subdivision is by far the 
most populous portion of Nadia, 
and in a great part of it, there are 
more than 900 persons to the 
square mile. The Ranaghat Sub- 
division and a great part of the 
Sadar, on the other hand, barely 
support half this population. The 
low density is here due, partly to 
the silting up of the rivers which 
has deprived the country of the 
silt it used to receive and of a 
means for carrying off the surplus 
water, partly to the bad system 
of land tenure, under which the 
cultivators are mere tenants-at- 
will, and partly to long- continued 
unhealthiness. 

The population of Jessore is 
greatest in the east, where the 
soil is most fertile and still re- 
ceives occasional deposits of silt, 
and least in the Bongaon Sub- 
division in the west, where the 
conditions are very similar to 
those in the south of Nadia to 
which it formerly belonged. The 
part of Murshidabad lying to the east of the Bhagirathi is wholly alluvial and 
its density considerably exceeds that of the western part of the district. In 
the latter tract the average density is reduced by the figures for the central 
thanas, which though now growing rapidly, are still very sparsely inhabited. 
52 .Northern Bengal is an extensive area and its general conditions 

vary considerably. The density is greatest in the 

NoETH Ben&al. g^g|. g^jj(j decreases towards the west and north. 

The centre of this tract contains the sparsely populated Barind. Pabna 

which stands first in respect of density of population owes its position mainly 

to the rich jute fields of the Sirajganj Subdivision. It is also probable that 




REFERENCES 
UNDER 150 PER S^' MILE 
151 TO Z50 — , — ,_. 

251 TO *00 ..-.-^_. 

H.0\ TO 500 „_.„... 

SlOl TO 600 „ „._, 

601 TO 700 „.-,„... 

701 TO 80O „._._.. 

801 TO 1000._ „.... 

1001 AND OVER 



area gives 



the true area is greater than would appear from the figures based on the 
survey, and that in some parts the district has gamed by alluvion. I his would 
seem to be the case in the Shahzadpur thana where the pomin 
a density of 1,235 to the square mile. Bogra is most thickly peopled m the 
east, between the Karatoyd and the Jamuna, where jute is the main stap e. 
Towards the north-west the alluvium gives way to the quasi-Mevite oi the 



shown against them. 2 



20 



CHAPTER I — DISTiaBDTION OF POPULATION. 



NORTH BENGAL 



RErERENCES 

UNDER ISO PER S9 MILE 
(51 TO 250 »' '» W 
251 '- 100 »» T> " 
H0\ ■>? 500 " fi '■ 
5or "f 600 »' »^ »♦ 
601 « 700 " " " 
701 ^f 800 ff " " 
801 V lOCO »* " " 
ICOl *H3 OVCa »' '' '* 




Barind and the population becomes more sparse. The unhealthy and jungly 

thana of Sherpur in the south-west 
has also a relatively small number 
of inhabitants. Thanks to its very 
fertile soil, Rangpur, in spite of 
long-continued unhealthiness, has a 
far greater population than Dinaj- 
pur to the west, Kuch JBihar and 
Jalpaiguri to the north or Goalpara 
in Assam to the east. Its density 
is very little less than that of 
Bogra and is almost the same as 
that of Mymensingh which adjoins 
it on the south-east. The only 
places where there are less than 
500 persons to the square mile are 
two unhealthy and ill-drained police 
circles in the south -central part of 
the district on the bank of the 
old Karatoya and a tract along 
the eastern boundary which in- 
cludes in its nominal area the bed 
and sandy chars of the Brahma- 
putra. 

53, The relatively low density 
in Rajshahi is due partly to its con- 
taining a large portion of the Barind 
and partly to the presence of nu- 
merous marshes and lakes, including the Uhalan bil, the largest sheet of inland 
water in Bengal. There is a belt of country running from north to south, 
through the centre of the district, where the population is as great as in almost 
any part of North Bengal. Malda also owes its low position to the Barind which 
extends over a great part of the district east of the Mahanandd. In the alluvial 
tract west of that river, the population is generally dense, and in one police 
circle, Manikchak, there are no fewer than 935 persons to the square mile. Kuch 
Bihar is most populous on the Rangpur border and least so where it marches 
with the Western Duars. Dinajpur owns a share of the Bd,rind,but its density 
is low throughout, and the most populous police circle in the district can boast 
of only 531 persons to the square mile. Jalpaiguri is even more sparsely 
populated. In only one police circle (Patgram, where there are a number of old 
families) does the population exceed 500, and in only three more does it exceed 
400 to the square mile. The fewest inhabitants are in the Duare. Towards 
the west this tract has filled up rapidly owing to the extension of tea 
cultivation, but in the east, the population is still very sparse, and in Alipur it 
averages only 89 persons to the square mile. Darjeeling is throughout very 
thinly peopled. In the Terai the density is about the same as in Jalpaiguri, 
but it gradually diminishes towards the north, and in the head-quarters sub- 
division there are only 1 84' persons to the square mile. Sikkim, which comes 
last, owes its very low density to the mountainous region in the north which is 
practically uninhabited. The southern part of the State is less elevated and 
contains more cultivable land. The population, though still sparse, is here 
far greater than in the north, especially in the tract west of the Tista, where 
there are numerous settlers from Nepal. 

54. The greatest density in East Bengal is found in Dacca, which lies in 
East Benoai, *^® ^"^^® formed by the confluence of the Padma 

and Megna, and next to Dacca, in Faridpur on the 
bank of the Padma and in Tippera on that of the Megna. The districts in 
question are sufficiently near the mouth of these great rivers to benefit to the full 
by their silt-laden floods, while they are far enough from the sea to escape damage 
by cyclones and storm waves, and they are not weighted, as are the districts on 
the coast, by the inclusion in their area of land not yet sufficiently elevated 
to be fit for perm.anent occupation. In Mymensingh to the north and Khulna 



AREA, POPULATION AND DENSITY. 



21 



Backergunge and Noakhali to the south, the density 



IS 



BENGAL 




very uniform. It 
rapidly diminishes 
in the south-east 
where the alluvial 
plain is replaced 
by the rocky and 
jungle clad spurs of 
the hill range that 
separates Assam 
from Burma. 

Great as is the 
density of the popu- 
lation of Dacca it 
would be still great- 
er were it not for 
the inclusion within 
its borders of the 
southern part of 
the Madhupur 

jungle, where the 
population, though 
rapidly growing, is 
still comparatively 
sparse. The pres- 
sure is greatest in 
the Munshiganj 
subdivision which 
contains the famous 
Bikrampur par- 
gana, the great 
home of the edu- 
cated classes of 
East Bengal, whose 
sons are found all 
over Bengal and 
Assam, and even further afield, practising as pleaders, or holding posts in 
Government service, or in private employ as clerks. The proportion of the 
population dependent on means of livelihood other than agriculture is thus 
relatively. high,* but even so the density of the population in some thanas 
is astonishing. In Srinagar there are 1,787, and in Munshiganj 1,526 persons 
to the square mile. 

55. The population of Tippera is greatest in the fertile tract along the 
bank of the Megna (except in the extreme north, where there are numerous un- 
reclaimed marshes) and in the old settled tract to the east, north and south of the 
head-quarters station. It is least in the centre of the southern part of the district, 
but as will be seen in the next chapter this tract is now rapidly being developed. 
Faridpur has about the same apparent density as Tippera, but it is probable 
that its area has grown since the time of the survey owing to the vagaries 
of the Padma, and that some of the thanas, such as Sibchar and Bhanga 
which, according to the survey figures, have respectively 1,406 and 1,223 
inhabitants to the square mile, are in reality less crowded than these figures 
would show. In the south-west of the district the cultivable area is smaller 
than elsewhere and in the north-west the lower density is due to long con- 
tinued unhealthiness. Bhushana which now has only 708 persons to the 
square mile had 843 at the time of the census of 1872. 

56. Fluvial action has affected the survey areas in Noakhali even more 
than in Faridpur, and much stress cannot be laid on variations in the apparent 



lOQI .AND. OVER 



* In Srinagar 63 per cent, of the population are dependent on non-agricultural means of subsistence 
and in Munshiganj 39 per cent. In Kapasia the corresponding figure is only 13. 



22 



CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OF POPULATION. 



density of different parts of the district. Companyganj thana, for example, 
is shown as having a lower density than in 1891, but its loss of population is 
due to diluvion, the effect of which on the area cannot be ascertained in the 
absence of a new measurement and its true density is probably, if anything, 
greater than it was at the earlier census. The islands to the south of the 
district have a relatively small population because many of the cultivators have 
their permanent homes on the mainland and only go to the islands when 
agricultural operations are in progress. 

The relatively low position of Backergunge is due to the figures for the 
south and west of the district. This tract is exposed to damage by storm 
waves ; a large part of it is still uncultivable, and it was laid waste less than two 
centuries ago by Magh pirates from Arakan. To the west and north of Backer- 
gunge town are some of the most thickly-populated tracts in Bengal and in one 
police circle, Jhalakati, there are nearly 1,200 persons to the square mile. 
Khulna also has a large Sundarban area, but here a great part has been 
excluded from the generally accepted area of the district on which the density 
has been calculated. Mymensingh has three thanas with a population exceeding 
1,000 to the square mile, but in the north, under the Garo Hills, many parts 
are very sparsely inhabited, and so also is the Madhupur jungle which pro- 
jects through the centre of the district from the Dacca boundary almost as 
far as the town of Mymensingh. In the west the arable area is reduced by 
numerous Mors or depressions in the surface which are filled with water for the 
greater part of the year. 

57. The average density of population in Chittagong is reduced by the 
figures for the Cox's Bazar subdivision which includes the storm-swept islands 
of Maheshkhal and Banskhali and, in the south, an inhospitable region of hill 
and jungle with only a few infrequent patches of cultivable land. The 
Chittagong Hill Tracts and Hill Tippera are even less capable of supporting 
a large population than the south of Chittagong, and their inhabitants are 
mostly migratory savages, whose primitive methods of cultivation necessitate 
the clearing of new land every other year ; after two years' crops have been 
obtained, the fields become unfit for further tillage until the weeds that follow 
in the wake of cultivation have been exterminated by reafforestation. Hill 
Tippera includes a strip of comparatively level land along its west(3rn boun- 
dary, and here cultivation is more permanent and the population is less sparse. 

58. South Bihar is fairly populous along the bank of the Ganges, but 
South Bihae further _ away, the surface rises and there is less 

cultivation, and the population becomes more and 
more scanty. Patna has a larger cultivable area than the other South Bihar 

districts, and its density is 
greater, but if its two large 
towns be excluded it has less 
than 700 persons to the 
square mile, which would 
not be considered a very 
high figure in East Bengal 
or North Bihar. Monghyr 
which comes next, owes its 
position to the tract north of 
the Ganges where there are 
698 persons to the square 
mile compared with only 412 
in the South Gangetic part 
of the district. In the south, 
on ttie border of Hazaribagh, there are barely 250 persons to the square mile. 
In Shahabad the population is greatest in the north and east, on the banks 
of the Ganges and the Sone, where much of the land is irrigated, and decreases 
rapidly towards the south and south-east, where the Kaimur Hills afford but 
small space for cultivation. The Bhabua thana, with 181 persons to the 
square mile, has the scantiest population of any tract in South Bihar, la 



SOUTH BIHAR 




AREA, POPULATION AND DENSITY. 



33 



Gaya also the population is very sparse along the southern boundary of the 
district where, as in the south of Shahabad, a considerable area ought 
really to be included in the Chota Nagpur Plateau. It is greatest in the north, 
but even here the absolute density is not excessive. Compared with the 
productiveness of the soil, however, it appears to be very considerable, and there 
are numerous emigrants from this district who seek a livelihood in the more 
favoured tracts of Bengal Proper. 

69. Although exceeded by the figures for a few individual districts elsewhere 

the portion of North Bihar which comprises the 

districts of Saran, Muzaffarpur and Darbhanga has a 

more teeming population than any other tract of equal size in the province. 

Towards the east 



NORTH BIHAR 




151 TO H50 PER sq JfllLE 

2SI » 400 >3 )i 3f 

A0\ -'» 500 ?3 5» JJ 

501 7J 600 »9 >3 >? 

eOi 9> 70O a? >} 79 

101 39 800 9) W 99 

801 99 1000 99 99 99 

tool ANO OVER -J^. >J ^' 



and north-west 
the population 
rapidly declines. 
In the most pop- 
ulous district, 
MuzafFarpur, the 
inhabitants are 
very evenly distri- 
buted; in only a 
small tract to the 
west does the 
average number 
per square mile fall 
below 90Q, while 
in no part of the 
district does it ex- 
ceed 1,000. Saran 
contains three 

police circles where this high ratio is exceeded, but it also contains five where 
it falls below 900. The population of this district is greatest in the south and 
centre and least in the north and north-east. Darbhanga, which lies between 
Muzaffarpur and Bhagalpur, partakes in the west, of the character of the former, 
and in the east, of that of the latter district. In only one of the western thanas 
does the density of population fall below 900 per square mile, while in none 
of the eastern thanas does it reach 800. So far as can be judged from the results 
of the recent census these inequalities in the distribution of the people are 
gradually being obliterated. 

The most populous part of Champaran is east of the Buri Gandak, where 
the soil is the stiff clay of the older alluvium. Then comes the tract 
between the two Gandaks, and lastly the north-western corner where the surface 
rises towards the Somesvar hills on the Nepal frontier, and a great part of the 
country is still covered with forest. This tract is very unhealthy and the 
aboriginal Thdrus alone seem able to inhabit it with impunity. The district 
generally is less healthy than those previously described ; it is also less fertile 
and has more recently been reclaimed from forest.* It needs more irrigation, 
and when the canals recently eanctioned have been completed, it seems pro- 
bable that the less settled parts of the district will be rapidly filled up. 

60. About half of Bhagalpur lies south of the Ganges, but, except for 
one thana in the extreme south-west, there is not much difference between the 
density of the population on the north bank and that on the south. The 
diminished density compared with the districts to the west of it may bo ascribed 
to a less fertile soil and less healthy climate, combined in parts with occasional 
floods from the Kosi which leave behind them a barren sediment of sand. The 
low density in Purnea is due mainly to the unhealthiness of the climate and to 
the infertility of the western half of the district, where the soil consists 
mainly of sand deposited by the Kosi which, moreover, frequently causes 

* OhamparaB is derived from Champa dram/a, the forest of Champa tvees. 



24 



CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OP POPULATION. 



disastrous floods. In the south-east there are numerous marshes which are not 
fit for cultivation. Further north, on both sides of the Mahdnand^ there is a 
somewhat greater population, but in only one thana, Bahadurganj, does it 
exceed 500 to the square mile. 

61. Orissa lies between the hills of the Tributary States and the sea. 

Its population is sparse on the lower slopes of the 
hills and also on the sea-coast where there is a strip 
of uncultivable land impregnated with salt ; for some distance beyond it there 

are numerous marshes, and cyclones 



OsissA. 



ORISSA 




occasionally inflict great damage. 
Between these two extremes the 
area under cultivation is great and 
the population dense, but it is only 
in C attack that this is apparent 
from the statistics showing the 
density of thanas ; the other two 
districts-are so narrow that every 
thana contains a tract of coast or 
hill or both. Cuttack enjoys an ex- 
tensive system of irrigation which 
protects the crops from failure in 
seasons Of drought, and enables 
land to be cultivated that would 
otherwise remain barren. One of 
the central thanas of this district 
has a population of nearly 1,000 
to the square mile, whereas Aul on 
the sea-coast has only 287, and the 
hilly Banki only 319. Balasore 
and Puri, having a smaller space 
intervening between the hills and 
the coast, and being for the most 
part dependent solely on the rain- 
fall — the south of Balasore enjoys a 
certain amount of iiTigation — the population is less dense. In Puri, moreover, 
the extensive Chilka lake occupies a large area and keeps down the average 
density. Its most closely-inhabited thana is Pipli with 767 persons to the 
square mile. In Balasore the greatest density, 674 persona to the square mile 
is found in Bhadrak. 

62. The Chota Nagpur plateau has an average population of 152 persons 

Choia NAaPHE Plateau. *° *^^ TT ?'^®^ Speaking generally, the popu- 

lation tends to decrease from the east, where the 
general elevation is low and the transition from plains to hills ia gradual to 
the west, where the country is everywhere more hilly and broken. The 
most densely inhabited district is the Sonthal Parganas which projects beyond 
the rest of the formation and is surrounded on three sides by the plains of 
Bengal Proper and Bihar. On the north-east and north-west the administrative 
boundary of the district includes a considerable area of low and level country 
which carries a fairly dense population. The Damin-i-koh, or reserve for 
aboriginal tribes in the centre of the district, is a typical part of Chota Nagpur, 
and is very sparsely inhabited. The adjoining district, Manbhum, ranks next 
in point of density, chiefly on account of the alluvial tract along the course of 
the Damodar. In the north-west and south the country becomes more broken 
and the inhabitants are fewer, except in the neighbourhood of the great Jheria 
coal-field, where the mines attract large numbers of coolies. Hazaribagh 
borders on Gaya, but it derives no benefit from its proximity to the ' plains, as 
the natural dividing line lies far to the north of the district boundary and 
the lower slopes of the hills lie within the district of Gaya. The population 
is greatest in the west in the valley of the Barakar river, where there is a fair 
extent of level country, and the coal mines support a considerable number of 



HOUSES AND HOUSE-EOOM. 



25 



labourers. The country west and south-west of the central plateau contains 
the larger proportion of hill and ravine and has very few inhabitants. 



CHOTA NAGPUR PLATEAU 




REFERENCES 

UNDER ISO PER Sq MILE 
151 TO 850 » » » 
251 » 100 » }> » 
-101 55 500 V W X> 
501 » 600 55 >} )) 
601 5> 700 5," 55 ff 
iOOOAWOYSK 55 » 55 



63. Ranchi, which has almost the same general density as Hazaribagh, 
exhibits a steady decrease of population from the north-east to the west and 
south-west. In Singhbhum the density is fairly uniform except in the south- 
west corner bordering on Grangpur which consists of a mass of mountains 
rising to the height of about 3,500 feet. The Palamau district has a fair 
population in the alluvial valleysjalong the course of the North Koel river and 
on the right bank of the Sone, but away from these rivers, and especially in 
the south and west- the country is wild and inhospitable and its inhabitants 
are few in number. 

The Orissa States have a slightly greater density than Palamau, but this 
is due to the Bgures for the eastern States which march with the Orissa plains. 
Some of the latter include a considerable area of level country and support 
a considerable population, amounting in the case of the little State of Tigaria 
to 492 to the square mile. Further west the density rapidly falls and Pal 
Lahara and Athmallik have respectively only 49 and 56 inhabitants to the 
square mile. Angul is surrounded by these States, and its circumstances are the 
same. At the bottom of the list are the Tributary States of Chota Nagpur 
with an average of only 62 inhabitants per square mile. The figure would be 
even lower but for the inclusion of the political States of Kharsawan and 
Seraikela which lie within the confines of Singhbhum. If these be excluded, the 
greatest density is found in Gangpur, and the least in Korea and Changbhakar. 

Houses and House-room. 

64. In 1872 and 1881, a house was defined as the dwelling place of one 

or more families having a separate independent 

Definition of Housb and entrance from the common way. In Bengal, this 

Valub of ihb Ebtoeit. definition was open to several objections, from the 

point of view of the actual enumeration, and it was therefore abandoned in 



26 



CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OF POPULATION. 





NUMBEK OB 




PBESOirS PEE 


Natural Division. 


HOUSE. 




1891. 


1901. 


FROriSCB 


5-4 


B-3 


West Bengal 


4-5 


4'4 


Central „ 


B-3 


6-1 


North 


6-4 


6-3 


East 


6-3 


6-4 


South Bihar 


8-7 


6-2 


North , 


5-8 


6-2 


Orissa ... 


6-3 


6-1 


Chota Nagpur Plateau ... 


6-5 


6-3 



189], when a house was defined as the residence of a commensal family.* 
The same definition was repeated at the present Census. There can be no 
comparison with the figures for 1881, when the unit was a different one 
and in the case of 1891 also it would be unsafe to draw very definite conclu- 
sions from the rariations disclosed. The definition was the same on both 
occasions, but in 1891 it was not issued until three months before the date 
of the Census, when it was too late to ensure its general application, 
and in several of the Bihar districts it was to a great extent overlooked 
in favour of the older definition. It was also not appKed in the cities of 
Calcutta and Howrah. On the present occasion the definition was issued at 
a very early stage in the operations ; the necessity for enforcing its careful 
observance was constantly inculcated, and there is reason to believe that 
it has on the whole been properly applied. There was occasionally a tendency 
to conceal separate messes with a view to escape taxation, but it is not likely 

that such attempts were successful to an extent 
sufficient to vitiate the returns. The great general 
uniformity between the average population per 
house in different parts of the province, confirms 
the view that the definition was appKed with great 
uniformity. The only tract where there is a 
marked divergence from the general standard is 
West Bengal, and here it is due to the presence of 
numerous immigrants working in the mills and 
coal mines whose huts were each reckoned as a 
separate house. In Midnapore and Bankura, which 
are free from this disturbing influence, the average rises to 4*8 persons per 
house. The average even here is somewhat low, but not more so than would 
be expected from the tendency in these parts of every married man to set up 
a separate establishment as soon as he takes his wife to live with him. The 
practice is much the same in East Bengal and Chota Nagpur, but here the 
rapid growth of the population gives more children to a family than in less 
progressive parts of the province. In North Bengal, on the other hand, the 
rather high average is due probably to a sHghtly greater tendency of 
families to remain joint and commensal. 

65. The return of houses in Europe is of great importance as it throws 
light on the question of overcrowding. But in Bengal, except in a few large 
cities, the statistics have no bearing on this subject. The unit is social not 
structural, and while in many cases a census house may comprise several distinct 
buildings, in others one building may be divided into several * houses.' At the 
same time the figures have a certain value of their own. 

66. If it were not for the joint family system, z.e., if every man living 
SioNiFioANOE OF FIGUEB8 SHOW- ^^^^ hls wifo had a house of his own, the varying 

iNo NiTMBBE OP Pbbsons Peb sizc of thc houso, wluch would then represent the 

^'"''r, «. -, J • T *^"^^^ ^^ *^^ ordinary acceptation of the term, 

would afford a good index to the progressiveness or decadence of the population 

^^^ As matters stand, however, these differences may 
equally well be due to the varying extent to which 
in different districts or at different times, married 
sons remain in, or leave, the parental home 
Some idea of the practice prevailing ip different 
districts may be gathered by comparing the 
number of houses in a district with the number of 
married females over 15 years of age, but here 
too the comparison is obscured by the fact that in 

?ome parts the proportion of married females only 
slightly over 15 years of age, is higher than m others. This is especially the case 
in parts of Bihar, but even if this be allowed for, it is clear that in this part of the 
province, sons do not so readily leave their parents' house for a new one of their 
own, as they do elsewhere. The setting up of a separate house is a less simnle 
matter m the crowded village sites of Bihar than it is in Bengal Proper- fiie 
people, moreover, are poorer, and manj^ of the men who go to Bengal for work 
leave their wives m the charge of relatives who will look after them. 





Number of 




bouses per 100 


Natueal Division. 


married 




temales aged 




16 and over. 


rBOrXNCE 


90 


West Bengal 


119 


Central , 


109 


North 


101 


Eas „ 


97 


South Bihar 


84 


North „ 


85 


Orissa 


^\ 


Chota Niigpar Plateau ... 


06 



* TJiis subject has beea more fully dealt with ip the AdnupiatratiTe B«por' o» thq-Cpnsus Ope^tions ^ 



TOWNS AND VILLAGES. 27 



Towns and Villages. 

67. For the purpose of the census the word town was held to include all 

municipalities and cantonsxients and such other 
TownT.""''"' ^'"' ^"""^^^ °^ continuous collections of houses as it might be 

decided to treat as towns. The total number of 
towns, as thus defined in Bengal, is 199, of which 190 are in British Territory 
and 9 in the Native States. Of the former number, 157 are municipalities 
and 9 are cantonnients, and 24 are other places treated as town on account of 
their urban character. The statistics regarding these towns are contained in 
Imperial Tables IV and V. The combined number of towns and villages and 
their distribution according to population will be found in Imperial Table III. 
The corresponding proporticjnal figures are given in Subsidiary Table No. II at 
the end of this chapter. 

68. In the province as a whole, out of every 100 persons, 95 live 

in villages and only 5 in towns. Bengal is a 
DisTKiBnTioN oE PoBULATiON distiuctly agricultural country, and many even of 

BETWEEN Towns AHD VULAGES. ,, 11 n, ~ '' •■,-, 

the so-called towns are merely overgrown villages. 
The urban population is considerable only in Central Bengal where the 
inclusion of Calcutta and its environs brings the proportion of urban population 
up to 19 per cent. If they be excluded, it is only a little more than 7 per cent. 
The second place is shared by West Bengal, with its flourishing industrial 
centres at Howrah, Bally, Serampore and Raniganj, and South Bihar, with its 
ancient towns of Patna, Gaya and Bihar ; in both these tracts 7 per cent, of the 
inhabitants live in urban areas. Orissa follows with an urban population of 
four per cent., then North Bihar and North Bengal with three per cent, and 
lastly East Bengal and the Chota Nagpur Plateau with only two per cent. 
The order in which the different tracts stand is sufficient to show the want 
of any connection between the prosperity of the people and the growth of 
towns. The general standard of comfort is highest in Eastern Bengal, 
although it has the smallest proportion of persons living in towns. South 
Bihar ranks comparatively high in this respect and yet it includes the poorest 
part of the province. The older towns, which usually owed their origin to the 
presence of a Native Court and its entourage, have few industries, and such as 
they possess are for the most part decadent, while in the newer towns the 
industries are carried on by foreign capital, and even the employes come 
from other parts of the country, i The mills of Howrah and the coal mines of 
Asansol are alike worked with British capital by coolies from Bihar and 
the United Provinces, and the shop-keepers who are enriched by the trade they 
bring, are also for the most part foreigners. The district-born, as a class, 
have so far benefited but little by the growth of new industries. In the 
general account of towns which follows it will be convenient to deal not only 
with their present condition but also with the progress they have made in the 
past, instead of leaving the latter subject for discussion in a separate chapter as 
has been done in the case of variations in the population generally. 

69. Burdwan.has six towns, all municipalities. The largest is Burdwan, 

itself, with 35,022 inhabitants. It has no special 
Towns in Wbst Bbngal. industries and owes its position to the fact that it is- 

the head-quarters of the district and of the Burdwan Raj. It is growing in 
importance as a railway centre and appears to be fairly prosperous, but in spite 
of this the population has grown but little of late years. It has been deserted 
since 1891 by the Commissioner of the Division, who has removed with his 
establishments to Chinsura. Kalna and Katwa are on the Bhagirathi and en- 
ioyed a considerable trade before^ the advent of the railway, but their prosperity 
has long been waning. The only progressive towns are Raniganj and Asansol 
in the west of the District which owe much of their development to the 
neighbourhood of the coal mines. Raniganj has, besides, large pottery works 
andis one of the busiest places in Bengal, while Asansol is an important 
railway junction; both are growing rapidly. The only town m Birbhuna is 
Suri the district head-quarters. It is small and has no special industries. 
Bankura has three towns with an aggregate population of more than 53,000 j 
thev are of small commercial impoi^;ance and are unprogressive, but Vishnupur, 
the ancient capital, is still noted for its embroidered silk scarves and shawls, 



28 



CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OP POPULATION. 



Midnapore contains seven towns, none of which are of much moment. The 
largest is the head-quarters station with 33, 140 persons, but it has no great 
industry or trade and shows no tendency to grow. Tamluk, the head quarters 
of the boat traffic on the Rupnarayan, has added 22 per cent, to its population, 
but it still has barely 8,000 inhabitants. There are eight towns in Hooghly of 
which by far the most important is Serampore on the bank of the Hooghly, 
which contains many important mills and is growing very rapidly, having 
added 40 per cent, to its population between 1881 and 1891 and another 
24 per cent, during the decade preceding the present census ; its popula- 
tion is now 44,451. Bhadreswar, also on the river, though barely a third 
the size of Serampore, has of late grown more rapidly, and now contains 
67 per cent, more inhabitants than in 1891. This is due to the growth of 
a local jute mill and to the fact that the operatives in some of the mills on 
the opposite side of the river reside in this town. Hooghly itself (including 
Chinsura) is decadent. Bally in the Howrah district is prosperous, but has not 
grown much during the last decade. Howrah city shows a remarkable develop- 
ment, and is now, next to Calcutta, the largest in the Province. In view of its 
^eat and growing importance, it seems desirable to consider its history and 
statistics in some detail, and this I am enabled to do, thanks to a very full and 
interesting report from Mr. Duke, the Magistrate, from which the greater part 
of the following three paragraphs has been extracted almost verhatim. 

70. Howrah, which stretches for seven miles along the Hooghly and com- 

prises an area of about 8g square miles, is a town 
owBAH. ^1 entirely modern growth. In 1785 it was a 

small village held by one Mr. Lovett who found it so unprofitable that he 
petitioned to be allowed to relinquish it. The artillery part of the Nawab 
Nazim was at one stage located there, and the artillery practising ground is 
shown in old maps, north of the railway where the most densely populated 
part of the town now is. The Government salt golas were located within the 
limits of the town, and it gradually grew in importance until, in 1841, it became 
the seat of a separate Magistracy. In 1 853 a further impetus was given to 
its development by the establishment there of the head-quarters of the East 
Indian Railway, the first part of which was opened to traffic in 1856. In 1874 
the pontoon bridge was opened, and the improved communication with 
Calcutta thus afforded enabled many of the people employed in the metropolis 
to reside on the right bank of the Hooghly. Meantime there had been a con- 
tinuous development of various large industries conducted according to Euro- 
pean methods, of which the rope works at Ghuseri and Shalimar, founded a 
century ago, are probably the oldest. Then followed iron foundries and 
engineering works, and then the rise of the jute and cotton spinning indus- 
tries, until at the present time there are no less than 40 registered factories 
working within the municipal limits. Excluding 13,815 persons in Bally, 
which then belonged to Howrah but has since been made a separate munici- 
pality, the population in 1872 was 83,969. In 1881 it was 90,391 and in 1891 
116,606 ; at the present census it is 157,594, or 35 per cent, more than it was 
ten years ago, and nearly 88 per cent, more than in 1872. 

71. This rapid expansion is due almost entirely to the great industrial 

development that has taken place. The growing 
demand for labour has been met by the immi- 
gration of labourers from outside the district 9,nd 
about two-thirds of the total number of inhabi- 
tants are immigrants, chiefly from up-country 
More than 33,000 come from the United Provinces 
and about 25,000 from Bihar. Amongst these 
foreigners there is an enormous excess of males 
who outnumber the females in the ratio of 2 to 1. 
As already stated they are for the most part opera- 
tives in the mills, who look forward to returning to 
their homes as soon as they have accumulated 
sufficient funds. In the meantime they live huddled 
together in crowded lodging-houses as close as 

possible to the mills and factories where they work. This over-crowding is not 
a necessary condition in Howrah, a*s there is ample room for building at no 



DiBTRICT, 


Number of 






WflTED PMOriNCMS ... 


33,143 


Patna 


5,80S 


Gaya 


2,824 


Shahabad 


6,389 


Saran 


6,772 


MuzafEarpur 


1,322 


Monghyr 


2,293 


Cuttack 


8,186 


Hooghly 


16,939 


Uidcapore 


6,276 


Oalcatta 


4,460 


24-Parganas 


3,606 


Bnrdwan 


1,963 



62 



81 



86 



26 



24 



22 



JO 



; M > ^ ^ 



BB H AKAH 




REFERENCES. 

FrCTliioe or State Bovndu^. 

DiBtriot „ ^■• x - , ::'— '- 

L Angnl, Oort Estatau.... Ill panont per ■(. mile< 

2. Pal Lihaia, NatiTa State 19....H n- 

3. Taaoher „ ISl...^^. 

4. Athmallik „ J6. 

5. Athgar „ 260.. 

6. Naramghpor „ 193---n-- 

7. Banunln. n 35... »• 

8. Tigiria „.... 

9. Hindol „ 1S2. 

m Sayagar „... 

11. Kltandpaia n ■ - 

12. Banpnr. „ -227... 

13. irUgiri „ 239. 

11 Seraikela „ 227...,, „ 

IS. Ehusawui „ 215...,^ » 

HatiT< State N. 6.. 



82 



84 



86 



Reg, No, as, Census, Bengal.— Apr. 02,-1,200. 




Photo. S, I. 0., Calcutta. 



TOWNS AND VILLAGES. 29 



Ward 
number. 


Number of 
persons 
per acre. 


Word 
number. 


Number of 
persons 
per acre. 


1 


36 


6 


18 


2 


11 


7 


62 


3 


B8 


8 


33 


4 


60 


9 


9 


6 


83 


10 


8 



great distance from the centres of industry. It proceeds partly from the desire 
of the operatives to live as near as possible to their work, partly from their 
poverty which leaves them little to spare for rent, and partly from the pressure of 
municipal taxation which falls heaviest on huts and discourages the construc- 
tion of new ones, unless there is a certainty of their being kept full of lodgers. 
The hasti clauses of the Municipal Act enable roads to be opened out and drain- 
age efEected ; but there is at present no law under 
which it is possible to prevent over-crowding, 
which sometimes attains truly astonishing pro- 
portions. The density of the population in each 
ward is noted in the margin; but as many of 
the wards contain large areas of uninhabited land, 
the figures afiord no index to the density 
of the population in the neighbourhood of the 
mills where over-crowding chiefly occurs. Fortunately the lodging-houses 
are of very flimsy materials, and there is much natural ventilation, so that 
the effects are probably less harmful than they would be in the case of 
masonry buildings. 

72. The rapid growth of the population has led to a great increase in 
the value of house property and land, and the municipal income in 1901 
exceeded five lakhs of rupees, compared with less than 2f lakhs ten years 
previously. The greatest recent improvement was the introduction, in 1896, 
of a filtered-water supply. The town had previously suffered very severely 
from water famines and cholera, but since the opening of the water- 
works the former have of com-se ceased, and the latter has not appeared in 
epidemic form. On the other hand the general death rate has risen, and it is 
sometimes asserted that this is due to the water-works, as the drains are now 
seldom dry, and breeding grounds for mosquitoes have consequently been 
multiplied. The town, moreover, is low and naturally exposed to water- 
logging. What it now needs, more than any thing, is an efficient system of 

drainage. 

73. Excluding Calcutta there are twenty five municipalities in the 24-Par- 

ganas. Of these the three suburban municipalities, 
Centeal Bengal Towns. Gossipore-Cbitpur, Manicktala and Garden Reach 

were enumerated as part of Calcutta, and have been dealt with in the Calcutta 
Census Report. Most of the towns in this district lie on the bank of the Hooghly, 
and owe their prosperity to the jute mills and other industries which are carried 
on mainly by European capital. The most progressive are Naihati and Bhatpara, 
which together have grown by more than 50 per cent, during the decade. 
Budge-Budge is also a growing town, but as it was only created a muni- 
cipality in 1900 the figures for previous enumerations are not available. The 
same remarks apply to Titaghar and Panihati, which were formed into muni- 
cipalities in 1895 and 1900 respectively. North and South Dum-Dum are 
slightly decadent and so are several others, including the head-quarters of the 
Baraset subdivision. Of the inland towns Basirhat alone shows a con- 
siderable gain of population. Nadia has nine towns, but only one, Rana- 
ehat can boast of an increase. The apparent loss of population in Kushtia 
and kumarkhali is due to the exclusion of a considerable area from the 
municipal limits ; Kushtia, at least, on its present area, has probably gained 
rather than lost ground. Santipur was once the centre of a flourishing weaving 
industry and its muslins had an European reputation, but the modern 
machine-made article has driven them out of the market; the weaws are 
no longer prosperous, and in many cases they have been driven to supplement 
the earnings from their looms by agricultural pm-suits. There was also at one 
time a coniiderable trade in date-sugar, but this too is becoming less profitable. 
The earthquake of 1897 destroyed many of the largest buildings, and these the 
impoverished owners have been unable to replace. The result of these adverse 
Conditions is a decline of 11^ per cent. Krishnagar, the diskict head-quarters, 



also decadent, chiefly on account of malarial fever which is very prevalent 




30 CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OF POPULATION. 



pilgrims on the date of the present Census, whereas in 1891 and 1881 a great 
number were present, especially in the former year, when the Dhulut ceremony 
was in progress at the time when the Census was takers. 

74. The towns of the Murshidabad district are either stationary or de- 
cadent. Berhampur, the district head-quarters, and Jangipur have gained, and 
Kandi has lost slightly, while Murshidabad and Azimganj, taken together • (they 
were not separately enumerated in 1891) show a heavy falling off. Trade has 
declined, and of late years the ivory work and bell-metal manufactures, for which 
Murshidabad is famous, have become less profitable. The earthquake of 1897 
destroyed a great number of houses which have not been rebuilt, and these 
two municipalities now wear a gloomy aspect of neglect and decay. The 
Jessore district has an urban population of only 1 per cent, which is collected 
in three small towns, all of which have lost ground since 1891. Kotechand- 
pur has a considerable trade, chiefly in date-sugar : but this seems to be becom- 
ing less profitable. 

75. North Bengal has no important tovs-ns. The head-quarters of the 

Dinajpur district and Rarapur Boalia and Nator 
NoMH Bengal Towns. j^ Rajshahi have a slightly smaller population now 

than they had in 1872. Eampur Boalia enjoyed a considerable trade when the 
Padma flowed beside it, but its prosperity has departed now that the river has 
receded to a distance of several miles. English Bazar and old Malda in the 
Malda district have lost ground owing to the diversion of trade to other routes. 
Nawabganj on the Mahanandd, near its junction with the Ganges, has the largest 
population of any town iu this district; but it is not a municipality, and 
comparative figures for earlier enumerations are not available. Jalpaiguri 
is progressive but still has less than 10,000 inhabitants. Rangpur has grown 
steadily since 1881, but its population is still only slightly greater than 
in 1872. The other places treated as towns in this district are sub- 
divisional head-quarters or railway centres, but they are not municipalities 
and their population in 1891 is not known. Bogra is growing slowly, but 
Sherpur in the same district is stationary. In Pabna the head-quarters station 
has grown by nearly 12 per cent., while the flourishing jute mart at 
Serajganj which, with 23,114 inhabitants, is the largest town in North Bengal, 
has lost ground, though to a very slight extent. 

76. The town of Darjeeling is peculiarly circumstanced, as it owes its 
existence not to local reqairements but to the fact that it has been selected as the 
summer head-quarters of the Bengal Government, and is also largely resorted 
to during the hot season by Europeans, whose permanent residence is iu the 
plains. Its inhabitants in 1872, before the days of the railway, numbered only 
3,157. During the next nine years the population increased by more than 100 
per cent., and it again doubled itself between the years 1881 and 1891. 
Since 1891 the growth has been less rapid, and at the present Census an increase 
of rather less than 20 per cent, has been recorded. Being a hill station its 
population is at a minimum during the cold weather months, when the general 
Census was taken. In order to ascertain its population during the season when 
it is chiefly resorted to, a special enumeration was effected on the 21st Septem- 
ber 1900. This disclosed a population of 23,852, or nearly 50 per cent, 
more than that at the time of the regular Census taken about 5 months later! 
Kurseong is another hill station, also in the Darjeeling district, but its elevation 
is considerably lower, and it does not enjoy the same reputation as a sanitarium. 
Its population is small, and it shows no signs of any great development, 

77. Although the urban population of East Bengal is relatively very 
„ ^ „, small, this tract contains one of the lare-est tnwna in 

E.SX B«Na.. Towns. ^^^ p^^^-^^^^ j^^^^^ ^^^ ^ flourisS^rcitT^Ong 

before the days of British rule, and for many years it was the capital of the 
Nawabs. It was subsequently the emporium of the well-known muslins 
which were greatly in demand iu Europe, and especially in France. In 1801 
it was estimated to have a population of 200,000. Its prosperity was seriously 
affected by the French wars, and in 1814 the police tax was levied only on 
21,361 houses, which would indicate a population of less than 110,000. The 
place continued to decline, and an enumeration effected in 1830 disclosed a 
population of only 66,989 persons. In 1872 when the growth of the jute 



TOWNS AND VILLAGES. 31 



trade had begun to cause a revival, the number of inhabitants was 69,212. The 
town has grown steadily since that date and now has a population of 90,542, 
or more than 30 per ceutjj greater than it was 29 years ago. The progress 
of Narayanganj which is quite a modern town and owes its progress entirely to 
modern trade and industrial developments, has been much more rapid, and its 
present population of 24,472 is about double that recorded in 1881. 

_ 78. Seven of the eight municipalities in Mymensingh have improved 
their position since 1891, the increase being most marked in Nasirabad, 
Sherpur, and Kishorganj, andin Jamalpur, the terminus of the railway and 
an important station for the river steamers. These towns are all small, and in 
none of them does the population reach 18,000. The Faridpur district con- 
tains Madaripur whose present population (17,463j shows an increase compared 
with 1891, of about 22 per cent. ; it is favourably situated at the junction of the 
Arielkhdln and Kumar rivers, and is the centre of a flourishing jute trade, 
Faridpur town has grown slightly, but it is still small and has no manufactures 
or general trade. In Backergunge all the towns are progressive and Barisal 
with nearly 19,000 inhabitants has grown by 22 per cent, in the course of the 
last decade. Its most flourishing town, however, is Jhalakati which is one of 
the largest marts in East Bengal. It is still small but shows a very rapid rate 
of expansion, and its population has considerably more than doubled itself 
during the last ten years. 

79. In Tippera the population is growing' rapidly and the towns are 
keeping pace with the general progress of the district. The capital, Comilla, 
has been tapped by the railway since 189 1 and the population, which now stands 
at 19, 1 69, has grown by more than 30 per cent. Chandpur is a branch terminus 
of the railway, a port for river steamers and the local head-quarters of the jute 
trade. It is a very rising town, but as it does not find a place in the returns 
for previous enumerations, it is not possible to give an exact measure of its rate 
of expansion. Akhaura is coming into importance as the railway station for 
the Brahmanbaria subdivision, and Laksam as an important junction, but 
neither of these places has as yet attained the rank of towns. Noakhali has 
practically no urban population , and its one small town is Sudharam, the head- 
quarters station. In spite of the advent of the railway and the development 
of its port, the town of Chittagong shows an apparent loss of population com- 
pared with 1891. This is due partly to the fact that the railway quarter, 
with a population of 1,289 persons, lies beyond the municipal limits and partly 
to the census having been taken during some holidays when large numbers of 
the usual residents were absent at their permanent homes a few miles away. 
The Magistrate estimates that the number of these temporary absentees must 
have reached nearly 3,000, Including them and the railway people, the 
population would be about 26,500, instead of 22,140 at which it stands in 
the census tables. 

80. South Bihar contains the oldest towns in the Province and Patna, 

Gaya, Bihar, and Monghyr have a very ancient 
eoriH BiHiE Towns-Patna. history. Buchanan Hamilton estimated the popu- 
lation of Patna at 312,000, but his calculation referred to an area of 20 square 
miles, whereas the city, as now defined, extends over only 9 square miles. The 
population returned in 1872 was 158,900, but the accuracy of the enumeration 
was doubted, and it was thought that the real number of inhabitants was con- 
siderably greater. It is thus probable that the growth indicated by the census 
of 1881 which showed a population of 170,654, was fictitious. There was 
a falling o£E of 5,462 persons between 1881 and 1891, while the present census 
gives a population of only 134, 785, which represents a further decrease 
of more than 18 per cent. This is due mainly to the plague which was 
raging in the city at the time of the census, and not only killed a great number 
but drove many more away ; no one who could go elsewhere remained in the 
stricken city, and many of the private houses and even shops were left empty 
or in charge only of a care-taker. The census thus entirely failed to afford 
V, true indication of the normal population of the city at the present time. 
To ascertain this a fresh count was effected at the end of July, i.e., about five 
months after the general census, when the plague scare had passed away an4 
Ithe people had once more settled down. 



32 CHAPTER I — DISTKIBUTION OF POPULATION. 





POPDIATIOlf. 


Census ol 


Total. Males. 


females. 


March ICOl 
July „ 


134.785 
153,739 


67,088 
79,369 


67,747 
74,370 



This second enumeration disclosed a population of 163,739 or about 
19 000 more than on the 1st March, but still nearly 7 per cent, below the corres- 
ponding figure for 1891. The relative deficiency of 
females on this occasion seems to indicate that some 
of those who had left during the plague scare had 
still not returned, but on the other hand there 
would in any case be more males in July than in 
March ; fewer would then be absent in Bengal, and 
the schools, which were closed in March but open 
in July, would also swell their number. On the whole, then, except for the loss 
due to actual deaths from plague, which according to the returns amounted to 
4,688, the population may be assumed to have regained its normal strength at the 
time of the second enumeration. The decrease due to causes other than deaths 
from plague which, allowing for an incomplete return of plague deaths is probably 
about 3 per cent., may be ascribed to the continued operation of the causes that 
led to a loss of population between 1881 and 1891, the chief of which was 
declining prosperity due to the gradual decay of the river-borne trade. 

81 . Of the other towns in the Patna District, Barh is stationary and Bihar 

„ „ Q T> has lost sliiihtly, while in Dinapur the population is 

Otheb Towns IN SoDTH BiHAB. , , =■ ,-"„n l ii. -j. *^ ^ • ^of\■t 

less by nearly 33 per cent, than it was m 1891. 

These variations are probably due entirely to the plague epidemic, and the 
heavy fall in Gaya and Tikari is attributable to the same cause. Plague ap- 
peared in Arrah shortly before the census and it is probably on this account that 
its population is slightly less than that returned ten years previously but, with 
the solitary exception of Sasaram all the towns in Shahabad seem to be decadent. 
Bhabua shows a heavy decrease during the last decade but it still has about as 
many inhabitants as in 1881. In Monghyr, as in Patna and Graya, plague was 
raging when the census was taken, and the population returned in Monghyr 
town (35,880) was 37 per cent, less than it had been 10 years earlier. A second 
census, taken at the end of July when the plague had disappeared, gave (i 
population of 60,133 or only 6,944 less than in 1891. Of this decrease 2,885 
represents the number of reported deaths from plague. The railway town 
of Jamalpur in the same district suffered from plague, and some of the railway 
offices have been removed to Calcutta ; its population has thus declined during 
the decado, but it still contains more inhabitants than it did in 1881. 

82. AH the municipal towns of Saran have lost ground. Chapra, which 
^ _, showed a steady growth between 1872 and 1891, 

^°^^= BiEAE Towns. j^^^ now suffered a decrease of about 20 per cent. 

Revelganj has lost even more heavily. There was no second census in these 
towns, but there can be no doubt that plague is the principal, if not the only, 
cause of the falling off. At the same time it should be noted that Siwan, 
where there had been no plague, also shows a decline. Motihari and Bettiah, 
in Champaran, have both gained slightly, but in Muzaffarpur, Sitamarhi alone 
is progressive. Muzaffarpur town is less populous by 9 per cent, than it was 
ten years ago but it has still 3,000 more inhabitants than in 1881. Its 
decrease is to a great extent only apparent and, but for the exclusion of 
one of the old wards from the municipal limits and the temporary absence of 
a large number of people in connection with marriage ceremonies, it would 
probably have returned at least as many inhabitants as in 1891. In Dar- 
bhanga town also the fact that the date was an auspicious one for weddings 
led to the population being unusually small on the day of the census. More- 
over, plague had just appeared and some of the residents whose permanent 
homes were elsewhere, had already begun to move away. 1 he population of 
this town in 1891 was abnormally large on account of the presence of some 
5,000 Brahmans who had come to partake of a feast given by the Maharaja. 
The decrease, which amounts to nearly 10 per cent., is attributable partly to 
these causes and partly to unhealthiness in recent years. In 1900 there were 
924 deaths from cholera alone. Rosera, on the bank of the Gandak, is 
slightly decadent, as the railway has diverted some of the traffic that was 
formerly borne by the river. Samastipur and Madhubani, on the other hand, 
have benefited by the railway, especially the former. Comparative figures are 
not available, but it is known to be gTowing rapidly. Of the larger Bihar 



TOWNS AND VILLAGES. 33 



towns Bhagalpur alone is progressive. It has grown steadily since 1872, but 
the increase of 9* 6 during the last decade is greater than that brought out by 
the two previous enumerations put together. This is due mainly to the great 
development in the export trade in agricultural produce which has led to the 
opening of a second railway station and to a great extension of the accommo- 
dation provided for goods. On the south, moreover, the municipal limits have 
been enlarged.* The town is a very healthy one with a good natural system 
of drainage and a filtered water-supply which has been greatly increased and 
extended during the decade. 

Purnea and Kishanganj both show a falling off in sympathy with the 
general decline of population in the Purnea district. 

83. There are only five towns in Orissa of which Cuttack, with 51,364 

inhabitants, is the largest. It has grown by 9 per 
OWNS. cent, since 1891 while the district taken as a whole 

has added only 6'4 per cent, to its population. The town is noted for its 
filagree work, but the advent of the railway has doubtless been the main 
factor in its somewhat rapid increase. At first sight the growth of Puri from 
28,794 to 49,334 seems phenomenal, but it is due mainly to the presence of 
an unusually large crowd of pilgrims on account of the Gobind Duadasi festival. 
When preparing the preliminary totals, the Magistrate, Mr. Luson, caused 
these pilgrims to be separately counted, and they were thus found to number 
J 7,085. If these be deducted, the population of the town falls to 32,269 or 
only 12 per cent, more than in 1891. There were doubtless some pilgrims 
present in the town at the last census also ; it is impossible now to ascertain 
their number, but as there was then no great festival in progress, it was pro- 
bably not very large. 

The other Orissa towns call for no special remarks. Balasore and Jajpur 
are almost stationary while Kendrapara has lost population. Comparative 
figures for Bhadrak are not available. 

84. The towns of the Chota Nagpur Plateau are for the most part small 

and unimportant. Sahibganj, in the Sonthal Par- 
TowNs OF THE Chota Naopce ganas, shows a serious decrease for which the 
Plateau. plague scare is responsible ; its normal population is 

probably quite as large as in 1891. Hazaribagh is slightly decadent, but on 
the other hand large increases have been registered in Ranchi and Purulia, 
amounting respectively to 28 and 42 per cent. In the case of Purulia the 
opening of the railway and the growth of the coolie recruiting business have 
added greatly to the population, but the reasons for the great expansion in 
Ranchi are less apparent. The other towns scarcely need separate mention. 
Chaibassa has grown and Raghunathpur and Lohardaga show a decrease. The 
population of the towns of the Tributary States was not shown on previous 
occasions, but they have no commercial importance, and it is not likely that 
there has been much change in recent years. 

85. If places now treated as towns for the first time be left out of 

account the urban population at the present census 

StTMMAET. shows an increase of 5*4 per cent, over that recorded 

in 1891. The apparent rate of progress is greatest in Orissa where, however, it 

is to a great extent fictitious, being due mainly 
to the crowd of pilgrims collected at Puri in 
connection with a religious festival. In East 
Bengal which comes next, most of the towns are 
growing. The country is prosperous and trade 
is increasing, and the most progressive towns^ are 
those connected with the export trade in jute. 
The high rate of increase in Central Bengal is 
due to the expansion of Calcutta and the modern 
industrial towns on the banks of the Hooghly. In 
.1 ^ ^+l,pr tiRrts of this tract the old native industries have ceased to be 
nrofiti)Te and the urban population is declining. West Bengal also owes xts 
S^^fnositiogjo ^^ expansion of new industries fostered by European 

* TLe true boundary had been lost sight of and a tract lying beyond it was treated as pait of the 
Municipality, but the addition ha& not yet been legalised. 



Natural Division, 


Percentage 

ol varia. 

tion. 


West Bengal 

Central „ 

North Bengal 

Ea»t Bengal 

South Bihar 

North Bihar 

Orissa 

Chota Nagpur 


+12-B 
+12-6 
+ i-4, 
+1S-7 
-16-0 
- 4-9 
+17-9 
+ 6-1 


XOTAZ 


+ B-4 



34 CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OF POPULATION. 



capital in Howrah and its environs, and at Raniganj and Asansol. The 
older towns show no tendency to grow. The progress of the urban population 
in North Bengal and Chota Nagpur is normal, and presents no points of interest, 
though it may be noted that, here too, the greatest advance has taken place 
in towns that have sprung up under British rule, such as Darjeeling, Purulia, 
and Ranchi. Throughout Bihar the urban population is stationary or deca- 
dent, save only in Bhagalpur and one or two smaller towns that owe their 
prosperity to the construction of new lines of railway. Few of the other 
towns contain any of the elements that make for progress, and many of them 
have suffered by the diversion of the traffic from the rivers to the railways. 
At the same time their position is not by any means so bad as the figures for 
the present census would indicate. The decrease in Muzaffarpur and Dar- 
bhanga is mainly fortuitous ; and that in Chapra, Revelganj and many of the 
towns of South Bihar is chiefly on account of the plague epidemic. The 
second count taken in Patna and Monghyr, a few months after the regular 
census, showed that even then a great part of the loss had been made good, and 
unless plague or some other calamity intervenes it is probable that the next 
enumeration will show a general recovery throughout the plague area. 

In India generally the urban population is small but it is particularly so 
in Bengal. In Madras, the Punjab and the United Provinces, the people who 
live in towns are more than twice, and in Bombay (excluding Sind) they are 
are nearly four times, as numerous, in proportion to the total population, as they 
are in this province. The province is also poor in respect of large cities. 
Calcutta, of course, is the largest city in India, but Howrah stands only four- 
teenth on the list ; its population is exceeded by that of five cities in the United 
Provinces of Agra and Oudh, three in the Punjab, two in Bombay, one in 
Madras and one in Burma. 

86. A village may be either a collection of houses bearing a separate 
y^ ^^g^g name, or else the mauza, «>., the area treated as 

a village at the survey. The latter has the 
advantage of being a definite unit regarding which there can be no manner 
of doubt so long as the boundaries laid down at the survey are known, but 
it does not at the present time necessarily correspond to the residential village. 
One of the latter may spread over two mauzas or survey villages, or two 
may lie in the same mauza or the mauza may be altogether uninhabited. On 
the other hand, if the survey unit be neglected, it is very difficult to say with 
any precision what constitutes a village. There are many collections o£ 
houses which would by one person be called separate villages, while another 
would treat them as hamlets of other villages in the neighbourhood. In 
Bengal the records of the revenue survey have not been kept up to date 
and in most districts the survey mauza is no longer clearly traceable. 
Generally, therefore, a village was taken for census purposes to mean a 
residential village, i.e., as a collection of houses bearing a separate name 
with its dependent hamlets. Where, however, there has been a recent cadastral 
survey, as in parts of Bihar and Orissa, the survey mauza was taken as the 
census unit. 

Having regard to the indeterminate character of the villages, it is unneces- 
sary to spend much time in discussing the statistics relating to them. The 
total number of villages is 222,656* and the average number of inhabitants is 
355. Eleven per cent, of the rural population live in villages with a population 
exceeding 3,000 ; 42 per cent, in villages with a population of from 500 to 2,000 
and 47 per cent, in villages with a population of less than 500. Assuming each 
village to be a point, the average distance between each would be rather less 
than a mile. The corresponding distance between each house would be 
about 212 yards. 

• The figure 222,855 in Table III include* Towns. 



SUBSIDIARY TABLFS. 



35 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE I.— Density of the Population. 



Natural Dinsioirs. Disibicib, 

ABD CIIIEB. 



BBNOAX, 



West Bengal 



SVBAL 

Howrah 

HooRhly 

Bnrdwan 

Midnapore .. 

Birbhum 

Bankura 



CITIES 

Howrah (Howrah and Bally) 
Booghly (Serampore) 



Central Bengal 



SURAL 

24-Pari;aiias 
Murshidabad 
Jessore 
Nadia 



CITIES 

Calcutta ... ■•• , „ •■• 

24.Fargana3 (Cosipur-Cmtpor, 

Garden Reach, and Maniok- 

tala.J 

North Bengal ... 



BVBAL 

Fabna 

Bogra 

Bangpnr 

Bajstaahi 

XIalda 

Ench Bihar 

Dinaipnr 

Jalpaiguri 

Darjeeling .. 

Sikkim < .. 



CITIBa 



East Bengal 



SVBAL 

Dacca 

Faridpur 

Tippeia 

Noakhali 

Fackergunge 

Myrreneingn 

Khulna 

Chittagong ... 

HillTlppeia... ... 

Chittagnng Hill Tracts 



CITIES 
Dacca (Dacca) 

North Bihar 

BVBAL 

MnzaOarpur 

Safan 

Darbhanga 

Champaran 

Bhagalpur ... 

Furnea 

CITIES 
• 
Bhagalpnr 
Darbhanga ... 
Mnzaffarpur 
Chapra 



Mean density per square mile. 



1901. 



413 



S91 



B7B 

1,361 
846 
670 
638 
615 
426 



14,714 

16,023 
11,112 



60S 

BS6 

408 
622 
620 
697 



8,446 



498 

483 

772 
629 
617 
664 
466 
434 
897 
266 
214 
21 



B14 

Bll 



849 
848 
694 



643 
42 
24 



10,060 
10,060 

636 



856 
607 
*77 
376 



S,340 

9,470 
9,463 
7,602 
6,667 



1891. 



3 
393 

eel 



an. 

618 
607 
466 

408 



11,284 

12,119 

8,938 



57« 



372 

Ii84 
646 



a4,osi 



84,116 
7,292 



4B8 



isa 

740 
663 
691 
665 
429 
443 
376 
230 
192 
11 



1881. 



465 



834 
800 
71S 
614 
691 
648 
667 
618 
34 
21 



9,147 
9,147 

63B 

es4 

888 
909 
820 
627 
466 
389 

8,900 

8,638 

10,608 

8,198 

8,193 



4 

366 

630 



1,142 
800 
618 
486 

452 



S,74« 

9,603 
6,390 



£«0 



830 

672 



80,616 

7,787 



439 



^9 

712 
ETI5 
600 
669 
374 
461 



196 
134 



408 



725 
727 
606 
499 
621 
482 
620 
464 
23 
20 



8,786 
8,786 

600 



847 
847 
770 
488 
450 
370 



a,lB4 

8,629 
9,422 
7,076 
7,381 



1872. 



6 

SS8 

B4B 

466 

1,078 
922 
563 
490 
486 
369 

8,148 

8,889 
6,110 

BOl 

44S 

307 
666 
496 

587 

SS,763 

31,660 
7,961 



417 



6E8 
472 
616 
649 



407 

862 

141 

81 



367 



36S 

634 
671 
662 
611 
618 
871 
604 
452 
8 
13 



7,690 
7,690 

Bse 

617 

736 
766 
626 
408 
417 
343 



7,S73 

6,172 
7,677 
6,373 
6,612 



Tariation Increase (+) or 
Decrease (-). 



1891 to 1901. 



1881 to 1891 



6 
+ SO 
+ 40 



+ 83 

+ 5 

+ 62 

+ 81 

+ 60 

+ 18 



+ 3,^30 



+ 3,904 
+ 2,124 



30 



16 



+ 6,604 



+ 8,276 
+ 1,163 



SB 



26 
9 

87 
9 

21 



10 



49 



89 

49 

135 

80 

37 

70 

36 

26 

8 

3 



913 
913 



15 
17 
36 
20 
12 
14 



1872 to 1881, 



+ 832 

- 1,045 

- 696 

- 1,638 



7 
+ 97 
+ »1 

+ 16 

+ 121 
+ 41 



+ 4 

+ 11 



+ s.em 



+ 2,516 
+ 2.598 



18 



+ 13 

+ 42 

+ 12 

17 

6 



+ s,ooe 



+ 3,500 
- 495 



19 



19 

S8 
6R 
9 
4 
65 
18 
11 
34 
68 



+ B7 



68 

109 

73 

107 

116 

70 

66 

47 

64 

U 

1 



36i 
361 

3B 

34 

41 
62 
60 
39 
16 
19 

746 



* 109 

T 1,086 

+ 1,122 

+ 812 



38 



IB 



+ 64 
- 122 

35 
6 

34 
+ 28 



714 
280 



B9 



+ 61 

+ 23 

+ 6 

+ 167 

+ 58 



1,0S5 
164 



za 



¥ 


64 


+ 


.33 


_ 


16 


+ 


10 


+ 


18 


+ 


64 


+ 


8 


+ 


65 


+ 


63 



+ 41 



91 
66 
44 
12 

3 

831 

16 

2 
16 

7 



Set 
Variatioh. 
1872-1901- 
(+)or(-) 



+ 1,096 
+ 1,096 

+ 74 



73 

HI 
81 

144 
80 
33 
27 



881 



+ 367 

+ 1,745 

+ 703 

+ 769 



» 
.<■ SB 
+ 46 

+ 110 



273 
76 
17 

48 
29 
.57 



+ 6,« 



7,134 
6,002 



J07 



101 

S6 

124 

CO 



10,740 
494 



66 



114 

167 

1 

16 
110 
27 
36 
126 
133 



+ 147 



178 

286 

183 

110 

247 

99 

91 

34 

11 



+ i8,370 
+ 2,870 

+ 110 



109 



167 
136 



82 



+ 1,067 

+ 1,S 
+ 1,786 
+ J, 299 [ 
66 



E 2 



36 



CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OP POPULATION. 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE I.— Density of the Population— cowcfe^ei. 



NiTTJEAL DlVISIOir, DiSTHICTS, 

*ND Cities. 


Mean density per square mile. 




Variation increase 
Decrrase (-) 


( + ) 


or 


Net 
Variation, 
1872-1901. 




























1901. 


18B1. 


1881. 


1872. 


1891 1» 1901. 


1881 to 1891 


1872 to 1881 


( + )or(-). 




1 


2 


3 


4 


6 




e 




7 




8 


9 




South Bihnr 


Bit 


esi 


B17 


460 


- 


20 


+ 


14 


+ 


61 


+ 4S 




BUBAL 


492 


BOB 


49B 


446 


- 


17 


+ 


14 


+ 


BO 


+ <7 




Patna 

MonghyT 
bhahabad 
Gsya 


691 
619 
449 
4,22 


758 
5115 
471 
437 


747 
481 
415 
435 


659 
4ii 
391 
40U 


+ 


64 
14 
22 
16 


+ 
+ 

+ 


11 

IB 

26 
2 


+ 
+ 
+ 
+ 


88 
41 
54 
35 


+ 36 
+ 71 
+ 68 
+ 23 




CITIES 


9,340 


10,617 


10,649 


9,992 


- 


i,377 


- 


32 


+ 


667 


7BI 




Patna (Patna and Bihar) 
Gaya (Gaya) 
Mongbyr (Monghyr) 


10,986 

lli,184i 

4,485 


.11,829 
11,483 
7,134 


12,2(11 

10,916 

6,921 


11,289 
9,549 
7,462 


- 


843 
],2i!9 
2,649 


+ 
+ 


372 
507 
213 


+ 

+ 


91.2 

1,.367 

641 


803 
+ 635 

- 2,977 




Orissa 


BOS 


475 


44S 


37S 


+ 


3S 


+ 


50 


+ 


07 


+ 130 




MUBAL 


SOS 


«75 


44B 


378 


+ 


S3 


+ 


30 


+ 


67 


+ ISO 




Cuttaok 
Balasore 
Puri 


668 
620 
411 


631 
4f3 
382 


494 
469 
359 


425 
374 
311 


+ 


S4 
37 
29 


+ 
+ 
+ 


40 
24 
23 


+ 
+ 
+ 


69 

85 

48 


+ 143 
+ 146 
+ 100 




CITIES 


























Chota yagpur Flateau 


15:8 


141 


124 


94 


+ 


11 


+ 


17 


+ 


30 


+ B8 




BUBAL 


JB2 


141 


134 


94 


+ 


11 


+ 


17 


+ 


30 


+ m 




Sonthal Parganas 
Manbhum 
Hazaribagh 
Karohi 

Singhbhum ... 
Oriasa Tributary States 
Palamau 
Angul 

Chota Nagrur Tributary 
States. 


331 
314 
168 
167 
163 
136 
126 
114 
62 


SJl 
288 
lfi6 
168 
145 
118 
121 
101 
55 


286 
265 
167 
1..S 
121 
98 
112 
95 
42 


230 

19S 

110 

114 

85 

77 

86 

46 

31 


+ 
+ 

+ 
+ 
+ 

+ 
+ 


10 
26 

2 

9 
18 
17 

5 
13 

7 


+ 
+ 
+ 
+ 
+ 
+ 
+ 
+ 
+ 


35 

.S3 

9 

10 

24 

20 

9 

6 

13 


+ 
+ 
+ 
+ 
+ 
+ 
+ 

+ 


66 
57 
47 
34 
36 
21 
26 
49 
11 


+ 101 
+ 116 
+ 58 
+ 53 
+ 78 
+ 68 
+ 40 
+ 68 
+ 31 




CITIES 




















1 







SUBSIDIARY TABLES. 



37 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE No. II. — Distribution op Population between Towns and Villages. 







PEECBNTAaB 






Peecentage op Rural | 


NATUBiL DiTISIOSa AHD DlBTRICIB. 


POPULATION. 


LIVIKQIS— 


1 TION IK TO^NB OP— 




POfULAIION 
OP 


IB VILLAGES 1 


Per town. 


Per 

village. 


I'owns. 


Villigi s. 


20,000 
and over. 


10,000 

to 
30,000. 


5,000 

to 
10,000. 


Under 
5,000 


5,000 
and 
over. 


2,000 

to 
5,000. 


500 

to 
2,000- 


Under 
500. 


1 


2 


3 


4 


6 


6 


7 


8 


9 


10 


11 


12 


13 


BEJfGJiZ 


eo^04 


335 


e 


95 


C8 


S4 


19 


S 


1 


10 


42 


47 


WEST BENGAL 


90,333 


300 


7 


93 


59 


25 


16 






6 


49 


52 


Burdwan 


It, 454 


395 1 


6 


9.5 


40 


36 


24 






1 


62 


41 


Birbhum 


8,ti9a 


289 


1 


99 






luO 




1 


6 


37 


57 


BaDkura 


17,768 


I'JO 


6 


95 


39 


61 








4 


28 


68 


Midnapore 

Hoogbly 


12,3)9 


819 


3 


»7 


37 


28 


35 






3 


40 


67 


16,736 


384 


13 


87 


56 


24 


21 






11 


48 


41 


Howrah 


88,128 


455 


20 


80 


90 


10 








15 


61 


31 


_CBNTUAL BENGAL 


3S,4B3 


369 


19 


81 


78 


15 


6 


1 




5 


49 


46 


24-PaTganas 


-16,9?6 


331 


19 


81 


50 


38 


11 


1 




3 


43 


54 


Calcutta 


847,796 




100 




lO'l 
















Nadia 


10,595 


461 


6 


95 


54 


11 


26 






8 


67 


35 


Murshidabad ... 


15,181 


843 


5 


95 


. 32 


68 








6 


47 


48 


Jessoru 


7,099 


368 


1 


99 






80 


2J 




4 


48 


43 


NORTH BENGAL 


8,386 


sus 


3 


97 


ss 


51 


15 


19 


2 


9 


36 


S3 


Raishahi 


i5,iai 


226 


2 


98 


71 




29 






1 


29 


70 


Dinajpvir 


13,480 


198 


1 


!<9 




100 








3 


20 


77 


Jalpaigutl ... ... 

Darjeeling 


6,141 
10,696 


1,014 
400 


1 
8 


93 
92 


- '.'.'..'.'. 


'"■79 


94 


21 


17 
2 


37 
13 


83 

46 


13 

40 


Biangpur 


4v9l4 


408 


1 


99 




54 


'20 






IB 


43 


41 


Fubna ... 


6,539 


218 


1 


99 






63 






3 


29 


68 


20,769 


371 


8 


97 


66 


44. 






1 


6 


47 


46 


Malrta 


11,476 


239 


4 


96 




89 




ii 


1 


6 


33 


CO 


Kuch Bihar 


3,616 


4fil 


2 


98 




74 






e 


9 


64 


31 


Sikkim 




472 




100 










9 


32 


34 


2a 


EAST BENGAL 


5,177 


398 


2 


98 


33 


52 


14 


1 


s 


12 


46 


40 


Ehulna 


8,078 


857 


2 


98 




43 


57 




1 


6 


47 


46 


Dacca. ... 


67,507 


349 


4 


96 


100 








1 


9 


48 


42 


Mymellsingh ... 


13,174 


390 


2 


98 




94 


6 






7 


44 


49 


Faridfeur 


14,656 


381 


1 


99 










1 


9 


46 


44 


Back^gunge ... 


9,116 


467 


2 


98 




72 


22 


6 


1 


16 


64 


29 


Tipp<»Ri,. 

Noa^Ukli 


16,149 


886 


2 


98 




El 


19 




1 


6 


45 


48 


16,620 


431 


1 


99 






100 




7 


21 


42 


80 


ChittuuonK 


12,992 


915 


2 


98 


86 








9 


37 


42 


12 


Chittagong Hill Tracts 




421 




mo 












2 


66 


42 


HillTippera 


9,613 


112 


5 


96 






160 








13 


87 


NORTH BIItAR 


29^13 


603 


3 


97 


66 


20 


14 




4 


20 


51 


25 




20,280 


397 


3 


97 


67 


19 


21 






9 


46 


45 


Champaran ... ... 

Muzaflarpur 

Darbhauga 
Bhagalpur 
Puxnea 


19,213 

22,014 
25,848 
40,749 
10,480 


668 
647 
fidO 
665 
C49 


2 
3 
3 

4 
1 


98 
97 
97 
96 
99 


61 

76 
64 
93 


36 
13 

27 

'"■■44 


'""a 
9 

7 
66 




6 
6 
7 
6 
1 


22 
19 
30 
23 
16 


52 

64 
5ll 
62 
53 


20 
21 
13 
20 
31 


SOUTH BIHAR .„ 


3S,a03 


343 


7 


93 


70 


19 


9 


2 


1 


12 


49 


45 




35,873 


277 


15 


86 


86 


10 


3 


1 




3 


86 


61 


Gaya 


14,303 


247 


6 


96 


62 




32 


6 




2 


34 


64 


19,684 


334 


e 


94 


69 


36 


6 






11 


44 


4« 


Monghyr 


17.869 


794 


3 


97 


60 


60 






9 


26 


51 


15 


OBISSA 


87,90* 


332 


4 


96 


73 


27 






1 


6 


46 


47 


Cuttack 


26,240 


360 


4 


96 


66 


35 






1 


6 


4!) 


44 


Balasore ... 


19,699 


307 


3 


97 


63 


47 






1 


4 


4.i 


50 


Fun 


49.334 


312 


6 


V6 


lou 








1 


6 


42 


S2 


CHOTA NAGPUR PLATEAU ... 


8,34:3 


190 


2 


98 


to 


26 


46 


12 




3 


26 


71 


Hazaribagh ... 


ll,9i3 
10.202 


129 
361 


3 
3 


97 
97 


'""ii 


74 


2« 
28 


""i 




1 
2 


17 

40 


82 
68 


Palamau 

Maubhum ... ... 


4,723 
8,779 


192 
231 


2 
2 


98 

98 




■"66 


62 


3s 
34 


i 


6 
3 


23 
21 


71 
73 


flinghbhum 

Sontbal Parganas 

Chota Nagpur Tributary States 
Orissa Tributary States 


8,663 
7,746 


192 
196 
132 
218 


1 
1 


99 
99 
100 
100 




;..:.: 


ido 

100 

"so 


"ii 




1 

e 

2 

1 


21 

27 
37 

28 


78 
67 
61 
71 


6,635 


163 


i 


99 












76 





























38 



CHAPTER I — DISTRIBUTION OP POPULATION. 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE III.— Houses and House-room. 



Mattibal Siyisioirs, Distbicib ob Ciiibs. 



BE\GAIj 



WEST BENQAL , 

Burdwan 

Birbhum 

Banknra 

Midnapore 

Hooghly 

Howraa 



CENTRAL BENGAL 

24-Pargaiias 
Calcutta 
Nadia 

Uurshidabad 
Jessore ... 



NORTH BENGAL 

Rajshahi 
Dinajpur 
Jalpaiguri 
DarjeeliDf; 
Brangpur 
Bogra ... 
Fabna ... 
Malda ... 
Euch Bihar 
Sikkim ... 



EAST BENGAL ... 

Khulna ... 

Dacca 

Mymenslngh 

Faridpur 

EacKergunge 

Tippera 

Noakhali 

Chittagong 

Chitta^ong Hill Tracts 

Hill Tippera 



NORTH BIHAR , 

Saran 

Champaran 

Muzaffarpur 

Darbhanga 

Khagalpur 

Furnea ,., 



SOUTH BIHAR 

Fatna ... 
Gaya 
Shahabad 
Monghyr 



OSISSA . 

Cuttack .. 

Balasore 

Furi 



CflOTA NAGFUB PLATEAU 

Hflzaribagh 

Ranchi ... 

Falamau 

Manbhnm 

Singhbhum 

Sonthal Parganas 

Angul ... 

Chota Nagpur Tributary States . 

Orissn do, do. 



atsbias nvmbeb os febsoits feb 
House. 



1901. 



S-9 



*-4 

4-2 
4-3 
4-8 
4-8 



Bl 

e-4 

6-7 
4-7 
4-7 
4 '9 



S3 

6-1 
6-4 
5-0 
4-0 
5-6 
5-9 
B6 
6-4 
B-1 
5-8 



B-4 

8-4 
6-6 
6-9 
6-2 
4'8 
5-8 
B-5 
49 
6-8 
6-6 



5S 

B-2 
B7 
53 
6.0 
6-6 
6'4 



S-2 

6-2 
B-1 
6-3 
6-4 



B'l 

B'l 
69 
4-6 

B-^ 

5-3 
6-3 
6-4 
63 
6-2 
6-8 
4'8 
6-1 
6-0 



1891. 



B-4 



4-B 

4-2 
4'2 
4-9 
4-9 
3-6 

s-a 



S-3 

B-7 
10-1 
4-9 
4-4 
6-3 



e-4 

B-7 
6-3 
B-4 
4-9 
6-6 
5-3 
B-B 
B-4 
4-9 



S-3 

6-6 
6-4 
6-6 
B'3 
49 
fi-7 
6-3 
4-9 
B-1 



B-8 

B-4 
6'2 
B'8 
6-1 
B-7 
B-3 



B-7 

e-i 

6-5 
B-7 
B-7 



BH 

B-l 
6-4 
6-2 



5-5 

6-9 
80 
,6-8 
6-4 
6-3 
6-1 
9-0 
B-S 
6-0 



1881. 



6-3 



4-8 

4-3 

6-1 

6-0 

4-08 

6-9 



60 

B-4 
17-7 
4-6 
4-7 
8-B 



60 

6-4 
B-3 
6-1 
6-S 
6-2 
6-9 
6-6 
B-6 
5-2 



7-3 

69 
6-7 
7-6 
7-1 
8-6 
8-4 
9-4 
6-3 
6-7 



6-6 

7-0 

6-08 

70 

7-2 

6-1 

6-06 



6-6 

6-2 
6-1 

7-09 
7-0 



S-9 

5-5 
6-8 
0-9 



B-4 

B-9 

36 

6-8 

5 '9 

6'2 

6-3 

9-07 

6-0 

8-4 



AyEBi.aB irlTMBEB OP HOUSEB FEB 
SQTT.1.BB MILE. 



1901. 



79 



131 

135 

119 

88 

111 



IBl 

182 
6,274 
126 
132 
126 



90 

111 

73 

63 

62 

111 

106 

140 

86 

85 



106 

110 
169 
105 
163 
129 
144 
127 
110 
4 
7 



ISO 

17B 
89 
174 
173 
90 
69 



97 

160 



84 
97 



99 

111 

88 
90 



as 

32 
31 
23 
69 
Rl 
B7 
23 
10 
27 



1891. 



73 



131 

121 
107 
82 
104 
232 
307 

136 

167 
3,376 
119 
131 
120 

83 

106 
67 
42 
38 

lOS 
98 

133 
78 
90 



96 



157 

97 
160 
119 
126 
114 
101 
4 



109 

168 
84 
163 
137 
83 
72 



99 



140 
81 



90 

104 

89 

.72 

2« 

27 
81 
21 
63 
27 
62 
11 
10 



1881. 



B9 



103 

107 
103 
64 
82 
196 



119 

146 

4,317 

106 

120 



73 

96 
66 
33 
23 
96 
66 
108 
66 
88 



63 

76 
110 
64 
99 
61 
72 
S3 



124 

80 

122 

108 

76 

61 



78 

134 

73 
63 
71 



75 



78 
51 



31 



24 
20 
43 
23 
45 
20 
7 
17 



CITIES, 1901. 



CrriHS. 



CALCUTTA ... 

Coasipur-ChitpuT 

Manicktollah 

Garden Beach 

Serampore ... 

Hovrah ... 

Bally 

Dacca 



Average 

number of 

persons 

per 
House. 



6-7 



Average 

number of 

Houses per 

square 

mile. 



6fi74 



6-9 


1,916 


6-2 


1,033 


4-2 


2,207 


S-2 


8,470 


8-4 


5,086 


3-9 


2,377 


B-a 


1,907 



Cities. 



Pa'na 
Bihar ... 
Gaya 

Darbhanga 
MuznfEarpur 
Chapra ... 
Bhagalpur 
Monghyr... 



Average 

number of 

peisons 

per 
House. 



41 
4-9 
60 

4-7 
4-7 
4-4 
i-2 
4-1 



Average 

number of 

Houses per 

square 

mile. 



3,673 
1,019 
1,999 
1.987 
1,606 
1,481 
l,7i)3 
1,074 



Figures for occupied houses for the cities for 1891 and 1881 being not available their average Nos. have not been given. The flKurea 
tor^ilcutta have been shown under Central BengaL The number of houses has been taken from the first total reported ta- the 
Distnot Omcers. j » 



CHAPTER II — ^VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



39 



Chapter 11. 

VABIATIONS IN THE POP ULATION. 



SHOWING THE VARIATIONS 
IN THE POPULATION 
SINCE IB9I 



Preliminary Discussion. 

87. In the previous chapter the statistics of the population as it stood on 

^ the 1st March 1901 have been considered. The 

piesent chapter deals with the variations that have 
taken place since 1872. The information regarding the early population of 
Bengal is very scanty and unreliable. In 1787 Sir William Jones thought that 
it amounted to 24 miillions including part of the United Provinces then attached 
to Bengal. Five years later Mr. Colebrook placed it at 30 millions. In 1835 
Mr. Adams assumed it to be 35 millions, but this estimate was thought too 
high and was reduced to 31 millions in 1844. In 1870 the population was 
held to be about 42 millions or less by more than a third than the figure dis- 
closed by the first regular census of the province which was taken in 1872. 
The changes between the latter year and 1881 and between 1881 and 1891 
have already been dealt with in the reports on those censuses ; they will, 
therefore, be treated of very briefly, and the discussion in this chapter will 

refer chiefly to the 
variations which have 
occurred during the last 
decade. The figures 
showing the variations 
in the population of 
districts are contained 
in Imperial Table II. 
Similar information for 
thanas is given in 
Table I of the Volume 
of Provincial tables. 
Proportional figures 
illustrating some of the 
more important features 
of the statistics will be 
found in Subsidiary 
Table I at the end of 
this chapter. The map 
reproduced in the 
margin shows the 
variations since 1891 in 
the population of districts taken as a whole. Similar maps in which the thana 
is the unit will be found in paragraphs 222 to 231 below. 

88. As already stated the population of the whole of Bengal now amounts 

to 78,493,410, vis., 74,744,866 in British Territory 
and 3,748,544 in the Feudatory States. The 
increase since 1891 is 3,819,612 or 5*1 per cent., 
vk., 3,397,905 or 4-7 per cent, in British Territory 
and 421,707 or 12-6 per cent, in the Native States 
It will be convenient to begin by examining 
the variations in each individual district and 
state, ^nd then to proceed to a consideration of 
the changes in each natural division and in 

Bengal as a whole. Apart from the gradually increasing accuracy of each 
succeeding census, which has now for the first time ceased to be a factor of 
any importance in these Provinces, the growth of the population depends 
on (1) the excess of births over deaths and (2) migration. Migration will 
be dealt with in the next chapter, and it will be referred to here only so 
far as is necessary in order to gauge its effect on the variations in the popular 
tion. Eeturns showing the number of births and deaths in each district are 




Tear of 
Census, 


Population. 


Percentage 

of 
Tariation 

since 
previous 
Census. 


1874 
1S81 
1891 
1901 


62,336,217 
69,836,940 
74,673,798 
78,493,410 


+"n-B 

+ 7-3 
+ B-1 



40 



CHAPTER II — ^VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



The Vital Statistics Eettteits. 



published in the annual reports of the Sanitary Commissioner for Bengal, 
but before any use is made of them, it is desirable to examine the figures 
in some detail in order to arrive at a conclusion as to their absolute and 
relative value. 

89. Births and deaths are recorded throughout the Province, except in 

Angul, the Chittagong Hill Tracts and the Feuda- 
tory States. The present system of mortuary regis- 
tration was introduced in 1869. The duty of reporting deaths was imposed on 
the chaukidars, or village watchmen, and not on the relations of the deceased. 
In 1876 the system was extended to births but the returns received were so 
incomplete that they were soon discontinued and, except in towns for which 
special legislation was undertaken in 1873, deaths alone were registered until 
1892. In that year the collection of statistics of births as well as of deaths 
was ordered, and the system now in vogue was introduced. In the Chaukidari 
Amendment Act of 1892 the reporting of vital occurrences was made one of the 
legal duties of the chaukidars. The births and deaths occurring in each 
chaukidar's beat are entered on leaflets by the chaukidar or, if he be illiterate, 
by the panchdyat, and taken by the former to the Police Station when he 
attends his weekly muster. A consolidated monthly return is compiled at the 
Police Station and submitted to the Civil Surgeon who prepares a similar 
return for the whole district. The accuracy of the reporting is checked by the 
police and other local officers, but the most valuable testing agency is that of 
the vaccination establishments, who are required to enquire regarding vital 
occurrences when on their rounds to test the vaccination operations. Errors and 
omissions thus brought to light are communicated to the District Magistrate 
and the chaukidars at fault are punished. In 1900, 276,077 births and 
211,618 deaths were enquired into by inspectors and sub-inspectors of 
vaccination and the omission from the returns of 4,345 births and 2,910 
deaths was thus detected. These omissions represent respectively 1*57 and 
1"37 of the total number of births and deaths reported. The corresponding 
proportions in tlie previous year were 1*13 and 1'14. Under the special 
Act for towns above referred to, the reporting of births and deaths by the 
nearest male relative was made compulsory. The information was collected for 
some time by the municipal authorities, but the results were not satisfactory 
and the duty was subsequently transferred to the police. 

90. The above measures have led to a great improvement in the accuracy 

of the vital statistics. Prior to 1892, the returns 
of deaths, which alone were collected, were held to 
be highly unreliable, and it was thought that about 

half the total number were unreported. The latest authoritative pronounce- 
ment on the probable birth and death rates in 
Bengal is that of Mr. Hardy, f.i.a., f.s.s., the 
Actuary who was retained by tbe Census Com- 
missioners of 1881 and 1891 to deal with the age 
returns prepared in connection with those enumera- 
tions. After an elaborate examination of the 
age statistics for both censuses he estimated that 
the birth and death rates in Bengal in 1891 were 
respectively SI'S and 44-8 per 1,000. The rates 
calculated on the number of births and deaths 
actually reported in each year are noted in the 
margin. The figures are far below those of 
Mr. Hardy s estimate and, so far as this test goes, it 
IS clear that they cannot yet pretend to a very close 
approach to accuracy. The returns for the latter 
half of the decade are, however, better than those 
for the earlier half. Moreover, it is not yet 
. .. ,. ,^ „ , certain that the estimates based on tbe ase 

statistics are altogether reliable. The age return is admittedly most inaccurate. 



CoMPABISOIf WITH ESTIMATED 

BiBTH AND Death-Bates. 





Eatb pbe i.OOO OP 


POPULA- 




Tios op 


1891 OP BSPOBIED 


JTeab. 






Excess 




Births. 


Deaths. 


of births 

over 
deaths. 


1892 


281 


3f9 


— 8-8 


1893 


85-7 


28-2 


+ 7-6 


1894 


32-8 


34-9 


— 2-1 


1896 


34-8 


31-4 


+ 3-2 


1896 


38-0 


34-2 


+ 3-8 


1897 


87 -0 


32-9 


+ 4-1 


1898 


35-8 


26-6 


+ 9-2 


1899 


430 


31-2 


+ 11-8 


1909 


38-7 


36-6 


+ 2-1 


Average of 








nine yenrs 


35'8 


81 -8 


+ 4-0 



NoiB.— Still-births are not included in 
the above figures. In 1899 when the larg. 
est number of still-births was recorded 
the rate was about 1-2 per l.OOO of the 
population of 1891 ; 67 per cent, of the 
total number were males. 



and although errors due to the tendency of the people to mention one or other 
of certain favourite numbers as their age can be eliminated by means of 
elaborate methods of adjustment, it is not so easy to correct any general tend- 
ency to over-state or under-state the real age. Some check is afforded by the 
actual vairation in the population from one census to another, but this has hitherto 



PRELIMINARY DISCUSSION. 41 



been obscured by the greater accuracy of each succeeding enumeration which 
has caused the growth of the population to seem greater than it really is. 
According to Mr. Hardy's estimated birth and death rates, the population should 
have grown at the rate of 7 per 1,000 per annum, i.e., the 71,069,617 persons 
in the areas for which vital statistics have been recorded should have risen in the 
course of ten years to 76,204,194, but the census shows that the population of 
these areas in 1901 was only 74,428,193. The actual increase is thus 3,358,576, 
or at the rate of 4"6 per 1,000 per annum.* The net addition to this population 
indicated by a comparison of the returns for births and deaths during the decade 
is 3,159,200. For the purpose of this comparison the actual number of deaths 
reported in each year has been taken, but on the side of births the number 
returned in the years 1892 to 1900 inclusive has been increased by one-ninth 
to allow for the year 1891 when births were not registered. It will thus 
appear that there is a very close approximation between the actual growth of 
the total population and that indicated by the vital statistics of the Province. 

91. In Subsidiary Table II the variations in the population of each 

district are compared with the excess of births 
Effect OF MisBATioN ON Popu- ^ygj. deaths, but before considering these figures it 

LATION AND VlTAI, STATISTICS. . ' •j.i.iT.j.j.i ■ •• 

is necessary to point out that the census variations 
and the vital statistics are both complicated by the movements of the people 
from one part of the country to another. A district may have gained or lost 
largely owing to migration and the actual variation in such a case will not 
of course correspond with that indicated by the excess of births over deaths. 
It is sometimes assumed that the efFect of migration can be discounted and the 
true growth ascertained comparing not the actual, but the district-born or 
natural population, which is arrived at by deducting from the actual population 
at the time of each census the immigrants from other districts and adding the 
number of persons born in the district who were enumerated beyond its borders. 
It is also assumed that the excess of births over deaths in any given area 
affords a direct measure of the natural growth of the population of that 
area. Neither of these assumptions is correct, and it is, therefore, necessary to 
examine briefly the real effect of the movements of the people on the 
population and the vital statistics. 

92. For the purpose of this enquiry permanent and non-permanent 
migrants must be considered separately; the permanent migrants again must be 
subdivided into two groups, those who had changed their abode before the 
commencement of the decade under consideration, and those who did so during 
the said period. The former, having already severed all connection with their 
district of orio-in and having b3en counted at the earlier of the two enumera- 
tions in the district where they have made their home, can have no further 
effect on the population or on the birth and death returns of their old district. 
When they die, the death is registered in the district of adoption and the births 
of their children are also registered there. Neither class of events in any way 
affects the vital statistics of their district of origin. These persons, therefore, 
should be considered an integral part of their district of adoption and their 
number should not be deducted from the figures showing the actual population 
of that district nor added to those of the district of origin.^ 

The circumstances of the second group are identical so far as their 
history after entering the new district is concerned. They should, like the 
first group, be treated as part of its population, and not as part of that of their 
old district. But the movement having taken place after the first and before 
the second enumeration, allowance must be made for it, when estimating the 
natural growth with reference to the census figures, by deducting from the 
actual population of the new district, and adding to that of the old, the number 
of permanent migrants who have come to the one from the other in the course 
of the decade. In this connection it must be remembered that the volume of 
the migration is not to be gauged by the mere difference between the figures 
for two successive enumerations; but allowance must also be made for 
deaths Thus if 1,000 permanent emigrants born in district A were found 
in district B in 1891, and the same number were again found there in 1901, 
this would indicate, not that th ere had been no further movement, but that, on 

* The srowtli of the'population is, of course, progressive and if "r" be the annual rate of growth, the 
8um wiU be^f-Pop^tionV 1901 = Population of 1891 X (1 + r).". 



42 CHAPTER II — VAEIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



the average, just enough persons bad gone from the one district to the other 
to fill death vacancies. If the death-rate bo taken at 40 per 1,000, this would 
involve a migration of 40 persons a year or 400 persons in the decade. If the 
number of emigrants had risen from 1,000 to 1,500 persons then, in addition 
to this migration of 400 persons required to keep up the original number, 
there must have been a further settlement of about 62 persons a year to pro- 
duce the increase of 500,* and the total number of persons going from district 
A to district B during the ten years will be 1,020. 

The case of non-permanent migrants is quite different. These persons are 
usually males. They leave their wives behind them and return home them- 
selves at frequent intervals. It is not probable that their absence has any 
appreciable effect on the size of their families. Their children are born, and 
the births of their children are registered, in their native district. On the other 
hand, the deaths occurring amongst them while absent from home are included 
in the mortuary returns of the district where they may happen to be at the 
time. Consequently, if the birth and death rates be calculated on the total 
population, the districts which attract a large number of temporary settlers will 
have a much smaller birth rate and a much higher death rate than those from 
which they come. In order to ascertain the true progress of a district from 
its vital st9,tistics, a proportionate deduction must be made from the mortality 
returns on account of deaths amongst temporary settlers and the same number 
must be added to the figures of the district whence these people have comcf 
When making a similar calculation on the basis of the census figures, these 
temporary migrants should be replaced in their district of birth. 

93. The census makes no distinction between permanent and temporary 
Examination OF DiscEEPAKciEs migration, and although a careful consideration 

Between Vital Statistics and of the birth place, of the occupations followed 

^^^^^^' by the foreign-born in the district of enumeration, 

and of the proportion of the sexes might enable an approximate estimate 
to be arrived at of the number of migrants of each class, both at the present 
census and in 1891, the enquiry would take more time than can be devoted 
to it in the present report. It must suffice to have pointed out reasons why the 
results of the census necessarily seem to differ from those of the returns 
of births and deaths and to note in general terms whether the actual differ- 
ences are capable of explanation on these grounds or not. Almost all the 
districts of Bengal Proper contain a large floating population from Bihar 
and the United Provinces who have no effect on the number of births while 
the deaths that occur amongst them go to swell the mortality returns. 
As a rule, therefore, the increase in the actual population is considerably higher 
than would appear from a comparison of the number of births and deaths 
shown in the vital statistics returns. There will necessarily be some discre- 
pancy, even where the number of these temporary settlers is about the same as 
m 1891, but it IS, of course, proportionally greater where it has grown during 
the decade. This has been the case in Burdwan, Hooghly, the 24-Parganas 
Calcutta, and other districts, and the recorded excess of births over deaths 
is, therefore, far less than the difference between the population as now 
ascertained and that of 1891. Permanent migrants affect the birth and 
death rates equally, and in their case there will only be a discrepancy when 
there has been fresh migration since 1891, as in the case of Dinajpui- Dar- 
jeeling, Sikkim and Jalpaiguri. In districts where there are comparatively 
few temporary settlers and whose population has not been greatly affected by 
migration since 1891, such as Midnapore and Backergunge, the difference between 
the census results and the vital statistics is less marked. It may there- 
fore, be concluded that in Bengal Proper the discrepancies are in mo'st cases 
not greater than the movements of the people would account for. In Orissa and 
Chota Nagpur also the discrepancies admit of a similar explanation. Many of 
the inhabitants of these divisions are constantly to be found in Bengal Proper 
whence they return to their homes at more or less frequent intervals. In Bihar 
however, and especially in the Patna Division, the difference is so marked that 

* For the method of arriving at this figure see footnote on page 102 ' """ ' 

t Thus Pun TTith Its vast number of pilgrims and a very small volume of permanent migration show., 

"VlTLl"'^-^!'^ ^'*T^*I\. ^^®mi.=^^4 ^^^^ °* 72,386, the vital statistics returns show In excess of 

l'^7e^ZiTL':^,ttLZt' ''''''''''' '''^' '°^^*^^^^ ^° '^^ --'^^"^ amongst ^puS'whl 



PRELIMINABY DISCUSSION. 43 



further explanation is necessary. The number of its inhabitants enumerated in 
other parts of the Province, taking the mean of the two last censuses, is 
563,070. Assuming this to be the average number absent at one time, the 
number of deaths amongst them at the rate of 40 per 1,000 would be 21,523 
yearly or 215,230 in the decade. The division has also sent out 15,373 emi- 
grants to the colonies, who have necessarily been omitted from the census returns, 
and also a considerable number to Upper Burma. But even so, a large diver- 
gence remains. The causes will be discussed when dealing with the figures for 
each district, but it may be stated generally that a great part of it is due 
to the plague. The returns of plague deaths were very incomplete and the 
20,075 deaths that were reported during the first two months of 1901 have 
not been included in the figures in the Subsidiary Table. Moreover, apart 
from the mortality, reported and otherwise, the plague frightened away most 
of the shop-keepers and others whose permanent homes were elsewhere 
and it also disorganised the arrangements for taking the census and interfered to 
some extent with the accuracy of the enumeration. The true population of the 
plague districts was doubtless somewhat greater on the 1st March 1901 than 
the returns would indicate. It is probable that, but for these disturbing 
causes, the difference between the recorded births and deaths in Bihar would 
have afforded as near an approximation to the census results as it has been 
shown to do in other parts of the Province. 

94. Generally, therefore, it appears that the difference between the total 

number of births and deaths shown in the 
Conclusions ab to Valub of yitol statistics returns affords a very close approx- 
imation to the actual growth of the population. 
Why this should be so when the number of each class of occurrences reported 
is considerably below the estimated birth and death rates, is a question that 
vnll be again referred to in the chapter on Age. It is usually supposed that 
deaths are more fully reported than births, but assuming that the estimated 
rates are not excessive, the result indicated above can only be due to a 
slightly greater inaccuracy on the part of the death returns. The under- 
statement of deaths in the case of plague is well-known, but this is due to 
special reasons. It may be that when any epidemic disease is specially 
prevalent, many deaths occur which are not reported, owing to the general 
demoralisation and alarm and, in some cases, to the death or flight of the 
village official who is responsible for preparing the return. The results of 
testing by vaccination officers do not disclose any special tendency to leave 
deaths unreported, but it is not likely that their testing is as thorough in 
villages where epidemic disease is prevalent as it is elsewhere. The natural 
tendency would be to avoid such villages. Apart from epidemics it has been 
suggested that there is a tendency to ignore the deaths of infants under 1 year 
of a.ge, who are buried without any special ceremony and whose decease is 
thus not likely to attract much notice. This also may possibly help to account 

for the result. 

95. This discussion has already reached a much greater length than I had 

intended, but before leaving the subject a brief notice 
B»poETBp Causes of Dbath. ^f ^^^ reported causes of death may not be uninter- 
esting. T^he first thing that strikes one is the high proportion of deaths ascribed 
to fever. More than 70 per cent, of the total mortality is returned under this 
head. This is due mainly to the difficulty of diagnosing all but a few well- 
defined, diseases. Cholera, dysentery and small-pox are known, but most other 
complaints are classed indiscriminately as fever. It is impossible to say what 
Proportion of the total is attributable to malarial affections, but it may safely 
>e assumed that wherever the mortality entered under this head is unusuUay 
ligh the greater part of the excess over the normal is due to their prevalence. 
On an average about one-twelfth of the total mortality is due to cholera, 
but the prevalence of this disease varies greatly from year to year and from 
district to district. In 1898 it was responsible for less than 1 death per 1,000 
of the population of the province, but in 1900 the mortality from it rose to 
nearly 5 per 1,000. In the latter year it killed off nearly 24 persons in every 
1 000 in Purnea, while in Bankura only 1 person in 4,000 died from the 
disease. Dysentery and diarrhoea account for barely a quarter as many deaths 
as cholera, while small-pox claims only 1 victim in every 5,000 persons yearly. 

r 2 



44 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



WEST BENGAL. 



96. 



The greater portion of Burdwan has a rich alluvial soil, but towards 

the west the surface becomes more undulating and 

BuEDWAN. ^^g alluvium gives place to laterite. At the time of 

the Census of 1872 the fever epidemic, to which the district has given its name, 

was at its height, and for many years the resulting mortality was enormous. 

It is unnecessary to describe in detail 
the origin and course of this fatal 
epidemic, as a full narrative up to 
1881 was given in the Census Report 
of that year and its subsequent his- 
tory was described in the Report on 
the Census of 1891. It will suffice 
to say that the disease is supposed 
to have originated in the Jessore 
district whence it spread gradually 
westwards, and appeared for the 
first time in Burdwan in 1862. 
Between 1872 and 1881 the popu- 
lation declined by more than 6 per 
cent. During the next decade, ex- 
cept in the Raniganj subdivision, 
there was a further decrease due to 
the same cause, but it was noted in 
the last Census Report that though 
the disease was still virulent in parts 
of the district, it seemed at last to 
be dying out. This expectation has 
been fulfilled. The district is still 
subject to fevers, especially to those 
of a remittent type, but the real " Burdwan fever " which often proved fatal 
within one or two days is now very rarely met with. Cholera is seldom 
absent from the district, and is markedly endemic in Kalna, but there have 
been no outbreaks of special virulence during the last decade. Crops have 
been good as a rule, and were short only in 1895 and 1896, and the 
cultivators have benefited by the rise in prices that has taken place. There 
are very few landless labourers except such as obtain remunerative employmetit 
in the coal mines. The consequence is that the district has made a rapid, 
recovery, and has added ten per cent, to its population, which now exceeds 
by more than 30,000 the number recorded in 1872. This satisfactory result 
is due partly to an increase in the number of immigrants, partly to a reduced 
flow of emigration and partly to the excess of births over deaths. The 

increase is greatest in the Raniganj 
subdivision, which rests on the late- 
rite, and is not only the healthiest 
part of the district, but has als6 
gained most by immigration. More 
than half the total number of immi« 
grants in the district were enume- 
rated in this subdivision, whither 
they have been attracted by the growing demand for labour in the coal miaes 
and other industries that are rapidly being developed. 

97. The growth of the population in the Asansol thana is phenomenal ; it 
has increased by more than 30 per cent, since 1891 and by 130 per cent, since 
1 c-ro Nearly one-third of the present inhabitants were born in other districts, 



Thana. 


POPUIA- 

xioir. 


PEEOEITTAeE OS 
VAEIATION. 




1901. 


1891-1901. 


1881-1891. 


niSTBICX XOXAL 


1,S33,47S 


+ 101 


-016 


Sadar Sttbdivision 


679,412 


+ 96 


- 31 


Bardwan 

Sahibeanj > 

Khandaghosli ^. 

Baona 

Satgachia 

Jamalpur 

Galsi 

Ausgram 


69,816 
80,041 
61,747 
105,363 
108,699 
72,947 
93,239 
87,560 


+ 8-4 
+ 7-7 
+ 10-4 
+ 10-6 
+ 9-8 
+ 1-6 
+ 14-8 
+ 12-4 


+ 14 '6 

- 1-3 
+ 1-2 

- 1-8 

- 3-1 
+ 0-1 

- 15-2 

- 11-6 


Jtaniganj SubdvHsion ... 


370,988 


+ 13 6 


+ 89 


Baniganj 

Asansol 

Kaksa 


165,911 
167,895 
37,182 


+ 12-1 
+ 31-8 
+ 6-3 


+ 8-9 
+ 28-9 
- 9-8 


Katwa Subdivision 


348,806 


+ 81 


- 10 


Kongaon 

Katwa 

Mangalkot 


85,287 
85,607 
77,912 


+ 10-8 
+ 4-8 
+ 8-8 


+ 1-0 

- 1-5 

- 2-4 


Kalna Subdivision 


1133,969 


+ 0-8 


- S-5 


Kalna 

Parbasthali 

Manteshvfar 


80,813 
74,794 
67,662 


+ 0-8 
- 30 
+ 6-2 


- 2-4 

- 6-0 
+ 1-9 



Fopulation. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male, 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Ifatural population 


764,742 
84,208 
43,587 

724,071 


767,733 
74,139 
50,877 

744,471 


682,872 
61,060 
66.768 

698,680 


709,008 
52,342 
69,769 

716,435 



1872. 



and of the district-born many have doubtless migrated from other thanasl 
Raniganj shows an increase of 12 per cent, since 1891, which is somewhat sur- 
prising in view of the fact that its coal mines are nearly worked out and 
that the people find more remunerative employment in the new mines further 
west. The town of Raniganj, however, is a great trading centre, and is probably 
one of the busiest places in Bengal. The increase is also considerable in the 
Burdwan and Katwa subdiviflions, where there has been comparatively littlg 



WEST BENGAL. 



45 



immigration. It is most noticeable in the Ausgram and Galsi thanas which 
were mentioned in the last Census Report as then forming with Kaksa the 
focus of the fever. Apart from the fever these thanas are naturally healthy, 
and the disappearance of the epidemic has been followed, as is usual in such 
circumstances, by a rapid recovery in the population. That the improvement 
is not equally marked in Kaksa is due to the poverty of the soil in that thana 
and to its proximity to the coal mines where good wages are obtainable. The 
only part of the district that has failed to share in the general revival are two 
of the three thanas of the Kalna subdivision, Kaloa and Purbasthali, where 
the Burdwan fever first appeared forty years ago. These thanas lie along 
the bank of the Bh%irathi ; the soil is water-logged, and they are full of 
jhils and jungle ; they are thus more unhealthy than any other part of the 
district. 

98. Birbhum like Burdwan suffered most from the great fever epidemic 

between 1872 and 1881, during which period its 

BiEBHUM. population declined to the extent of nearly 60,000 

persons. The epidemic continued its ravages during the earlier years of the 

next decade, especially in the south 
of the district, and although there 
was an improvement during the fol- 
lowing years the Census of 1891 
showed a further decrease of nearly 
4 per cent, in the population of the 
head-quarters subdivision. This re- 
sult was due to the high mortality 
in the Bolpur and Sakulipur thanas 
which adjoin the Ausgram thana of 
Burdwan that has already been men- 
tioned as one of the tracts where the 
fever was still prevalent in 1891. 
The loss in the south of the district 
was counterbalanced by an increase 
of 10 per cent, in the Rampur Hat 
subdivision, and the net result for the 
whole district was a small increase, amounting to barely one-tenth of the 
loss registered ten years earlier. Since 1891 there has been a great improve- 
ment in the health of the people. The fever epidemic has disappeared, and 
although cholera has often broken out, especially in the south-eastern thanas, 
there have been no serious epidemics. The district is wholly agricultural^ and 
owing to its undulating surface, the crops can never fail altogether. There 
were short crops in 1891, 1895 and 1896, but there was no serious distress; in 
other years the outturn was good, and the cultivators have benefited by the 
rise in prices. Their material condition has thus improved considerably. J he 
onlv classes that have suffered are the respectable poor with fixed incomes, and 
the landless labourers; the latter, however, can always obtain remunerative 
ployment in the coal mines round Asansol. .,,,.,., , „ ., 

99 The result of the prosperous condition of the district and ot its com- 
parative freedom from disease is an 
increase of 104,240 persons or Vd per 
cent. The population now exceeds 
by about 6 per cent, that recorded at 
the first census, 29 years previously. 
There has been some immigration 
of Santdls for cultivation and of 
up country men in connection with 
the railway, but the total number of 
foreign settlers is only 14,000 greater 
tlinn it was in 1891 This, moreover, is to a large extent counterbalanced by a 
+pr amount of emigration, and it is thus clear that the increase is due 
mainlv to the natural growth of the population. Excluding Muraroi in the 
Streme north of the district, where the immigration of Santd s has been 
^S^tiprovement is most marked in th^ Asouth of the district where 



Thana. 


PopniA- 
Tioir. 


Pekcektaob of 
vabiation. 




1901. 


1891-1901. 


1881-1891. 


DXSXBICT XOXAZ 

Sadar Subdivision 

Suri 

Dubrajpur 

Bolpur 

Sakulipur 

LabpuT 

Rampur Bat Subdveision 

Bampur Hat 

Mayureehwar 

Nalhati 

Huraroi .> 


909,)}80 

533,938 

140,033 

138,025 

115,849 

77,740 

64,281 

366,333 

102,810 
93,839 
83,521 
86,182 


+ IJ'0 

+i40 

+ 10-9 
+ 16'5 
+ 17-3 
+ 141 
+ 11-5 

+ M-7 

+ 10-03 
+ 8-6 
+ 11-9 
+ 17-2 


-h0'7S 

- 3-8 

- 0-4 

- 6-6 

- 8-5 

- 8-9 
-1- 8-8 

-^ 80 

+ 6-6 
■t- 6-0 
+ 10-3 



rise 
on! 
th( 
em 



Population. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual pojulation 

Immigrants 

Emigrants ... 

Natural population, ... 


4*4,689 
27,194 
20,876 

438,371 


457,691 
33,412 
26,485 

450,664 


389,842 
20,744 
17,128 

386,226 


408,412 
26,894 
22,4^ 

404,967 



46 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



it represents a recovery from the losses recorded at the last census. The 
continued advance of the Ramgur H^t Subdivision is attributable partly 
to its fertile soil and partly to the fact that it is tapped by the railway. The 
least progressive thana is Muraroi, where the soil is comparatively infertile and 
there is a large proportion of unculturable waste. 

100. The greater part of the Bankura district is high and undulating. 

The soil is poor, but the country is well drained, 
Bankuea. g^jjjj ^Ijq people suffer very little from malarial affec- 

tions. Towards the east, in the Vishnupur subdivision, the land is low and 

alluvial ; the soil is very fertile, but 
the cUmate is unhealthy and mala- 
rious. The " Burdwan " fever was 
introduced from the adjoining thanas 
of Galsi and Khandaghosh in Burd- 
wan, and caused a very heavy mort- 
ality, but its westward course was 
checked on reaching the high ground 
in the west of the Vishnupur subdivi- 
sion. The head-quarters subdivision 
never suffered from the disease, and 
its population increased by 21 per 
cent, between 1872 and 1891, while 
that of the Vishnupur subdivision, in 
spite of the superior fertility of the 
soil, declined by more than 8 per 
cent. As in Burdwan and Birbhum 
the great fever epidemic has now died out, and the past decade has been a 
fairly healthy one. Between 1894 and 1897 the mortality was comparatively 
high, and cholera was unusually prevalent, but in spite of this, the recorded 
birth-rate has throughout exceeded the death-rate. The people suffered con- 
siderably from scarcity during 1896 and 1897, but on the whole the crops have 
been good, and the material condition of the people has improved. The 
Magistrate, Mr. De, writes on this subject as follows: — 

" There has been, on the whole, an inoreaee in the prosperity of the people. They 
evince a growing desire to provide themselves with better food, better clothing, and better 
appliances generally. Gold and silver ornaments are more common than they were ten 
years ago, brass utensils have usurped the place of earthen pots, and shoes, umbrellas and 
better articles of dress are more extensively used. New brick-built houses are springing 
up everywhere, and articles of food which were formerly luxuries are now in common use." 

101. In view of these favourable conditions it is somewhat surprising to 
find that the population is only 4 per cent, greater than it was in 1891, and that 
the increase is far less than the vital statistics would indicate. The Vishnupur 
subdivision has increased by 7 per cent., so that it has now nearly recovered 
the combined losses of the two previous decades, but the head-quarters 

subdivision has added less than 





POPCIA. 
HON. 


PEEOENTAaE OB 
TAKIATIOS. 




1901. 


1891—1901. 


1881—1891. 


DISTRICT TOTAL ... 


1,116,411 


+4-37 


+ »-7 


Sudor SubdiviHon 


713,0SS 


+ s-a 


+ 6-S 


Bankura 

Onda 

eangajali^hati with 1. 0. 

Burjora. 

Kaipnr 

Simlapul Independent 

outpost. 
Khatra 


148,870 
122.917 
185,411 

101,435 
38,109 

116,313 


+ B-9 
+ 0-1 
+ 4-0 

- 0-8 
+ 3-0 

+ 3-0 


+ 10-1 
+ 2-4 
+ 3-2 

+ 6B 
+ 13-0 

+ 12-8 


TishMupur Subdivision 


404,366 


+ 7-3 


-4-4 


Vishnupur 

Sonamakhi 

Eotalpur 

Indas 


142,873 
82,488 
96,692 
82,343 


+ B'l 
+ 9-3 
+ B-9 
+ 104 


- 3-4 

- 5-8 

- 3-9 

- B-3 



Population, 



Actual papulation 
Immigrants 
Emigrants 
Natural population 



1901. 



Male. Female, 



549,484 
11,740 
76,269 

613,013 



666,927 
17,794 
71,249 



1891. 



Male, Female. 






626,941 
17,194 
67,665 

566,412 



643,727 
25,469 
64,873 

672,641 



three ^ per cent, to its population. 
This is due to the movements of the 
people. The immigrants from out- 
side the district are fewer by about 
13,000 than they were ten years 
ago, while the emigrants have in- 
creased by more than 38,000, The 
emigrants are for the most part hardy aborigines from the south and 
east of the district who find the high pay obtainable on the coal fields of 
Asansol or the distant tea gardens of Assam a more attractive prospect than 
a penurious livelihood laboriously extracted from the unwilling soil of their 
native uplands. There is also a considerable amount of temporary migration 
on the part of the semi-Hinduized tribes in the south and west of the district 
who supplement their scanty harvests by working as labourers in the metropo- 
Ktan districts when they have no crops to look after. They leave home in 
December, after the winter-rice has been reaped, and do not return till the 
monsoon breaks. This temporary emigration was greatly stimulated in the 



WEST BENGAL. 



47 



cold weather, when the Census was taken, by the short harvest of that year, 
and this accounts to a great extent for the falling off in the population of Raipur 
and the very small increase in the other thanas in the south of the district. 
But for these movements of the people the growth of the population would 
have been two or two and-a-half times as greater as that recorded at the 



Census. 
102. 



Midnapore is 



MlDNAFOBE. 



an extensive district and comprises tracts of very 
different characteristics. The subdivisions of Contai 
and Tamluk are on the sea-coast and the estuary 
of the Hooghly and contain the mouths of the Rasalpur and Haldi rivers. They 

are comparatively free from malaria 
and produce very rich crops of rice. 
The Ghatal subdivision further north, 
slopes back from the bank of the Rup 
Narayan; the soil is a rich alluvium, 
but much of its area is liable to floods, 
and though excellent crops are obtain- 
ed, the inhabitants suffer greatly from 
malarial affections. The head-quar- 
ters subdivision consists in the north 
and west of thinly wooded and rocky 
uplands. The climate is good, but 
the laterite soil is dry and infertile. 
Towards the east and south the level 
dips, and a swampy hollow is formed 
between the elevated country to the 
west and the comparatively high 
ground along the coast ; the condi- 
tions in this tract are very similar to 
those in the Ghatal subdivision which 
it adjoins. 

Thirty years ago the whole of 
the north-eastern portion of Midna- 
pore suffered severely from " Burdwan 
fever," and in 1881 the district 
showed a loss of 1'07 per cent, of its 
population as compared with that 
found in 1872. 

Since 1881 the health of the district has been fair and the population 
on a whole has made satisfactory progress. Although much ordinary fever 
exists in the badly drained and flooded tracts, in other respects the health of 
the people shows a marked improvement, and during the last decade the district 
has been peculiarly free from cholera and small-pox epidemics. This is due 
in recent years to the opening of the railway through the district which carries 
the crowds of pilgrims to Jagganath, who previously plodded wearily on foot 
and spread disease in all directions along their line of march. The railway 
has benefited the district in many other respects. By facilitating the disposal 
of the produce, prices have risen, and the cultivators, who enjoy fixity of 
tenure, are very well off. It has opened up several of the jungle thanas and 
stimulated trade. The decade has been a prosperous one, and in 1897, when 
the pinch of famine was keenly felt elsewhere, the birth-rate was unusually 
high — a circumstance attributed by the Magistrate to the prosperity of the 
people, who disposed of their hoards of rice at famine prices. 

103. In the district as a whole, there has been an advance of about 6 per 
cent, in the population since 1891, as compared with a gain of 4*6 per cent, in 
the previous decade, and a decrease of 1 per cent, in 1872 — 1881. The Contai 
subdivision leads the way with an increase of 11 per cent. All the thanas in 
this subdivision have gained considerably, but especially Contai itself, which 
has added nearly a sixth to its population of 1891, and the other three thanas 
on the coast, which contain the great temporarily-settled estate of Majnamutha. 
The Ghatal subdivision has lost nearly 1 per cent, of the population recorded at 





POPULA- 


Fekcestasb op I 




TIOU. 




TAEIAIIOlf. 




Thana. 












1901. 


1891- 


-1901. 


1881- 


-1891. 


niSTBICT XOXAZ. 


»,yS9,lJ!4 


+ S-90 


+ 


4-6 


Sadar Subdivision 


t,277,749 


+ 


4-5 


+ 


1-3 


Kharakpur 


111,016 


+ 


10-6 


h 


•2 


Midnapore 


78,321 


+ 


9'1 


JhargaoD 


76,(]63 


+ 


7*1 


+ 


17'4 


Binpur 


104,982 


+ 


2-4 


+ 


13-9 


Salbnni 


60,850 


+ 


9-7 


+ 


2 '3 


Debra 


67,872 




1-3 


^ 


4-0 


Sabang 


153,805 


+ 


•6 


— 


1'5 


N arayangarli 

Garhbeta 


118,441 


+ 


•8 


— 


9-0 


183,12i 


+ 


6-3 


+ 


6'4 


Eeshpur 


86,680 


+ 


SS 


— 


1-3 


Cantan 


123,641 


+ 


2-S 


^ 


5'8 


Gopiballabpur 


163,156 


+ 


7-4 


+ 


9-1 


Ghatal Subdivision 


3g4,991 


— 


09 


+ 


4-6 


Ghatal 


92,082 


__ 


06 


+ 


lO'l 


Daspur .'. 


130,664 





2-4 


+ 


70 


Ghaudrabona 


102,245 


+ 


0-7 


— 


2-3 


Tamluh Subdivision 


5«5,25S 


+ 


90 


+ 


ire 


Tamluk 


147,929 


+ 


10-6 


+ 


8-6 


Maslaiidapur 


96,966 


+ 


8-3. 


+ 


10 ■! 


Sutahata 


70,644 


+ 


11-6 


+ 


13-8 


Panskura 


143,356 


+ 


4-1 


+ 


1-7 


Nandigram 


124,344 


+ 


12-6 


+ 


27-5 


Contai Subdivision 


603,136 


+ 


106 


+ 


61 


Khajri 


67,667 


+ 


14-7 


+ 


10-0 


Contai ,., 


172,643 


+ 


17-1 


+ 


12'8 


Batnnagar 


76,020 


+ 


8-3 


+ 


11-6 


Bhagwanpnr 


120,728 


+ 


8-6 


— 


S-3 


Bgra 


77,884 


+ 


5-5 


+ 


181 


Fataapur 


99,294 


+- 


6-2 


+ 


1-0 



48 



CHiPTER II— VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



the last census. This decrease, as well as one of 1'3 per cent, in thana Debra and 
insignificant increases of '6 and "8 per cent, respectively in thanas Sabang and 
Narayangarh, all in the Sadar subdivision, is largely due to the movement of 
a portion of the population from the densely populated and lowlying 
tracts in the north-(;ast and centre of the district to the reclaimed /a^a? lands 
along the coast and tidal rivers in the Contai and Tamluk subdivisions. 
From the times of the Muhammadans these lands had been reserved by Grovern- 
ment for the accumulation of salt and for the supply of fuel to boil the brine. 
The manufacture of salt by Government was stopped about forty years ago, 
and the lands, which are very extensive, were settled with various persons. 
After some time they began to be cleared and to be surrounded with embank- 
ments to keep out the salt-water. Thus protected, they yield abundant crops 
and are still an attraction to cultivators from distant parts of the district. Un- • 
fortunately the embanking of these lands is said to have caused deterioration in 
the beds of various tidal rivers and khalSt and so to have rendered more frequent 

the flooding of the lowlying tracts 
inland which have been previously 
referred to. Considering its size the 
volume of emigration and immigra- 
tion from and to the district is small. 
The immigrants aggregate less than 
60,000, and the emigrants about 
134,000. The number of females on 
both sides of the account is very 
nearly the same as it was ten years ago, but the number of males who have 
come to the district is greater by about 7,000, and that of those who have left it 
by about 10,000 than it was in 1891. On the one hand the railway has 
attracted a number of coolies and railway employes, and on the other it has 
induced a greater exodus than before to Calcutta and Hooghly for temporary 
employmet during the early months of the year. The net result of these 
movements is a small loss amounting probably to something less than 1 
per cent. 

104. The Hooghly district suffered aTmost more than Burdwan itself from 
jjp^ggj^^ tlie great fever epidemic, and in 1881 the Census 

Superintendent estimated the total loss of popula- 
tion due to this cause at 660,000. Between 1872 and 1881 there was a 

decreuse in the population amount- 



Population. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Pemale. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Statural population 


1,390,233 
27,764 
72,129 

1,434,608 


1,393,881 
22,107 
62,116 

1,438,890 


1,308,074 
20,405 
62,874 

1,350,043 


1,323,392 
21,950 
63,54i 

1,364,965 



Thana. 



^OPTIIiA- 

TIOH. 



Peecenta&e op 
taeiation. 



1891—1901. 1881—1891. 



DXSXJilCT TOTAL 



Sadar Stibdivision 



EalBgarb 

I'andua 

Dhaniakhali 

Polba 

Hocghly 



Serampore Subdivision 



Haripal 

Erislanagar 

Seiatnpoie 

Sin?;ur 

Chbnditala 



Arajnbaffh Suhdivision 



Arambagh 

Goghat 

Kbanakul 



1,049,SS3 



308,715 

46,229 
68,066 
95,594 
43,462 
64,774 



413,178 

96,910 
67,694 
93,611 
(-■5,617 
99,446 



327,389 

121,317 

106,788 

»9,254 



+ T4 



- 0-3 

- 1-1 
+ 4-1 

- (1-1 

- 3-0 

- 30 



■¥3-3 

+ 1-9 

- 8-7 
+ 17'3 

- 31 
+ 1-9 



+ 08 

+ 2-3 
- 1-8 
+ 1-9 



■¥6-0 



+ 0-4 

- 32 

- 0-3 
+ 2-3 
+ 20 
+ -06 



+ 130 

+ 11-S, 
+ 8-6 
+ 16-7 
+ 141 
+ 15-6 



+ 3-4 

+ 6-7 
- 15 
+ 4-8 



ing to 12A percent. Duringithe 
next decade, there was a recovery 
of 6 per cent., chiefly owing to the 
rapid expansion of the Serampore 
subdivision. During the last 
decade there have been no speci- 
ally violent outbreaks of cholera or 
small-pox. Cholera was bad in 
several years, but the mortality so 
caused was but a small fraction 
of that due to fever. The country 
is flooded yearly by the spill of 
the Damudar. Its surface is but 
little above sea level, and the drain- 
age is bad and is yearly getting 
worse, as the siltfng-up of the old 
streams and water-courses conti- 
nues. The soil is thus water-logged 
to an exceptional extent. The 
peculiarly malignant "Burdwan" 
lever has disappeared, but even now the fevers of the district are of an 
unusually virulent kiud. The death-rate is consequently high, and in only two 
years of the decade have the recorded births been more numerous than the 
deaths. 



WEST BENGAL. 



49 





1901. 


1891. 


Population. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Antual population 

Immigrants ... 

Emigranta 

Katural population ... 


628,279 
81,82S 
70,290 

516,746 


521,003 
57,891 
52,551 

515,663 


609,185 
49,662 
84,581 

544,104 


525,111 
50,332 
71,660 

646,439 



But if the health of the people has been bad, they have very little to 
complain of in other respects. The crops have been good in most seasons, 
and prices have ruled high. The cultivators are thus so prosperous that 
there was no serious distress even in 1897 when the rice crop was little 
more than a third of a normal one. There is a large and growing demand 
for labour in the mills and brick-fields, but the natives of the district are so 
well off that not only do they not, as a class, take emplo3'ment in the 
mills, which obtain their lalaour force chiefly from Bihar and Orissa and 
from Bankura, but they themselves employ imported labour to do the work which 
the same class in other parts of India are accustomed to do unaided. Writing 
on this subject the Magistrate (Mr. Inglis) says :— 

" There is no doubt that the uneducated classes are remarkably well off. The cultivators 
find ready markets for their jute, potatoes and other crops, and make large profits. The 
ordinary ryot or cultivator can afford to hire other men to do most of his field work. 
This is evidenced by the large number of foreign labourers who have settled in the district or 
who visit it at the harvest season. Wages have risen greatly, both for skilled and unskilled 
labour, and in the towns all classes are well off, specially the coolies, who will not work 
regularly, and the shop-keepers. The mills in the Serampore subdivision and those near 
the head-quarters station (across the river) pay a large amount in wages, and most of this 
is spent locally." 

105. The result of the recent Census is a small increase of 1^ per cent., 

but this is due entirely to a rise in 
the number of immigrants, and a 
diminished loss from emigration. 
The number of persons from else- 
where who were enumerated in the 
district was greater by nearly 40,000 
than in 1891, while the number of 
emigrants was less by more than 
33 000. The number of the latter has been diminishing steadily since 
1881. So much of the migration to and from this district is of a temporary 
nature that it is impossible to gauge its effect on the population with any 
approach to accuracy. If the whole of the movements of th.e people were 
permanent and distributed evenly over the decade, the census figures would 
indicate an annual exodus of some 2,3o8 persons coupled with a settlement of 
8 935 new comers,* or a net gain by migration of about 65,000 persons since 
1891. The actual gain is probably considerably below this figure, but even 
so it is evident that it far more than accounts for the small addition to the 
nopulation which has been recorded. The same conclusion is obvious from 
the fact that the only part of the district which has shown any marked advance 
is the great industrial centre, Serampore, where it amounts to more than 17 
per cent, the actual addition to its population being about the same as that for 
the district as a whole. Two other thanas in this subdivision, Haripal and 
Chanditala show a nominal increase, due in the latter to the importation of 
coolies to 'work in the brickfields. The head-quarters subdivision shows a 
general decline except in Pandua, where there is an advance of 4 per 
cent Two of the three thanas of Arambagh show an increase, slight but 
none the less welcome, because quite unexpected. This subdivision is 
0-enerally looked on as the unhealthiest part of the district, and its crops are 
often damaged by floods from the Damodar, whose waters are now allowed to 
spill uver its right bank in order to obviate the risk of the embankment on the 
left side being breached. In spite of the immigration that has taken place, the 
district is still less populous by 70,000 than it was in 1872 and even then the 
district had suffered terribly from the fever epidemic for nearly a decade. It 
seems very doubtful whether it will ever fully recover its losses until the 
drainage problem is solved. 

106. The district of Howrah occupies a peculiar position, owing to its 

proximity to Calcutta, and to the presence within its 
HowEAH. limits of a great industrial town. Its inhabitants 

— ' « rpT,- ic nn the basis of a death-rate of 40 per l-,000, the slight difEerence between this and the 
, i- f-!^ floa+li Tate being due to the consideration that there are Tery few children amongst 
normal efitima ted aeatar 8^^^ ^.^^^ calculations have been made is explained io the footnote on 

migrants, xue waj lu "***« 
pa^e 102. ^ 



50 



CHAPTER ir — ^VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



even in the rural areas are dependent on agriculture to a smaller extent than 
those of any other district in Bengal, and many of them go daily to their work 
in the metropolis, returning home in the evening. The communications 
between the rural areas and the town have been greatly improved during the 
decade by the opening of the Bengal-Nagpur Railway through Bagnan and the 
construction of the light railways from Howrah to Amta and to Sheakhali in 
the Hooghly District. Howrah suffered to a far less extent than its neighbours, 
Hooghly and Burdwan, in the fever epidemic, and even in 1881 the only thanas 
that showed a decrease were Jagatballabhpur and Amta in the north-west of 
the district. With the exception of Bagnan, which is bounded on the west by 
the Rup Narayan, and Jagatballabhpur, the other thanas are on the bank of 
the Hooghly, and though not very high, are better drained than the country 
behind them. The last ten years have not been healthy, and, except in 1897 
and 1898, fever has been very prevalent. Prior to 1896 cholera broke out 
constantly, but the construction of the water-works in that year, in addition to 
improving the general health of Howrah city has resulted in a far smaller 
mortality from epidemic disease. The crops were bad in three years owing to 

deficient rainfall, and in two years 
they suffered from floods, but the 
people are so well-ofE that relief 
works are never necessary* The 
mills offer ample employment to 
those who need it, and the only class 
that has not improved its position is 
the poorer middle class, who find 
the cost of food constantly increa- 
sing, while their incomes remain the 
same. The district now contains 
86,889 persons more than it did in 
1891, but nearly half of this is 
due to the phenomenal expansion 
of Howrah city which has 
already been referred to. Excluding 
Howrah city, the growth has been 6| per cent. Along the river the increase 
has been about 9 per cent. ; in Bagnan 5, and in Amta 2| per cent. The 
relatively small increase in Amta is surprising, in view of its greater accessi- 
bility since the construction of the Howrah-Amta light railway. 

107. The number of immigrants has increased by rather more than 34,000 

according to the returns, but it is 
probable that the true increase is 
really greater. Howrah, though a 
separate district for ordinary admin- 
istrative purposes, is in revenue 
matters a subdivision of Hooghly, 
and the villagers often describe 
themselves as born in Hooghly. 
The inspection of the schedules was more thorough on this occasion than in 
1891, and mistakes of this nature were corrected to a much greater extent. At 
the present Census only 26,120 persons were returned as born in Hooghly 
compared with 34,459 in 1891. It is probable that the whole of the excess 
in 1891 was due to this misdescription of birth-place, and that the immigrants, 
as compared with 1891, were fewer by 8,000 than the returns would indicate! 
If so, the gain by immigration at the present Census probably accounts for 
about 7 per cent, of the total increase. Two-thirds of the total number of 
persons born out side the district were found in Howrah city, whither they 
had been attracted for work in the numerous mills and other industrial under- 
takings. Of the remainder, excluding accidental migration across the border 
line of adjacent districts, the great majority were doubtless attracted by 
the prospect of employment in the brick-fields, or on railway works. The 
terminus of the Bengal-Nagpur railway at Shalimar and extensive sidings were 
being constructed at the time of the Census, and afforded employment to 
thousands of coolies from Midnapore, Bankura and Ranchi. 





POPUIA- 


PXBCEHTAaE Ot 




TICK. 




VAKIATIOK. 1 


Thana. 












1901. 


1891 


-1901. 


1881-1891. 


DISTSICT XOXAL 


8B0.S14 


+ 


11-4 


+ 1306 


Sadar Subdivirton 


431,337 


+ 


17-7 


+ 17 B 


Bally 


18,662 


+ 


11-8 


+ 12-7 


Howrah 


1 167,694 








Golabari 


+ 


35- 15 


+ 28-4 


Sibpur 








Bumjor 


162,431 


+ 


9-9 


+ 14'9 


Jagatballabhpur 


92,670 


+ 


8-6 


+ 9-9 


TJlubaria Subdivision ... 


4,19,967 


+ 


SS 


+ 9-6 


Amta 


166,939 


+ 


2-4 


+ 9-6 


Baernan 


72,439 


+ 


5-2 


+ 8-2 


TJlubaria 


96,392 


+ 


8-8 


+ 7-8 


Syampur 


84.487 


+ 


8-7 


+ 13-0 



— :^= 


1901. 


1891. 




Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Pemale. 


Actual population 

ImmigrantB 

Emigrants 

Katural population 


439,526 
98,641 
14,884 

355,768 


410,989 

45,979 

8,512 

373,622 


334,844 
68,071 
12.430 

329,203 


378,781 

42,131 

7,094 

343,744 



CENTRAL BENGAL. 



51 



24-PABa^NA.B. 



CENTRAL BENGAL. 

108. The 24-Parganas includes several tracts of entirely different charac- 
teristics. 

They are divided by the Magistrate, into the following five groups; — 

(1) The thanas on the bank of the Hughli in which there are mills. 

These are Naihati, Nawabgajij, 
Barrackpore, Khardaha, Bar- 

nagore, Budge-Budge. The suburbs also fall within this 
category, but they have been treated for census purposes as 
part of Calcutta. These thanas on the whole are more healthy 
than those further inland, being higher and enjoying a better 
supply of drinking water, which, in some cases, is filtered by 
the management of the mills. 

(2) The northern and central thanas, Habra, Diganga, Barasat, 
Dum-Dum, and Tollygunge. The drinking water is here very 
bad, being derived mainly from tanks polluted by surface 
drainage; the drainage channels are blocked and there are 
numerous swamps, and the homesteads are surrounded by dense 
jungle. Malaria is very prevalent. 

(3) The eastern thanas, Baduria and Basirhat. The inhabitants are 
for the most part sturdy Muhammadans; the country is now 
healthy and the main crop is jute which yields a handsome 
profit to the cultivators. 

(4) The southern thanas, Haroa, Bhangar, Sonarpur, Baruipur, 
Vishnupur, Fultah, Diamond, Harbour and Magrahat. These 
thanas are salubrious owing to better drainage, the com- 
parative absence of noxious undergrowth and the sea-breeze 
that blows almost continuously during the south-west monsoon. 

(5) The Sundarban thanas, Hasanabad, Canning or Matla, Jaynagar, 
Mathurapur and Kalpi. Cultivation is here spreading rapidly, 
and reclamation is extending southwards. 

The census of 1881 showed a net increase of nearly 6 per cent, but 

there was a decline in the north 
and east of the district due to the 
prevalence of malaria. The so-called 
"Burdwan fever" spread thither 
from Nadia about 1861, but is said 
to have died out in 1864. However 
that may be, this tract continued to 
be very unhealthy, and there was a 
loss of population amounting to 9 per 
cent, in the Barrackpore subdivision 
and to 10|^ per cent, in the Naihati 
thana. In 1891, excluding the subur- 
ban municipalities, the district showed 
a further increase of 11 "8 per 
cent., but several of the northern 
and central thanas were either 
stationary or decadent, the worst 
being Habra, where there was a 
decline of 5*4 per cent. 

Since 1891 the condition of the 
people has, on the whole, been pros- 
perous, but some distress was caused 
by the floods of September 1900 
which destroyed the crops in a great 
part of the Sundarban area. There 
has been a considerable industrial 
development and the demand for 
labour in the mills lining the Hughli 
public health is said to have been bad 

G 2 



TEANi.. 



VISTBICT TOTAJC .. 

Sadar Sabctivifion 

Tollygunge 

Sonarpur 

Baruipur 

Jaynagar 

Matla (Canning) 

Vishnupur 

Bhaugar 

Budge-Budge 

Bamagore 

Baratat Subdivision .', 

Dam-Duni 

BarracKpore 

Nawabicanj 

KhardHha 

Barasat 

Diganga 

Habra 

Naihati 

Basirhat SubMviston.. 

Basirhat 

Baduria 

Haroa 

Hasanabad 

Viamona Harbour Sub- 
division 

Diamond Harbour 

Fultah 

Magrahat 

Eslpi 

Mathurapur 



POPULA." 
TIOK. 



1901. 



a,078,SB9 
709,917 

105,827 
43,616 
90,788 

107,969 
80,210 
83,994 
76,«5 
82,352 
38,648 

431,983 

64,666 
35,630 
16,964 
26,019 
76,686 
66,208 
70,638 



373,187 



132,286 
61,564 
91,472 



460,748 

70,685 
62,403 
130,424 
135,099 
72,137 



Pehcentaoe 01 

VAEIATIOir, 



1891—1901. 



1881—1891. 



+ 99 
+ 11-9 



1-4 
S'3 
4-6 

i8'e 

41-9 
6-2 
12-6 
13-9 
127 



+ 4-6 



1-4 
28'1 
7-9 
7-5 
1-3 
1-0 
0-9 



+ 7'g 



10-7 
4'6 
2-0 

16-S 



+ 14-4 



11'4 
6-2 

4-8 



23-0 



+ 11-8 
+ 15-4 



29-1 
•4 
14'3 
19-5 
18-9 
10'2 
4'4 
16-5 
14-3 



+ G'S 



18'8 
9-2 



15-9 
3-4 

4-2 
6'4 

irs 



9-6 



2-1 
27-4 
18-0 



+ 270 



20-0 
14-6 
16-0 
18-0 
161 



has been growing steadily. The 



52 



CHAPTtE II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



Population, 


1901. 


1891. 




Male. 


Eeraale. 


Male. 


Pemale. 


Actual population 
Immigrants ... 
Emigrants ... 
Natural population 


1,092,916 

151,963 

63,017 

1,000,980 


986,443 
70,414 
66,943 

970,972 


989,278 

106,381 

61,061 

933,968 


902,755 
65,290 
47,127 

894,692 



throughout the decade, save only in 1893, 1897 and 1898. The most unhealthy 
year was 1896, when the recorded deaths from cholera numbered 11,043 and 
from fever 37,919. The reported deaths exceeded the births in this year and 
also in 189o. 

109. Excluding the suburbs of Calcutta, the census of 1901 shows a net 

increase of 9*9 per cent., or, if the 
suburbs be included, of slightly more 
than 10 per cent. The total number 
of immigrants has increased by 
nearly 64,000, and as most of these 
new arrivals are males, it is cJear 
that a very large proportion of them 
are temporary settlers attracted by 
the high wages obtainable in the mills. But immigration only accounts for 
about a third of the total gain, and there is a loss of more than 20,000 persons 
by emigration (chiefly to Calcutta) which must be set off against it. The 
greater part of the increase is, therefore, due to natural growth. 

The variations in each of the five groups of thanas into which the district 

is divided are noted in the margin. Speaking 
generally it may be said that the growth of the 
riparian thanas is due to immigration to the mills 
and that of the Sundarban thanas to new reclamations 
by imported cultivators. Elsewhere the changes are 
due mainly to natural conditions. The only thana 
in group (1) that has lost ground is Nawabganj. 
The rural area is here very unhealthy, and a large 
cotton mill has been partially closed. Group (2) 
shows a stationary population. The number of persons enumerated in Calcutta, 
but born in the !<!4-Parganas, has grown by 24,000 during the decade, and it is 
mainly from this group of thanas that they have gone, attracted partly by the 
pleasures of town life and partly by the superior healthiness of Calcutta com- 
pared with their own fever-stricken homes. In group (4) a decrease is returned 
from Haroa where several large estates have been abandoned owing to the 
breach of the embankments constructed to keep out the salt water. The 
greatest expansion in the Sundarban area is in Canning, where large reclama- 
tions have been effected by the Land Improvement Company, but all the 
Sundarban thanas show a remarkable development. 

110. The census of Calcutta and the three Suburban Municipalities, 
Cossipore-Chitpur, Manicktala, and Garden Reach, was taken under the super- 
Caicutia and Subtobs. ^^^io"? o* *b® Deputy Chairman of the Calcutta Cor- 
poration, who has discussed the results in a separate 
report. It will suffice to note here that the total population of the metropolis, 
including its suburbs, is about 950,000, and that if Howrah, which is really as 

much a part of Calcutta as Southwark 



Group. 


Percentage 
of variation. 


Thanas. 

(1) Eiparian 

(2) North & Central 

(3) Eastern 

(4) Southern 

(5) Sundarban 


-t- 12 4 
+ -5 
+ 6-9 
+ 5-8 
+ 24-2 



(iBicufia 

Cossipore-Chitpiir 
Wanicktala 
Garden Reach 



1901. 



1891. 



847,796 
40,760 
32,387 
28,211 



949,144 



682,805 
31,423 
28,161 1 



1881. 



612,307 
26,294 
48,125 



1872. 



Not available. 



633,009 
26,369 
63,992 



741,889 



686,736 



713,379 



is of London, be included, the popula- 
tion is very nearly 1,107,000, which 
is greater than that of any European 
city except London, Paris and Berlin, 
and of any city in America, except 
New York, Chicago and Philadelphia. 
Excluding China, the population of 
whose cities is uncertain, the only city in Asia with more inhabitants than 
Calcutta is Tokio. According to this census returns the expansion of the city of 
Calcutta during the last decade exceeds 24 per cent., but this is due no doubt in 
part to a more accurate enumeration, facilitated by an excellent set of maps 
which were prepared at my suggestion. No fewer than two-thirds of the 
inhabitants of Calcutta, are immigrants, and of these barely one quarter are 
females. Amongst the persons born in Calcutta the sexes are more evenly 
represented and 46 per cent, of the total are females. The increase in the 
number of immigrants is about 83,000 and in that of the Calcutta-born 
about 72,000. In the Subuibs the proportion of immigrants is even greater 
than in Calcutta itself. 



CENTRAL BENGAL. 



53 



111. The Nadia district is a part of the old delta, but its rivers have gradu- 
.^ ally dried up and it no longer receives the annual 

^^^^' deposits of silt which formerly renewed its fertility. 

In the greater part of the district the soil is sandy, and will not retain the water 
necessary for the growth of winter rice. Its main crops, therefore, are early 
rice, pulses and oilseeds. Late rice is generally grown only in the Kalantar, 
a lowlying tract of black clay soil stretching from the adjoining part of Murshi- 
dabad through the Kaliganj and Tehatta thanas, and in the country north and east 
of it in the thanas of Meherpur, Damurhuda, Gangni, Nowpara and Kushtia. 
Formerly indigo was extensively cultivated, and the ruins of the old factories 
are to be seen all over the district. But the indigo planters have well nigh dis- 
appeared, and although in their time complaints of their highhanded behaviour 
were frequent, there is little doubt but that the condition of the raiyats is on the 
whole less favourable than it was in their time. They are for the most part 
tenants-at-will, a circumstance which the planters made use of to procure the cul- 
tivation of indigo, while their new landlords have taken advantage of it to force 
up rents, and their landlords' underlings to levy blackmail on their own account. 
The district was once famous as a health resort, and it is said that 
Warren Hastings had a country house at Krishnagar. But it has long since lost 
this reputation. Before attacking Burdwan, the fever, subsequently called 
after that district, had devastated Nadia and Jessore, between 1857 and 1864, 
at which time it was known as " Nadia fever." A fresh outbreak occurred in 
1880 and continued for five years, causing a terrible mortality, especially in the 
southern half of the district. A Commission appointed in 1881 concluded that 
the epidemic had its origin, partly in the insanitary conditions which prevail in 
native villages, but chiefly in the silting up of the rivers which had become 
" chains of stagnant pools and hot-beds of pestilence in the dry season". There 
were two destructive floods, in 1885 and 1890, and it is thus small wonder that 
at tbe Census of 1891 a decrease of rather more than 1 per cent., should have 
been recorded. 

1 12. The decade which has just passed has witnessed no such widespread 

calamities as that which preceded it, 
but the conditions have not been 
favourable to the growth of the 
population. Fever has been very 
prevalent in the south of the district, 
especially in Krishnagar town and 
in the old jungle-smothered villages 
of the Ranaghat subdivision. In 
the extreme north-east of ' the dis- 
trict also, obstructed drainage 
has favoured the spread of a 
virulent form of malarial fever which 
has caused a very heavy mortality.* 
Cholera also was very prevalent, 
especially in 1891, 1892 and 1896. 
The only two healthy years of the 
decade were 1897 and 1898. The 
seasons were on the whole unfavour- 
able to the crops, especially those of 
1895 and 1896, in which years the 
early rice crop was little more than a 
half and a third, respectively, of the 
normal outturn. The winter rice 
suffered even more, yielding less than 
half of an average crop in 1895 and 
barely a seventh in 1896. Distress 
was severe throughout the district 
and deepened into famine in the tracts where late rice is the staple crop. The 

^V,P mortality was so high in some of the villages in Kamirkhali in 1897 when I was M-gistrate of 
.1. J- Jit that iTurpeoted the presence of T-lague. A special inspection was made by tlie Cml Surgeon 
tt r'eSrtd ttJ the&s wer^e due to a bad outbreak of malarial fever. 





POPUIA- 
TIOK. 


Peecentaoe 01 
variation. 




1901. 


1891-1901. 


1881-1891. 


DISXMTCT TOXAI, ... 

Sadar Subdivision 

Krishnagar 

Chapra 

Hanskhali 

Kaliganj 

Nakiislpara 

KisBengunge 

Banaghat Subdivision 

Bnnaghat 

Santipnr 

Chakdaha 

Kushtia Subdivision ... 

Kushtia 

Nowpara 

Daulatpur 

Kumarkhali 

Meherpwf Subdivision 

Meherpur. 

Karimpur 

Gangm 

Tehatta 

Chuadanga Subdivision 

Ohuadanga 

Damurhuda 

Alamdanga 

Jibannagar 


1,667,491 

361,333 

106,887 
66,477 
42,777 
62,792 
66,719 
87,681 

317,077 

76,144 
49,569 
91,874 

4S6,36S 

118,499 

143,934 

84,063 

144,882 

348,134 

78,865 
100,944 
79,467 
93,848 

fiS4,S89 

67,161 
69,603 
91.231 
36,704 


+ 1-4 

+ 3-5 

— 6-7 
+ 3-1 
+ 14-5 
+ 12-7 
+ 0-6 
+ 15-4 

-B6 

— 1-6 

— 82 

— 7-48 

+ 0-7 

+ 7-2 
+ 2-2 

— 0-1 

— 4-7 

+ 3-4 

+ 6-3 

— 5'5 
+ 8'6 
+ 7-7 

+ 3-7 

+ 1-e 

+ 9'6 
+ 1-7 

+ 1-5 


— 1-1 

— 6 9 

— 6'1 

-n-e 

-13-4 

— 6-8 

— 01 

-46 

— 8-4 
+ 0-1 

— 4-0 

+ 6-4 

+ 10-7 
+ 2-8 
+ 4-2 
+ 8-4 

— 0-5 

— 3-0 
+ 8-9 

— 2-3 

— a-2 

-35 

— 8-1 
+ 0-5 

— 0'2 

— 9-9 



54 



CHAPTER 11 — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 





1901. 


1891. 




Males. 


Females. 


Males. 


Females. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Datural population 


827,609 
311,226 
71,160 

868,443 


839,982 
28,784 
62,677 

863.776 


802,147 
35,498 
77,696 

844,345 


841,961 
37,447 
67,255 

861,789 



relief afforded by Government was eminently successful in preventing loss of 
life, and the deaths reported in the years 1896, 1897 and 1898 were less numer- 
ous by nearly 50 per cent, than those of the preceding triennium. The statistics 
were tested, but the results showed that the reporting was quite as accurate as 
usual, and the fact that during the same period the reported births exceeded by 
7 per cent, those of the previous three years, points to the same conclusion. 

113. The net result of the present census is an increase of 23,383 persons 
or 1*4 per cent. The Ranaghat subdivision in the south of the district shows a 
loss of 5'6 per cent., or 1 per cent, more than that recorded ten years ago. 
The Krishnagar thana, in the head-quarters subdivision which adjoins this tract, 
has also lost ground, though not quite to the same extent as in the previous 
decade. The whole of this tract is, as has been already noted, malarious and 
unhealthy, and its continuous decline must be ascribed mainly to this cause. 

I^he decadent condition of the weav- 
ing industry of Santipur may also 
have contributed to the falling off 
in that direction. Calcutta and the 
mills in its neighbourhood attract 
immigrants from this neighbourhood, 
but the total number of Nadia-born 
settlers in Calcutta and the 
24-Parganas was less in 1901 than it had been ten years previously. The district 
has lost by migration during the decade to the extent probably of about 1 
per cent. 

The two eastern thanas of the head-quarters subdivision, Hanskhali and 
Kissengunge, show the greatest increase of any in the district. These thanas 
lie in the hollow across which the floods of the Bh%irathi sweep whenever the 
great Lalitakuri embankment in the Murshidabad district gives way, and they 
suffered severely in the floods of 1885 and 1890. The population of Kissen- 
gunge was stationary in 1891, while that of Hanskhali showed a great decrease. 
In the two thanas together, the present figures represent a very slight improve- 
ment on the population recorded twenty years ago. The only other part of the 
district that shows a satisfactory rate of progress is the line of thanas stretching 
through the centre of the district from Kaliganj to Kushtia, which corresponds 
very closely to the area in which famine relief operations were found necessary. 
This area, taken as a whole, is probably at the present time the healthiest 
part of the district. The decrease in Kumarkhali, in the north-east, is due to 
malaria which, as will be seen further on, has caused an even greater loss of 
population in the adjoining parts of Jessore and Faridpur. The falling off 
in Karimpur to the north-west is less easy to explain. 

114. The district of Murshidabad is bisected from north to south by the 
M I ABAD Bhdgirathi, the ancient course of the Ganges, and 

the character of the country on the two banks is 
very different. East of this river the soil is lowlying and alluvial, and forms a 
part of the old delta. It is fertile, but is liable to be flooded by the spill of the 
Bhagirathi and other rivers, to prevent which numerous embankments have at 
various times been erected.* The climate is damp and malaria is prevalent. 
On the western side, the land is high and undulating ; the soil is a hard clay on 
which winter rice alone grows well, and the climate is comparatively dry. The 
Bh^irathi is more than a mere physical boundary. It was the ancient dividing 
line between E^rh to the west and Barendra to the east. West of the river 
Hindus predominate, while to the east Muhammadans are more numerous. 
The population is comparatively dense on the eastern side of the river but 
is sparse in the central portion of the Earh country. Shortly before 1881 
the Burdwan fever spread to the district, and devastated not only the 
lowlying waterlogged eastern tract, but also the elevated country to the 
west. For some years the death-rate was exceptionally high, and the 
growth of the population was checked, the variation between 1872 and 1891 

* The most important is tlie line of embankments along the left bank of the Bhagirathi. The propriety 
of maintaining all these embankments has often been called in question. The land that woald otherwise 
be flooded is thereby deprived of its supply of fertilizing silt, and the river, being confined to its bed 
deposits its silt there, and thus gradually raises itself above the level of the surrounding country. ' 



CENTRAL BENGAL. 



55 



being barely 2 per cent. Since 1891 there has been a great improvement 
and the death-rate has fallen considerably, especially in the Rdrh country, 
which is reputed to be the healthiest part of the district. The reported birth- 
rate has beeh higher than in most other parts of Bengal and in 1899, it exceeded 
48 per 1,000, a figure which shows that the vital statistics of the district have 
attained a fair standard of accuracy. According to these returns the excess of 
births over deaths during the eight years 1892 — 1900 exceeds 98,000. The 
gradual decay of the silk and indigo industries has affected the prosperity of 
the people, and in 1897 the district was visited by famine. The distressed 
area comprised the tract east of the Bhagirathi and a small strip in the Kandi 
subdivision, but relief operations were not found necessary on so large a scale 
as elsewhere. The scarcity had no apparent effect on the death-rate which was 
considerably lower in 1897 than in any other year of the decade, exceptt 1898, 
while the average birth-rate of 1897 and 1898 was higher than that of any 
other consecutive two years. Except for the famine year, the crops have been 
generally good, and the condition of the cultivators is satisfactory. 

115. The present census shows a net increase of 6* 6 per cent, but there 

are considerable local variations. 
Two tracts have sustained a loss of 
population, viz., Suti thana in the 
Jangipur subdivision, and the 
country bordering on the left bank 
of the Bhagirathi from Azimganj to 
Berhampore, including ManuUabazar, 
Shahanagar, Sujaganj and Daulat- 
bazar. Suti is surrounded by pro- 
gressive thanas, and the falling-off 
is due probably to temporary causes 
connected with the movements of 
the Ganges. A good deal of land 
has been washed away and thrown up 
on the opposite bank of the river in 
the Malda district, and this has led to 
a considerable amount of emigration. 
The other tract has been decadent 
ever since 1872. It is to a great 
extent urban, and its prosperity has 
been steadily declining. Trade has 
been diverted to other channels, and 
the ivory work and bell metal manu- 
factures for which it is noted have 
become less profitable. The Lalbagh 
subdivision was closed for some years, and this also must have had some effect 
in reducing the population. The prosperity of this locality, moreover, is closely 
connected with the fortunes of the Nawab whose circumstances have not 
been improving. The earthquake of 1897 overthrew a great number of buildings 
which the people have not been able to replace, and the untouched ruins give to 
the visitor an uncomfortable impression of neglect, decay and poverty. Through- 
out the rest of Eastern Murshidabad there has been a fair increase, which is 
greatest in Raghuuathganj in the north, and in Burwa in the extreme south. 

In this part of the district as a whole, 

the rate of growth is 31 per cent. In 

Western Murshidabad, on the other 

hand, it amounts to 12*9 per cent. In 

no thana in the latter tract is it less 

than 9, while in Sagardighi and 

Kalianganj it amounts to 26 per cent. 

These thanas, which are still very 

attract a large proportion of the immigrants from 

Birbhum and the Sonthal Parganas. Sagardighi showed a fair increase at the 

two previous enumerations, but Kalianganj was almost stationary in 1891, 

1881 it showed a decrease of 11*7 per cent. The thana that has 





Popula- 


PEBCENTAaB OB 




tion. 


TAKIATION. 












1901. 


1891—1901. 


1881-1891. 


DXSIBICT lOXAZ 


1,333,184 


+ 6-6 


+ 1-9 


Sadar Subdivition 


471,969 


■+S-7 


+ S'5 


Sujaganj 

Goranazar 


9,377 
12,oai 


- 0-3 
+ 0-02 


+ 127 

- 4-8 


Serhampora 


24,897 


+ 3'7 


- 0-3 


Burwa 


74,418 


+ 8-3 


+ 1-1 


Daulatbazar 


37,342 


- 42 


- 1-4 


Harihaipara 


57,181 


+ 39 


- 3-6 


Noada 


51,817 


+ 6-2 


+ 2-5 




88,944 


+ 3-9 


+ 9-0 


Jalaugi 


116,466 


+ 3-2 


+ 4-0 


ralbagh Subdivision ... 


193,978 


+ 611 


- in 


Shahanagar 


25,300 


-18-9 


+ 17-4 


ManuUabazar 


12,827 


-18-6 


+ 110'4 


Aaanpur 

Bhagwangola 


14,723 
66,092 


+ -6 

+ 4-7 


- 9"3 

- 6-8 


Sagardighi 


37,078 


+26-0 


+ 6'5 


Kalianganj 


47,658 


+26-3 


+ 1-3 


Jangipur Subdivision ... 


334,191 


+ 6-4 


+ 41 


Kaghunathganj 


73,509 


+10-7 


- 9-8 


Shamshirganj 

Snti 


88,849 
64,432 


+ 11-9 

- 6-4 


+ 14'0 
+ 4'5 


Diwan sarai 


61,640 


+ I'S 


+ 10-3 


Mirzapnr 


46.76) 


+ 9-3 


+ 2-8 


Kandi Sutdivision 


334,053 


+ 13-SI 


+ 0« 


Eandi 


31,924 


+ia'S 


- 17 


Barwan • ••• 


69,806 


+ 9-8 


+ 3-5 


Ehargaon 


63,772 


+13-9 


+ 3'6 


Bharatpur 


121,947 


+11-6 


+ 1-0 


Gokaran 


46,604 


+l«-7 


— 6-8 





1901. 


1891. 


Population. 


Male. 


Pemale. 


Male. 


Female, 


Actual population 

Immigiants 

Emigrants 

Natural populatioo ... 


653,346 
39,848 
38,469 

655,967 


679,838 
35,218 
40,227 

684,817 


605,666 
44,843 
39,981 

600,803 


645,281 
35,429 
41,911 

651,763 



sparsely populated, 



while 



m 



56 



CHAPTEK II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION, 



aa^A mnst rnnifllv since 1872 is Shamshirganj , which is nearly 50 per 

prevail over almost the whole of Jessore. The banks 
Jessoee. ^£ ^]^Q rivers are higher than the country behind 

1 J • „ ^ +i,n,c *r.rmp(l between the main water courses. The 

E£ °^^anV»:a^psfr:^b„, formed, while good drintog «|.r « 
'^Sentty epidemic L^ in .SIT.- ^e^e t^o -e^^^^^^^^^^ 



in a 



Thana, 



POPOIA- 
TION. 



1901. 



PEEOENTAGE OS 
TAKIATION. 



1891—1901. 



1881—1891. 



DISTRICT XOTAZ 

Sadar Suhdivision 

Jessore 

Ealiganj 

Bagharpara 

Gadkhali 

Manirampur 
Keshabpur 

tTJienida Sitbdivision 

Jheoida 

Kotchandpur 
Salkopa 

lUagura Subdivision 

MaKura 

Muhammadptr ... 
Salikba 

Karail Subdivision 

Marail 

Lohagara 

Bar Kalia 

Bangaon Subdivision 

Eangaon 

Mahesbpur 

Sarsha 

Gaighata 



\j,813,lSB 



BGl,!i4g 

146,089 
81,286 
54,366 
60,761 

142,278 
76,683 



304,899 

84,680 
40,287 
179,932 



S77,S81 

149,889 
83,081 

44,461 



3SS,281 

164,171 
112,611 
85,499 



317,3SS 

106,619 



68,199 
43,262 



-40 



-5-6 

- 7-6 

- 2-1 

- 6-9 

- 4-6 

- 4-9 

- 7-5 



-S-3 

- 5-8 

- 2-5 

- 0'4 



-8-3 

- 9-7 

- 8-6 

- 4-3 



+ 11 

+ 1-7 

- 2-5 
+ 4-9 



-39 



- 2-9 

- 4'4 



quently known as " Nadia," and then 
as "Burdwan,". fever, which decima- 
ted the population of the country 
from Jessore westwards as far as the 
Vishnupur subdivision of Bankura. 
The first, known outbreak occurred 
near Muhammadpur amongst a body 
of some six hundred prisoners work- 
ing on the road from Jessore to 
Dacca. In 1843 the epidemic 
seemed to disappear, but it again 
broke out in 1846 and spread as 
has already been described. At the 
present time this malignant type of 
fever is not noticeable, but a milder 
form is very prevalent, and although 
the mortality is not sufficiently 
striking to attract attention, it is 
silently and relentlessly at work, 
destroying many and sapping the 
vitality of the survivors and reducing 
their fecundity. The soil of Jessore 
is fertile, but the crops during the 
decade have not been very good. 
The condition of the cultivators 
appears, however, to be satisfactory, 
and they have benefited by the rise 
of prices. There was some distress in 1897, and a few thousand rupees were 
expended in helping the very poor, but regular relief operations were not 
needed. The decade has boen consistently unhealthy and the returns of vital 
statistics for the nine years ending with 1900 show an excess of deaths over 
births aggregating 70,934. 

117. The census of 1881 brought out an apparent increase in the popula- 
tion, bat this is attributed by the Magistrate (Mr. Elallifax) to the inaccuracy of 
the census of 1872. In 1891 there was a decrease of 2'6 per cent., and this has 
now been followed by a further decline of 4 per cent. In the head-quarters 
subdivision the loss of population is about the same as in 1891, and it is consi- 
derably less in Jhenida and Bangaon; it is greatest in Magura (8-5 per cent.) 
where there was an improvement of 3*4 per cent, in 1891. The only subdivision 
which shows a slight advance is Narail in the south-east. The great falling-off 
in Magura is due to the prevalence of malarial fever, which has caused such a 
marked diminution in the population of the adjoining thanas of Kumarkhali in 
Nadia, and Pangsa, Balia-kandi and Bhushana in Faridpur. The subdivision 
has the advantage of better drinking water (from the Gorai and Nabaganga) 
than any other part of the district except Narail, but malaria is not dependent 

* Westland's Eeport on Jessore, pages 179 — 183. The disease had preyiously been known, but only 
in a milder endemic form. 



-3-6 



-S-3 

- 5-6 

- 6-9 

- 9-8 

- 6-5 

- 3-8 

- 30 



-4S 

-12-3 
- 6-1 

+ 0-4 



+3-4 

+ 4-3 
+ 8-3 
- 8-0 



+ 6g 

+ 0-1 
+ 11-2 
+ 11'7 



-8-7 

- 7*4 

- 8-2 
-11-1 

- 9-7 



NORTH BENGAL. 



57 



on the drinking water ; and Muhama,dpur, where the great fever epidemic 

6rst broke out, lies within the limits 
of this subdivision. 

The above changes in the popu- 
lation are practically independent 
of migration. The total amount of 
inter-district movement is small 
and immigrants and emigrants have 
'Corrected figures. alike decroased in number since 1 891. 



Fopulation. 


1901. 


1891. 


Hale. 


Pemale. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


914,026 
24,485 
43,775 

933,316 


899,130 

2i,B61 

. 27,359 

903,938 


941,334 

24,083 
67,814* 
976,066 


947,493 
27,837 
38,490* 

966,146 



NORTH BENGAL. 

118. The district of Rajshahi is composed of three entirely distinct tracts. 

The first, or Barind, is elevated and undulating. 
Bajshahi. rpjjg gQJj -g ^ g^jg j.g^ pj^y ^j. quasi -laterite, and, 

where not cultivated, is covered with brushwood interspersed with large 
trees, the remains of extensive forests. The only crop that can here be grown 
is winter rice. The population, though once plentiful, is now sparse. The 
climate is healthy. This tract comprises the whole of Godagari, the greater 
part of Tanor, Manda and Mahadebpur, and the north of Singra. The Gangetic 
thanas, Rampur Boalia, Charghat and Lalpur, form another well-defined area. 
It has a grey sandy soil and a variety of crops are grown. The level is relatively 
high, and the climate is moderately healthy. The population is fairly dense 
and includes a considerable number of landless labourers who were originally 
attracted by the silk industry. The remaining thanas, Naugaon, Bagmara, 
Puthia, Panchupur, Nator, Singra and Burigaon, constitute the third area, 
a swampy depression, waterlogged and abounding in JMls. The rivers 
that once drained it have been cut in halves by the Padma, and their 
mouths have been silted up. The soil is a black loam, and is most fertile. But 
malaria is very prevalent, especially during the winter months, and the death- 
rate is high. The population, however, is dense except in Singra, which 
divides with thana Raiganj in the Pabna District the distinction of containing 
the Chalan bil, the largest sheet of inland water in Bengal. This tract may 
be again subdivided into areas growing and not growing ganja. The former 
category includes the Naugaon and Panchupur thanas which supply the whole 
of Bengal with ganja. The crop is a most profitable one and is a great attrac- 
tion. The land is here somewhat higher and the drainage less obstructed than 
elsewhere in this group of thanas. i ,• ^^ 

119. During the nmeteen years between 1872 and 1891, the population of 
the disirict as a whole was almost stationary. The thanas to the north and west 
increased rapidly, while those in the centre and south declined. The latter part 
of the district suffered so terribly from fever that in 1883 and 1884 Rajshahi 
held the first place in the list of fever-stricken districts. The unhealthiness 
still continues, and the annual reports of the Civil Surgeon are most depressing. 
In seven out of the last ten years it has held a place amongst the six most 
feverish districts in Bengal, and in 1892 and 1893 it stood at the top of the list. 
In only two years of the decade, 1897 and 1898, did the reported births exceed 
the deaths These years were comparatively healthy owing to the low rainfall 
which caused many of the shallower bils to dry up. The crops have been good 
since 1897 but prior to that year they had been short for several years m 
succession The famine did not touch this district, though the people suffered 
from the high prices due to scarcity elsewhere. The condition of the cultivating 
classes is said to be satisfactory, especially in the Naugaon Subdivision.^ The 
decade however, has seen the practical extinction of indigo cultivation m the 
district and the decline of the silk industry has impoverished silk- worm rearers 
and silk-workers and the cultivators of the mulberry. 

120 The net result of the last ten years m the district as a whole is a 
sbVht increase of 1-6 per cent. As on previous occasions, there has been 
«n increase in the B^ind and in the ganja-growmg thanas and a decrease 
fn -the centre and south of the district. The most progressive thanas are 
Nnnfraon and Mahadebpur, both of which have been growing rapidly 
during tiie whole of the last thirty years. Manda, in the Bdrind, and Panchu- 
nur m the Naugaon Subdivision, also show a considerable increase. The 

* ' H 



58 



CHAPTER II — VAKIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 









1 




Popula- 
tion. 


Pbeoehtasb 01 1 

TiKIATION. 1 




1901. 


1891-1901. 


1881-1891, 


niSTBICT TOTAL ... 

Sadar Subdivision 

Boalia 

Tanor 
Godagari 

Puthia 

Charghat 
Eagmara 

Naugaon Subdivision ... 

Naugaon 

Man da ..* •■• 

Panchupur 

Uahadebpur 

Nator Subdivision 

Nator 

Singra 

Burigaon 
Lalpur 


1,463,407 

363,936 

96,046 
88,487 
47,871 
92,830 
116,999 
123,704 

476,073 

170,548 

126,155 

95,774 

83,594 

4XZ,399 

127,783 

119,418 

108,684 

66,644 


+ 26 

— 1-3 

— 8-9 
+ 1-8 
+ 1-3 

— 8-6 

— 5-8 
+ 3-9 

+1S1 

+ 14-2 
+ 10-8 
+ 8-7 
+ 141 

— 4-8 

— 101 
+ 1-6 

— 6-8 

— 1-3 


- 0-8 

- 31 

- 2-0 
+ 1-6 
+ 6-7 
+ 21-0 
+ 61 

- 2-1 

+ 10-8 

+ 121 
+ 101 
+ 11-7 
+ 8-9 

- 6-3 

- 7-5 
+ 41 

- 41 

- 20-7 



respectively, 
immigration- 





1001. 


1891. 




Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigranta 

Bmigiants 

Natural population ... 


741,690 
46,816 
11,9(1 

706,816 


720,717 
82,864 
11,671 

700,024 


719,289 
42,710 
19,026 

695,605 


720,845 
28,034 
19,257 

711,668 



stationary condition of Tanor and Godagari is surprising, as the immi- 
gration of Santals and other tribes 
continues. Bagmara thana shows an 
increase for the first time since 1872, 
and Puthia and Lalpur, though they 
have again declined, have done so 
at a far less rapid rate than on pre- 
vious occasions. In Nator, Burigaon, 
Charghat and Boalia, on the other 
hand, the decrease is greater now 
than it was in 1891. There seems to 
be little ground for expecting any 
early improvement in the condition 
of the central and southern part of 
the district. Since 1872 the popula- 
tion has decreased by 12*8 per cent., 
while that of the thanas in the Barind 
and in the ganja-growing tracts has 
grown by 25"6 and 59'3 per cent., 
These two tracts owe a great deal of their development to 
from other districts in the case of the^ Barind, and from other 

parts of Rajshahi itself, chiefly from 
Puthia, Baghmara and Nator, in 
the thanas where ganja is grown. 
The total number of immigrants 
from other districts has increased 
by more than 9,000 during the 
decade, but it is very uncertain 
how many have come to stay. A 
great many are palki-bearers, earth-workers and field labourers who visit 
the district during the cold weather and leave again before the rains set 
in. Probably not more than a third are permanent settlers. Of these, the 
great majority are Santals, Mundas and Ordons who have made clearances in 
the jungles of the Barind. The zamindars allow newly-cleared land to be held 
rent-free for the first three or four years, and this exactly suits the taste 
of these unsophisticated aborigines, who do not mind the physical labour in- 
volved in breaking down the jungle, but have a very great aversion to the 
payment of rent. They remain until rent is demanded and then move on, 
leaving the land they have brought under cultivation to be occupied by the 
less hardy and less industrious Hindu cultivators who would shrink from 
undertaking on their own account the irksome task of reclamation. 

131. The whole of Dinajpur is alluvial, with the exception of four or five 

thanas in the south of the district which lie in the 
Bdirind. The surface is here elevated, undulating 
and well drained, and even in the alluvial parts of the district the proximity 
to the foot of the hills and the consequent greater speed of the rivers has 
given the country a more rapid slope than is the case further south, and 
it is thus far better drained. In spite of this the district was for many 
years exceedingly unhealthy, and in 1878 a Committee was appointed to 
enquire into the causes. The only remedial measure adopted was a scheme for 
draining the neighbourhood of the chief town. The census of 1881 showed 
a gain of barely 1 per cent, which was more than accounted for by the greater 
accuracy of the enumeration. The district continued to be unhealthy for some 
years longer, but it then took a turn for the better, and in 1891 there was an 
increase of rather less than 3 per cent., of which, however, a considerable part 
was due to immigration. Since 1891 the health of the district has continued to 
show gome further improvement, but it is even now far from satisfactory, and 
malarial fevers are still very prevalent. In every year of the decade, Dinajpur 
has been one of the six districts with the highest recorded mortality fi-om fever 
but this may be due in part to the greater accuracy of the returns, as its reported 
birth rate is exceeded in only two districts in the Province. A comparison of 
the births and deaths reported during the nine years 1892-1900 shows a net 
excess of 21,080 births. The crops have been good on the whole. There were 



DiNAJPUE. 



NORTH BENGAL. 



69 





1901. 


1891. 




Hale. 


Pemale. 


Male. 


female. 


Actual population 

Iminiiirants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


823.972 

80,789 

8,420 

761.603 


743,108 

61,214 

8,773 

700,667 


774,880 
66,012 
16,946 

725,314 


708,190 
46,024 
16,735 

678,901 



partial failures in 1891 and 1897, and the scarcity in the latter year was aggra- 
vated by the high prices which prevailed throughout India. The good harvests 
of subsequent seasons have restored the prosperity of the cultivators, but they 
are wanting in industry. The Magistrate says : — 

'*They are an idle lot. In spite of tlie fertility of the soil, the low rates of rent, and the 
opening up of the country by railways, their material condition is still much the same as it 
was many years ago. The reclaimers of jungle and waste land, a large portion of the reapers 
during harvest time, the coolies, the domestic serva,nts, the skilled labourers, such as carpenters, 
etc, the wholesale traders, all, or nearly ail, come from other districts. The standard of 
comfort of the ordinary cultivator is low. He is content with a house which can but in- 
difEerently protect him and his family from stress of weather, and he does not possess any 
warm clothing for the winter. The standard of comfort has not shown any tendency to rise 
during the last ten years. The people are improvident and spend a large amount of money 
every year in buying useless articles of rural luxury a,t the fairs held all over the district 
during the dry months." 

122. During the last decade the population has grown by 84,510 or 5"7 per 

cent., but this is to a great extent due 
to immigration from other districts. 
The increase in tlie immigrant popu- 
lation is nearly 20,971, but this, of 
course, does not represent the real 
number of new arrivals. There were 
already 112,000 immigrants in 1891, 
and at the assumed annual death rate 

of 40 per 1,000, about 45,000 new settlers must have come to the district during 
the decade to keep up this number. A further immigration of 2,486 persons 
yearly, or of about 25,000 during the decade, would be necessary to produce 
the excess of 20,000 immigrants recorded at the present census. There is some 
uncertainty as to the actual number of emigrants in 18^1* but in any case the loss 
by fresh departures during the decade cannot well have exceeded 6,000. These 
figures indicate a net gain owing to migration of about 64,000 persons, which 
leaves less than 21,000, or say 1| per cent., as the gain due to the excess of 
births over deaths. This result agrees very closely with that indicated by the 
returns of births and deaths. I have discussed this matter at some length, not 
because it is claimed that a very close approximation to the true growth of the 
population has been arrived at, but because the volume of immigration is here 
exceptionally large and the mere percentage of increase in the population 
actually enumerated in the district thus differs to an unusual extent from that 
indicating the true growth. Moreover, where a district has so long been deca- 
dent, it is specially desirable to know whether the conditions adverse to health 
still continue or not. 

123. An examination of the figures for individual thanas shows, as was to 

be expected, that the increase is most 
rapid in the south of the district, 
especially in Patnitala, Patiram, 
Chintaman and Nawabganj. These 
thanas lie in the Barind. Magni- 
ficent tanks and scattered bricks 
afford ample evidence of a consider- 
able population at some former 
period but at the present time the 
country is very sparsely inhabited, 
and it is for the most part covere,d 
with scrub jungle. About fifty years 
ago it occurred to the manager of a 
Government estate that the waste 
land might be reclaimed if Sant^ls 
were imported and settled there. 
The experiment was made and 



IHaSA. 


Popula- 
tion. 


PBBOBlfTAOE OP 
VAEIATIOK. 


1901, 


1891-1901. 


1881-1891.1 


nISXBZCI XOXAI, ... 

Sadar Subdivision 

Dinajpup 
Ealigani ,., 

Bnnshihari ... 
Fatnitala 
Far»a 
Fatiram 
Gangarampnr 
Chintaman ... 
Farbatipnr ... 
Nawabganj ... 

Xhahurgaon Subdivision 

Thaknrgaon ... 
Banisanlcsil ... 
Firgani 
Birgan] 


1,567,080 

1,0S3,994 

209,248 
108,336 
86,872 
86,457 
93.960 
64,887 
93,243 
83,613 
61,027 
74,978 
?6,473 

B43,086 

227,423 
73,712 
98,2U 

143.740 


+B-7 

+ 7-7 

+ 0-S 
+ 4-7 
+ 1-6 
+ 3-8 
+ 19-0 
+ 8-4 
+23-9 
+ 4-9 
+12-7 
+ 8-4 
+13-7 

+a-a 

+ 1-2 
- -4 
+ 3-7 

+ 4-2 


+36 

- 1-8 
+ 60 

- 0-8 
+ 1-5 
+14-0 
+ 41 
+ 6-6 
+ 7-0 
+ 4-S 
+ 37 
+ 7-7 

+ 0-4 

+ 1-8 
-1-2 
+ 10 
-1-8 



* In 1891 more than 10,000 persons censused in the Sonthal Parganas were returned as born in 
■Dinainur There would seem to hare been some mistake about this. There is no known trend of emigra- 
tion fiom Dinaipur to the Sonthal Parganas, and a movement on such a scale as this could not have 
««P»n>d observation. At the present census only 67 persons in the Sonthal Parganas returned Dinajpur as 
their birthplace. The Deputy Commissioner of the iSonthal Parganas is of opinion that the birthplace 
table ot 1891 for that district is quite unreliable. 

H 2 



60 CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



proved such a success that the influx has continued ever since. The total 
number of Santals in the district now amounts to 74,101. Their lead has been 
followed by a- few Mundas and Oraons from Ranchi. The zamindars welcome 
the advent of these hardy pioneers, but they do not usually take any active 
steps to import them, as they are of a roving disposition and readily move on 
to fresh clearances on other estates. Outside the Barind the Santals seem averse 
to settling and the increase in the population is consequently smaller. The 
only thana showing a decrease is Ranisankail. The opening of the Bihar 
section of the Eastern Bengal Hallway does not, so far, appear to have had much 
effect in developing the tract through which it runs, and both Raiganj and 
Dinajpur show a less rapid rate of increase than the thanas on either side of them. 

124. Jalpaiguri comprises two distinct tracts, viz., (1 ) the regulation portion 

which was formerly a subdivision of Rangpur. 
ALPAiGTTKi. This tract includes thanas Jalpaiguri, Rajganj, 

Titalya, Boda and Patbgram, all of which lie west of the Tista, except the last 
which is an enclave of the Kuch Bihar State; (2) the Western Duars, taken from 
Bhotan after the war of 1864-65, comprising the thanas of Damdim, Mainaguri, 
Dhupguri, Falakata and Alipore, all east of the Tista. The regulation tract has 
been long settled, and except in the noi-th, it has a fairly dense population. The 
non-regulation thanas, on the other hand, were very sparsely populated when 
first acquired. The former tract is decadent, while the latter is very progressive. 
Its two western thanas, Damdim and Mainaguri, contain much land very 
suitable for the cultivation of tea. The first garden was opened in 1874, and 
others followed so rapidly that in 1881 there were 55 tea estates with 6,230 
acres under tea. In 1891 there were 79 gardens with 35,683 acres of tea, 
and in 1901, 103 gardens with 76,158 acres. Apart from the tea gardens, the 
settlement of land for ordinary cultivation is progressing rapidly ; the rates of 
rent are very low, and cultivators are attracted not only from the thanas west 
of the Tista, but also from Rangpur and the Kuch Bihar State. 

The census of 1872 was not very accurate, even in the regulation part of 
the district, and for the Western Duars an estimate by the Settlement Officer 
was accepted in lieu of a detailed enumeration. There were also various changes 
of jurisdiction between 1872 and 1881, and the effect of these on the population 
was not ascertained. It is thus impossible to give an accurate idea of the 
variations that took place between 1872 and 1881. So far as the figures go, the 
pop\ilation of the district as a whole rose by nearly 40 per cent., and that of the 
Damdim and Mainaguri thanas was more than nine times as great in 1881 as it 
was in 1872. The Deputy Commissioner (Mr. Forrest), however, calculates 
that the population of the district in 1872 must have been at least 70,000 greater 
than that returned at the census in which case the growth of the district 
between that year and 1881 would be only about 16 per cent. 

125. During the next ten years the registered increase was 17*2 per cent. 
The regulation portion of the district showed a loss of 3-5 per cent., which was 
shared by all thanas except Jalpaiguri, where an advance of 10 per cent, was 
recorded. The Western Duars continued to show a phenomenal rate of 
development, especially Damdim, Dhupgari and Falakata. Since 1891 the area 
under tea has more than doubled. The industry has now fallen upon hard 
times and its fiu-ther development has been checked, but the effect of this will 
not be apparent until 1911. The settlement of lands in the Duars for ordinary 
cultivation has continued to progress. The crops have been good and the 
growing demand for labour has been met, as in previous years, by extensive 
importation from other parts of the Province. Amongst the natives of the 
district the landless labourer does not exist. There have been considerable exten- 
sions of the Bengal Duars and Kuch Bihar State Railways, and a workshop has 
been opened in connection with the former, employing nearly 1,000 workmen. 
There have been no specially serious outbreaks of epidemic disease, but fever 
IS always prevalent, and in eight out of the ten years the district has figured 
amongst the six districts with the highest recorded mortality from fever in the 
Province. The births reported by the police have exceeded the deaths only in 
four years, and on the average the deaths have outnumbered the births by 
nearly 3 per 1,000 per annum. Even if we allow for a slightly more 
defective registration of deaths than of births the natural population must 
still be slightly decadent. The registered mortality is greatest in the Duars 



NORTH BENGAL. 



61 





Population. 


Percentage of variation. 


!Ihana. 


1901. 


1891-1901. 


1881-1891. 


DXSIBXCT XOTAZ 

Sadar Subdivision 

Jalpaiguri 
Bajganj 
Titalya 
Boda 

Fathgram .„ 
Maynagnii _. 
Dhupgari ... 
Damdim ... 

Alipore Subdivision 

Alipore 
Falakata 


787,380 

668,037 

82,324 
61,976 
20,642 

165,007 
66,926 

119,426 
64,260 

107,567 

110,3BS 

69,746 
49,607 


+ IB- 6 

+ 9-8 

— -7 

— 3-9 

— 1-8 

— 0-8 

— 6-3 
+ 20-5 
+ 57'1 
+ 28-3 

+ 64-7 

+ 70-0 
+ 67-9 


+ i7-a 

+ 11-8 

+ lO'O 
] — 6-0 

- 6'8 

- 7-1 
+ 27-9 
+ 77-7 
+ 167-4 

+ 29H 

+ 29-2 
+ 77-7 



where the reported deaths give an average of 39-9 per 1,000 compared with only 

33* 1 in the regulation tracts. The 
birth-rate, on the other hand, is here 
34*3 per mille, as against 33"3 in the 
Duars. 

126. The census of 1901 shows 
that the population has grown by 
15*6 per cent. The rate of progress 
has fallen slightly but the actual addi- 
tion to the population is greater than 
it has ever been before.* The 
regulation tract is still decadent, 
while the Western Duars have again 
made a great advance. The most 
progressive thana on this occasion 
is Alipore, followed by Falakata 
and Dhupgari. Damdim, which showed the greatest development in 1891, 
has increased far less rapidly during the last decade, owing probably to the 
fact that there was less scope for further expansion. Most of the land 
suitable for tea had been taken up prior to the last census. Throughout the 
district the variations in population are due almost entirely to migration, which 
accounts alike for the falling-ofi west of the Tista and for the rapid growth 
of the population east of that river. The western thanas are the more 
healthy, and they, if any, would show an increase if migration were left out 
of account. These, however, are the thanas where alone a loss of population 
has taken place, and it is clearly due to the movement of the population within 
the district from west to east which has been going on since 1881, and probably 
from a much earlier date, and will doubtless continue so long as the supply of 
cultiirable waste in the Western Duars remains unexhausted, unless in the 
interval the zamindars reduce their rates to the level of those payable on the 
Government estates in the Duars. There is also a slight balance against 
these thanas in the migration between them and Siliguri in the Darjeeling 
district. 

127. In the Duars, on the other hand, the natural population has probably 

declined, and the whole of the in- 
crease is due to the growth of the 
immigrant population. There are 
now 188,223 immigrants in the dis- 
trict, compared with 143,922 in 1891, 
and most of them were enumerated in 
the Duars, The proportion borne by 
the foreign-born to the total popula- 
tion in each thana in the Duars is 
noted in the margin. It is highest in Falakata, 
where more than half the inhabitants were born 
outside the district. About half of the immi- 
grants are tea-garden coolies from Chota 
Nagpur and the Sonthal Parganas. Many of 
these stay permanently. The number of settlers 
from Kuch Bihar and Rangpur is less than it was 
in 1891 ; many of the older settlers have died, 
and the new-comers have not been sufficient to re- 
place them. Assuming the death-rate amongst the immigrant population to be 
40 per 1,000 per annum, an annual supply of nearly 6,000 new-comers would be 
needed to keep up their original number, and of nearly 6,000 to raise it to the 
present figure. The countervailing loss owing to departures from the district 
has been very small, and the net gain on account of migration must have 
considerably exceeded 100,000. The district-born population has increased 
from 552,856 to 616,583, but this is due not so much to the excess of births 
over deaths as to the fact that the ranks of the district-born are swelled by 
the children of immigrants who have made their homes in the district. There 
were 60,613 immigrant females in the district in 1891, and if the births amongst 

* I assume that the Deputy ComnHssioner's estimate of the 1872 population is correct. If the census 
figures be taken, the increase between 1873 and 1881 was greater than that between 1891 and 1901. 





1901. 


1891. 


Population. 


Male. 


Pemale. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual popolation 

Immigrants 

Emierants 

Natural population 


422,877 

104914 

7,655 

326,618 


364,603 

83,309 

9,871 

291,065 


364,319 

87,914 

9,631 

286,036 


316,417 
60,613 
11,016 

266,820 



Thana. 


Percentage 
of immigrants. 


Maynaguri 

Damdim 

Dhupgari 

Alipore... 

Falakata 


28 
48 
38 
40 
65 



62 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



them were at the rate of 80 per 1,000 yearly, this alone would account for a 
great part of the increase that has taken place. 

138. Darjeeling consists of three distinct tracts, viz., (1) the thanas of 



DASJEELiya. 



Darjeeling, Jorbangala and Kurseong, i.e., the 
whole of the hills except the Kalimpong outpost ; 
most of this was ceded by the Raja of Sikkim in 1835 ; (2) the Kalimpong 
outpost taken from Bhutan in 1865 ; and (3) the Terai, i.e., the Siliguri thana, 
annexed from Sikkim in 1850. 

At the time of its cession, the first mentioned tract was almost wholly 
under forest, and it is said that there were not twenty resident families in the 
whole area.* Its rapid growth is due partly to the establishment of the hill 
stations of Darjeeling and Kurseong and partly to the development of the tea 
industry. The first garden was opened in 1856, and proved such a success that 
within thirty years the greater part of the cultivable area was under tea. Exclu- 
ding the municipality and cantonment, more than two-thirds of the' population 
is resident on the tea gardens. The Kalimpong outpost contains only one or 
two gardens, and the greater part of the area is reserved for native 
cultivation. Five-sixths of the inhabitants are settled on the Government 
Mds mahdls. The aborigines of Kalimpong are Lepchas and Limbus, but many 
Nepalis are now settling there. The Terai contains a number of tea plantations 
along the foot of the hills, but there are also extensive areas under ordinary 
cultivation, and the tea-garden population is barely one-fifth of the total. 

The hills, including Kalimpong, are very healthy, and the death-rate is 
comparatively low. The Terai, on the other hand, is notoriously malarious, 
and the mortality is always very heavy. In the district as a whole there was 
an increase of 63 per cent, between 1873 and 1881 and of 43 per cent, in the 
next decade, but the rate of expansion was far more rapid in the hills than 
in the plains. In the former the growth in these nineteen years was 222 
per cent., while in the Terai it was only 62 per cent. The census of 1872 was 
admittedly inaccurate, and in 1881 also there were probably a good many 
omissions, especially of women, owing to the alarmist rumours that were spread 
amongst the ignorant hill men. The census of 1891, on the other hand is 
believed to have been very accurate, and some part of the difference between 
that and the previous enumerations must be set down to the greater accuracy 
of the work, but even if liberal allowances are made for the errors on previous 
occasions, it is still clear that the growth of the population during these nine- 
teen years was phenomenal. 

129. During the last ten years the health of the hilly part of the district has 
been normal. In Siliguri, however, the mortality, always high, has been excep- 
tionally heavy. The recorded deaths for the decade as a whole give an average 
death-l-ate of 59*8 per 1,000 per annum, and in 1900 it exceeded 71 per 1 000. 
The average birth-rate, on the other hand, was only 19-4 per annum. 'The 
ordinary crops have been good, and in Kalimpong the number of settlers 
has been rapidly increasing. There is a great demand for labour of all kinds 
and wages are far higher than in any other part of Bengal. As observed by 
the Deputy Commissioner, there is no district in the Province where the people 
are so well off. The tea industry, however, on which the growth of the distnct 
mainly depends, has been passing through a serious crisis. Prices have fallen 

greatly during the last four or five 
years, and many gardens are no longer 
able to work at a profit. Some few 
have already been closed and others 
have reduced their labour force, so 
that the increase due to extension of 
cultivation during the earlier years 
of the decade has been to a great 
extent^ discounted by subsequent 
reductions of establishment. 

The population of the district as 
a whole has grown by 11-5 per cent, 
during the decade. The increase is greatest in Kalimpong, where the waste 

* This however seems doubtful. In the course of enquiries made regarding the alleged gradn I 
disappearance of the Lepchas it was stated to me that many of the hill-slopes now occupied by tea-eardp 
were formerly the sites of Lepcha Tillages. gai^aens 



Thana. 


Population 
1901, 


Peeoewta&e oj 
vaeiatioh. 




1891-1901. 


1S81-1891. 


VISTBICI XOXAZ 

Saaar Subdivtsion 

ParjeeHng 

Kalimpong 

Jorbai^ala 

Xiurteung Stibdlvition... 

Eurseong 

Silignri 


249,117 

133,386 

69,362 
41,611 
22,613 

115,731 

46,266 
70,466 


+11B 

■V262 

+ 13-8 

+ 66-9 
+ 24'5 

— 1-6 

+ 1'4 

- 3'5 


+43-4 
+ 6.8-6 

■ + 62'6 

+ 89* 

+ 88'5 
+ 17-0 



NOETH BENGAL. 



63 



Population. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female, 


Male. 


Female. 


Actaal population 

immigrants 

Emie^rmts 

Natuial population 


183,006 
71,289 
3,128 

61,844 


116,112 
63,102 

65,676 


' 143,046 

78,978 

S,29S 

47,866 


100,268 

68,079 

1,526 

48,716 



land is rapidly being brought under cultivation by new settlers, chiefly from 
Nepal. In Darjeeling and Jorbangala there has been a fair growth, and the 
tea gardens in this tract have added 5,000, or more than 12 per cent., to their 
population since 1891, In the Kurseong subdivision the tea-garden popula- 
tion has been slightly reduced, but the loss has been more than counterbalanced 
by the growth ol the town of Kurseong and by new settlers for ordinary 
cultivation. Of the decrease of 2,464 petsons in the Siliguri thana,, about two- 
thirds is accounted for by the fact that in 1891 a large number of termporary 
immigrants were employed there in the (ionstruction of ei road. The tea 
gardens have added 11 per cent, to their population, but the settlers in the 
khds mahdls have decreased by nearly 5 per cent. Having regard to the heavy 
death-rate, the loss of population in this thana must have beeft far greater than it 
is but for immigration from outside. If we accept the recorded death-rate as 

correct and raise the birth-rate from 
19-4 as reported, to 26 pei? 1,000, 
the annual decrease, but for iminigi?a- 
tion, would, at the rate of 35 per 
1,000, exceed 2,500. There must 
thus apparently have been an immi- 
gration to the thana of more than 
25,000 persons. This supposition is 
corroborated by the returns of birthplace which show that no less than 36,907, 
or 62 per cent, of the inhabitants of the thana were born elsewhere. 

The total volume of immigration is less than it was in 1891, but the 
foreign -born still number nearly half the total population of the district, A 
very large proportion of them are permanent settlers on the tea gardens and 
khds mahdls. The earlier immigrants are gradually dying out and their place 
is being taken by their children born in Darjeeling ; the reduction in the 
foreign-born population, therefore, merely means that the flow of fresh 
immigrants is growing less and not that it has ceased altogether. If there had 
been no new settlers since 1891 the number then enumerated would have fallen 
to about 91,000, or 32,000 less than the actual strength of the immigrant 
population. These figures indicate an average annual arrival of some 4,000 
new-comers. The corresponding loss by emigration is inappreciable. 

130. The soil of Eangpur is fertile and the population is' vei*y dense 

compared with other districts in North Bgnjg'al. 
A wave of unheal thiness swept over the district 
time before 1872. Between that year and 1891 malarial fever was 
very prevalent and the district lost more than 4 per cent, of its population. 
The thanas that suffered most before 1881 were Rangpur, Mitapokhur aiid 
Pirganj in the centre of the district. In 1891 these three thanas taken together 
recovered some of their losses, but there was a general decadence in^ all 
the thanas to the east and north of therri and in Badarganj which adjoins them 
on the west. The death-rate from fever was very high throughout the decade, 
and there were frequent outbreaks of cholera- which was imported by coolies 
passing through the district en roui& for Assam. The prevalence of malaria 
was attributed at the last census to the obstruction of the old drainage channels 
south and west bf the Tista. The greatest loss of population occurred in the 
thanas on the north-east of that river, but there can bfr no doubt that- the 
di-flinage is obstructed thtou^lioutthfe district. 

Since 1891 there has befen a great improveriaent in the health Of the people, 
and the^ births reported by the police since birth registration Was introduced' in 
1-892 have exceeded the deaths by more than 29,000. The crops on the Whole- 
have been good, and even in 1897 the distress Was coriiparatively slight. No 
relief works were found necessary, and the amount distributed iji charitable 
doles was very small. Railway communications have been greatly improved. 
The Gaibanda subdivision has been rendered more accessible by the line run- 
ning' fi'om Santahar to Fulchari on the Brahmaputra; the Kneh Fihar Railway 
has been completed on the north ; the railway to the Jalpaiguri Duars running 
from Lalmonir Hat thrcilgh the north of the district has been openedj and the- 
Tista river has been bridged. These operations have not' only' opened out the- 
country but they brooght many labourers into the district' s<>na6of whoxi* wei*** 



Ei.SSPUB. 



some 



64 



CHAPTEB II— VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



PopuiAXioir. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 
InuniKrants 
EmtgrantB 
Natural population 


1,126,109 
80,420 
26,692 

1,027,381 


1,039,072 
28,986 
27,470 

1,071,646 


1,061,812 
43,070 
38,679 

1,067,481 


1,003,662 
14,188 
36,085 

1,025,649 



Thara. 



POPULA- 
TIOH. 



Peboentaqe op 

VAEIATIOir. 



still there at the time of the census. Speaking of the prosperity of the people, 
the Magistrate (Mr. P. C. Mittra) says: — 

" The material condition of the people has greatly improved during the last decade. They 
generally reap good harvests, and now derive larger profits than formerly by selling jute and 
tobacco, owing to the facilities for export afforded by the new lines of railway. Agricultur- 
ists may now be seen using umbrellas and other imported things which were formerly con- 
sidered luxuries. They are now better fed, better clothed and better educated. It is true 
that they are sometimes in difficulties on account of failure of crops owing to deficient 
or excessive rainfall, but they very soon recover, as the land is very fertile and rents are 
lower than in Central Bengal." 

The earthquake of 1897 did a great deal of damage to roads and buildings, 
but it is not certain that its effects were altogether harmful. It caused 
marked changes in the level of the country and it is possible that it has improved 
the drainage. The Magistrate reports that since the earthquake malaria 
has abated, and his opinion derives some support from the vital statistics 
of the district according to which there were 190,883 deaths during the three 
years 1898 to 1900 compared with 223,034 during the previous triennium. 

131. The census shows a net increase of rather more than 4 per cent., and 

the population is now almost exactly 
what it was thirty years ago when the 
first census was taken. This result 
is due in a great measure to indmigra- 
tion, and if this were left out of 
account the increment would not 
much exceed 1 per cent. This, 
though small, may perhaps be taken 
as showing that the general opinion regarding the improvement in the health of 

_^^^__^ the district is well founded, in which 

case a marked increase may be looked 
for in 1911. The greatest expansion 
has occurred in the Gaibanda sub- 
division where it is due partly to the 
advent of the railway, and partly 
to its comparative salubrity and to 
the extension of jute cultivation, 
which has attracted settlers from the 
unhealthy thanas to the north-west, 
and also from Pabna and Mymen- 
singh. Nilphamari shows a fair rate of 
growth, due in part to the railway 
settlement at Saidpur and the flour- 
ishing trade centre at Darwani, and 
in part to the healthiness of the 
locality and the extension of sugar- 
cane and tobacco cultivation. The 
only thanas which show a marked 
decadence are Mitapokhur which lost 
heavily between 1872 and 1881, 
Mahiganj, where the decrease in 1891 
was greater than in any other part 
of the district, and Kurigram, where 
it seems to be due chiefly to diluvion and to outbreaks of cholera which is said to 
be imported by coolies passing through the subdivision on their way to Assam. 
132. Bogra is a small district, but it is one of the most prosperous in 
Bo Bengal. The soil is fertile and the great majority 

of the inhabitants are sturdy, industrious and proli- 
fic Muhammadans. It is bisected from north to south by the Kardtoy^. East 
of that river the land is alluvial and lowlying and is subject to annual inunda- 
tions. ^ On the west the surface is somewhat higher and towards the north-west 
the soil is a hard clay and is covered, where not reclaimed, by a thick under- 
brush. This is in fact a part of the B^rind or old tertiary formation already 
described in the accounts of Rajshahi and Dinajpur. The district appears to be 



BISTBICX XOXAZ 



Sadar SubMviHon 

Raoepur 

MahiKani 

Kaligauj 

Badarganj 

Mitapokhur 

Pirganj 



Nilphamari Subdivision 



1901. 



Nilphamari 
Dimla ... 
Jaldhaka 



Kurtgaon Subdivision 

Eurigaon 
Barabari 
Jfageshwari 
TJlipur 

Gaibanda Subdivision „ 

Gaibanda ,., 

Oobindttanj 

Sundarganj 



g,lS4,tSl 



6S8,S91 

142,033 
106,882 
161,611 
94,704 
93,648 
69,913 



461,314 

160,663 
133,289 
167,462 



B14,S9S 

66,099 
126,678 
142,010 
190,606 



S20,184 

200,779 
234,183 
85,222 



1891-1901. 1881-1891, 



+ 43 



1-8 

7-6 
3'4 
1'7 
8-0 
6-7 
2'8 



+ 30 

+ 9'6 

— 2-6 

+ 1-8 



+ 1-3 



4'8 

4 '3 

•7 

1-8 



+ lfi-3 

+ 14'7 

+ ]6!0 

— 1-6 



— IS 



— 3-9 

+ 6-1 

— 14-9 

— 4-1 

— 11 
+ 0-2 

— 1-6 



0-4 

2-2 
1-6 
0-6 



- SO 



8-8 

2-8 
6 '6 
5-3 



NORTH BENGAL. 



65 



more healthy than either Rajshahi to the west or Rangpur to the north. The 
drainage is somewhat better and malaria is less prevalent. It is only along the 
bank of the moribund Kaxatojd, and especially in the towns of Bogra and 
Sherpur, that serious unhealthiness exists. Between 1872 and 1881 the popula- 
tion grew by 6*5 per cent., and this was followed during the next decade by a 
further increase of 11 "2 per cent. The great general prosperity of the district 
is shown by the fact that on both occasions every thana in the district shared 
in the general improvement. 

"Since 1891," says the Magistrate, Mr. Sen, "there has been no disaster 
of any kind, either in the shape of famine or pestilence, to impede progress. 
There was some scarcity in 1897, but there was no loss of life and local help 
sufficed to allay it. The inhabitants are well off, and most cultivators hire 
foreign labour at the time of reaping and sowing. Wages are high and the 
local people will rarely condescend to work as coolies." The opening of 
the railway from Santahar to the Brahmaputra towards the close of the decade 
promises to still further increase the prosperity of the district, and a great 
amount of produce is already being exported by means of it. The earthquake 
of 1897 overthrew most of the brick buildings in the towns of Bogra and 
Sherpur, including the Government offices, and struck a serious blow at the 
prosperity of Sherpur town which was already decadent; but otherwise no 
serious harm was done. The vital statistics show a net excess of about 30,000 
births since 1898, and the Bogra and Sherpur towns and Sherpur thana are the 
only places where the registered deaths have outnumbered the births. 

133. The census of 1901 shows a further increase of 11 '8 in the 

population, and again every thana in the 
district contributes to the general result. 
The growth is greatest in the Panchabibi 
thana in the Barind, which adjoins the 
highly progressive thanas of Patiram 
and Patnitala in Dinajpur and its 
development is due to the same cause, 
viz., the clearance of the jungle by immi- 
grant Sant^ls and Mundas, who remain 
only so long as the landlord demands no 
rent, and then move on elsewhere with 
their portable huts, leaving the land 
already reclaimed to be occupied by the 

settled cultivators of the district. The thana is sparsely populated compared 
with the rest of the district, and thero is still ample room for further expansion. 
The next most progressive thana, Dhunote, presents a complete contrast to 
Panchabibi, as it is already the most densely populated part of the district. 
The soil is a grey sandy loam of great natural fertility and it receives annual 
deposits of silt from the Jamuna. The principal crop is the highly profitable 
jute which finds a ready market at Serajganj, on which the numerous water 
channels which intersect it converge. It lies along the bank of the Jamuna and 
the climate is good. Very similar conditions prevail in Sibganj and Shariakandi, 
but here jute is less extensively grown. The smallest increase is in the Bogra and 
Sherpur thanas. These are less healthy than the rest ; Sherpur in particular is 
jungly and the silting up of the Karatoy^ has led to obstructions in the drainage. 
As abeady observed, the vital statistics of this thana show an excess of deaths 
over births. Bogra thana is already somewhat densely populated, but in 
Sherpur the population is sparse. 

134. The variations above noticed are due in the mam to natural causes. 

There is a considerable immigration 
from Pabna and Rajshahi on the 
south and south-west, and some emi- 
gration to Rangpur and Dinajpur on 
the north and north-west. There 
are about 5,000 immigrants from the 
Sonthal Parganas and Chota Nagpur 

andmore than twice as many from Bihar and the United Provinces, The former 



Than 


Popnlation 
1901. 


Percent! ge 
of variation. 




1891-1901. 


1881-1891. 


DISTRICT TOTAL 

Bogra 

Shariakandi' 

Sibganj 

Panphabibi 

Khetlal 

Adamdighi 

Sherpur 

ChunSte 


8B4,S3S 

258,104 
134,688 
76,622 
89,026 
61,477 
110,967 
54,032 
79,820 


+ 6-2 
+ 16-2 
+ 13-4 
+ 22-1 
+ 11-2 
+ 9'5 
+ 7-1 
+ 19-0 


+ 113 

+ 9-3 
+ 11-6 
+ 13-9 
+ 9'1 
+ 16'1 
+ 15-2 
+ 7-6 





1901. 


1891. 


POPUIATIOK. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigranis 

Emigrfnts 

Natural population ... 


437,3*9 

22,358 

8,137 

423,128 


417,184 

16,539 

7,619 

409,264 


391,632 

38,663 

6,301 

361,280 


372,829 

17,921 

6,908 

360,816 



Qg CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



are mostly settlers in the Barind, while the latter are nearly all temporary visitors 
who carry palkis, dig earth and serve as field labourers during the dry months. 
Since 1891 the number of immigrants has fallen ofB, especially those 
from Rajshahi, Chota Nagpur and the Sonthal Parganas, while the number 
of emigrants is greater. It is thus probable that although the immigrants 
exceed the emigrants very nearly in the ratio of 5 to 2, the balance of migra- 
tion during the decade under review has not been very much in favour of this 
district, and the greater part of the improvement that has taken place may 
be attributed to natural causes. 

135. The head-quarters subdivision, which forms the south-western half of 

Pabna, like the adjoining portion of Rajshahi, is an 
area of silted up river-beds, obstructed drainage and 
marshy swamps. It is fertile, but abounds in old villages surrounded by jungle, 
and malaria is very rife. From 1880 to 1884 it shared in the excessive 
mortality from fever that distinguished the Rajshahi district during these 
years. The Serajganj subdivision, on the other hand, resembles the neighbour- 
ing half of Bogra. It is lowlying, but except in Raiganj the drainage is not 
impeded by the high banks of dead rivers. It thus receives the benefit of an 
annual deposit of silt from the Jamuna, but at the same time, when the 
floods subside, the water readily flows off and does not stagnate as it does 
further east. The climate is consequently far more healthy than that of the 
south-western half of the district. Jute is the main crop and the people are 
very prosperous. Apart from the climate and the fertility of the soil, the varia- 
tions in the population depend largely on fluvial action. The district lies in 
the angle formed by the confluence of the Padma and the Brahmaputra, or 
Jamuna as it is here called. Both these rivers, but especially the latter, are 
constantly oscillating, cutting away land in one direction and adding it in 
another. For a series of years one bank is gradually cut away and the other 
added to, and then for another series of years the opposite process goes on. 

The census of 1881 showed an increase in all parts of the district, 
especially in the Dulai thana, where it was probably due to alluvion. Then 
came the fever epidemic in the south-west of the district and during the early part 
of the next decade there was a very heavy mortality. The Padma cut away its 
northern bank and spread over the country, leaving in many parts a deposit of 
sand that effectually checked cultivation. At the same time the Jamuna 
washed away a considerable area in the Mathura thana. The result was 
that at the end of the decade the population of the head-quarters sub- 
division was less by I'l per cent, than it was at the beginning. In Serajganj 
none of these adverse conditions prevailed and the population grew by 
8'3 per cent. 

136. During the decade that has just passed the circumstances have been 
very similar to those of the previous ten years. The south-western part of the 
district has been uniformly unhealthy and the vital statistics show an excess of 
deaths over births in everjr thana. In Serajganj, on the contrary, the public 
health has been good and in every thana, except Raiganj, where the figures 
approach equality, the births greatly exceed the deaths. In the bead-quarters 
the process of erosion is still going on. The Padma has caused some further 
diluvion in Dulai and a considerable portion of Mathura has been cut away 
by the Jamuna and thrown up on its opposite bank in the Dacca and 
Mymensingh districts. Owing to the difficulty of defining a village with 
precision, it is impossible to lay very much stress on variations in the number of 
inhabited villages, but it is none the less significant that in this thana the 
number has fallen since 1891 from 257 to 216. Further north the river 
has been making amends for these ravages, and in the Shahzadpur and 
Serajganj thanas extensive chars have been formed which are now sufficiently 
high to admit of cultivation and permanent habitation. The crops have been 
good in most years of the decade, especially in Serajganj. In 1897 there was 
a partial crop failure, but the only tract at all seriously affected was a small 
strip of about 70 square miles between Sara and Pabna with a population of 
35,000. Test works were opened, but the demand for employment was very 
trifling and no regular relief works were found necessary. 



NOETH BENGATi. 



67 



THA-HA. 



POSULA- 
TION. 



1901. 



DISXniCT XOTAt 

Sadar SuMi/vision 

Dnlai 

Pabna ... ••. 

Uathura 

ChatmOhar 

Serajganj Subdivision ,„ 

SetaiganJ 
Shahzadpur 
Baigani - 
Xjlapara 



1,4S0,461 

5SS,749 

170,882 

Vilfili 

88,644 

W9,860 

833,712 

264,180 
261,896 
110,368 
197,268 



Peeceniaoe of 
vakiation. 



1891-1901. 



+ 4-3 

— 91 

— 7-2 
+ 6-3 

— 6-3 
~ S8 

+ 94 

+ 10-9 
+ 8-8 
+ 11-6 
+ 7-2 



1881-1891. 



+ 5-9 

— ri 

+ 0-9 

— 18 

— 6-6 
+ 0-6 

+ 83 

+ 8-6 

+ 9-2 

+ 7-1 

+ 7-1 



137. The outcome of the above conditions is a net gain of 4*3 in the 

population of the district as a whole, 
the resultant of a further fall of 2'1 
per cent, in the head-quarters, and a 
further increase of 9*4 in the Seraj- 
ganj subdivision. In the former 
tract all the thanas show a decrease 
except Pabna, which includes Sara. 
The growing importance of this 
place as the terminus of the northern 
section of the Eastern Bengal State 
Railway has here led to a rapid 
growth of the population. The deca- 

, dence elsewhere has already been 

sufiBciently accounted for. In Serajganj the greatest development has taken 
place in Eaiganj where the so-called Bunas are at work clearing jungle. The 
immigration of Santdls and other aboriginal tribes has not greatly increased 
since last census, and as the number of births only slightly exceeds the 
number of death's, it is probable that there has been a movement to this thana 
of ordinary cultivators from other parts of the district to take up land 

cleared by these pioneers, but 
vacated by them as soon as rent was 
demanded. Some natives of Saran 
and Champaran have also settled 
down in this thana as cultivators. 
The number of immigrants and 
emigrants alike has decreased since 



POPXTLATIOS. 



1901. 



Male. 



709,896 
34,168 
39,917 

716,165 



Pemalo. 



Male. 



female. 



711,068 
] 4,882 
24,386 

720,671 



677,262 
37,710 
46,216 

683,768 



683,971 
16,790 
27,977 

696,168 



Actiial population 
Immigrants ... 
Emigrants ... 
Natural population 

1891, and it is not probable that the movements that have taken place during 
the decade have had much effect on the population. The losses on the one 
side would seem to have been nearly balanced by the gains on the other. 

138o The Mahananda river flows through Malda from north to south and 

divides it into two nearly equal parts which present 
Malda. ^ery difi'erent characteristics. West of the river 

the soil is alluvial and comparatively low and a great deal of it has been 
fiubiect to fluvial action in very recent times. The Ganges once washed the 
walls of Gaur, but it now flows sixteen miles further east. Except between 
Gaur and the Mahananda where there are extensive undrained swamps, 
the land on this side of the MAhananda is very fertile and admirably adapted 
for the cultivation of rice, mulberry and the celebrated Malda mangoes. The 
eastern half of the district lies in the Barind, and has a high undulating 
surface and a stiff clay soil. It once bore a dense population, but is now very 
thinlv inhabited and is covered with thorny tree-3ungle locally known as MMl. 
It is well suited to the growth of winter rice and it is now being rapidly opened 
out in the manner already described in the case of Dinajpur, Rajshalii and 
Boffra Towards the south, in Nawabganj, the land becomes alluYial ahd here, 
as in the other portions of the district bordering on the Ganges, the cultivable 
area varies according to the trend of the river. _ * « a •„ lUo ^{«fr,Vf 

Between 1873 and 1881 there was an increase of 5-0 in the district 
nonulation. Nawabganj, Kharba and Ratua showed a rapid expansion, but the 
foThern hklf of the trict west of the Mahananda was found to contain fewer 
inh^MtTntsthan it had done at the earlier of the two enumerations. ^ This 
wasttrit^^^^^^^ oi^^^-^^l fevers^ during the latter h.ifo, 

Z decade. Duritiff the next ten years the district prospered greatly. The 
ooeninf out of th% Bdiand thanas by Santdls which had barely com- 
menced in 1876,* made great strides, especially in Gajol and Old Malda 
?here was also a great growth of population along the south of the distoct 
t^t Z^l r^\r,-huted to the advent of Musalman cultivators from Murshidabad, 

:^^?Sj^^^d^^ 

Zri^i^t^^^l^M.^^^^^^ S-t devastation/and the population is both scanty and 

unprogregsire." ^2 



68 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 





POPniA- 


PEEOElTTAeE OP 




IIOK. 


TARIiTlOJf. 


Thanas. 










1901. 


1991-1901. 


1881-1891. 


HISTRICT TOTAZ ... 


8»4,030 


+ 8S 


+ 14'S 


Gumashtapur ... 


60,316 


+ 6-6 


+ 7-0 


English Bazar... 


911,449 


— 6-2 


-H3-5 


Nawabganj 


73,393 


— 1-6 


-HI 2-3 


Kaliachak 


148,201 


+ 14-3 


-I-12-0 


Sibranj 


127,908 


+ 11-2 


-H2-6 


Kharba 


70,810 


+ 10-* 


+ 8-6 


Batua 


63,742 


+ 7-8 


-H33-0 


Talsihatta 


48.134 


+ 3 


(a) 


Old Malda 


72,348 


+22-9 


■1-16 -2 


Gajol 


79,776 


+26-0 


-1-17-6 


Manikchak 


43,965 


— -3 


(ft) 



(a) 
(ft) 



Included in Kharba. 
Included in Eatua. 



district has not been satisfactory. Cholera was rife in several years, _and in 

1900 there was a specially bad out- 
break in English Bazar. Malarial 
fever generally breaks out on the 
cessation of the rains, and in six 
years out of the last ten the district 
has been amongst the six with the 
greatest reported mortality from fe- 
ver ; in 1899 it headed the list with a 
recorded fever mortality of 41 -7 per 
1,000. In spite of this, the vital 
statistics for the last nine years show 
an excess of births over deaths of 
nearly 2U,000. The crops on the 
whole have been good and there has 
been no famine. The cultivation of 
jute is extending, and the agricultural community is well ofE. 

139. The increase in the population during the decade has been 8*5 per 
cent. The thanas that have grown most are Old Malda and Gajol in the 
Barind where Santals are still settling in large numbers. In 1891 there were 
19,457 immigrants from the Sonthal Parganas, and there are now no less than 
42,575. The number of Santals in the district is 62,126, compared with 
20,989 ten years ago. There were then only 7,969 female immigrants and there 
are now 21,180. In spite of the great development that has taken place 
during the last twenty years, these two thanas are still the most sparsely in- 
habited in the _ district, and unless something unforeseen happens, they will 
probably continue to grow rapidly for many years to come. The next most 
progressive thanas are Kaliachak and Sibganj in the south-west of the district 
where new chars have attracted a number of Muhammadan cultivators from 
English Bazar and Nawabganj and from Murshidabad on the other side of the 
river. English Bazar shows a considerable decrease which is attributed partly 
to declining trade, partly to unhealthiness, including several outbreaks of 
cholera, and partly to migration to the adjoining thanas. The slight falling off 
m Manikchak arid Nawabganj is due probably to diluvion. Since 1891 the 
immigrants have increased from 86,124 to 97,887, while the number of emi- 

grants has fallen from 32,699 to 

26,764. If allowance be made for 
deaths amongst the migrants enumera- 
ted in 1891 the district would ap- 
pear to owe considerably more than 
half of its total increase of popula- 
tion to immigration, and the amount 
to natural growth is probably not 

J he Kuch Bihar State is a lowlying waterlogged plain, the whole 
of which has at one time or another been subject to 
fluvial action. Major Colvin, the Superintendent 





1901. 


1891. 




Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigrants ... 

Emigrants 

Natural population ... 


437,639 
66,070 
13,220 

395,789 


446,391 
42,817 
13,644 

417,118 


399,917 
49,793 
16,845 

366,969 





140. 



KirCH BlHA.B 



of the State, says: — 

"It is intersected by several large rivers, but except in the cold weather when they are 
at their lowest, i is impossible to get any faU from the snirounding country to the rLrs 
Even m the cold weather the fall to the bed level of the river! is very smaU, and anv 
attempt to cut drainage channels to the rivers would lead in the rains to an inundation ratS 
than to the drainage of the area they might be constructed to serve. The State generally sS 
fact hopelessly waterWged. In the rains it is not uncommon to see the wells^oyeSr 
^^'^^ can le no doubt as to the general unhealthiness of the State." ""^"""^"S' 

The census of 1881 disclosed a gain of 13-1 per cent., but much of this 
r«?S il L'v ^T T^^l t '^^P^^'^^ "methods of enumeration. The census of 
1872 was taken by the Settlement Department and was spread over more than 
li""" T""^' ^'? y^^rs later there was a loss of 3-9 per^cent., due maSly to 
the unhealthmess of the climate, and, to a smaller extent, to emigratSn The 
only thana that showed an increase was Eulbari in the north-east of the State 
Ihere was a severe epidemic of cholera in 1891, and fever has always S 



NORTH BENGAL. 



69 



present. The condition of the people in other respects is satisfactory. They 
get three crops a year, and if one falls short, they have the others to fall back 
upon. There was scarcity in 1892 and 1897, but it did not amount to famine, 
and in other years the outturn has usually been good. The opening of the 
Kuch Bihar State Railway and the Bengal-Duars Railway has done much to 
develop the resources of the country and has greatly facilitated the disposal of 
produce of all kinds. 

141. If only the climate were more salubrious, a rapid expansion might 
be expected, but, as matters stand, the unhealthiness of the climate has more 
than counterbalanced the productiveness of the soil, and the recent census 

shows a further decline of 2 per cent. 
The only thaua that can boast of an 
increase is Haldibari. This is the 
principal centre of the jute trade and 
is yearly growing in importance. It 
is on the Eastern Bengal State 
Railway, and it enjoys with Mekli- 
ganj, the reputation of being the 
healthiest portion of the State. The 
falling- off is greatest in the head- 
quarters thana, where it is due not only to unhealthiness, but also to migration 

to Fulbari; the figures for the last 

census 



Tbanas. 


Population 
1901. 


PBEOESTA&E OB 
TABIATIOIf. 




1891-1901. 


1881-1891. 


STATE TOTAL 

Eotwali 

Dinhata 

MekliganJ 

Haldibari 

Mathabhanga ... .. 
rvUbari 


B66,974 

121,609 

14!),900 

60,203 

37,641 

140,183 

73,438 


-SOB 

- 4-4 

- 20 

- 1-0 
+ 9-9 

- 3-5 

- 1-6 


-3-9 

- 4-0 

- 6-6 

- 2'2 

- 1-7 

- 6-7 
+ 37 





1901. 


1891. 


Population. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

ImmigrantB 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


801,382 
27,884 
16,761 

290,259 


269,692 
16,969 
16,782 

264,416 


302,457 
27,990 
24,962 

290,439 


276,411 
19,219 
21,199 

278,891 



large 



moreover included several 
gangs of labourers employed 
on public works. There has been 
a decrease both of immigrants and 
of emigrants since 1891, especially 
of the latter, and the net result seems 
to be a slight gain of nearly 15,000 
persons. These variations which have occurred are therefore due mainly to 

natural causes. j. i i i . 

143, Sikkim has been described as the catchment area ot the head-waters 

of the Tista. It lies between the Singilela and the 
Sikkim. Chola Ranges, and is bounded on the west by Nepal, 

on the north and north-east by Tibet, on the south-east by Bhotan, and on the 
south by the district of Darjeeling. By the treaty of Titalya m 1817, the inde- 
pendence of Sikkim, which the Gurkhas had begun to menace was guaran- 
teed and the settlement of Nepalese in Sikkim was thus prevented from that 
date' until 1889. In the latter year the aggression of the Tibetans led to a war 
which was succeeded by the more active intervention of the British Government. 
A Political Officer was appointed; communications were greatly improved by the 
construction of roads and bridges, and the settlement of Nepalese was permitted 
in certain parts of the State. These measures were followed by a rapid 
develonment of the country. Settlers from Nepal flocked m and the land 
revenue which was Rs. 29,294 in 1891, rose to Rs. 61,879 ten years later. 
The census of 1891 indicated a total population of 30,458, and this has now 
crown to 59 014, an increase of 93-7 per cent. The enumeration of 1891, 
following as 'it did so soon after the introduction of British methods of 
administration, was admittedly incomplete, and some of the increase must be 

ascribed to the greater accuracy of the present 
census. The two main indigenous castes, Lepchas 
and Bhotias, now number 7,982 and 8,184 (includ- 
ing 7,253 Sikkim-Bhotias), as compared with 5,762 
and 4,894, respectively, in 1891. The climate is 
good ; there have been no serious epidemics ; the 
people have been prosperous, and they are naturally 
very prolific, the crowds of children being a very 
striking feature of every Sikkim hariilet. But even 
so it is impossible that these tribes should have 
developed to the extent the above figures would 
indicate in the short space of ten years. ^ The bulk 
of the total increase, however, is in the immigrant 
population. Of the total inhabitants, no fewer than 22,720 or 38.5 per cent, 
were born in Nepal. There was no return of birthplace m this State m 1891, 





TOTAl HTIMBBB IN— 


CABTB OB TBIBK. 


1901. 


1891. 


Khambu 

liimbu* 

Mnrmi 

-Gnrung 

Kbas 

Kami 

Hangar 

Newar 

Samai ••• 


9,668 
6,936 
6,267 
4,603 
3,260 
2,838 
2,446 
1,818 
838 


3,983 

3,366 

2,867 

2,931 

829 

1.670 

901 

729 

287 



• The Limbus are natives of Sikkim as 
well as of Xepal, bnt they are shown m t* s 
MtMory 88 their increase is Probj^ly due 
mataiy to immigration from the other side 
of the boundary. 



70 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION.^ 



but there can be no doubt that the majority of these immigrants must have 
come in since that year. The caste return at that census was very rough, but 
a comparison of the figures for some of the main Ne palesecastes shows how 
greatly they have increased in number. There is still a great quantity of waste 
land fit for cultivation, and it is probable that for many years to come the 
population will continue to grow at a very rapid rate. 



EAST BENGAL. 



143. 



The Dacca district is one of the most favourably situated in Bengal. 
-Lying between the Jamuna and the Megna, and, 
watered by numerous other streams, it is blest with 
a pure and abundant supply of water. 'J'he greater part of the district 
lies low and is flooded every year ; but after the rains the flood water is 
drained off, and leaves the land enriched with a thick deposit of silt, while 
in the absence of large stagnant marshes it is very free from malaria. Jute is 
very extensively grown and yields a handsome profit to the cultivators. 
North of Dacca, towards the Mymensingh border, the character of the country 
changes. The surface rises and becomes undulating, and a stiff clay takes the 
place of the alluvium. This part of the district is still somewhat sparsely 
populated, but it is now rapidly being opened out by various Mongoloid tribes : 
the main crop here is the winter rice and, unlike other parts of the district, 

its success is dependent solely on 
the rainfall. More than three- 
fifths of the people are Musalmans, 
who are hardier and more prolific 
than their Hindu neighbours. A 
large proportion of the popula- 
tion derives a livelihood from 
fishing in the great rivers which 
adjoin the district, and boatmen 
from Dacca are to be found on 
every waterway in the Province. 
The Bikrampur pargana in Munshi- 
ganj, where Ballala Sena once held 
his Court, is the great home of 
many respectable and well-to-do 
families, and its sons are to be 
found all over Bengal and Assam, 
holding appointments under Gov- 
ernment or in private service, or 
practising as pleaders in the courts. 
The jute industry attracts numer- 
ous natives of Bihar and the United 
Provinces, and many of the domestic servants, street coolies, palki-bearers, &c., 
also come from up-country, 

144. In these circumstances a rapid growth of the population is but 
natural. In 1881, and again in 1891, an increase of more than 14 per cent. 
was recorded, and this has now been followed by a further gain of 10"6 per 
cent. The slight diminution in the rate of progress is not to be attributed 
to any falling-of£ in the prosperity of the people or in the healthiness 
of the district. The crops and the public health have alike been good during 
the decade; even in 1897 there was no crop failure, and the only sufferers 
were people with small fixed incomes who felt the pinch of the high prices 
caused by the famine in other parts of the Province. The riparian tracts 
are subject to changes by the action of the rivers, especially those on the 
Padma, in the manner described in paragraph 135, There is thus from 
time to time a considerable movement of the riparian population, from one 
side of the river, where land has been diluviated, to the other, where new chars 
have been thrown up. Since 1891 the Padma has cut away a considerable 
area along the western boundary of the district, especially in Nawabganj 
and Harirampur, and has thus checked their growth. Moreover, the 
population in some parts is already so dense that further progress at the 
rapid rate which prevailed prior to 1891 is impossible, Munshiganj thana 



Thana. 


POPULA- 
IION. 


Peeobhtaoe of 
vahiatioh. 




1901. 


1891-1901. 


1881-1891. 


DXSXItlCT XOXAL 

Sadar Subdivision 

Kotwftli 

Keruniganj 

Kapasia 

Nawabganj 

Sabha 

Narayanganj Subdivision 

Narayanganj 

Raipura 

E.upgan.i 

Munshiganj Stibdivlsion ... 

Munshiganj 

Siinagar 

ManifcganJ Subdivision ... 

Manikganj 

SealooAircha 

Harirampur 


3,649,333 

881,317 

93,682 
206,591 
174,436 
170.855 
236,964 

660,713 

157,993 

276,627 
226,892 

638,331 

300,692 
337,769 

468,943 

207,772 
169,920 
101,250 


+106 

+ 11-4 

+ 12-0 
+ 10-7 
+ 22-3 
+ 9-1 
+ 13'7 

+ 130 

+ 14-3 
+ 16-7 
+ 14-6 

+ 9 9 

+ 10-2 
+ 9-6 

+ 4-3 

+ 3-9 

+ 7-6 
+ 1-1 


+ 14-3 

+ 13-8 

+ 4-8 
+ 13-7 
+ 18-9 
+ 9-7 
+ 18-3 

+ 330 

+ 33'2 
+ 18 '0 
+ 20-2 

+ 167 

+ 20'2 
+ 13-7 

+ 4-6 

+ 8-4 
+ 3-4 



EAST BENGAL. 



71 





1901. 


1891. 


Population. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Act' al population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


1.312,417 
66,767 
94,842 

1,350,492 


1,SS7,105 
28,532 
33,646 

1,342,218 


1,187,739 
68,9U3 
80,6Ue 

1,199,312 


1,207,991 
32,988 
27,966 

1,202,709 



which showed an advance of 20*2 per cent, in 1891, has now grown by only 
10*2 per cent., but even this rate of expansion is extraordinary, having regard 
to the fact that the thana has a density of 1,526 persons to the square mile. 
Narayanganj, with 1,362 persons to the square mile, has increased 14"3 by 
per cent., compared with 33 2 per cent, in lh9 1. The circumstances of Raipura, 
Rupganj, and Srinagar are very similar. The rate of increase is con- 
siderably less than in 1891, but even now it is very high, having regard to the 
great density of the population, which, in Srinagar, reaches the extraordinary 
average of 1,787 per square mile. In the part of the Manikganj subdivision, 
south and west of the Dhalesvari the quality of the land is said to be deteriora- 
ting. The district has also lost 
by migration. Immigrants now 
number only 85,399, compared 
with 101,841 ten years ago, while 
the mimber of emigrants has risen 
from 108,300 to 128,381. This 
would indicate a net loss of nearly 
45,000 if the whole of the migra- 
tion were of a permanent nature, but the great excess of male emigrants seems 
to indicate that the majoriiy of them are only temporarily absent. 

145. Until the beginning of the last century the main channel of the 

Brahmaputra flowed through the middle of the 
Mymensingh district, and although it now passes 
along the western boundary and the old Brahmaputra has shrunk to a mere 
fraction of its former volume, there is still a marked difBerence between the 
country on either bank. The people to the east of it resemble those of Sylhet 
in their dialect, social customs, and observances, while those to the west are like 
the inhabitants of Pabna, Faridpur and Dacca.* To the east the country is 
intersected by marshes or hdors where large herds of bufEaloes are grazed in the 
cold weather. Jn the rains the whole country is submerged, except the crowded 
villao-e sites which are artificially raised above the ordinary flood level. The 
ffeneral elevation of the country west of the old Brahmaputra is higher, and it 
contains a great part of the formation known as the Madhupur jungle, which 
stretches northwards from the boun- 
dary of the Dacca district almost 
as far as the town of Mymen- 
singh. The climate is generally 
salubrious, and the Durgapur thana 
at the foot of the Garo Hills alone 
has a bad reputation for its un- 
healthiness. The soil is rich and 
large areas are under jute, the most 
profitable of all the main crops. 
The great majority of the inhabi- 
tants are prolific Muhammadans. 
The census of 1881 showed an 
increase in the population of 29-9 
per cent. ; but a great deal of this 
must have been due to the inaccu- 
racy of the enumeration of 1872. 
The next decade resulted in a fur- 
ther gain of 13'4 per cent. Since 
1891 there has been no crop 
failure. In 189€ the rice crop was 
short, but this was compensated for 
by a good yield of jute. The 
public health has been fairly good, 
previous decade, and there was 

in these 



Than*. 



JUSTJtlCX TOTAI- 

Sadar Subdivision ... 

Nasirabad 

Phulbaris 

GhaCar^aoo 

Nandail 

liswarganj 

Phulpur 

Setralcona Siibdivision . 

Netrakcna 

Kendua 

Durgapur 

Jamalpur Subdivision 

Jamalpur 

Ualitaifcarl 

Diwangonj 

Sherpur 

Xangail Subdivision 

Taneail 

Kalihati 

Gopalpur 

JCishorganj Subdivision 

KishorBanj 

Eatiadi 

Jiajitpur 



POPULA- 
TIOH. 



1901. 



Percentage oi 
vakiation. 



1891-1901. 



1881—1891. 



3,915,068 

977,476 

264,763 
110,347 
162,454 
115,778 
160,660 
163,589 

S74,77i 

271,037 
189,421 
114,313 

673,398 

282,477 
99,852 
146,067 
146,602 

970,339 

467,730 
280,807 
271,702 

719,184 

297,378 
]6*,387 
267,419 



+ 13 8 

+ 14-6 

+ 14-4 
+ 19-0 
+ 15-6 
+ 9-2 
+ la- 1 
+ 17 "7 

+ 71 

+ 8-6 
+ 10 6 
— V2 

+ IG-1 

+ lo'9 
+ 16-0 
+ 11-9 
+ 21-2 

+ 139 

+ 10-6 
+ 10-4 
+ 19'4 

+ 11-8 

.+ loa 

+ ll'0 = 

♦ 14-8 



+ 13 6 

+ 14 6 

+ 10-4 
+ 26-0 
+ 19'1 



8-6 
22'1 



+ 11-3 



— 0-6 

+ 16-8 

+ 16-2 
+ 24-6 
+ 28-0 
+ 1-6 

+ 14-3 



+ 18-2 
+ 28-3 

+ 4'4 

+111 

+ 12-3 
+ 13-5 
+ 9-4 



Cholera was more prevalent than in the 

a comparatively high death-rate in 1895, 1899 and 1900, but even 



* XT^A^r. tlip IWiilmmmftdans the tract west of the old Brahmaputra belonged to Sirkar Bazuha, which 
includFdtl^^portSSraJBrW^^^^^^ *^« ^-^ -- ^'^-^''^ ^ 

Sirkar Silbat. 



72 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



years the births outnumbered the deaths. The average of the returns for the 
decade shows a yearly excess of births over deaths amounting to 10 per 1,000. 

146. The result of these favourable conditions is a further addition to 
the population, exceeding that of the preceding decade, though it represents a 
slightly smaller percentage of increase. The only tract which has not shared in 
the general advance is the swampy terai in Durgapur, the unhealthiness of 
which has. already been alluded to. This thana was slightly decadent in 1891, 
and the small increase of 1881 appears to have been due to the inaccuracy of the 
previous census. The adjoining thanas in Sylhet are equally unhealthy. 
Further west the country at the foot of the Graro Hills seems less injurious to 
health, though it is more suited to the residence of people of Garo origin than to 
that of the ordinary Bengali. The thanas in this tract all show a great develop- 
ment, especially Sherpur, which has a larger proportional increase than any 
other thana in the district. Then comes Gopalpur on the Padma, where the 
growth may be due partly to the formation of new chars, and then the 
sparsely populated thanas in the Madhupur jungle, Ghafargaon and Phulbaria, 
where the Koch Mande and other aboriginal tribes are pursuing their congenial 
task of converting the forest into cultivated fields. 

There has been an increase of VdfiZO immigrants, and of 5,785 emigrants 

since 1891. The former include 
36,891 persons from the United 
Provinces, aod 18,604 from the 
Patna Division. A large propor- 
tion of these are merely temporary 
visitors, employed in earth-work, 
palki-bearing, domestic service, 
and the like. They form their 
matrimonial connections in their 



Population. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Mule. 


Female. 


Actual population ... 2,014,805 

Immigrants 1 82,760 

iDmif^ants 1 45,971 

Natural population ... 1,978',016 


■illl 


1,788,616 
78,788 
43,577 

1,753,410 


1,683,570 
23,207 
31,203 

1,691,666 



own country, and have no permanent effect upon the population of the district. 
The net gain by migration since 1891 has been less than 17,000 and forms an 
inappreciable proportion of the total variation in the population. 

147. The whole of Faridpur is an alluvial formation. To the north 
Faeidpctb ^^^ ®^®* *^® l&iidi is comparatively high, but in 

the south the whole country is one vast marsh 
intersected by strips of high land along the banks of the numerous rivers that 
once flowed through the tract. The inhabitants are mostly Chandals 
(Namasudras), who build their houses on the river banks or on mounds 
from twelve to twenty feet in height laboriously thrown up during the dry 
months when the water disappears. The main crops are jute and a long- 
stemmed variety of winter rice which grows as the flood increases and will 
thrive in any depth of water provided that it does not rise too suddenly. 
Subject to this condition the higher the water rises the better; the silt deposit 
is proportionately increased, the sewage and other impurities which collect 
in the cold weather are more completely removed, and there is less difficulty 
in obtaining potable water during the winter months. These marshes are 
slowly but steadily being silted up, and a constantly growing area is being 
reclaimed for cultivation. The Padma forms the northern and north-eastern 
boundary of the district and here changes are constantly taking place. 
Sometimes large areas are diluviated, while at other times extensive accretions 
are formed. In recent years accretions have been the order of the day, and 
several thanas, notably Sibchar and Bhanga, are believed to possess an area 
considerably in excess of that with which they are credited in the records of 
the Survey Department. The western boundary is formed by the Gorai and 
Its continuation, the Madhumati, which affords an outlet for much of the water 
brought down by the Padma during tlie early part of the monsoon, when the 



comparatively high level of the Brahmaputra prevents an exit by the ordinary 
channel. The population has been growing st '" ' - ■• 

people" says the Magistrate, 



The population has been growing steadily since the time of the 
farst census. " The material condition of the people " says the Magistrate, 
Mr. K. C, De, "is very good. Wealth is very equally distributed, and 
there are no very rich or very poor people. The majority live by cultivation 
or by fishing. The land is very fertile and yields rich harvests with very 
little toil. The rivers and other inland waters are richly stocked with fish 
and it would be a very abnormal state of things that could cause a famine." 



EAST BENGAL. 



73 



Than A, 


PoPirn- 

TION. 


Pekcehtage op 
vabiaiioh. 




1901. 


189i— 1901. 

- 


11881—1891. 


niSTSICX XOXAZ 

Sadar Subdivision 

Faridpur 
Blianga 
Haksudpnr ... 
Awanpur ... 
Bhushana ... 

Goalundo Subdivision 

Goalundo 
Baliakandi ... 
Pangsa 

Sladaripur Subdivision 

Palang 
Sibchar 
Gopalganj ... 
Kotalipara ... 


1,937,646 

713,336 

106,462 
214,064 
191,891 
104,271 
95,648 

319,385 

120,620 

88,632 

110,233 

906,135 

218,345 
296,819 
189,846 
110,897 
91,228 


+ 63 

+ 6-8 

+ 9-6 
+ 13 '9 
+ 8-8 
+ I'S 

- 6-5 

~ 9'3 

- B-S 

- 9-B 

- 12-9 

+ 13-5 

+ 12-8 

- 1'2 
+ 38-9 
+ 14-5 
+ 1B*3 


+ 9-9 

+ 66 

+ B-8 
+ 11-4 
+ 12-4 
+ 2-6 

— 4-9 

+ 90 

+ 18-8 
+ BO- 2 
- 16-8 

+ 15-0 

+ 16-6 
+ 8-8 
+ 12-9 
+ 13-4 
+ 19-6 



The health of the district does not appear to be so satisfactory as its material 
condition. Malarial fever is prevalent especially in the north-western thanas. 
The years 1892, 1899 and 1900 were very unhealthy, particularly 1900, 
when special steps were taken to afford medical aid to the sufferers. In 
the district as a whole the vital statistics indicate an excess of 61,144 births 
over deaths, but in the Goalundo subdivision and the Bhushana thana the 
deaths outnumbered the births by 32,709. 

148. The census of 1901 shows a net increase of 6*2 per cent., but this 

is the outcome of very different 
figures for the various thanas. The 
north-western part of the district, 
including the whole of the Goalundo 
subdivision and Bhushana thana in 
the head-quarters subdivision, which 
marches with the decadent thanas 
of Kumarkhali in Nadia and Magura 
and Muhammadpur in Jessore, has 
lost heavily, and Awanpur which ad- 
joins this area is practically station- 
ary. The decrease in the Bhushana 
thana has been continuous since 
1872. Pangsa showed an increase 
in 1881, but in 1891 it lost more than 
it had gained in the previous decade. 
In Goalundo thana the decline is to 
some extent apparent only, the popu- 
lation having been swollen at the time of the previous census by a great number 
of pilgrims from the districts further east who had visited Calcutta for the 
Ardhodaya Yoga and happened to be at Goalundo on their way home on 
the date when the census was taken. There is another decadent tract in the 
Palang thana to the west of the Madaripui subdivision which has also suffered 
much from malarial fever. The decrease would here have been greater but 
for the additions to its area owing to alluvion. The other thanas in Madaripur 
all show a great increase due, in the case of Sibchar, to new settlements 
on i alluvial accretions, and in the rest of the subdivision, to the natural growth 
of the population. The climate is here more healthy, the inhabitants are 
prolific the soil is fertile and the gradual reclamation of the swamps still 
affords 'ample room for expansion. Trade also is developing, and the boat 
traffic with Calcutta now passes this way, and not, as formerly, by channels 
further north. The increase in the Bhanga and Faridpur thanas, like that 
in Sibchar, is probably due in part to immigration to new chars, 

149. The total number of immigrants is about the same as in 1891, but 

the number of females is nearly 5,000 
less, which seems to indicate a 
considerable decrease in the number 
of permanent settlers from other 
districts. It must however be 
remembered that many of the 
foreign-born enumerated in the 
district in 1891 were pilgrims on 

their way home from the Ardhodaya Yoga, amongst whom the females far 
outnumbered the males. The number of emigrants, both male and female, is 
far smaller than it was ten years ago. The district may have gained slightly 
by the movements of the people during the decade, but not sufficiently to 
niaterially affect the variation in the population which has taken place. By 
far the greater part of increase must be ascribed to natural causes. 

150. Khulna, was formed into a district in 1882. Prior to that date the 

head-quarters and Bagerhat subdivisions belonged 
Khuina. ^q Jessore, and Satkhira to the 24-Parganas. The 

northern part of the Satkhira subdivision is a densely populated tract, resembl- 
ins: in its general physical characteristics the adjoining thanas of Jessore ; the 
drainage is bad and there are numerous swamps, and malaria is always present. 
The otiier northern thanas are also lowlying, and Mis are large and numerous, 





1901. 


1891. 




Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Pemale. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Bmigrants 

Natural population ... 


970,164 
46,673 
54,190 

977,681 


967,482 
26,810 
21,620 

962,292 


906,594 
41,637 
63,807 

928,764 


917,121 
31,696 
28,712 

914,138 



74 



CHAPTER II — VAEIATIONS IN THE POPULATIOX. 



but the country is more open and there is less jungle, while the stagnant pools 
and tanks, which are so common in North Satkhira, are rarely to be seen. In 
these thanas there is still room for expansion and much of the bil land is capable 
of reclamation. The southern thanas include large areas in the Sundarban 
forests where there is an immense quantity of fertile land awaiting the 
axe and the plough. The jungle is steadily being pushed back, and every 
year more land is being brought under cultivation. A great deal of the 
work of reclamation is carried out by persons whose permanent homes are 
elsewhere, but the number of regular settlers is gradually growing. The only 
thanas which showed a decrease between 1873 and 1881 were the Sundarban 
thanas, Asasuni and Morellganj, for which the sale of the Morell Estate, which 
led to the abandonment of many of the clearances, was held responsible. 
During the next ten years both thanas recovered their losses and there was a 
general advance throughout the district, save only in Kalaroa and Baitaghata, 
where there was a slight falling-ofE, which was attributed by the Magistrate 
to the fact that the population had reached the limit which the soil was capable 
of supporting. 

The health of the people during the decade ending in March 1901 has 

not been specially good, but no seri- 
ous epidemics have been reported. 
The crops were short in 1896 and 
1897 owing to drought, and in 1900 
a great part of the winter rice was 
destroyed by the disastrous down- 
pour in September of that year. 
The cultivators, however, seem on 
the whole to have been fairly prosper- 
ous. 

151. The census of 1901 shows 
that the popula,tion has grown by 6"4: 
per cent., compared with 9 per cent, 
in the previous decade, and 3'] per 
cent, in the nine years prior to 1&81. 
This is the net result of an increase 
of 17*7 per cent, in the head-quarters 
subdivision, and of 6-6 in Bagerhat, 
coupled with a falling-off of 1-5 per 
cent, in Satkhira. In the latter sub- 
division again the decrease is practi- 
cally confined to two thanas, Kalaroa and Asasuni. In Kalaroa it is due to the 
prevalence of malaria and to repeated attacks of fever. In this thana the 
vital statistics show a considerable excess of deaths over births, while in the 
district at large the number of births reported exceeds that of the deaths. 
There has also been some emigration to the clearances in the Sundarbans where 
there is a great demand for labour, and wages are two or three times as high 
as in Kalaroa. Asasuni, which also shows a large decrease, has a very fluctua- 
ting population. The cause of the falling-off has not been clearly ascertained. 
For some reason the extension of cultivation in the Sundarbans is pro- 
ceeding far more slowly in this subdivision and in Bagerhat than in the 
adjoining thanas of the Ql-Parganas, and of the Khulna head-quarters sub- 
division. Satkhira itself, which 
shows a slight decline, has sufered 
from the diversion of the boat traffic 
between Oalcuitta and East Bengal 
to channels further south; the 
health of the people has also been 
unsatisfactory. The growth of the 
Bagerhat subdivision is normal and 
calls for no special comment. Culti- 
vation is being steadily extended into the shallow bils which form so marked a 
feature of this part of Bengal. In the district head-quarters the most noticeable 
item in the Statistics is the increase in the population of Paikgachha thana which 
has grown by nearly 50 per cent, during the decade. This is owing to the 





Popula- 


Pbecentige of 


Thana. 


tion. 


VAKIATION. 




1901,. 


1891-1901. 


1881-1891. 


mSTRICT TOTAI, ... 


1,333,043 


+ 64: 


+ 90 


Sadar Subdivision 


401,78S 


+ X7-y 


+X00 


Kliulna 

Dumuria 

Baitaghata 

Paikgachha 


153,999 
82,262 
40,655 

124,869 


+ 8-4 
+ 4-1 
+ 9'8 
+ 497 


+ 11-5 
+ 6-3 
- 1-2 
+ 18-2 


Bagerhat Subdivision ... 


363fiil 


+ 6 6 


+13-3 


Bagerhat 

Mollahat 

Bampal 

Morelganj 


165,806 
'62,460 
61,687 
83,183 


+ 2-6 
+ 5'6 
+ 10-7 
+ 12'4 


+ 10-1 
+ 17'1 
+ 11-8 
+ 18-1 


Satkhira Subdivision ... 


488,317 


- IB 


+ 6-7 


Satkhira 

Kalaroa 

Magura 

Asasuni 

Kaligani 


ini.819 

71,713 

91,326 

66,247 

168,102 


— 1-7 

— 10-1 
+ -3 

— 11-9 
+ 6-1 


+ 7-2 
— 2-0 
+ 10-7 
+ 1*« 
+ 2-3 





1901. 


1891. 




•Male, 


Pemale. 


Male. 


Female. 


\ 

Actual population ...! 

Immigrants , 

BmigrAnts 

Natural population 


'663,470 
43,697 
14,068 

623,841 


699,573 
28,020 
11,815 

689,868 


617,981 
61,872 
13,786 

679,894 


669,671 
28,007 
13,580 

646,244 



EAST BENGAL. 75 



progress made in pushing back the jungles of the Sundarbans, and to the settle- 
ment of cultivators on the new clearances, which attract cultivators not only 
from other parts of the district, but also from Nadia, Jessore, Faridpur and 
other districts. The total number of immigrants has fallen ofE considerably 
since 1891 but they are more numerous by nearly 27,000 than they would, 
have been, had no fresh settlers come in to the district. Taking the ebb 
and flow together, the district seems to have gained by the movements of the 
population during the decade to the extent of from 20,000 to 25,000 persons'. 
It should be noted, however, that many of the Sundarbans cultivators are 
not permanent settlers, but continue to reside in their old homes and only visit 
the Sundarbans when ploughing or harvesting operations are in progress. 

152. Backergunge lying between the Haringb^ta and the Megndi is an 

unmistakeable part of the true delta, and its surface 
Backbegungb. nowhere rises much above high water-mark. 

The whole district is intersected by innumerable rivers and water-channels, 
whose banks, being comparatively high, are lined with village sites. To 
the north the country is full of low swamps like those of South Faridpur, 
where the Namasudras live an almost amphibious life ; here much land is 
still too low to be cultivable, but the process of reclamation is steadily going 
on as fresh deposits of silt gradually replace water by mud. To the south 
there are extensive areas of waste land covered with forest, part of which has 
never yet been brought under the plough, while part was formerly cultivated, 
but was devastated by the Maghs during the early part of the 18th century. 
At the present time cultivation in this direction is being rapidly extended, 
chiefly by Muhammadans, who are constantly throwing but new colonies 
further and further into the jungle. 

Between these two tracts, the marshy swamps on the north and the 
Sundarban forests in the south, a strip of comparatively high land intervenes 
which has been longer settled. The population has here attained a density 
that does not permit of further rapid growth, save only in the east, in the 
Bhola and Barmuddin thanas, where the effects of Magh incursions have 
not yet altogether passed away, and there are still considerable stretches of 
cultivable waste land. The main crop is the long-stemmed winter rice. The 
land is everywhere most fertile and owing to the extensive areas of 
waste and the independent character of the cultivators, especially of 
those who are Muhammadans, they have succeeded in making very favourable 
terms with their landlords. They are thus exceptionally prosperous even for 
this part of Bengal. Thanks to the strong winds of the south-west monsoon, 
fever is far less prevalent than further inland. The water-supply, however, 
is bad during the winter months and epidemics of cholera are not uncommon. 

153. The district is most fortunately situated in every way but one; it is 
peculiarly exposed to the devastating effects of cyclones, and from time to time, 
when an exceptionally strong south wind happens to coincide with the bore 
or tidal wave which sweeps up the Megna at the time of the full and the new 
moon storm -waves break over the country, drowning men and cattle and 
destroying crops and houses. Nor is the harm done by these storm-waves 
confined to the immediate loss which they cause. The inrush of salt- 
water renders the water of the rivers undrinkable and the people have 
resort to stagnant tanks and bils. This and exposure inevitably lead to 
disastrous epidemics of cholera and othei diseases. The worst of the recent 
calamities of this nature was in 1876, when a tidal wave submerged a great 
part of the district to a depth of from 10 to 45 feet. Nearly 74,000 persons 
in the Backergunge district alone were drowned, and the cholera epidemic 
which followed carried off nearly 50,000 more. The census of 1881 showed 
a nominal increase, but it seems probable that this was due to the inaccuracy 
of the previous census, and that there had in reality been a considerable loss of 
population. During the next decade the district made a rapid recovery 
and added 13'3 per cent, to its population. The increase was enormous 
in Galachipa, Barmuddin and other thanas that had suffered most seriously 
from ihe sto'rm-Wave. By 1891, therefore, it may be said that the district 
had fully recovered from the disaster of 1876. 

During the last decade the crops have been uniformly good, but there 
have been three cyclones, in October 1893, October 1895, and June 1896, 

K 2 



76 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPDLATION. 



which though not in any way comparable to the terrible disaster of 1876, 
did a considerable amount of damage, especially in the Bhola and Barmuddin 
thanas, where they were accompanied by floods of salt-water. These cyclones 
were followed as usual by epidemic diseases, but in spite of this the average 
.reported birth-rate was nearly 43 per 1,000 compared with a death-rate of 
rather less than 37. The decade, in the district as a whole, may therefore 
be held to have been fairly healthy, but some parts suffered from fever, 
especially the Bauphal and Matbari Police Circles; in the former the reported 
deaths exceeded, and in the latter they very nearly equalled, the births. 

154. The census of 1901 shows a net gain of 6-4 per cent., or 

almost exactly the same as that 
indicated by the vital statistics of the 
district. There has been a decline 
in the Matbaria thana which has 
suffered from fever, but the other 
two Sundarban thanas — Amtali and 
Galachipa — have grown rapidly, as 
also have the hil thanas, Graurnadi 
and Sarupkati. The remaining 
thanas all show a fair rate of 
increase, with the exception of Nal- 
chiti, Backergunge, Fatuakhali, and 
Bauphal in the centre of the district, 
the population of which is almost 
stationary. This appears to be due, 
to a great extent to migration to 
the waste lands in the north and 
south of the district, and, in Bauphal 
to a high rate of mortality. The 
eastern thanas in the Dakhin Shah- 
bazpur subdivision would doubtless 
have shown a much greater increase 
but for the damage done by cyclones. 

There has been a considerable falling-off in the number of female 

immigrants, while amongst emigrants 



Thabta. 


Popula- 
tion. 


VEBCENIAeE OP 
VABIAIIOH. 




1901. 


1891-1901. 


1881—1891. 


DISTBICT XOTAZ ... 


3,291,7B2 


+6-4 


+ 13-3 


Stidar Subdivision. ... 


945,367 


+ 7'S 


+ 7-9 


Barisal 

Qanmadi 

Mebdiganj 

Jhalakati 

Nalchiti 

Backergunge 


143,573 
238,934 
165,675 
174,184 
80,466 
148,695 


+ 7-7 
+14-8 
+ 6-2 
+ 6'5 
+ 2'5 
+ 2-1 


+ 6-1 
+ 12-9 
+ 7-0 
+ 14-0 
- 07 
+ 8-1 


rirojpur Subdieision 


653,494 


+ 6-5 


+16-2 


Firojpur 

Sarupkati 

Matbari 

Bhandaria 


180,835 
206,113 
114,195 
102,851 


+ 5*3 
+ 13-7 
- 4-8 
+ 8-0 


+ 6-6 
+ 12'9 
+ 24-8 
+ 29-2 


Patitakhali SuhdUi- 
»ion. 


522,658 


+5'2 


+26-4 


PatuakhaU 

Bauphal 

Amtali 

Galachipa ...' 


197,283 
110,583 
124,690 
90,102 


+ 1-4 
- 0-4 
+11-3 
+18-8 


+ 11-9 
+ 16-6 
+ 18-4 
+ 83-8 


JOahhin Shahbaspur 
Subdieision. 


270,233 


+4-6 


+31-7 


Bhola 

Barmuddin 


150,435 
119,748 


+ 4-2 
+ 6-0 


+ 17-2 
+ 28-1 



POPUIATIOK. 



1901. 



Male, 



Actual population 
Immigrants 
Emigrants 
Natural population 



1,175.903 

61,085 

24,635 

1,149,353 



Female. 



1,115,849 

8,900 

14,477 

1,121,426 



1891. 



Male. 



1,104,443 
61,725 
29,178 

1,081,891 



Female. 



12,688 

13,1)58 

1,061,992 



the decline is chiefly in the number 
of males who have left the district. 
The immigrants greatly outnumber 
the emigrants, but this is due to a 
large excess of males who, when not 
accompanied by females, are usually 
only temporary settlers. So far as 
permanent migration is concerned, the balance seems to be against the district 
and the natural increase of the population is probably somewhat greater than 
the variation in the actual population would indicate. 

155. The Noakhali district comprises a tract of mainland, the whole of 
NoAKHALi. which, with the exception of a narrow strip in the 

extreme east, where it borders on Hill Tippera, is 
low-lying alluvium, and several islands in the mouth of the Megud, the largest 
of which are Sandip and Hatiya. The houses are built, as in many other 
parts of East Bengal; on mounds of earth. Each house stands in the middle 
of its occupant's fruit trees and cultivation, and there are few of the crowded 
village sites so common further west.^ The district is still being added to by 
alluvion, and though parts are occasionally washed away, its area is steadily 
growing. The Megna, which once flowed past the town of Noakhali has 
now receded to a distance of more than eight miles. The country is intersected 
by numerous water channels. The soil is an alluvial clay and is extraordinarily 
fertile; as long ago as 1625 the island of Sandip was described by Sir Thomas 
Herbert as '_' one of the fairest and most fruitful spots in all India." It is esti- 
mated that in normal years the district produces twice the quantity of rice 
required for local consumption., Large quantities of betel-nuts and cocoanuts 
are also grown for export. The health of the people is generally fair, but the 
water-supply is very inferior; it is usually derived from the shallow tanks or 



EAST BENGAL. 



77 



ditches from which earth has been taken to raise the land on which the houses 
are constructed. I'he district is liable, like Backergunge, to inundation from 
the bores or tidal waves which sweep up the Megna at the full and new moon, 
especially at the time of the equinox, and when assisted by a strong south 
wind occasionally submerge the islands and considerable areas on the main 
land. Noakhali suffered even more than Backergunge from the bore of 1876; 
its recorded decrease of 2*3 per cent, between 1872 and 1881 probably 
represents only a small portion of the actual loss of population, but even accord- 
ing to the census figures the islands of Hatiya lost a quarter and Sandip a 
sixth of its inhabitants. During the next ten years, everything was favourable 
to a rapid increase of the population, and the census of 1891 showed an increase 
of 23*0 per cent., which was wholly due to natural growth, a remarkable 
instance of the way in which a community can recover from the efEects of a 
catastrophe of the kind without any assistance from outside, and a proof that in 
some way or other, positive or preventive checks on the growth of population 
in India, operate to a far greater extent than is usually imagined. It is possible 
that to some extent the deaths from drowning and disease occurred mainly 
amongst the old and feeble, i.e., the part of the population whose share in the 
reproductive process was already at an end, and whose loss would be noticeable 
only for the few years which would otherwise have elapsed before their decease. 
But other causes also must have operated. It is often the case that a severe 
epidemic is followed by a cycle of healthy years when the death-rate is much 
below normal. Moreover the great reduction in the population must have 
relaxed the pressure on the land, thereby enabling young men to set up separate 
establishments at an earlier date and encouraging the Muhamtnadans, who 
comprise three quarters of the population, to accept in their harems the widows 
of their deceased neighbours, who in leaner years would have remained unappro- 
priated and infertile. 

156. During the last ten years the crops have been uniformly good and 
communications have been greatly improved. As stated by the Magistrate, 
Mr. CargiU.— 

The district has rapidly advanced in the scale of civilisation during the decade 
Telegraphic communication to Noakhali has been introduced. Eoads have been improved 
Steamer communication has been opened up between various parts of . the district and 
Backergunge. The Assam- Bengal Eailway, which runs though the east of the district, has 
been constructed. These improved communications have facilitated exports and the standard 
of living has thus been raised. An ordinary raiyat wearing a shirt and a pair of shoes with 
an umbrella over his head, is a common sight. 

The district was visited in 1893 by a cyclone which destroyed a fifth 
of the rice crop and up-rooted nearly half the betelnut trees. The loss caused 
by the destruction of these valuable trees has not yet been made good, but in 
other respects the people soon recovered from their losses. 

The health of the district is said to be deteriorating, but this conclusion 
seems to be based on the gradually growing number of deaths reported by the 
police, which in 1900 reached a ratio of 42*1 per 1,000 calculated on the 
population of 1891. The gradual increase, however, seems attributable rather 
to improved reporting and, if the ratio be calculated as it should be, on the popu- 
lation of 1901, it falls to 37-2 per 1,000, which, if correct, is considerably below 
the estimated actual death-rate in the province as a whole. That the reporting 
is now very accurate seems to be proved by the extraordinary number of 
births shown in the return for 1900 which represent a ratio of 59*3 per 1,000 
on the population of 1891 or 52-3 on that of the present census. 

157. The growth of the population dm-ing the last decade has been 13'1 

per cent., and the whole of this has 
been due to natural development. 
The volume of migration has not 
varied to any great extent, and so far 
as it goes, the balance is against the 
district. The amount of permanent 
movement to and from the district is 
about equal, but amongst temporary 
migrants the number of persons born 



Population. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


668,777 
10,776 
26,139 

684,141 


•572,961 
8,568 
7,444 

671,627 


508,727 
10,976 
21,499 

619,260 


600,966 
7,748 
7,626 

600,849 



in Noakhali who were absent from the district was far greater than that of 



78 



CHAPTEE n — VAEIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



Thana. 


POPDLA- 
TION. 


Peecektage OB 

VAEIAIIOS. 




1901. 


1891—1901. 


1881— 189<. 


DISTBICT TOXAL ... 

Sudor aubdveUion 

Sndhanun 

Companigeni (old thsua 
Bamni). 

Lakhmipur 

Besamganj 

Bamganj 

Sandip 

Hatiya 

Fenny Subdivisioa 

Ghliagalnaia 

fenny 


1,141,7118 

892,891 

130,942 

45.168 
166,528 
190,065 
119,678 
115,137 

66.390 

318,837 

136,816 
183,521 


+131 

+ 14-4 

+ 8-8 

- 8-1 
+ 18-9 
+ 18-8 
+ 20-4 
+ 14'fl 

+ la'a 

+ 9-7 

+ 8-9 
+ 10-4 


+23-0 

+ 84-3 

+ 187 

+ 17-7 
+ 28-3 
+ 21-0 
+ 230 
+ 39-6 
+ 22-4 

+goo 

+ 13-7 
+ 26-4 



TiPPBEA. 



persons bom elsewhere who were found there at the time of the census ; it was 
also considerably in excess of the corresponding number in 1891. The fact 
already alluded to, viz., that three quarters of the inhabitants are Muhamma- 
dans is no doubt largely accountable for the continued rapid growth of the 
population. An examination of the details reveals a decrease only m one 
thaua, Companyganj, where the Megna, or Bamni as it is here called, has cut 
away a considerable area of land, and has caused many people to move to 

other parts of the district. The in- 
crease is moderate in Sudharam where 
there has probably been some diluvion, 
and in the eastern thana, Chhagal- 
naia ; it is somewhat greater in 
Fenny and in the islands of Sandip 
and Hatiya, and is greatest of all in 
the north-west of the district, in the 
Begamganj, Ramganj and Lakhmi- 
pur thanas. These thanas escaped 
the cyclone of 1893; their climate is 
particularly good, and they adjoin the 
thanas in the Tippera district where 
the greatest development in that 
rapidly growing district has taken 
place. They have also benefited by 
the great expansion in jute cultivation 
which has taken place since 1891. 

158. Tippera is bounded on the west by the Megna, and on the east by 

the native State of Hill Tippera. The greater part 
of the district is a low alluvial flat, with a light and 
somewhat sandy, but very fertile soil. Towards the eastern boundary the 
surface becomes undulating and gradually rises ; the soil is here a deep alluvium, 
alternating with bands of clay and sand. The great majority of the inhabit- 
ants are Muhammadans, who are known to be more prolific than their 
Hindu neighbours. The district was still very sparsely inhabited at the time 
of the first census in 1872, but since that date it has enjoyed uninterrupted pros- 
perity and its population has grown rapidly. Between 1872 and 1881, the 
increase was only 7*8 per cent., but during the next decade it rose to 17'8. 
The growth was greatest in the Chandpur subdivision, which added nearly 31 
per cent, to its population in the course of the ten years, a result which 
was at the time thought impossible, in the absence of any marked immigra- 
tion from outside, except on the hypothesis that the count of 1881 were 
defective. 

Since 1891 the harvests have been good in seven years, poor in two, 1895 
and 1896, and bad in one, 1893, when heavy floods destroyed a great part of 
the crop and drowned many cattle, and relief works on a small scale were 
found necessary. The peasantry soon recovered from this temporary calamity, 
and they are now, says the Magistrate, as prosperous as any in India. The 
construction of the Assam-Bengal Railway, which traverses the district from 
north to south and has a branch running westwards through the southern part 
of the district to Chandpur on the Megna, has greatly improved the communi- 
cations, and has assisted in the rapid development of the jute trade, which is the 
other main feature of the decade. The Civil Surgeon reports that the health 
of the people has not been satisfactory, but here, as elsewhere, the gradual 
rise in the reported death-rate appears to be due to the greater accuracy of 
the vital statistics rather than to a growing unhealthiness. And even 
now the reported death-rate is extraordinarily low, that in 1900 being at 
the rate of only 28 per 1,000 of the population according to the present census. 
The recorded birth-rate in the same year was 39'4 per 1,000. According 
to the returns, the net excess of births over deaths during the nine years 
preceding the year 901 was 215,933. 

159. The actual increase as shown by the census is 335,056, or 18'8 
per cent. This great development has taken place entirely through the 
procreative capacity of the people living in the district without any aid from 
migration. The number of immigrants slightly exceeds that of emigrants, 



EAST BENGAL. 



79 



Population. 


1901. 


1891. 


Males. 


Females. 


Males. 


Females, 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


1.086,989 
37,095 
30,367 

1,079,261 


1,082,002 
19,667 
25,162 

1,037,507 


911,799 
87,966 
26,198 

900,032 


871,136 
18,697 
18,892 

871,331 



Thana. 


PopriA- 

TIOS. 


PBECENTAaE OF 
TAEIATIONB. 




1901. 


1891—1901. 


1881—1891. 


DISTMICX IOTA Z 

Sadar Sabdivision 

Comilla 

Saudkandi 

Morndnagar ' 

Ghandina 

Ghsudagram 

Laksam 

Brahmembaria Subdivision 

Brahmanbaria 

Kasba 

Nabinagar 

Cliandpur Subdivision, ... 

Ghandpor 

Matlab Bazar 

Hajiganj ... i 


3,117,991 

9S7,699 

177,468 
206,414 
204,715 
110,707 
133,553 
124,847 

677,084 

300,934 
143,638 
23i,612 

483,S08 

208,944 
185,654 
138,610 


+ 18-8 

+ 16-6 

+ 12-4 
+ 19-8 
+ lB-7 
+ 18-6 

+ 14-5 
+ 20-7 

+14-7 

+ 14-4 
+ 12-8 
+ 16-3 

+300 

+ 36-8 
+ 23-9 
+ 26'8 


+ 17-8 

+16-7 

+ 18-3 
+ 20-7 
+ ],6-l 
+ 18-8 
+ 181 
+ 19'0 

+ 11-9 

+ 11-2 
+ 11-6 
+ 13-6 

+30-8 

+ 23-6 
+ 34-3 
+ 22-5 



but whereas the former stand at almost the same figure as in 1891, the latter 

have increased by more than 
10,000. The number of women, 
and therefore of permanent mi- 
grants, is also considerably greater 
amongst those who have left the 
district than amongst the new 
arrivals. As on previous occasions 
the growth is greatest in the south 
of the district and the Chandpur subdivision now possesses considerably more 
than twice as many inhabitants as it had in the year 1872. The rapid 
spread of jute cultivation, the formation of new accretions along the bank 
of the Megnd, and the development of trade in Chandpur town account in 
part for the exceptionally rapid rate of progress in the Chandpur thana. 

Matlab Bazar has also benefited 
by alluvion, but in Hajiganj no 
such explanation is possible, and 
the reasons for its rapid growth 
must be sought in the extension of 
jute cultivation and the improve- 
ment of communications by the 
construction of the Assam-Bengal 
Railway and the enlargement by 
natural processes of the channel 
cut some years ago to connect the 
Dakatia river with the Megna. 
Here and in the Laksam and 
Chandina thanas which adjoin it, 
the population is still far less dense 
than in any other part of the dis- 
trict, and there is even now ample 
room for further expansioi). In view of the fact that the present rate of pro- 
gress has been continuous since 1872, too much stress cannot be laid on the 
improvement of communications during the decade, and the main reason for 
the increase which has taken place is doubtless the fact that the tract is very 
fertile and is capable of supporting a -much larger population than it posseted 
in 1872, and that it has enjoyed great prosperity unbroken by any serious crop 
failure or wave of unhealthiness. To the east and north of this area of maximum 
development the rate of growth gradually diminishes. It is least in Camilla 
and the thanas to the north of it which adjoin the Hill Tippera boundary. This 
is the oldest part of the district ; there is less room for further expansion, the 
soil is not so well adapted to the cultivation of jute, and there is a tendency to 
migrate to Hill Tippera where a considerable amount of cultivation is already 
carried on by persons resident in the adjacent parts of the Tippera district. It 
seems probable also that there has been some migration from these thanas to 
those in the south of the district. 

160. Gbittagong differs from the portions of Eastern Bengal hitherto dealt 

with in that it is not, in the main, alluvial. It con- 
Chittagong. gjgjg Qf g^ jQQg narrow strip of coast, valleys and low 

ranges of hills, lying between the Bay of Bengal and the Hill Tracts. Its 
average breadth is about 15 miles and its length about 165 miles. The g.en€»ral 
trend of the hills is north and south. The islands of Maskhal and Kutubdia, a 
small tract opposite to them in the centre of the district and a very narrow line 
along the coast are the only parts of the district where the soil is alluvial. The 
people generally are prosperous. They get two crops of rice yearly and 
building materials are cheap and easily procurable. The poorer classes obtain 
remunerative employment in Arakan during the paddy harvest when they 
earn a rupee a day. The south of the district is occupied largely by Maghs 
who took refuge there in the latter years of the 18th century after the cojiquest 
of Arakan by the Burmese. In Chittagong town the climate is feverish, Kut in 
most parts of the district it is fairly healthy. As in Noakhali and Backeigwge 
so also in the alluvial part of Chittagong, the great scourge of the country 
are the inundations of sea water which occasionally take place. Ihe tidal 
wave of 1876 afflicted Chittagong almost as much as Backergunge and the 



80 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



census of 1881 would have disclosed a decrease of population but for the omis- 
sions that took place in 1872. The next ten years were healthy and prosperous 
and a considerable increase of population was recorded in 1891. 

In the earlier years of the last decade the crops and the public health were 
good, but in 1896 and 1897 the outturn of rice was considerably below the 
average. The opening of the Assam-Bengal .Railway not only vastly improved 
the local communications but also gave a great stimulus to the development of 
the Port of Chittagong, which has now become the natural harbour for South 
Assam and a great part of Eastern Bengal. 

161. But on the 24th October 1897 the district was devastated by a 
cyclone worse than any that it had suffered from since 1876, The hurricane 
reached its maximum intensity in the small hours of the night when a 
series of storm waves swept over the islands of Kutubdia and Maskhal and 
the villages on the mainland near the coast, drowning many thousands of men 
and cattle, sweeping away homesteads and destroying the standing crops. The 
loss of life by drowning alone was estimated at 14,000 souls. But this was by no 
means all. The district had suffered from two bad seasons and the total loss of 
the rice crop in the tracts chiefly affected caused intense distress. The houses 
in which the people lived had been blown down and where the storm waves had 
passed, the very materials had disappeared. In his report on the disaster, the 
Magistrate says that in some places, only the stumps of broken fruit trees and, 
here and there, the remnants of the posts of houses remained to show that a 
village had ever existed. Active relief operations were taken in hand imme- 
diately and it is believed that there was no direct loss of life from starvation. 
But want and exposure must have lowered the general health and rendered the 
people liable to the attacks of disease. The country was covered with corpses 
of men and animals and the water-supply was polluted. Cholera broke out 
with appalling intensity, and in Kutubdia alone it was estimated that 1,.300 
persons, or more than 1 1 per cent, of the population, died during the epidemic. 
The total number of deaths from cholera in the district in 1897 and 1898 
aggregated 21,001 against 4,234 in the two preceding, and 1,340 in the two 
following, years. The excess over the average of these two periods or about 
18,000 deaths may not unreasonably be ascribed to the effects of the cyclone. 

To fully appreciate the effect of this catastrophe on the population of the 
affected tracts it is necessary not only to compare the figures for the recent census 
with those for 1891 but also to note the progress made during the previous decade. 
These tracts form the most fertile part of the district and in 1891 the Maskhal 
thana, which includes the island of that name and Kutubdia, showed an 
increase of 29'6 per cent. Banskhali increased by 25*4 and Chakaria by 
20*3 per cent. It may be assumed that, but for the cyclone, an equally rapid 
rate of progress would have occurred between 1891 and 1901. Maskhal 
however shows a decrease of 7*3 per cent, and the other two thanas are practi- 
cally stationary. The difference between their present population and that 
-which they would have attained if they had continued to grow at the same pace 
as in the previous decade is about 54,000. The whole of this difference 

may be laid to the account of the 
cyclone. There has been some 
loss in other thanas also, due partly 
to damages caused by the cyclone 
and partly to subsequent emigration 
to Kutubdia and Maskhal which 
has concealed to some extent the 
true extent of the loss sustained by 
the latter tracts. It is probably 
to these causes that the decline 
in the population of the Satkania 
thana must be ascribed. 

1 62, The net increase during the 
decade in the district as a whole is 
63,083 or 4-9 per cent. It seems 
probable that this is only about 
half of that which would have 
taken place but for this disastrous 
cyclone. Ihe greatest growth has occurred in the thanas along the coast which 





POPtlLA. 


Pebitbiitagb 07 




noH, 


VAEIATIOW. 


Thana. 










1901. 


1891—1901. 


1881—1891. 


DISTBICT TOTAL 


1,3B3,350 


+4-9 


+139 


Sadar Subdivision. 


1,1B3,081 


+4-6 


+13S 


Chittagong 


99,343 


+W8 


+ 19-3 


Mirsarai 


102,259 


+ 9-3 


+ 21-8 


Sitakund 


74,048 


+ 9-9 


+ 15-0 


Hathhazari 

Phatikchari 

Kaojan 

Patiya "' 

Satkania 

JJaniikhali ", 


94,571 
112,308 


+ B-8 
+ 2-4 


+ 9*1 

+ 4-7 


164,501 


+ 2'9 


+ lO'B 


S21,278 
156,613 
128,166 


+ 7-1 
-1-1 
+ 0-3 


+ 14-6 
+ 7-3 

+ 26-4 


Cox's Bazar Sitbdlvision ... 


300,169 


+ 6-S 


+16-8 


Coi'b Bazar 


75,960 


+ 9-9 


+ 10-2 


Maskhal 


34,921 


— 7'S 


+ 29-6 


Chakiria 


47,288 


+ 1'6 


+ 20'3 


Teknaf 


42,000 


+21-3 


+ 13-3 



EAST BENGAL. 



81 



Population. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Aotaal population 

ImmigrantB 

Emigrants 

Natural Population 


641,392 

7,029 

85,804 

720,167 


711,868 

4,310 

20,233 

727,781 


613,868 

7,824 

78,633 

686,677 


674,299 

3,872 

24,087 

694,514 



escaped the brunt of the cyclone, vis., Teknaf and Cox's Bazar in the south, and 
Chittagong, Sitakund and'Mirsarai in the north. The two former are still very 
sparsely inhabited. In the three latter, the soil is more fertile and there is a 
much smaller proportion of uncultivated waste than in the inland thanas, and 
they are now traversed by the railway. 

There is very little immigration to Chittagong and the emigration which takes 

place is to a great extent of a tem- 
porary character. Such emigrants 
are mostly men who leave their 
wives in Chittagong and go for a 
few months to Arakanto cut paddy 
or serve as laskars on steamers. 
Owing to the poor rice crop in 1900- 
1901, the number of these tem- 
porary emigrants was greater than usual from Satkania thana which furnishes 
the greater number of these harvest labourers. The number of females amongst 
the Ghittagonians enumerated elsewhere, however, shows that there is also a good 
deal of permanent emigration, especially to Arakan, where nearly 14,000 of 
the total number were found. Most of these are Maghs, whose ancestors sought 
refuge in the district a century ago and who are now gradually finding their 
way back to their old home. The Magistrate reports that a number of families 
left the district to settle permanently in Arakan after the cyclone of 1897. 
The net loss by the movements of the people during the decade would be about 
37,000 if all were permanent migrants, but as so many of them are only tem- 
porary, the real loss is much less, possibly not more than from 20,000 to 35,000. 

163. The Chittagong Hill Tracts lie to the east and north-east of the 

regulation district of Chittagong of which they 
CHiTTAGONe Hill Teacts. formed part until 1860. The greater part of the 
country consists of hills and ravines covered with dense tree-jungle. The main 
rivers are the Karnaphuli, Sangu, and Mamori. The inhabitants are Maghs, 
ChAkmas, Tiparas, and Kukis. They build their houses on bamboo platforms 
raised ten feet from the ground, and cultivate on the /^^zm system; that is to 
say, they make clearances in the jungle, and when the trees and undergrowth 
they have cut down become sufficiently dry, they burn them ; then after the 
ground has been softened by rain, they dibble in seeds of rice, cotton, maize, 
melons, and yams, all mixed together. The ashes of the trees furnish a rich 
manure, and the cultivator thus obtains a bountiful return from the various seeds 
sown. After one or two years, cultivation becomes impossible on account of 
the choking weeds that spring up, and the cultivator . moves on to a fresh 
clearance. The district is divided into three circles, each under its own chief 
or raja, — the Bohmong in the south, the Ch^kma in the centre and north, 
and the Mong in the north-west. The Chakma Circle is inhabited mainly by 
Ch^km^s, the Bohmong by Maghs, and the Mong by Tiparas. The settlement 
of the Maghs dates from the Burmese occupation of Arakan, rather more 
than a century ago. During the decade preceding the census of 1891 the 
district showed a net gain of 5 "2 per cent. There was a great decrease 
in the Mong Circle, and a still greater increase in the Bohmong, whither many 
families had migrated from the Mong Circle, but the differences are so great 
that it seems doubtful if the areas of the two circles were the same on both 
occasions. The ChAkmdi Circle showed an increase of 6'6 per cent. 

164. Since 1891 the history of the district has been quiet and uneventful. 

The crops have been good, there have 
been no widespread epidemics, and 
the population has grown rapidly, es- 
pecially that of the Bohmong Circle 
in the south, where the increase 
exceeds 40 per cent. This is due 
probably to migration from other 
circles or to differences in the divid- 
ing line as drawn at the two enu- 
merations. The district lost about 



Thana, 


FOPXILA- 

Tioir- 


PEBOElfTAOE OB 
VAKIATIOIT. 


1801. 


1891—1901, 


1681—1891. 


nZSIMICX TOTAZ 

Chakma 

. Mong 

Bohmong 


134,7GS 

48,789 
31,898 

41,075. 


+ 16-3 

+ 7-1 

+ 40'4 
+ 12-9 


+ B-B 

+ 6-6 
- 40-2 
+ 86'8 



1 600 persons by the adjustment of the Lushai boundary in 1898. But for this 
the net increase would have been 17'7 per cent. This is due entirely to natural 



82 



CHAPTER 11 — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



Population, 


19^. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Fei]9&le. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


68,238 
6,337 
1,109 

63,010 


56,624 
B27 
762 

66,769 


69,666 

7,694 

616 

62,488 


47,720 
983 
297 

47,032 



Thanas, 



Population 
1901. 



Peeoentagb op yaica- 

HON. 



1891-1901. 



1881-1891. 



+ 861 



+43-8 



development, coupled perhaps with a more accurate enumeration. The number 
of immigrants is sKghtly less than in 1891. On both occasions males greg^ly 

preponderated over females; many 
of the former were temporary visitors 
who had come to cut timber in the 
forests or to serve in the local police 
force. The emigrants are slightly 
more numerous than they were ten 
years ago, but even now their num- 
ber is very small. Two-thirds of 
the total number were found in Hill 
Tippera. Thirty years ago there was a considerable movement from that State 
to the Chittagong Hill Tracts, but since then the pendulum seems to have 
swung in the other direction, and the present tendency is to leave these hills 
and settle in Hill Tippera. 

165. The State of Hill Tippera comprises several ranges of low hills run- 

ning from north to south and the narrow valleys 

HillTippeea. between them. The country, covered for the 

most part with dense jungle, resembles very closely the Chittagong Hill 

Tracts. Towards the north the val- 
leys become wider, and along the 
northern and western boundary there 
is a strip of comparatively low, 
level land very similar to the ad- 
joining parts of Noakhali and 
plains of Tippera. In the hills the 
j'hum system of cultivation prevails, 
but in the lowlands the plough is used 
and the land is held permanently. 
Here cultivation is rapidly extend- 
ing, and the waste land is being 
brought under cultivation by immigrants from British territory, including, it 
is said, absconding coolies from the tea gardens of Sylhet. 

The census of 1872 was very inaccurate, and in 1881 also it is doubtful 
if a complete count was obtained. In 1891 the arrangements were less 
elaborate than in British territory, and less information was asked for but it 
is probable that so far as the bare numbers are concerned, the enumeration was 
very fairly accurate. On the present occasion the full schedule was used and 
the procedure differed but little from that laid down in the Census Code for 
Bengal. The increase of 43*8 per cent, recorded in 1891 was probably due, to 
a considerable extent, to the greater accuracy of the census in that year. The 
increase of 26* 1 per cent, now recorded appears to be due mainly to the grow- 
ing immigration from the neighbouring districts of Sylhet, Tippera, Chittagong, 

Noakhali and the Chittagong Hill 
Tracts. With a death-rate of 40 per 
1,000 per annum, the total number 
of new settlers requisite to fill death 
vacancies in the foreign-born popu- 
lation of 1891 would be rather more 
than 13,000, and about the same 
number would be required to raise 
their strength to the number now returned. This leaves 10,000 or rather 
more than 7 per cent, to be accounted for by the natural growth of the 
population. 



DISXBICT TOTAL 

Agartala 

Belonia 

Sonamiira 

Kailaohor 

Khowai 

Bharmagram 



173,3!IB 

65,615 
27,343 
39,229 
20,673 
10,295 
18,170 



Not available. 



Population. 


1901. 


1891. 


Males. 


Females. 


Males. 


Females. 


Actual population ,.. 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


92,495 

24,828 

88 

67,766 


80,830 

19,066 

64 

61,828 


71,698 

19,88a 

904 

63,288 


65,846 

14,066 

811 

62,691 



SOUTH BIHAR. 



166. The Patna district stretches along the southern bank of the Ganges. 

p Except in the extreme south the land is a dead 

level and the soil alluvial. It is watered by 

various rivers, and practically the whole area is under cultivation ; the 

western part is irrigated by the Sone Canals. Before the era of railways 

the trade followed the course of the Ganges, and its banks are lined 



SOUTH BIHAR. 



83 



•with 
now 



towns that -once 
been diverted and 



throve on 
the towns 



the 



river traffic, but the trade has 
are decadent. Twenty years ago the 
agricultural population had apparently already reached the limit which the 
land could support, and in 1891 the increase recorded was purely nominal. 
During the last decade the conditions were normal up to 1900. There was 
a heavy mortality in 1892, 1894 and 1^96, but in other years the public 
health was fairly good, and the crops were on the whole satisfactory. There 
was a short outturn in several years, notably in 1891 and 1896, but even 
in the latter year, though the landless classes suffered from the prevalent 
high prices, the district escaped the stress of famine. The recorded births 
during the eight years 1892-^1899 inclusive exceeded the deaths by 23,762, 
and but for the plague, which appeared in epidemic form in January 1900, there 
is no reason why the district should not have at least maintained its position. 

But the plague wrought terrible havoc. It broke out in January 
1900, and in the course of that month the number of reported deaths 
was 2,127. The recorded mortality rose to 4,461 in February and 8,486 in 
March. In April the epidemic began to subside, and only 3,229 deaths were 
reported. During the next few months the disease was comparatively quies- 
cent, but on the advent of the cold weather it again began to assume serious 
dimensions. In November 814 deaths were recorded, and in December 2,886. 
The total reported mortality from plague during the year was 23,022. The 
deaths from all causes aggregated 86,996, and exceeded the births by 17,946. 
In January and February 1901 the epidemic continued to grow in virulence, 
and 11,510 deaths from plague were reported. The epidemic was at its 
height at the time when the census was taken. The inhabitants were in a 
wild state of alarm. Most of the people whose homes were in other districts 
had fled, and wherever the disease broke out, those who did not go away 
altogether removed en masse to temporary sheds in their fields. Even if 
the census staff had escaped the general panic and the ravages of the disease, 
the work of enumerating a population that was constantly on the move would 
have been a very difficult task. But they did not escape. Many of them were 
stricken, and many fled, often at the last moment when it was next to 
impossible to replace them and to prepare afresh the preliminary record, which 
as often as not had disappeared. Everything possible was done to overcome 
these difficulties, and in the places where the epidemic was worst, the census 
was taken in the day time instead of at night. At the same time it cannot 
be contended that the enumeration was as accurate as it would otherwise 
have been, and it is inevitable that some of the people who were absent from 
their own houses must have been left out of account. 

167. The net result of the census was a decrease of 148,425, or 8'4 per 

cent. The decline was greatest 
amongst immigrants, who were 
fewer by 53,052, or 36 per cent., 
than at the previous census. It 
may be assumed that this result 
was entirely due to the plague 
scare which caused many of these 
temporary settlers to return to 
their homes. There does not 
appear to have been any great exodus of the district-born and the number 
of such persons who were enumerated in other districts was almost the 
same as in 1891. After allowing for the loss due to the absence of 
a great part of the foreign-born population there is still a net decrease 
of 95,373 to be accounted for. For this it would seem, the plague is 
mainly to blame. There is no doubt that the general tendency in Bihar 
is to a diminished rate of reproduction, and it will be shown in another 
chapter that the proportion of children is slowly, but steadily, falling. But 
the fact remains that, until the plague epidemic, the vital statistics showed 
a slight excess of births over deaths, and even if we allow for deaths in 
other districts amongst the large number of Patna people who seek work 
elsewhere during the dry season, it is not likely that the total number of 
deaths would greatly exceed that of births. To what extent this decrease of 
more than 95,000 is to be ascribed to actual mortality, and how far it was due 

L 2 





1901. 


1891. 


Population. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual popnlation 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural popnlation 


fill 


820,402 
60,178 
68,334 

838,658 


863,026 
67,168 
72,717 

883,276 


906,334 
78,024 
69,827 

896,68Y 



84 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



Xhanas. 


POPULi- 
TION. 


PEItCEIITA.SE 07 
VAKIATIONS. 




1901. 


1891-1901. 


1881-1891. 


DISTMXCT TOTAI, 


l,eS4,985 


- 8-4 


-I-0-9 


Sadar Subdivision 


504,666 


-13-7 


-hO-7 


Pirbahor 

Sultanftanj 

Alamgani 

Khwaja Kalan ... .:. 

Chank Kalan 

Malsalami 

Phulwari 

Bikrara 

Masaudhi Buzurg 


27,565 

1,746 

25,222 

35,093 

23,619 

27,742 

90,839 

163,612 

109,228 


+ 7*1 

- 90-3 

- 14-6 

- 19-9 

- 16-7 

- 20-3 

- 9-9 

- 9-4 

- 11-4 


-f 4-0 

-mi 

- 47 
-1- 2'7 
-12-0 

- 3-6 
■¥ 3-9 

+"2-a 


Binapore Subdivision 


1SS,08B 


-11* 


*6-6 


Dinapore 

Maner 


64,962 
87,103 


- If2 

- 11-6 


■¥ 6-6 
- 3-4 


BarJi Subdivision 


36B,3S7 


-lOB 


■>r8-S 


Barh 

Fatua 

Mokameh 


195,839 
72,608 
96,890 


- 4-4 

- 18-7 

- 151 


A- 5'6 
H- 1-4 
+21 '6 


Bihar Subdivision 


602,907 


- 09 


-31 


Bihar 

Hilsa 

Chandi 

Islampur or Athasaria 
Bilao 


265,066 
99,529 
70,766 
79,482 
88,064 


+ 0-8 
+ 2-7) 

- S'S) 

- 2-4 

- 1-9 


- 6-7 

- 0-9 

-1- 3-1 

- 1-8 



to omissions from the Census Record, it is impossible to say. The total 
reported mortality from plague was less than 35,000, but a very great number 
of aeaths must have occurred which were not included in the returns. The 
people feared the remedies that it was sought to apply almost as much as they 
did the plague itself, and it was often found that plague had been raging for 

weeks in villages where no deaths 
had been notified. The reporting 
agency moreover suffered as much 
as the general population and, 
apart from wilful suppression, the 
reporting must often have been 
very incomplete, owing to the 
general disorganisation f roin which 
the district administration suffered. 
It is probable that at least half the 
plague deaths escaped notice, but 
even so, it must apparently be 
admitted that some 25,000 persons 
were omitted from the census 
returns. 

The thanas which show the 
greatest decadence are all, with 
two exceptions, on the bank of the 
Ganges or the Sone. The great- 
est falling-off is in Malsalami, 
Fatua and Mokameh. The only 
inland police circles where there has 
been a marked decline are Masaudhi 
Buzurg and Chandi. Excluding 
Chandi, the Bihar subdivision, as a 
whole, shows a slight increase. These variations follow very closely the course 
of the plague epidemic, and the greatest decline has occurred in the thanas 
where plague was most virulent. 

168. Prior to 1865 the northern part of Gaya formed, with the south of 

Patna, the old district of Bihar, while the southern 
part constituted, with part of Hazaribagh, the sila 
Ramgarh. The characteristics of the two tracts are quite distinct. The northern 
part, which extends southwards to about 10 miles beyond Gaya town, is fairly 
level, but has a slope sufHcient to enable the water to be collected in reservoirs, 
which the people construct themselves and from which they irrigate their fields. 
In the west a considerable area is irrigated from the Sone Canals, The soil 
is fertile and the population is fairly dense. The southern part which still bears 
the name of Ramgarh, is imperfectly irrigated, the surface is more elevated, 
and the soil is comparatively barren ; the population is here sparse and a great 
part of the area is still covered with forest. The proportion of landless labourers 
in Gaya is somewhat high, and many eke out their local earnings by working 
as coolies in Calcutta and other parts of Bengal Proper during the dry months. 
The population is not progressive. Between 1872 and 1881 there was an 
increase of 9*1 per cent., but much of this must has been due to better enumera- 
tion. The following decade showed an increase of only 0*6 per cent. This 
was explained partly by the unhealthiness that had prevailed and partly by the 
loss sustained by migration. Since 1891 the conditions have on the whole been 
unfavourable. During the earlier years fever was very prevalent, and in 1892 
and 1894 the number of reported deaths exceeded that of the births. Later on 

there seems to have been less fever, 
but in 1897 a severe outbreak of 
cholera again caused the deaths to 
exceed the births. Taken as a whole, 
the births during the nine years 
ending with 1900, exceeded the 
reported deaths by about 60,000, but 
it must be borne in mind that a con- 
siderable proportion of the district population is absent for several months in 



Gata. 



Population. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 
Immigrants 
Emigrants 
Natural population 


1,011,271 
18,876 
96,530 

1,088,926 


1,048,662 
27,289 
76,939 

1,098,362 


1,046,011 

21,714 

114,349 

1,137,616 


1,093,320 

32,860 

106,336 

1.167,306 



SOUTH BIHAR, 85 



the year, and if the deaths that occur amongst them while away from home, 
which are registered in other districts, be added to those recorded in Gaya, the 
total number would equal, if it did not surpass, the recorded excess of births 
over deaths. There was scarcity in 1891-92 owing to the failure of the winter- 
rice and spring crops, and again in 1896-97, when the short outturn was 
aggravated by the high prices of food grains consequent on famine elsewhere. 
In the Nawada Subdivision, the Sakri river overflowed its banks in 1896, 
carrying away several villages and covering the land with a deposit of sand. 
The condition of the poorer classes during the decade has, on the whole, been 
unsatisfactory. 

169. At the same time, but for the appearance of plague in the 
latter part of 1900, there seems no reason why the population of the district 
should have decreased, as it has done, by 3 -7 per cent. The disease broke out 
in Gaya town in October and spread rapidly during the next four months. By 
the day of the census the recorded deaths from plague aggregated 3,775, and it 
is probable that the actual mortality was far greater. The people of villages 
where plague appeared left their homes and took refuge in temporary sheds 
constructed sometimes near and sometimes far away from the old village sites. 
The difficulties which the prevalence of the epidemic threw in the way of the 
census operations in the Patna district have already been described. The 
conclusion arrived at, which is applicable also to Gaya, was that the census 
results were affected in three ways ; firstly, by a mortality far in excess of that 
indicated in the death returns, secondly, by the departure to their own homes 
of temporary settlers from other districts, and, thirdly, by an incomplete census, 
due partly to deaths and desertions amongst the census staff and partly to 
the failure to enumerate the whole of the panic-stricken fugitives from villages 
where plague had broken out. The loss due to the flight of natives of other 
districts may be taken as the difference between the present immigrant popu- 
lation of the district and that recorded ten years ago, or about 8,000. The 
rest of the decrease or about 70,000 must apparently be attributed partly 
to plague mortality and partly to a defeclive census in the plague-stricken 
parts of the district. The Magistrate, Mr. Oldhamj points out that the 
Nawada Subdivision which was remarkably free from plague up to the date of 
census, shows an increase in every tbana. As regards the extent to which the 
two factors mentioned have contributed to the falling off in the district-born 
population it is difficult to form any definite opinion. Mr. Oldham has gone 
into the subject with some fulness, and the following remarks are extracted 
from his report : — 

" As soon as the first of the charge totals came in, the decrease attracted my attention. 
The very marked decrease in the case of the Tikari thana charge led me to seriously doubt 
the correctness of the figures reported, although I knew that plague had been particularly 
bad in that jurisdiction. , , , i. . ^ 

" I immediately ordered that all supervisors and enumerators were to be brought into 
Tikari with all schedules, both draft and final, and kept present from the morning of the 
6th when I would go out and inspect the books and examine the stafE. As soon as the 
provisional district totals were despatched, I proceeded to Tikari and made a systematio 
inspection and enquiry. I found in this way that more than eleven thousand persons had 
in this jurisdiction alone left their houses since the preliminary record. We then proceeded 
to cross. question the enumerators, especially those in whose books the largest number of 
red ink cuttings had been made, as to each individual case. I read out each name that had 
been scored through and questioned the enumerator as to where the person had gone to. 
I found the enumerators were invariably able to give a satisfactory answer. The •persons 
had either run away or had died of plague. When the person was reported to have fled to 
another village in the same jurisdiction, 1 got out the schedule book of that village, and made 
sure that he had been entered in red ink in that village. In this way we checked a large 
proportion of the red ink cuttings, and I was agreeably surprised to find the general oare 
and precision witli which the work had been done and the general accuracy of the books. 

1 70. It would thus appear that the decrease was due more to the deaths 
that occurred than to the disorganisation of the arrangements, but where 
such large numbers of persons were on the move it seems impossible that 
all could have been accounted for by the census staff. Even without the 
complication of plague, absentees are more readily noticed than new arrivals, 
and the final revision on the night of the actual census tends to deduce 
slightly the real population. This tendency must be greatly exaggerated when 



86 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



G}hanaa. 



DISTRICT XOTAZ 



Sadar Suidvvislon 

Gaya 

Gaya Town ... 

Tikari 

BherghaU 

Atari 

Barachati 



Ifawadah Subdivision 

Nawadah 

Bajauli 

Pakribarwan 

Aurangabad Subdivision 

Anrangabad 

Daudnngar 

Nabinagar 



J^aha/nabad Subdivision , 



Jabanabad 
Arwal 



POPCIA- 

TION. 



1901. 



PEBOENTAdE OB 
TABIAIION. 



1891—1901. 



1881-1891. 



3,039,933 



751,8BS 

168,228 
71,288 
148,131 
162,023 
106,269 
106,916 



453,868 

296,029 
76,202 
82,637 



467,673 

247,663 
112,625 
107,497 



386,333 

267,879 
118,666 



-3-7 



-9-7 



+3-3 

+ 4'6 
+ 0-6 
+ 1-0 



-10 

- 4-1 
+ 6-1 

- 0-5 



+ 0-6 



-16 



- 6-5 
-11-8 


-10-9 
+ 5-1 


-19-8 

- 1-4 
-14-9 

- 2'S 


+ 4'3 

- 1-3 
+27 '9 

- 0-3 



-1-8 



- 39 

+ 3-a 



-7-4 

- 6-7 
-10'4 

- 7-9 



+3-8 

+ B-1 
+ 3-7 
+ 10-3 



+S'3 



- 1'6 
+ 13-2 



Shahabad. 



the absentees and new arrivals are exceptionally numerous, and when the 
people are overcome with fear and the enumerators are performing a thankless 
^ ^ task under exceptional diflSculties, 

and when many of them are new 
men, hastily appointed at the last 
moment, to replace others who have 
died or disappeared. When we 
turn to the statistics for individual 
thanas, the responsibility of the 
plague for the loss of population 
that has occurred becomes very 
apparent. Up to the date of the 
census the epidemic had wrought 
most havoc in Tikari, and this 
thana has sustained a loss of 19'8 
per cent. ; then come Atari, Gaya 
Town and Gaya thana, with de- 
creases of 14'9, 11-3 and 6-5 respec- 
tively. The three thanas in the 
Nawadah Subdivision which escap- 
ed the epidemic all show a slight 
advance. The decadence in Ram- 
garh, i.e. in the south^n thanas, 
is due partly to long continued 
general unhealthiness and partly 
to emigration to the adjoining districts of Hazaribagh and Palamau. In 
Sherghati and Barachati the decrease has been continuous since 1881. 

171. Shahabad, like Gaya, is divided into two distinct parts. The nor- 
thern portion, comprising about three-fourths of the 
whole area, is a low-lying alluvial flat and is entirely 

under cultivation. It is extensively irrigated by canals and its crops are 
thus to a great extent protected from drought. The south of the district, 
comprising the greater part of the Bhabua and Sasaram thanas, is occupied 
by the Kaimur hills, an undulating plateau, unprotected by irrigation, and 
yielding poor and precarious crops. The population is here very sparse and 
much of the land is still covered with forest. The tenantry of Shahabad 
are sturdy and independent and enjoy a fixity of tenure which saves them 
from rack-renting. The proportion of landless labourers is small and the 
surplus inhabitants find ready employment in Bengal either in the police force 
or as peons and club-men under the zamindars ; the district also supplies 
many recruits for the native army. The climate of the northern part of the dis- 
trict is said to be steadily deteriorating. There is no system of drainage and 
the surface is so flat and low that there is no outlet for the water which 
accumulates. The introduction of the canals is said to have raised the sub-soil 
water level and so encouraged malaria, but whether this be so or not, and 
the view is not supported by the results of recent research regarding^ the spread 
of malarial affections. The district has long been very unhealthy, and in 1891 
a decrease was averted only by a large gain from migration. Fever began to 
make its ravages felt in 1879 and from that time the epidemic grew steadily 
worse until 1886, when the district was stigmatized as the worst in the whole 
province in respect of fever mortality. 

172. During the last decade there has been no marked change in the condi- 
tion of the people. There was a partial crop failure in 1896 but it resulted in 
famine only in the southern part of the district where irrigation aff'ords no 
protection against deficient rainfall. Wages have risen, and the prices of food 
grains are higher than they were ten years ago. The district has maintained 
its reputation for unhealthiness. The worst year was 1894 when the recorded, 
death-rate exceeded 53 per thousand and the mortality from fevers was greater 
than in any other district in the Province. From 1892 to 1900 inclusive, the 
vital statistics show an excess of deaths over births amounting to more than 
25,000. It would probably be double this amount if allowance were made 
on account of the deaths registered in other parts of Bengal amongst the 



SOUTH BIHAE. 



87 



natives of this district who were temporarily away from it. The district escaped 

the ravages of plague until shortly 



PoPutATIOH. 


1301. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female, 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

EmigrantB 

Natural population 


936,644 
26,877 
82,679 

992,246 


1,026,162 
67,036 
77,134 

1,046,260 


989,596 
73,184 
79,030 

996,412 


1,070,983 

61,048 

100,7)4 

1,120,649 



census, when it broke 



before the 

out in the head -quarters station. 
The number of deaths reported was 
small, but the alarm which the 
epidemic created sufficed to drive 
to their homes most of the tem- 
j ^, , n n . , porary settlers from other districts 

and the number of foreign-born males found in Shahabad at the time of the 
census was only 26,877 compared with 73,184 ten years previously. The 
movements of the population have resulted in a net loss to the district which 
IS even greater than the figures would indicate, as there has been an emigra- 
tion of 7,633 persons to the colonies, of whom the census necessarily took no 
count. Allowing for those who returned from the colonies, the net loss oa 
this account may be placed at about 6,000. 

173. The above adverse conditions have resulted in a decrease in the 
district population of 97,883 or 4-7 per cent.* The falling oS is most marked 

in the Bhabhua subdivision where 
it is due to the unhealthiness of the 
climate and to the migration of 
the people, especially during the 
famine year, to more favoured parts 
of the district. Elsewhere the 
decrease is greatest in the Arrah 
thana where it may be wholly 
ascribed to the exodus on account 
of plague. The only thanas that 
have gained ground are three of 
the four thanas of the Sasaram 
subdivision. The construction of 
the railway accounts largely for 
this, coupled with the fact that 
the area irrigated by canals is 
greater here than in any other 
part of the district. Piaro thana 
in the head-quarters subdivision, which borders on this tract and has also a 
plentiful supply of canal water, is practically stationary. 

174. Rather more than a third of the Monghyr district is on the north 

bank of the Ganges, and is a low but fertile alluvial 
plain which supports a dense population and difEers 
but little from the adjoining portions of Darbhanga and Bhagalpur. The 
south of the district is also to a great extent alluvial, but the general level 
is higher and the surface is more undulating, and several ranges of 
hills, outliers of the Vindhyan series, enter the district from the south and 
gradually converge towards Monghyr town. The soil in the hilly tracts 
is comparatively barren and the inhabitants are few in number. Between 1872 
and 1881 there was an increase of 8'5 per cent, in the population, and the 
next ten years showed a further advance of 3*3 per cent. The greatest gain 
was in the Beguserai subdivision. The north-eastern part of the Jamui sub- 
division, which had suffered a great deal from fever, lost heavily and the popu- 
lation of the subdivision as a whole was stationary. 

During the last decade the public health has been fairly good, and. in 
only two years, 1892 and 1894, did the deaths out-number the births. 
According to the returns the net excess of births during the nine years, 1892- 
1900, has been 126,872, but the Magistrate is of opinion that the reporting of 
the deaths of infants is very defective, and that the real difference 
between the birth and death rates is less than these figures would indicate. 
Plague broke out in January 1900, but subsided in May, only to reappear with 
renewed virulence in the ensuing cold weather. The . total number of deaths 
from plague reported in 1900 was 2,052, and in the first two months of 

* All the districts of the United Provinces which adjoin Shahabad, viz., Mirzapur, Benares, Ghazi- 
pur and Ballia, show a heavy decrease. 





Popcii- 


Pebcentase op 


Xbana. 


TION. 


VAEIiTION. 




1901. 


1891—1901, 


1881—1891, 


ItlSXRICT TOIAZ 


1,963,696 


- 4-7 


+ B-7 


Sadar Subdivision 


699,956 


- B-9 


+ s-s 


Arrah 

Sliahpur (Belauti) 

Piaro 


814,168 
188,069 
197,729 


- 9-4 

- B-4 

- -1 


+ 12-3 
+ 1-6 
+ 10-3 


Buxav Subdivision 


416,704: 


- BO 


+ 3B 


JBuxar 

Dumraon 


156,426 
260,278 


- 6-0 

- 4-4 


+ a-o 

+ 4-4 


Sasaram Subdivision 


B39,63S 


+ 1% 


+ »-5 


Sasaram 

Bikramganj 

Dehri 

Ebarghar 


166,260 

186,482 

90,167 

96,736 


+ I'S 
+ 2-3 
+ 8*1 
- 6-6 


+ 6-3 
+ 1'4 
+ 6-7 
— 1-0 


Bhabhua Subdivision 


306,40X 


-ita 


+ 6-8 


Ehabhua 

Mohanea 


166,728 
140,673 


- 8-9 

- lS-7 


+ 6-8 
+ 8-2 



MONGHTE. 



88 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



1901 it was 2,433. As in other districts, so also in Monghyr, the disease 
was far more prevalent than the reports would indicate, and much of the 
mortality was concealed. The parts of the district which sufEered most were 
Monghyr town and Shaikhpura Thana. The material condition of the people 
seems to have improved somewhat. The crops were short in 1891, especially 
in the northern part of the district, and relief works were opened for several 
Hionths. In 1896-97 the people suffered from high prices consequent on famine 
elsewhere, but the crops were fairly good. In other years the general result 
of agricultural operations has been satisfactory, and the wages of ordinary 
labourers have risen by about 33 per cent. 

175. The census of 1901 shows an increase of 32,783, or 1*6 per cent. The 

improvement is considerably less 
than the vital statistics would lead 
one to anticipate. Directly and in- 
directly, plague probably accounts 
for a loss of from 20 to 25 thou- 



Popnlation. 


. 1901. '- 


1891. 




Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 
Immigrants 
Emigrants 
Natural population 


1,011,580 
37,624 
96,644 

1,070,600 


1,057,224 
48,645 
87,575 

1,096,254 


987,072 

42,617 

105,221 

1,049,776 


1,048,949 
58,757 
83,997 

1,074,169 



sand persons, and in addition to 
this there is a large adverse balance 
on account of migration. Assum- 
ing all movements to and from the 
district to be of a permanent nature, it may be noted that the immigrants now 
number 86,069, or about 19,000 more than would have been the case had there 
been no new comers since the previous census, but the emigrants exceed by 
about 58,000 the estimated number of survivors amongst the emigrants of 1891. 
These figures indicate a net annual loss of about 4,500 persons. The whole 
of the migration however is not permanent and the real loss on this account 
in the decade may be roughly estimated at from 30,000 to 40,000 persons. 

The fertile Begusarai subdivision, on the north of the Ganges, again 

shows the greatest growth of 
population. The head-quarters 
subdivision is stationary, owing 
mainly to the out-break of plague 
and the consequent mortality and 
confusion, but the removal of 
certain offices of the East Indian 
Kailway from Jamalpur to 
Calcutta has also affected the 
population some extent. The only 
thana in this subdivision which 
shows a marked increase is 
Kharagpur, which at the time of 
the census harboured a consider- 
able number of plague refugees 
frorn^ Monghyr. In the Jamui 
subdivision also, the population is 
practically stationary ; the sparsely 
inhabited and hilly thanas in the 
south-east, Jamui and Chakai, 
CMitinue to show steady development, while Shaikhpura and Sikandra, in the 
north-east, have lost ground. The decrease is specially marked in Shaikhpura 
which adjoins the Mokameh Thana in Patna and, like it, has suffered greatly 
from the ravages of plague. Both Shaikhpura and Sikandra were decadent in 
1891 also, when the prevalence of fever was blamed for the result. 





POPULA- 


Percentase op 




TIOU. 


VABIAIION. 


Thanas. 










1901. 


1891—1901. 


1881—1891. 


DISTBICT XOTAI. 


Z,068,S04 


+ 1-6 


+ 3-3 


Sadar Subdivision 


874,611 


+ -4 


+ 3S 


Monghyr 


129,064 


- 9-6 


+ 1-8 


Gogri 


393,913 


+ 2"6 


+ 4-3 


Jamalpur 


18,671 


- 14'4 


+ 9-4 


Surajgarh 


168,906 


+ -3 


+ 1-3 


Khargpur ... 


169,167 


+ 6'8 


+ 4-5 


Jatnui Subdivision 


esi,ss7 


- OS 


+ O'S 


Shaikhpura 


181,897 


- 7'5 


- 1-3 


Jamui 


133,979 


+ 6'6 


+ 4'4 


Sikandra 


112,622 


- 1'6 


- 6-4 


Chakai 


122,729 


+ 4-8 


+ 70 


Begusarai Subdivision ... 


649,966 


+ 5-8 


+ S-9 


Begusai-ai 


408,110 


+ 3-7 


+ B-3 


Tegra 


234,856 


+ 7-8 


+ 7-0 



NORTH BIHAR. 



176. 



Saran is a fertile tract of rich alluvial soil lying between the Gogra 
Si^^j, and Ganges on the south, and the Gandak on the 

north and east. It is very densely populated 
and highly cultivated. It grows an unusual variety of crops, including opium 
and indigo. There is a great deal of irrigation, partly from canals but mainly 
from wells constructed by the cultivators themselves. The increase of 10*5 
per cent, between 1872 and 1881 was attributed mainly to better enumeration and 
the same explanation was given of part of the increase of 7*4 per cent, during 



NORTH BIHAR. 



89 



the next decade. The district already contains a larger population than it 
can support and it sends its surplus inhabitants into every part of Bengal 
in search of employment. Most of them go only for a time and return home 
after intervals of one or two years. The improvement in railway commu- 
nications has greatly facilitated their movements, and while on the one hand 
more people leave the district, on the other, they return home at more 
frequent intervals than formerly.* 

177. During the first half of the last decade the crops were fairly good, 
and the general condition of the people was satisfactory. The short rain- 
fall of 1896 resulted in famine but, owing to the variety of crops grown, 
the district suffered less severely than its neighbours in North Bihar. 
The distress was greatest where the cultivation of rice predominated. The 
Gopalganj subdivision suffered most, but about two-1;hirds of the Si wan and 
half of the Sadar subdivision were also badly affected. Relief operations were 
commenced in November 1896 and continued for ten months, when the posi- 
tion was restored by a good hhadoi harvest (Indian corn and millets), and the 
prospect of a bumper crop of winter rice. The famine undoubtedly told 
severely on the people and there must necessarily have been some deaths 
amongst the aged and infirm owing to the want of proper nutrition, but 
it had no apparent effect on the reported death-rate for the district as a 
whole. The recorded mortality in 1897 was less by 11 per cent, than the 
average of the preceding three years. The birth-rate was also less, but only 
by 8 per cent. It may be argued that a diminution in both births and deaths 
points to defective reporting of vital occurrences in a season of special strain. 
But a reduction in the birth-rate, especially in the latter months of the year, 
would naturally result from the reduced vitality of the people. Moreover, 
defective reporting would reduce the returns for births and deaths in equal 
proportions so that even if it be assumed that the whole decrease in the birth-rate 
in 1897 was due to this cause, the fact remains that the deaths decreased in a 
greater proportion than the births, and that they were therefore really fewer 
in number than the average of the three previous years. Since the famine 
the harvests have again been good and by the time of the census the people 
had entirely recovered from its effects. 

The decade was healthy up to 1899, when plague made its first appearance, 
and between 1892 and 1900 the reported births exceeded the deaths by 
83,725. t The history of the plague is much the same as in Patna, but it 
was less widespread and the Gopalganj and Siwan subdivisions were very 
little affected. The disease assumed epidemic proportions during the cold 
weather of 1899-1900. It then gradually faded away, but appeared with 
renewed intensity in the succeeding cold weather. During the three months 
preceding the census 6,767 deaths from plague were recorded. The real number 
was doubtless far greater, and the epidemic had the usual effect of disorganis- 
ing the arrangements for the census as already described in the case of Patna 

and Gaya. 

178. There has been a loss of population during the decade of 57,968 per- 
sons or 2"2 per cent.J Owing to the 
unusual amount of emigration from 
this district it is very difficult to trace 
the causes of this most unsatisfactory 
result. At first sight it would seem 
that as immigrants have increased 
and emigrants have fallen off the 
district must have gained by the 
movements of the people, but this 



Population. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Pamale. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants... 

Natural Population ... 


1,095,288 

18,468 

176,498 

1,262,834 


1,814,221 
87,972 
69,436 

1,845,685 


1,182,670 

7,603 

226.2110 

1,360,267 


1,332,337 

82,028 

168,854 

1,464,168 



does not appear to be the case. There is of course no doubt that the district 
has gained by immigration. Just as prior to 1891 there had existed a 

* T+ I'a mterestine to notice that the remittances by money order to the Sami district aggregated nearly 
S5 lakhs oiupee'in^GOO compared with less than 17 lakhs in 1892-93 This may be due partly to 
ll inereasinz use of the post office for the purpose of remitting money, but it must also be attributed m 
™,t+ntb« larger number of Saran people who go elsewhere to earn a livelihood. 
^ t K this e™ at least half should be deducted on account of deaths amongst temporary emi- 

^'^''fThf n1?gSourSg^distSts''of' the United Provinoes-Ballia, Azamgarh and Gorakhpur-also show a 
loss of population. 



M 



90 



CHAPTER II— VAKIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



its neighbours, so during the 
been in the other direction, 











^1 


District. 


1891. 


1901. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Shahabad 

Muzaflarpur 

Patna 

Champaran 

Gorakhpur 

Ballia 

Azimgarh 


2,043 

7,991 

4,131 

16,464 

11,207 

1,622 

167 


6,197 
4,646 
4,711 
9,983 
12,831 
9,687 
177 


33,326 

7,969 

7,684 

49,278 

29,464 

1,674 

27 


20,366 
6,009 
16,891 
33,063 
41,096 
12,061 
242 


Total 


46.925 


69,218 


99.666 


130,621 



strong flow of population from Saran to 

last decade the tendency seems to have n .. ri •+ ^ t> ■ ^ 

especially in the case of the adjoining districts of the United Provinces, 
which have given 32,064 persons to Saran, compared with only 14,992 in 
189 1 But on the other hand, in spite of the superficial conclusion indicated by 
the figures, it seems equally clear that there has been an even greater loss by 
emigration. The decrease in the census figures occurs m the districts adjoining 

Saran where the migration may be 
held in the main to be of a perma- 
nent character. Prior to 1891, in 
addition to accidental migration due 
to marriage, there had evidently been 
a strong overflow of the surplus 
population of Saran into Champaran, 
Grorakhpur and Shahabad, where 
there was a greater quantity of land 
available for cultivation.* Owing to 
bad crops and other causes the same 
inducement for migration no longer exists and the movement has died out. 
The decrease in the number of Saran people now found in the adjoining dis- 
tricts seems to be due, not so much to these settlers having returned to their old 
homes> as to the fact that many of them have died since 1891, and their place 
has been taken by their children born in the districts to which they migrated. 
If so, it will appear that even in the case of Bihar districts there has been 
some loss by migration!, and in Bengal Proper, the emigrants from Saran 
now number 114,193 compared with 85,536 ten years ago. Another reason 
for the decline is that there has been a reduction in the birth-rate. This 
subject belongs properly to another chapter, but it may be noted here that 
there has been a marked falling o£E in Saran in the proportion of married people 
and also in the number of children brought into the world. 

179. The net result of the last census is, as already stated, a decrease of 

2 '2 per cent. For this the Sadar 
subdivision, which has lost 5*6 per 
cent., and Darauli thana in Siwan 
are responsible. This is the tract 
which was suffering from plague 
at the time of the census. The 
rest of the district has almost exactly 
the same population as it had ten 
years ago. The decrease is greatest 
where the plague was worst, i.e., 
in Sonpur, Chapra and Parsa thanas. 
It may therefore be concluded that 
while the general want of progress is 
due to the adverse balance of migra- 
tion and to the fact that the district is 
unable to support a much greater 
population than it already possessed 
in 1891, the plague is to blame for 
has occurred in the southern part of 



Ttaana, 


POPUIA- 
TlOlf. 


Peecehtage op 
vaeiatiok. 




1901. 


1891-1901. 


1881-1891. 


DISTSICX TOXAZ ... 

Sadar Subdivision ... 

Chapra 
Manjhi 
Parsa 

Mashrak ... 
Sonpur 

GopalganJ Subdivision 

Gopalganj .„ 
Mirganj 

Siwan Subdivision ... 

Siwan 

Darauli ... 
Basantpur... 


2,4O9,B09 

972,718 

363,078 
162,460 
223,266 
143,603 
100,111 

635,047 

275,742 
369,305 

801,744 

337,926 
220,820 
242,998 


-8-2 
-BS 

- 7-3 

- a-4 

- 4-9 

- 1-6 
-10-3 

+ -a 

+ -3 

- -1 

+ -1 

+ l-l 

- 2-3 
+ I'l 


+ 7-4 

+ 2-7 

+ 8'6 
+ 4-3 
+ 2-0 

- 3'7 

- 6-1 

+ 12-7 

+ 6'6 
+ 16-9 

+ 103 

+ 11-1 

+ 6-8 
+ 14-0 



of the decrease that 



Champaean. 



the greater part 
the district. 

180. In the east and south, Champaran closely resembles the adjoining dis- 
tricts ; the land is level, fertile and highly cultivated, 
and the population is dense. Towards the north- 
west the surface becomes more undulating and gradually rises as the Nepal 
frontier is approached. The population is here sparse and cultivation gives 

* In the case o{ Cliamparau most of the immigrants took up land in the sparsely populated northern 
thanas, Bagaha, Shikarpur and Adapvir. A similar movement within Saran itself was observed between 
1881 and 1891 in the case of Mirganj, where the existence of more waste land there than in other parts of 
the district attracted settlers from other thanas. 

t The decrease in the number of Saran-born persons enumerated in the Sonthal Parsanas from 
15,145 to 1,370 is probably fictitious. I have already had occasion to point out that the Sonthal 
Parganas return of birth-place in 1891 is untrustworthy. No less than 18,238 persons enumerated in the 
Sonthal-Parganas were shown as born in Gaya compared with l,64i6 on the present occasion. 



NORTH BIHAR. 



91 



way to grassy plains and extensive tracts of forest, amongst which the 
scattered clearances of the aboriginal Thdrus afford the only evidence of human 
occupation. The Gandak now forms the south-western boundary of the 
district, but it formerly flowed through the centre, along the course indicated 
on the maps as the Buri Grandak. The whole of the tract between the new and 
the Buri Gandak has been subject to fluvial action within comparatively 
recent times, and the soil is here light and sandy. On the other or north- 
eastern side of the- Buri Gandak the prevailing soil is the hhdngar or older 
alluvium, a stiff clay requiring irrigation, which is provided mainly from tanks 
and wells and by damming up the hill-streams. The rainfall in Champaran is 
heavier than in other Bihar districts, and the moisture of the atmosphere, 
the presence of numerous stagnant lakes formed in old river beds, and the 
proximity of the hills combine to give the district a far more unhealthy climate 
than any other part of Bihar. The census of 1881 showed an increase of 
population amounting to 19 '5 per cent., due partly to improved enumeration 
and partly to immigration from the adjoining districts to the sparsely inhabited 
thanas in the north of the district. The next decade showed a further advance 
of 7*9 per cent., which was due mainly to a continuance of the stream of 
immigration; the total number of persons born elsewhere but censused in 
Champaran having reached the unprecedented number of 248,511. 

181. Since 1891 the district has suffered from a succession of lean years. 
The harvest of winter-rice in 1891 and the spring crop of 1892 were poor and 
prices rose, causing the people to feel the pinch of scarcity. In 1892 the winter- 
rice crop was again below the average. The crops of 1893 and 1894 were fair, 
but they were followed by bad harvests in 1895, and the spring of 1896, and a 
general failure of the winter-rice crop in the autumn of that year. The general 
distress then deepened into famine. Practically the whole district was 
affected. The Dhaka thana suffered most of all, and next to that, the whole of 
the Bettiah subdivision, except a narrow strip on the banks of the Gandak. 
The relief operations were on a larger scale than in Saran, but their duration 
was about the same. The efforts of Government to save the people from 
starvation appear to have been successful, and the number of deaths reported ' 
was lower than the average of the three preceding years. The birth-rate 
fell in about the same ratio, but as already explained, a low birth-rate is a 
necessary sequel of a famine, and the number of births during the latter part 
at least of 1897 would naturally be below the normal. It follows that even if 
the reporting agency did their work less efficiently during the famine than at 
other times there is no reason to suppose that there were more deaths in 1897 
than in the' average of the three preceding years. The death-rate which was 
low in 1897 was still lower in 1898 while, on the other hand, more births 
were reported in 1899 than in any other year since the registration of 
births was introduced. In 1898 and 1899 the people enjoyed better harvests, 
but it was not until the end of 1900 that their prosperity was generally 

It was reported in 1891 that the district was gradually losing its reputa- 
tion for unhealthiness, but unfortunately the improvement has not been main- 
tained There have been frequent epidemics of cholera, and fever also has been 
very prevalent. In five of the nine years ending in 1900 the reported 
deaths have exceeded the births, and the net result is an excess of 1,059 deaths.* 

182. The census of 1891 shows a decrease of 69,002 persons, or 3-7 per cent. 

The result is directly attributable to 

the short crops and unhealthiness 
from which the district has suffered. 
Not only has the arrival of new set- 
tlers ceased, but it seems probable 
that if the figures for 1891 are correct 
many of those who were then in the 
district must since have returned to 
Even if a death-rate of 50 per 1,000 be allowed on account 
TirZllZiZim^Loi the decade, there' would still be nearly 150,000 
survivorrfromam ^ the settlers e nu merated m 1891 even if the^r ranks 

"Tri^'Magistrate thinks it probabl«i that deaths due to epidemics of chokra are. not fully repofted. 

M 2 





1901. 


1891. 


Population. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immil^rants 

Emigrants 

Natural' population ... 


886,607 
55,047 
16,442 

847,002 


904,856 
61,734 
19,635 

872.767 


936,135 

140,992 

S0,896 

816,039 


923 330 

107,519 

19,2SS 

; 836,099 



their former homes. 



92 



CHAPTER II— VAEIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



The actual number 



Thaita.. 


Popula- 
tion. 


PEBOESTAaE OF 
TABIATIOir. 




1901. 


1891—1901. 


1881-1891 


DISTRICT TOTAZ ... 

Sadar Subdivision 

Motihari 
GobindRanj ... 
Kesaria 
Madhuban ... 
Dha ka Kamchandra 
Adapur 

BettiaU Subdivision 

Bettir.h 
Shikarpur ... 
Bagaha 


1,790,463 

1,040,599 

173,474 
157,971 
177,917 
104,497 
258,898 
167,842 

749,864 

328,755 
207,088 
214,021 


- 3-7 

- s-4 

- 8-8 

- 11-8 

- 31 

- 4-6 

- 4-0 
+ -2 

- 1-3 

- 1-6 

- IS 

- -9 


+ 80 

+ 7-8 

+ 6-4 
+ S-4 
+ 3-3 
+ 4-1 
+ 62 
+ 20-8 

+ 80 

+ 3-3 
+ 15-1 
+ 9-3 



had not been swelled by the arrival of any new comers 
of immigrants, however, is now only 106,781. . , i • • 

Part of the decrease may be due to the return home of some of the immi- 
grants who were enumerated in 
Champaran in 1891, but the fall- 
ing off is due mainly to the un- 
healthiness of the decade and the 
diminished fecundity of the people 
consequent on a series of bad years. 
The emigration to other districts 
of persons born in Champaran does 
not appear to have greatly affected 
the figures. The number of female 
emigrants remains practically un- 
changed, but that of males, most of 
whom are temporary absentees, has 
decreased. The Magistrate is of 
opinion that there has been some movement across the Nepal frontier, but of 
this no statistics are available. The only thana that has not contributed its 
quota to the general result is Adapur. This thana enjoys the advantage 
of irrigation and an exceptionally fertile soil, and in part of it a full rice crop 
was secured even in 1896, when there was a disastrous failure elsewhere. 
The thanas that have suffered most are Gobindganj and Motihari, but the 
reason for this is not apparent. They suffered from the famine far less than 
Dhaka, where the proportional decrease is only half as great as in the thanas 
to the north-west, where there has been only a very slight loss of population. 
183. Muzaffarpur is an alluvial plain, but the country north of the 

Baghmati is more marshy than that to the south of 
Mtjzaffaepue. ^jj-g j,j^gj.^ ^^^ £^g climate is reputed to be less 

salubrious than the rest of the district, which is usually very healthy. The 
staple crop is rice. Between the Bdghmati and the Buri Gandak the land 
though less marshy, is more liable to inundation. Further south again, in the 
Hajipur subdivision, the country is higher, but it is capable of irrigation from 
the numerous streams that . intersect it. This part of the district is reputed 
to be the most fertile, and it has the further advantage of a variety of crops, 
so that it is less seriously affected by a failure of the monsoon rains. Prior 
to 1881 there was a considerable growth of population, which was atlributed 
in part to the defects of the first census in 1872. There was a further 
increase of 5 per cent, in 1891 ; there was a falling off in Hajipur, but this 
was counterbalanced by a large increase in the northern subdivision of 
Sitamarhi. Since 1891, there have been crop failures in 1891-92, when relief 
operations on a small scale had to be undertaken, and again in 1896-97 when 
the whole district suffered from famine except the southern part of Hajipur. 
The Sitamarhi subdivision sustained the brunt of the distress. The relief 
operations were carefully planned and successfully carried out. The people, 
no doubt, suffered a good deal, but so far as can be gathered from the vital 
statistics returns, there was no loss of life directly attributable to want of 
food. The reported deaths fell short of the average of the three preceding 
years by about 25,000, while the deficiency of births was only 17,000. Thanks 
to a succession of good harvests, the effects of the famine were not long felt, 
and by the end of the decade the people had entirely recovered their normal 
condition. There were heavy floods in 1898, which caused considerable loss 
of cattle and damaged the standing rice crops, but no permanent injury 
resulted from them. 

There were epidemics of cholera in 1893, 1894, 1896 and 1900, which 
carried off more than 76,000 persons, but in other respects the public health 
has been fairly good, and the returns for the nine years 1892 — 1900 show 
an excess of nearly 80,000 births over deaths. 

* The great redncl ion in the number of immigrants attracted my attention as soon as the figures 
were reported, and their number was again counted direct from the schedules. This fresh count, which 
was carefully checked, brought out a slightly smaller number of immigrants than the rriginal return. The 
figures for 1891 appear to be extraordinarily high. They include 83,241 immigrants from Saran, 56,076 
from Muzaffarpur, 52,186 from the United Provinces and 34,626 from Nepal. 



NORTH BIHAE. 



93 



184. The recent census discloses a slight increase of 41,933, or barely- 
half the amount that the vital 
statistics returns would indicate. 
The immigrant females are about 
as numerous as in 1891, and there 
is an increase of more than 4,000 
male immigrants. The emigrants 
are less numerous than in 1891, the 
falling ofE being especially marked 
in the case of males. There is still, however, a heavy balance against the 
district and the figures do not include the persons who have migrated across the 
Nepal frontier. 

It is a notable fact that every thana in the great 

north of the 
suffered most 
famine, has 



Population. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


1,318,647 
32,200 
86,607 

1,372,854 


1,436,243 
66,602 
67,030 

1,447,771 


1,306,027 

27,803 

121,647 

1,399,771 


1,406,830 
66,185 
82,642 

1,434,287 



increase, while 
of that river, 



rice-growing tract 
Baghmati, which 
severely from the 
shown a marked 
every thana south 
except Hajipur in 
the extreme south, has lost popu- 
lation. The former tract has been 
growing steadily since the time 
of the first census in 1872, and it 
attracts settlers both from Nepal 
and from the southern part of 
the District. The progress is 
greatest in the Sitamarhi and 
Shuihar thanas which march with 
the Nepal frontier. The Hajipur 
subdivision, which is now station- 
ary, sustained a slight loss of 
population in the decade preceding 
the census of 1891. The decHne in 
the Muzaffarpur thana is said to be due to its having suffered most from cholera 
and to the fact that it is this tract which supplies the majority of the persons 
who emigrate to lower Bengal in search of work. 

185. Darbhanga greatly resembles Muzaffarpur, to which it appertained 

until 1875. The northern and central part of the 
district is devoted mainly to the cultivation of rice, 
and the bulk of the inhabitants are dependent on the aghani or winter rice crop. 
The south of the district possesses great natural fertility, and wheat, barley, 
oil-seeds, various kinds of pulses, indigo, and opium are grown. As in Muzafiar- 
pur the increase recorded in 1881 was attributed to a more accurate enumera- 
tion. In 1891 the district showed a further increase of 6"5 per cent. — a gain of 
11*5 per cent., in the Madhubani subdivision in the north being to some extent 
counter-balanced by a loss of 2*3 in the southern or Samastipur subdivision. 
The decade peceding the present census has not been a prosperous one. In 
1891 the crops failed over a considerable area in the sadar and Madhu- 
bani subdivisions, and relief operations were necessitated. In the next two 
years the crops were good and the people regained their prosperity, but in 
1895 the harvest was again a short one, — -" ^'^■" ~"" j^^h^^^j t.« ^i^- 



Thana. 


PopniA- 

TIOM. 


Pekoentaoe op 
vaeiatios. 




1901. 


■1891—1901. 


1881-1891. 


DISTBXCT TOTAL 

Sadar Subdivision 

Muzaffarpur 

Poru 

Katra 

Sitamarhi Subdivision, ... 

Sitamarhi • 

Shiuhar 

Pupri 

Belsund 

Hajipur Subdivision 

Hajipur 

Lalsanj 

Mahuwa 


2,754,790 

1,050,037 

540,534 
301,717 
207,776 

986,582 

346,790 
196,962 
244,664 
199,276 

718,181 

270,929 
163,162 
294,091) 


+ 1-3 

-S3 

5-6 

- 2-8 

+ 8-7 

+ 6'7 

+ 9'0 

+ 7-2 
+ 6-4 
+ 4-1 

+ 06 

+ 2-6 

- 10 

- 0-1 


+ 5 

+ 4-8 

+ 5-3 
+ 5-7 
+ 2-1 

+104 

+ S'l 
+ 5-7 
+ 12-4 
+ 16-3 

- 10 

- 2-3 

- 1-9 
+ 0-6 



DAEBHAUaA. 



and 



this was followed by the 
great crop failure of 1896. This affected the whole district except two 
of the three thanas of the Samastipur subdivision ; in the third thana, Waris- 
nagar, the distress was less acute than in the rest of the district, and it 
w^ greatest in the western part of the sadar and Madhubani subdivisions. 
The number of persons requiring relief was greater in Darbhanga than in any 
other district, but the recovery after the famine was at least equally rapid. 
The Magistrate, Mr. "Wheeler, says that " the end of 1897-98 saw the people 
„i „j. ^stored to their normal condition." The prosperity of 1898-99 was 



prosperity 

in the south-west of the district in the 

1900, the crops were generally 



m 



almost restored to 

marred by floods. There were floods 

following year also, but both then and 

^^^ The decade has not been a very healthy one. The mortality was excep- 
tionally heavy in 1892, 1894, 1896 and 1900; in the three formei years ths 



u 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN IHB POPULATION. 



POPUIATIOIT. 


1901. 


1891. 


Males. 


Females. 


Males. 


Females. 


Actual population 

Immigrsnts 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


1,416,474 
33,473 
68,143 

1.441,114 


1,496,137 
67,107 
53,069 

1,492,099 


1,370,986 
36,381 
55,228 

1,389,832 


1,430,970 
47,799 
53,962 

1,137,133 



deaths out-numbered the births, but taking the period as a whole (excluding 
1891 when births were not registered) the reported births exceeded the deaths 
by 65,918. Plague broke oub in the Dalsing Serai thana about the beginning 
of December 1900 and in February 1901 the number of reported deaths 
was 420, but the real number, says the Magistrate, was undoubtedly greater. 
The disease subsequently spread to other thanas, but not until after the census. 
186, The census shows that since 1891 there has been an addition to the 
population of 110,656 persons or 3'9 per cent. The movements of the people 

do not appear to have materially 
afifected the result. So far as per- 
manent movements are concerned 
the balance of the account is in 
favour of the district. The number 
of emigrant females is nearly 4,000 
less than that of those who have 
come in from other districts, and 
while the former are slightly less numerous than in 1891, the latter have grown 
by more than 9,000. There has been a loss on account of the migration of 
males, but this is mostly of a temporary character. There were 3,000 fewer 
male immigrants at the time of the present census and 3,000 more emigrants 
than there were ten years previously, and the excess of the latter over the 
former now amounts to about 25,000 or some 6,000 more than in 1891. 

On examining the details of the variations for individual thanas we again 
fail to find any correlation between them and the famine. The increase is 
slight in the Samastipur subdivision which was least afEected by famine, while 

it is greatest in Madhubani, where 
the distress Avas most severe both in 
1892 and 1897. Nor do the vital 
statistics seem to account for the 
variations, and in the four un- 
healthy years, the reported death- 
rate was higher in Madhubani than 
any where else. The fact seems 
to be that while the other parts 
of the district have as dense a 
population as the land will support, 
there is still some room for expan- 
sion in Madhubani, where even 
now there are only 812 persons per 
square mile compared with 872 in 
the sadar, and 985 in the Samasti- 
pur subdivision. Madhubani, more- 
over is the great rice-growing 
subdivision, and although it is the 
rice crop which suffers most in seasons of deficient rainfall, it seems probable 
that it gives the greatest return to the husbandman when the seasons are 
normal. It would appear, therefore, that there has been some migration within 
the district from the more crowded thanas of the south to the rice growing 
country in the north, The only thanas in the district that show a decline are 
Warisnagar and Darbhanga. In the former the death-rate was higher than the 
district average while the latter would have shown a slight increase but for 
the inclusion of the figures for Darbhanga town which, as explained elsewhere, 
has sufifered a considerable loss of population. Dalsing Serai, where a decrease 
of 6-1 m 1891 was attributed to diluvion, would probably have shown a 
somewhat larger increase but for the advent of plague. The Ganges is still 
working its way further north, but not sufficiently so to appreciably afieet 
the population. 

187. Bhagalpur, like Monghyr, lies on both sides of the Ganges which 

Bhagalptte. divides it into nearly equal parts. The northern 

. . forms a continuation of the great alluvial plain of 

North Bihar, but it is reputed to be less fertile than the country further west 

It is intersected with rivers and water channels ' ' ' 





PopuiAiioir. 


PEECENTACtE OF 
VAEIATION. 


Thaka. 










1901. 


1891—1901. 


1881—1891. 


DISTJtlCX TOTAL 


3,912,611 


+ 3-9 


+ 6-5 


Sadar Subdivision 


1,065,595 


+ 1-6 


+ 8-0 


Darbhanga 

Sahera 

Roserha 


436,153 
355,021 
275,118 


-■ ri 

+ 2-7 
+ 6-1 


+ 9-3 
+ 11-6 
+ 2-0 


Samaitipur Subdivision ... 


75S,637 


+ 1-9 


- ss 


Samastipur 

Dalsingh Sarai 

"Warisnagar 


311,312 

272,270, 
169,056 


+ 2'0 
+ 3-8 
- 1-1 


- 0-3 

- 6-1 
+ 0"6 


Madhubani Subdivision ... 


1,094,379 


+ 7-8 


+ 1S0 


Madlmbanl 

Khajnuli 

Banipati 

Phulparas 


263,665 
247,329 
266,431 
326,961 


+ 3-9 
+ 8-0 
+ 8-8 
+ 10-2 


+ 16-3 
+ 28-6 
- 1-0 
+ 10'9 



oi very deficient rainfall, render irrigation easy, 



which, except in seasons 
and rice is: therefore the 



NOETH BIHAR. 



95 



principal crop. In the southern tract also, rice is the main staple. The riparian 
portion is fairly level but in sorae parts the surface is undulating, and here 
it is cleverly terraced and irrigated from reservoirs constructed on the higher 
slopes. In addition to rice, wheat, sugarcane, and other crops requiring a less 
ample and constant supply of water are extensively grown. Further from 
the river the surface has a greater elevation, and the soil becomes more 
shallow and rocky and comparatively barren. The inhabitants are fewer in 
number and their crops are scantier and more precarious. The growth of 
the population between 1872 and 1881 amounted to 7-7 per cent. In the 
next decade there was a further advance of 3*3 per cent., the out-come of a 
considerable increase in the western part of North Bhagalpur, and in Banka 
and Bhagalpur thanas in South Bhagalpur, combined with a decline in the 
Kishanganj and Bihpur thanas, due to the ravages of the Kosi, on the north 
bank, and in Sultanganj and Amarpur on the south. 

Since 1891 the district has twice suffered from famine, in 1891-93 and 
again in 1896-97. The tract most affected was the western part of North 
Bhagalpur, in the Supaul and Bangaon thanas. South of the Ganges, the 
scarcity did not in either year amount to famine. Test works were opened 
early in 1897 but they failed to show any demand for labour. Since the last 
famine the crops, on the whole, have been good and the people have recovered 
from its effects. The vital statistics show an excess of births over deaths 
between the years 1892 and 1900, amounting to 76,604. The only year in 
which the deaths out-numbered the births was 1894. There was an epidemic 
of cholera which was especially bad in Amarpur, but the main cause of the 
high mortality was the excessive prevalence of fever which accounted for 
42*23 deaths per 1,000 in Kishanganj and for 33'03 in the district as a 
whole. The healthiest years were the famine year, 1897, and the year imme- 
diately after it. In 1897, 13,000 fewer deaths were reported than the average 
of the three previous years, while the births were 7,000 above the same 



average. 
188. 



The 



addition to the population brought out by the last 'census is 

56,257 or 2-8 per cent. The 
general rate of increase is much 
the same as in the previous decade, 
but the figures for individual 
thanas vary greatly. Sultanganj, 
Bihpur, and Amarpur cum 
Katauria, which lost ground in 
1891, now show an increase, 
while Banka which then was the 
most progressive thana in the dis- 
trict, is now slightly decadent. 
Madhipura has lost rather more 
than it gained in 1891. The two 
thanas of the Supaul subdivision 
and the Bangaon and Bhagal- 
pur thanas show a continuous 
growth, and Kishanganj a continu- 
ous decline. Kishanganj suffers 
more from fever than any other 
part of the district, and it is liable to devastation from the sandladen floods of 
the Kosi. The same adverse conditions account also for the decline in Madhi- 
pura. The most progressive thana on this occasion is Pratapganj, which owes 
its access of population to the advent of the railway. 

The number of settlers from other districts, and chiefly from the adjoining 

portions of Darbhanga, Monghyr, 
and Purnea is far less than in 1891, 
but this is due probably to deaths 
amongst the original immigrants 
rather than to their subsequent 
return to their original homes. 
The gradual westward movement 





POPHLA- 
TIOM. 


PekoehI AOE or 

TAEIATIOS. 




1901. 


1891—1901. 


1881—1891. 


DISTRICT TOTAL 

Sadar Subdivision 

Bhagalpur 

Colgong 

Sultanganj 

Bibput 

Banka Subdivision 

Banka 

Amarpur 

Eatauria 

Madhipura Subdivision ... 

Madhipura 

Kishanganj 

Bangaon 

Supaul Subdivision 

Supaul 

Pratapganj 


8,088,9B3 

B8B,344 

189,980 

204,088 

96,116 

96,060 

433,499 

161,602 
162,963 
118,944 

BB9,310 

276,462 
116,647 
166,311 

B10,900 

359,535 
151,306 


+ S-8 

+ eo 

+ 8"5 
+ 6-6 
+ 31 
+ 2-7 

'+S-4 

- 1-1 
+ 5-6 
+ 3-6 

-2-8 

- 3-8 

- 6'9 
+ 2'0 

+ 6-1 

+ 3-6 

+ 12-4 


+ 3-3 

+ 11 

+ 9-3 
+ 0"6 

- 63 

- 3-0 

+ 0-B 

+21-8 
] - 9-3 

+ S1 

+ 2'7 

- 7-5 
+ 9-7 

+ 9-9 

+12-5 
+ 3-9 



Population. 


1901, 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


1,027,536 
68,006 
66,491 

1.036,020 


1,061,418 
49,632 
67,814 

1,069,700 


1,004,865 

7»,6e4 

64,804 

991,105 


1,027,881 
76,000 
60,323 

1,018,164 



of the Kosi, however, may have driven some of the settlers from Purnea back 



96 



CHAPTER II — VAKIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



to that district. The emigrants stand at almost the same figure as they did ten 
years previously but they include rather fewer females and rather more males. 
The district has thus sustained some loss by migration and it seems probable 
that, but for this, it would have shown an increase somewhat in excess of 
that recorded in 1891. 

189. The part of Purnea east of the Mahdnanda is more nearly allied to 

Bengal than Bihar, and the bulk of the inhabitants 
■^'^^^^^' are of Rajbansi Koch origin, though most of 

them are now converts to Muhammadanism. There are numerous swamps 
especially towards the south. The main crop is rice, but jute also is exten- 
sively grown. West of the Mahanandd the population is mainly Hindu, and 
the castes are the same as in the adjoining Bihar districts. A considerable 
portion of this latter tract, say from Purnea town westwards, has been greatly 
affected by the vagaries of th^ Kosi river, which is constantly changing its 
bed, and the soil, which elsewhere is a rich loam, is here very sandy, admirably 
adapted for pasture, but not so well suited for cultivation. The main crop is 
rice and though it seldom sufEers from want of rain, there is constant danger of 
destruction by the floods from the Kosi. 

Though their houses are poor and luxuries are rare, the inhabitants are not 
badly o£E. Rent is low and the people have as much food and clothing as they 
require. There are very few landless labourers, and unskilled labour has to be 
imported from outside. There was an increase of population between 1872 and 
1881 amounting to 7'8 per cent., and a further increase of 5'1 per cent, between 
1881 and 1891. The growth was most rapid in the great pastoral thanas, 
Dhamdaha and Matiari, which attracted numerous settlers from Bhagalpur, 
Monghyr and Darbhanga, and added a third and a seventh respectively to 
their population. 

Since 1891 the crops have been fairly good. There was some scarcity in 
1891-92 and again in 1896-97, but no famine. The communications have been 
improved by the construction of new railway lines. The district, however, is 
very unhealthy and the vital statistics show that the deaths outnumbered the 
births in every year except 1897, 1898 and 1899. The mortality was greatest 
in 1891 and 1900 when cholera was terribly prevalent ; in the latter year, 
according to the returns, it accounted for no less than 46,240 deaths or 24 per 
1,000, a rate of mortality which, with one solitary exception, was more than 
double that of any other district in any year of the decade. The total recorded 
death-rate in that year reached the appalling figure of 57 per 1,000. During the 
years 1892 — 1900 the reported deaths were more numerous than the births by 
38,239. Statistics of births in 1891 are not available, but the year was a very 
unhealthy one, and it probably witnessed a considerable loss of population. 

190. The result of this marked unhealthiness is reflected in the statistics of 
the present census which shows a decrease of 69,864 or 3-6 per cent. There 

is a decrease both in the number of 



Population. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

EmigraDtB 

Natural population 


958,452 
69,03-2 
•20,615 

910,035 


916,342 
38,973 
16,803 

894,172 


993,496 
83,313 
40,689 

960,872 


951,162 
61,935 
30,398 

929,626 



persons coming from, and going to, 
other districts, but the inter- district 
movements appear to have been 
exceptionally great in the years 
preceding 1891 ; in 1881 the figures 
very closely resemble those of the 
recent census. At all three 
enumerations the number of 
persons who have come to the district has greatly outnumbered that of those 
who have left it, but a great many of the former are only temporary visitors 
who bring their cattle in the cold weather months to graze in the splendid 
pasture lands on the left bank of the Kosi. The fact that the fees for grazing 
are now more strictly realised coupled with the extension of cultivation may, 
perhaps, account for the smaller number of persons who now come with their 
cattle from other districts. Wbere so much of the migration is of a purely tem- 
porary character it is very difficult to frame an estimate of the extent to which 
a district has gained or lost by the movements of the people. The immigrants 
have decreased to a greater extent than the emigrants and if they were all 
only temporarily away from their native districts, the figures would indicate a 
small net loss. If on the other hand, they had all changed their residence 



OKISSA. 



97 



permanently there must have been a considerable gain; the number of 
immigrants is greater by about 18,000 than it would be had there been no new 
arrivals while the shrinkage amongst emigrants is greater than deaths alone 
would account for, and it would seem as if some must have returned home 
since 1891. 

The only thana in the whole district that shows an increase is Saifganj, 

which owes its development to the 
fact that it contains the important 
railway junction at Katihar.* 
Thanks to this thana the tract west 
of the Mahanand^ has slightly 
gained in population since 1891, 
while that to the east of that river is 
responsible for the whole of the loss 
which has taken place. The decline 
is least marked in Purnea itself 
and in the thanaa bordering on the 
Kosi, and if Saifganj be left out 
of account it becomes gradually 
greater towards the east. It is 
most considerable in Balarampur, 
which is the unhealthiest thana in 
the district. No reason beyond 
unhealthiness can be assigned for 
the changes which have taken place. 
The fatal epidemic of cholera in 
1900 affected chiefly the western 
part of the district which, but for this, would doubtless have shown much better 
reisults. 



Thanas. 


POPULA- 

ATIOH, 

1901. 


PEBCEKIAeB OP 
TARIATIOlf. 




1891-1901. 


1881—1891. 


DISTRICT TOTAL 


1,874,794 


-36 


+ S-1 


Sadar Sutdivision 


838,333 


-9-6 


+ 60 


Purnea 

KasbaAmur 

Gondwara 

Dhamdaha 

Kadwa 

Balarampur 

Saifganj 


155,894 
119,135 
109.368 
144,661 
132,821 
78,174 
98,280 


-0-6 

- 2'7 

- 5'6 

- 0-1 

- 8-0 
-22-S 
+28-6 


+ 1-9 
+ 0-6 
- 6'4 
+ 30-9 
+ 3-8 
+ 7-0 


KishanganJ Subdivision ... 


619,476 


-4-8 


+ 3-7 


Riahaoganj 

Bahadurganj 

Kaliaganj 


149,979 
203,281 
266,216 


- B'O 

- 5-4 

- 4-S 


- 2-2 
+ 9-6 
+ 0-2 


Araria Subdivision 


416,985 


-3-6 


+ 80 


Araria 

Matiari 

Banigani 


■ 201,028 
128,906 
87,061 


- i-e 

- 2-4 

- 2-9 


+ 5-3 
+14-2 
+ 5-0 



ORISSA. 



191. 



Cuttack is divisible into three parts with very different characteris- 
tics. To the east, bordering on the Garjdts or 
^'^''^''^' Tributary States of Orisaa, is a region of rocky 

hills and barren soil, supporting a scanty and semi-Hinduised population with 
a very low standard of comfort. To the west, on the seashore, is a low-lying 
tract of great natural fertility where protected from the action of the salt 
water. A great part, however, is unprotected and unfit for cultivation, and 
much of the rest is exposed to damage from, storm-waves. The population is 
therefore sparse. Between these two extremes lies a fertile alluvial plain 
watered by three great rivers — the Mahdnadi, Brahmani, and Baitarni — and 
protected from drought by an extensive system of canal irrigation. This tract 
is very highly cultivated and has in parts a density of population very little 
less than that of the most thickly inhabited parts of Eastern Bengal and 
Tirhut. It is this portion of the district which sends its surplus male popula- 
tion to Calcutta and other parts of Bengal in search of work as domestic 
servants, door-keepers, &c., and the local earnings from agriculture are 
supplemented by large remittances from relatives in service elsewhere. Thanks 
partly to these remittances the standard of comfort is a comparatively 
high one. 

The censuses of 1881 and 1891 disclosed an increase of 16"3 and 7*8 per 
cent, respectively. The Magistrate thinks that the census of 1872 was 
incorrect and that the actual population exceeded the census figures by at 
least 100,000. This would reduce the rate of growth in the succeeding 
nine years to 13 per cent., which is about what might be expected during 
the period when the district was recovering from the terrible famine of 1866. 
The progress during the next decade would have been greater, but for the 
cyclone of September 1885 which destroyed 45 villages in Patamandi 
thana, most of whose inhabitants were either drowned or succumbed to fever 
and cholera which, as usual, followed in the wake of the flood. 

* Saifganj has been formed into a thana since 1891 and there may possibly have been some mistake in 
working out the population from the tabulation registers of the last census. At the same time the great 
growth of tie railway centre at Eatihar, seems quite sufficient to account for the recorded increase 
in its poptilatiou. 

N 



98 



CUAPTEE II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



192. Since 1891 the district has on the whole enjoyed good health. 
Cholera has seldom been absent, but it assumed serious proportions only in 1892, 
when it accounted for 21,289 deaths and in 1900 when the mortality was at the 
rate of 8*5 per 1,000. Since 1896 the birth-rate has been uniformly high, and 
in 1899 the number of births reported represents a ratio of nearly 50 per 1,000 
on the population of 1891. During the nine years preceding the present census 
the reported births exceeded the deaths by 108,540. The excess would probably 
have been greater had the figures been available for 1891, which was a 
particularly healthy year. There was a cyclone in 1891 which did con- 
siderable damage along the coast, and in this year and again in 1900 there 
were floods throughout the district. The famine of 1897 was felt in Cuttack 
but slightly, but the high prices affected the non-agricultural community. 
The advent of the railway has greatly improved the communications ; it has 
not been open long enough to affect the area under cultivation, but it has 
greatly stimulated migration. Natives of the district employed in Bengal 
return home at much more frequent intervals than formerly, but on the 
other hand the number seeking employment elsewhere has increased. But the 
greatest immediate benefit from the railway is the comparative immuoity which 
the district has secured from the dissemination of epidemic disease by the crowds 
of pilgrims travelling to and from the temple of Jagannath at Puri who now 
go by rail instead of on foot. The fact that the work on the railway 
embankments did not attract labour from within the district shows that the 
people are too well off to care about serving as coolies. The recent settlement 
operations, though possibly irksome at the time, have done much to teach the 
peasantry what their rights are and to protect them from harassment and 
illegal exaction. 

193. The result of the recent census 
per cent. This is rather greater than the 
the latter do not include the figures for 



IS 



Population. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male, 


Pemale. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

BmigrantB 

Natural population ... ,.,; 


996,409 

11,606 

81,283 

1,066,088 


1,067,349 
21,338 
35,476 

1,081,487 


940,667 

8,817 

61,452 

998,192 


997,114 

21,117 

61,163 

1,027,160 



an increase of 125,087, or 6-5 
vital statistics would indicate, but 
1891, which, as already stated, 
was a particularly healthy year. 
The number of immigrant females 
is about the same as it was ten 
years ago ; male settlers are more 
numerous, chiefly on account of 
the railway. The number of 
females who have left the district 
is considerably less than in 1891, 
chiefly on, account of the figures 
for the Orissa States, Singhbhum and the 24-Pa.rganas, but that of males is 
nearly 20,000 greater. These males are mostly temporary absentees, but even 
so the district has suffered a net loss by the movements of the people since 
1891 which is sufficient probably to account for the diminution in the rate of 

growth that has taken place as 
compared with that in the previous 
decade. The general increment is 
shared by all parts of the district 
and the, rate of development is 
remarkably uniform throughout. 
The growth of population has been 
least in the already densely 
inhabited thanas,, Cuttack, Salepur, 
Jajpur and Jagatsinghpur and 
greatest in the fertile but sparsely 
inhabited thanas, Patamandi any 
Aul, on the sea coast, where thfc 
construction of protective embank 
ments and the offer of easy terms 
of settlement have led to consider- 
able reclamations of land thrown 
out of cultivation by the salt water floods of 1885. Then follow the inland thanaa 
which adjoin the Garj^t States, Dbarmsala and Banki, which have also a very 
sparse population, and then Kendrapara, where the population, though more 
dense, is less so than in the other central thanks. 



Thanae. 


POPUIA- 
TlOIf. 


Peecektaoe of 
taeiation. 




1901. 


1891—1901. 


1881—1891. 


DISXBICX TOXJ.Z 

Sadar Subdivision 

Cuttack 

Banki 

Salepur 

Tirtol 

Jagatiingpur 

Vendvapara Subdivision 

Kendrapara 

Patamandi 

Aul 

jajpur Subdivision 

Jajpnr 

Dharmsala 


2,063,7 S 8 

1,035,275 

213,238 
74,677 
282,691 
180,309 
284,360 

467,081 

' 280,197 
126,646 
111,339 

560,402 

269,419 
290,963 


+ 6-5 

+ 5-4 

+ 6-0 
+ 7-4 
+ 4'6 
+ 6-8 
+ 6-4 

+S-7 

+ 7'1 
-l-10'7 
+ 9-8 

+ 6-6 

+ 4-3 
+ 8-8 


+ 7'9 

+ 85 

+ 8'6 
+ 0-8 
+ 8-2 
- 8-1 
+ 25-6 

+100 

+ 12'4 

-^ 1-4 
+ 11-1 

+ 6-3 

+ S-0 
+ 7-6 



OEISSA. 



99 



194. Balasore consists of a long strip of land, mostly alluvial, between 
Balasoee, ^^^ ^^y ?^ Bengal and the Tributary States, very 

narrow in the centre but growing broader towards 
the north and south. Along the coast is a belt of land about three miles 
broad, which is impregnated with salt and unfit for cultivation. The western 
portion, which runs along the foot of the hills and borders on the Garjats, is 
jungly and uncultivable. Between these two extremes lies the fertile, arable 
country which constitutes the greater part of the district. The climate is good, 
except in the north, whither malarial fevers have spread from the adjacent 
unhealthy thanas of Midnapore. Between 1873 and 1881 a great increase 
in the population was recorded, owing partly to improved enumeration and 
partly to a recovery from the losses caused by the famine of 1866. The next 
decade witnessed a greatly diminished rate of progress, and the general 
expansion was only 5"0 per cent. Jellasore, in the extreme north, had suffered 
from malaria and was stationary. Chandbali, in the south, with its scanty 
population and prosperous port, showed a rapid develop^ient. In the rest 
of the district the increase was very evenly distributed. 

Since 1891 the north of the district has become less unhealthy. There 
have been frequent epidemics of cholera. The worst outbreak was in 1892 
when this disease was responsible for a mortality of 15 per 1,000, a rate which 
was exceeded during the decade only in the terrible epidemic in Purnea in 
1900. The reported deaths exceeded the births in this year and also in 1894 
and 1896, when cholera was again prevalent, but in the nine years, 1892 — 
1900, taken together, the births outnumbered the deaths by about 30,000. 
The people are fairly prosperous, and nearly every one has land of his own. 
The crops have been good, and the opening of the railway has greatly improved 
communications. The only disaster was a high flood in October 1900, which 
destroyed crops and cattle, though it caused very little loss of life. The area 
chiefly affected was in the Dhamnagar Thana. 

195. The favourable conditions of the decade are reflected in the census 

figures, and in spite of some loss 
by migration the population of the 
district in 1901 is greater than that 
at the time of the previous census by 
76,522, or 7*7 per cent. Amongst 
females emigrants and immigrants 
are both less numerous than in 
1891, but the ex:cess of the for- 
mer over the latter remains about the same. The male immigrants are fewer 
and the emigrants more numerous than in 1891, and the latter now out-number 
the former by nearly 16,000. The loss owing to the movements of the people 
may thus be roughly estimated at from 1 to 2 per cent. 

The population of the Chandbali and Basudeb thanas shows the great- 
est development. They are on 
the sea shore ; both contain much 
land fit for cultivation, and 
the absence of destructive cy- 
clones has encouraged reclamation. 
Dhamnagar, in the south-east, 
shows a slight loss of population, 
which, however, is probably only 
temporary. The destruction of 
crops by the flood which occurred 
shortly before the census sent 
many of the males to other dis- 
tricts in search of work where- 
by to tide over their temporary 
difficulties. This explanation is 
confirmed by the figures for each 
sex ; the falling-off is confined to 
males and the female population is greater than in 1891. Throughout the rest 
of the district the rate of increase is uniform, varying from 7-9 per cent, in 
Jellasore to 9 per cent, in Bhadrak. 

N 2 



POPULATIOS. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Pemale. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

ImmigTants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


617,643 
13,235 
29,024 

633,332 


563,654 
16,232 
22,739 

560,161 


481,664 
15,006 
25,147 

491,806 


613.011 
19,917 
25,421 

618,615 





POPULA- 

Tioir. 


Pebcentag-e OB 

TAKIATIOK. 




1901. 


1891—1901. 


1881—1891. 


DISTRICT TOXAI, 

Sadar Subdivision 

Balasore 

Soro 

Jellasore 

Baliapal 

Basta 

JBhadrak Subdivision ... 

Bbadralc 

Basudebpur ... ... 

I)]iamnagar 
Clundbali 


1,071,197 

B93,S44 

122,594 
229,263 

59,721 
100,839 

80,127 

478,633 

193,410 
83,129 

1S7,70& 
64,406 


+ 7-y 

+ 8-3 

+ 8-9 
+ 8-1 
+ 7'9 
+ 8-7 
+ 8-0 

+ 69 

+ 9'0 
+ 12'0 

- -4 
+ ll'B 


+ S-3 
+ B-1 

+ 4-e 

+ 7-2 
+ 0'6 
+ 5-8 
+ 4-0 

+ S-J 

+ 4-3 
+ 1-0 
+ 4-6 
+ 11-1 



100 



CHAPTER II — ^VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



196. The Khurda subdivision of Puri is a Government estate. The 

country is above flood level while the numerous 
^^^^' rivers that intersect it afford ample means for 

irrigation. The rest of the district is a low alluvial plain, through which the 
torpid rivers find their uncertain way towards the sea.; their final exit is often 
impeded by ridges of sand thrown up by the strong monsoon currents, and their 
banked-up waters often burst the embankments that have been erected to 
restrain them and cause disastrous floods. The district has grown steadily since 
1872 and at the last census an increase of 6'4 per cent, was recorded, part of 
which was attributed to defects in the previous enumeration. 

The public health has not been very good since_ 1891. Cholera is 
imported annually by pilgrims, and fever is prevalent during the cold weather. 
The reported deaths exceeded the births in 1892 and 1897, but in the nine 
years, 1892 to 1900, there was, according to the returns, a net excess of 32,153 
births over deaths. In 1891 the crops suffered greatly from insufficient rain at 
the commencement of the monsoon, and the damage was aggravated by a cyclone 
in the following November, which brought on an exceptionally heavy flood. 
Most of the embankments were breached, the standing crops were destroyed, 
and cholera, dysentery and other diseases spread all over the district. - The 
year 1897 was equally disastrous. The crops of 1896 were short everywhere 
and this resulted in a general scarcity, though relief operations were necessary 
only in the neighbourhood of the Chilka lake and in parts of the Khurda 
subdivision. The country round the Chilka was again subject to scarcity in 
1900, when the rainfall was scanty and ill-distributed. So far, therefore, 
as agricultural operations are concerned the conditions have not been satis- 
factory. On the other hand the opening oE the railway has benefited the 
people greatly. Its construction afforded profitable employment to the 
labouring classes, and now that the district has been brought into easy com- 
munication with Calcutta, emigration in search of employment has been greatly 
facilitated and wages have risen in consequence. Prices of produce also have 
risen owing to the new markets that have been brought within easy reach. 

197. The actual increase brought out by the present census is 72,286, or 

7*6 per cent., but part of this is due 

to the fact that a great religious 

festival was in progress at Puri 

at the time when the census was 

the immigrant popu- 

exceeded that of 189*1 

than 13,000. The 

persons born in the 

districts who were 



POPDLATIQN. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


606,839 
20,919 
11,487 

497,407 


610,445 
32,114 
17,604 

495,836 


474,530 
16,797 
11,517 

470,250 


470,483 

■ 24,132 

19,871 

465,707 



and 
thus 



taken, 
lation 
by more 
number of 
adjoining 

enumerated in Puri was less than in 1891, and the addition to the population due 
to pilgrims must therefore have been greater than the above figures would 
indicate.* The number of female emigrants has fallen off while that of males 
is about the same as it was ten years previously. But for these movements 
of the people the rate of growth would probably have been about the same as, 
or rather less than, that of the previous decade. 

The Sadar and Pipli thanas show the smallest rate of progress. Thi< 

is due mainly to the fact that the 
embankment on the left bank of 
the Bhargavi river has been breach 
ed so often that it was decided in 
1895 to leave it unrepaired, and 
the consequences, says the Magis- 
trate, have been fatal to the pros 
perity of the country which thij 
embankment had been designed to 
protect, and which was previously 
one of the richest and most popu 
lous parts of the district. The 
opejiing of the railway, more 



Th^na. 


POPTTLA- 
TIOS. 


fRBCBITTAaE OV 
TAKIATIOK. 




1901. 


1891-1901. 


1881-1891. 


BISTItlCT TOTAZ 

Sofdar Subdivision 

Puri 

PnriTown ... 

Gop 

Pipli 

Khtirda Subdivision 

Khurda 

Bhanpur 


1,017,384 

eS8,048 

217,126 

49,334 

142,439 

249,150 

3B9,S30 

264,296 
104,941 


+ 7-6 

+ 7-3 

+ S'7 
+71'3 
+ 6'8 
+ 3'2 

+ S-4 

+ 8'3 
+ 8-5 


+e-3 

+ 86 

+ 6'« 
+12-1 
+15'S 
+ «'4 

+9-3 

+ 0-4 
+ 76 



over, has stimulated emigration in search of employment. Many of the 

* The number of pUgriniB in Puri town on the night of the eensus exceeded 17,000, 



CHOTA NAGPUR PLATEAU. 101 



poorer Brahmans who live in these thanas, have taken to the profession of pil- 
grim-conductors and large numbers were absent at the time of the census. Gop 
thana shows a greater increase than the rest of the head-quarters subdivision, 
Q'S it is^ less developed, and there is more room for expansion. The Khurda 
subdivision is more favourably situated than other parts of the district, and 
its somewhat more rapid development is therefore only natural. 

CHOTA NAGPUR PLATEAU. 

198. Hazaribagh, like the rest of Cbota Nagpur, consists, to a great extent, 

of rock and ravine, and the cultivable area is com- 
AZAEiBAGH. parativoly small. On the north it rises somewhat 

abruptly from the Bihar plain, and a table- land is formed which stretches 
along the northern face of the district, having an average width of about 15 
miles. South of this a further rise takes place and leads to a second plateau 
which occupies the west central part of the district. In the western part of the 
northern table-land the slope is towards the north and the rivers find an exit 
in the plains of South Bihar, but elsewhere there is a gentle declivity towards 
the south-east, and the drainage of the country converges on two main channels, 
the Barakar and the Damodar. The valleys of these rivers gradually 
become wider and in places highly cultivated and fairly extensive tracts of 
level alluvium take the place of the scattered and laboriously constructed 
terraces on the slopes of the hills which are to be seen elsewhere. The district 
is unprotected by irrigation. A large proportion of the inhabitants are Bhuiy^s, 
Santals and Kurmis, and other aborigines whose habits are migratory and who 
are in great demand as coolies on tea-gardens. The first reliable census 
was in 1881, and between that year and 1891 there was an increase of 5*7 per 
cent, in the population. With the exception of the Hunterganj thana the 
whole of, the north-west of the district lost ground, but this was more 
than compensated for by the increase elsewhere, especially in the Giridih 
subdivision. These variations were explained partly by the movement of the 
population within the district and partly by emigration to Assam and other parts 
of Bengal. 

199. Since 1891 the district has suffered three times from short crops, the 
result of deficient rainfall. In 1895 the harvests were deficient, and in the 
following year they failed almost completely. Owing to the partial failure in 
the previous year, the distress thus caused was general and widespread. The 
thanas most affected were Barhi, Koderma, Bagodar, Gumia, Ramgarh, Mandu 
and Hazaribagh. Relief works failed to attract labour owing, it is said, partly 
to the unwillingness of the wilder tribes to engage in unaccustomed forms of 
labour, and partly to a fear that the acceptance of famine rates of payment 
would tend to lower wages permanently, but a good deal of employment was 
afforded by the District Board, and gratuitous relief was given to beggars and 
destitute travellers. Two good years sufficed to restore prosperity, and when, in 
in the year 1899, there were again deficient harvests, the people were able, 
without serious distress, to tide over till better times. The decade was, on the 
Tsrhole, a fairly healthy one, and, according to the vital statistics returns, the births 
sut-numbered the deaths by about 81,000. The unhealthy years were 1894 and 
1897, especially the latter, when the deaths that were reported numbered 56,036, 
or 48 per 1,000. This was the famine year. The Sanitary Commissioner attri- 
Ibuted the high death-rate to unhealthiness resulting from an excessive rainfall in 
1896 but the Civil Surgeon of the district thinks that although fever and 
cholera were chiefly to blame, the high mortality was due partly to the indirect 
effects o£ the privations endured by the people. The tendency of the forest 
Jribes who suffered most from the famine is to seek for sustenance in the jungles 
jather than go to the Government relief works. These jungle products when 
taken with other articles of food are not unwholesome, but as a sole dietary they 
lire innutritions and indigestible. A long course of such food enfeebles the 
tonstitution and predisposes to disease. The birth-rate of 1897 and 1898 was 
very low, but in 1899 it suddenly rose to over 50 per 1,000. Plague appeared 
in several parts of the district in January 1901, but the totial number of plagub 
deaths reported prior to the census was only 309, 



103 



CHAPTER n— VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 





1901. 


1891. 




Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population ... 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural population... 


670,122 
19,469 
83,672 

634,225 


607,639 
22,414 
60,784 

653,209 


666,964 
26,312 
60,484 

601,136 


697,367 
46,833 
63,138 

603,863 



200. The recent enumeration shows a slight increase of 13,640, or 1'2 per 

cent., but the real growth of the 
population has been much greater 
than these figures would indicate. 
The balance of migration has gone 
heayily against the district. The 
immigrants are far fewer than in 
1891, and the arrival of new settlers 
has, if anything, been more than 

discounted by the return to their old homes of persons from other districts 
who were enumerated in Hazaribagh in 1891. On the other hand, the number 
of persons who have left the district has greatly increased, and 150,356 
persons born in Hazaribagh, were enumerated elsewhere compared with 
only 113,622 in 1891. If we take the death-rate at 40 per 1,000, and assume 
that an equal number of persons left the district in each year of the decade, 
this would seem to indicate an annual emigration of about 9,111 persons, or 
91,110 during the decennium.* The real number is probably somewhat less 
than this, as the years when emigration was most active were in the latter part 
of the decade. But for this loss by migration the rate of increase would pro- 
bably have been not less than 8 per cent. 

201. The local variations follow the same general direction as in 1891. 

The decadent thanas include the 
whole western half of the district 
except Hunterganj in the extreme 
north-west, and Mandu, Ramgarh, 
and Kasmar in the south. It is in 
this part of the district that recruit- 
ing operations for the tea districts 
are most active. The great increase 
in Kasmar is due in part to its prox- 
imity to the Jheria coalfield and to 
the construction of the Jheria-Katras 
railway. All the thanas in the 
Giridih subdivision show an im- 
provement, but the growth is most 
marked in the case of Giridih itself 
where the coal mines of the East 
Indian Railway attract a steadity 
increasing number of labourers. In 
Ganwan and also in Kodarma, in the 
head-quarters subdivision, mica mining 

affords employment to many, and this has no doubt affected the population to 
some extent. 

202. The greater part of Ranchi is an elevated undulating table land, 

where the terraces cut in the slopes of the depress- 
ions which lie between the ridges are almost the 
only places where permanent cultivation is feasible. Towards the west and 
south the surface becomes more broken; the hills are steeper and the valleys are 
replaced by ravines where no crops can be grown. The district is the great 

* The yearly number of deaths at 40 per 1,000 amongst the 113,632 persons enumerated elsewhere 
in 1891 would be 4,545, consequently 45,450 persons must have gone from the district during the decade to 
keep up the number of emigraots ascertained in 1891. The annual emigration necessary to produce the 
excess of 36,734 emigrants shown in the returas for 1901 is calculated thus : — 

Let a;=the number of emigrants in each year and '040 (i.e. 40 per 1,000) the death-rate. Then the 
number surviving at the end of one year will bea;X -960, at the end of two years mX 'dQQ', and so on. Hence 
the total number of new emigrants at the end of the decade will be — 

X (•960W + •960^+9608, etc. +-960)=36,734. 







PEECEHTAeE OF 


Thanas, 


Population, 
1901. 


Vauiatiow. 












1891—1901. 


1881-1891. 


DISTRICT XOTJ.I, 


1,177,961 


+ i-e 


+ S-4 


Hadar Subdivision 


760,164 


- -3 


+ 3-a 


Hazaribagh 


92,923 


— 8-3 


— 1-3 


Barhi 


60,292 


— 2-5 


— -6 


Bagodar 


64,490 


— -1 


+ 8'9 


Uamgar 


ao,78i 


+ 1-4 


+ 9-6- 


Kodarma 


79,413 


+ 2-2 


+ 6-S 


Kasmar 


67,741 


. +13-6 


+ 7-4 


Simaria 


37,936 


+ 3-7 


— 1-0 


Ohorparan ... 


60,858 


— 33 


— 10'6 


Hunterganj 


63,693 


+ 8-9 


+ 2'6 


Gumian 

Mandu 


29|S13 
29,968 


— 2-7 
+ 2-2 


} + 12-3 


BurkagaoD 


64,479 


— 49 


+ 2-6 


Chatra 


67,777 


- 69 


— 4-a 


Giridih Subdivision ... 


417,797 


+ 40 


+ ll}-0 


Giridih 


116,993 


+ 8-8 


+ 26-1 


Kharagdiha 


87,696 


+ -6 


1 + 4-0 


Dhanwar 


71,262 


+ 23 


Dumurhi 


82,328 


+ 2-6 


+ 17-0 


Ganwaa 


69,629 


+ 4-1 


+ 7-2 



The approximate accuracy of this method is confirmed by a comparison of the results afforded by it 
with the statistics maintained under the Inland Emigration Act. According to these statistics 180,097 
persons weje imported to Assam as tea-garden coolies from Ohota Nagpur Plateau during the decade. 
The number of persons enumerated in Assam but born in this tract was 209,068 in 1891 and 281,375 in 1901. 
At a death-rate of 40 per 1,000, the total number of emigrants needed to keep up the 1891 population would 
be 83,627, while to produce the excess of 72,207 shown in 1901, 89,765 new emigrants woifid be needed. 
The total of 173,393 falls very little short of the figiire separately ascertained under the labour law. 



CHOTA NAGPUR PLATEAU. 103 



recruiting ground for tea-garden coolies, and its aboriginal tribes, especially 
its Oraons and Mundas, are to be found on every tea-garden in Assam and 
the Western Duars. During the decade ending in 1891 the district added 6-7 
per cent, to its population, in spite of a large and growing stream of 
emigration. 

Since 1891 there have been four years of very deficient harvests, viz., 
1891, 1895, 1896 and 1899. The crop failure was greatest in 1899, but the 
suffering was less than in 1896, partly because it came after two seasons of good 
crops, while the short harvest of 1896 followed immediately on that of 1895, 
partly because in the absence of general scarcity elsewhere prices never rose so 
high, and partly because the preparations for meeting the calamity were more 
complete. In 1897, as test works failed to attract labour, it was hoped that the 
people would be able to surmount their trouble without help from Govern- 
ment. The hope unfortunately was not realized, and great distress suddenly 
developed in the central part of the district, chiefly in the Toto, Sesai and 
Karra thanas. Relief operations were at once undertaken, but the acute stage 
of distress was of very short duration. Only three deaths from actual starvation 
were reported, but cholera broke out in epidemic form, and the mortality from 
bowel-complaints was also exceptionally high, owing, it is said, to the bad 
effects of eating gondii {panicum miliare) grain unmixed with rice on constitu- 
tions enfeebled by a low and insufficient diet of roots and fruits gathered in 
the forests. In 1899 the area that suffered most was much the same as in 1896. 
Relief works were opened in ample time, the attendance on them was far better 
than in the previous famine, and the distress that would otherwise have ensued 
was thus to a great extent averted. 

203. The decade is reported to have been an unhealthy one, but if so, 
vital statistics returns must be exceptionally inaccurate. The returns show 
an average birth-rate of 38 and a death-rate of 29 per 1,000 and a net excess 
of births over deaths of 110,191. The mortality was highest in 1897, when it 
exceeded the average of the decade by 60 per cent. It is to be feared, 
as in Hazaribagh, that the famine was indirectly responsible for much of this 
mortality. In Bihar, as we have seen, the famine had no apparent effect on 
the mortality. Not only was the death-rate lower than usual dm-ing the famine 
year, but the census shows that the tracts which suffered most are precisely 
those where the greatest increase of population has taken place. The reason 
why the result should have been different in Chota Nagpur is explained as 
follows in the Government Resolution on the famine: — 

"A. considerable part of the food-supply consists of the edible _ forest products, 
which are resortefi to largely everywhere as a supplement to the ordinary diet. The 
most important of these products is the flower of the mahua tree, but a large variety of 
jungle fruits and roots are eaten, both cooked and raw. This diet, though sufficient to 
sustain life, is deleterious if unaccompanied by rice or other grain, yet the aboriginal and 
semi-aboriginal tribes, who form a considerable portion of the population, are content to 
eke out a scanty subsistence upon it in their native jungles rather than do anything in 
the nature of a " task " upon relief works. Consequently, though the numbers on relief m 
the division were at no time large, there was more anxiety felt on its account than else- 
where. The inaccessible character of the country and the range of prices, which here 
reached a higher level than in any other portion of the Province, combined with the scat- 
tered character of the population and the restless and independent nature of the forest 
tribes, gave rise to great fears lest the food supplies should fail and the people die m the 
jungles rather than resort to relief works ; and although only a few actual deaths from 
starvation are reported to have occurred, yet there is reason to apprehend that the sufEenngs 
of the poorer classes haw been greater in this Division than elsewhere." 

It should, however, be mentioned that in 1900, when famine conditions 
ftgain prevailed, the reported death-rate was below the average for the 

20*4. The short harvests greatly stimulated emigration, and recruiting for 
the tea gardens of Assam and the Duars was very active.* The balance of 

# Tiin Tiiimber of emigrants to Assam registered at Eanchi daring the decade was 47,764 of whem 
vW^OOOoTereregisteTeaintlietwo years 1897-98 and 1899-1900. These figures do not include aU 
nearly 20.000 were registereQm A ^ ^^ ^ ^^^^ the relative strength of the tendency to 

emigrants to AsBambt they may ^^^^^^^ Kanchi-born persons enumerated in Assam in 1901 

tS 7V4 compared wftr70,049^ 1891 which would represent a total emigratioi, of about 65,000 
assuining an equal number of emigrants to have left yearly. 



104 



CHAPTRE II — ^VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



POPrlATIOH. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


677,180 
17,030 
142,910 
703,060 


610,746 
16,026 
132,341 

728,060 


651,873 
12,526 
119,190 
658,637 


677,012 

12,979 

126,832 

690,865 



Note.— Ranohi and Palamau formed one district until the 1st 
January 1892 an! the statistics of migration collected in 1891 refer 
to the two districts combined. For tlie purpose of this and similar 
statements it has been assumed that the immigrants and emigrants 
vere then distributed between them in the same proportions as at 
the present census. 



migration was heavily against the district in 1891 and it is still more so at the 

present census ; emigrants now out- 
number immigrants by 243,195 
compared with 220,517 ten years 
ago. Assuming all these to be per- 
manent migrants and assuming also 
that the volume of migration was 
the same in each year and that the 
annual death-rate was 40 per 
1,000, these figures indicate a net 
loss to the district during the 
decade, of about 116,000 persons.* 
After allowing for temporary 
migrants and for the excessive emigration of 1897 and 1900 it would still seem 
that the true increase in the population must have been about 13 per cent., 
instead of 5*2 per cent, which is the actual variation in the number of persons 
enumerated in the district. It will be seen, when dealing with Palamau, that 
some of the emigrants from that district have probably been credited to Ranchi, 
but it is impossible to frame any estimate of their number, f 

205. The variations iu individual thanas cannot always be clearly ascer- 
tained, owing to the numerous 
changes in jurisdiction that have 
taken place since 1891, and to the 
fact that the corrections made in 
the population according to the 
census of that year were in some 
cases rough estimates based on the 
assumption that the density of 
population was uniform throughout 
the thanas afEected. This circum- 
stance probably accounts for the 
great apparent increase in' Chain- 
pur, Kurdeg, Kolebira and Bano. 
The last two thanas with Bassiaall 
formed one thana in 1891. In 
the three together the increase is 
23-3 per cent, which is still 
sufficiently striking. There has 

been a good deal of migration within the district from the older thanas, where 
the landlords are very powerful, to the more jungly thanas along the south of the 
district, and this probably accounts for a good deal of the increase in Kurdeg, 
Kochdega, Kolebira, Bano, and Khunti, and for the slight decline that has 
taken place in PalkotJ The only thanas that show a more than nominal 
decrease are Toto, Sisai and Karra which suffered most from the famines of 
1897 and 1900 and so furnished a specially large quota of emigrants to Assam 
as well as to the more favoured tracts in the south of the district. 

206. Palamau was separated from Lohardaga, now called Rancbi, and 

formed into a separate district in 1892. Unlike 
Paiamatt. Ranchi and Hazaribagh, there is here but little 

table-land and the face of the country is wilder and more broken by rock 
and jungle. The only level areas of any extent are in the north* of the district, 
on the right bank of the Sone, and in the valleys of the North Koel and 
Amanat rivers, where permanent rice cultivation is carried on by people of the 
same castes as are met with in the adjoining plains districts. Elsewhere 
the inhabitants are mainly forest tribes who eke out their precarious crops of 
oil-seeds, maize and cotton with the blossoms of the mahuA tree and other 

* The method of arriving at this figure has been explained in the foot-note on page 103. 

■f There was also some confusion in 1891, due to the system of working out the results in the districts 
instead of in Central offices. The work was generally well done but in a few offices it was not properlj 
supervised. In Hooghly for instance, the birthplace return shows no persons born in Hazaribagh, Eanehi 
or Singhbhum and 2736 in the Chota Nagpur States. This figure clearly refers to persons bom in all parts 
of Chota Nasrpur except Manbhum. 

J The Deputy Commissioner thinks that in the jungle thanas to the south of the district and in 
Chainpur on the west, the census of 1891 was not altogether accurate. 







FEBCEITTAaE OV 


Thanas. 


Population 
1901. 


VABIAIIOU. 












1891-1901. 


1881-1891. 


mSTRICT XOTAI, ... 


i,lS7,9ge 


+58 


+ 6-7 


Toto 


46,663 


— 4-1 


+ 6-S 


Khnnti 


113,660 


+17'8 




Mandar 


75,307 


+ 2'1 


+10-6 


Bishenpnr 


19,485 


+ 1-2 


Included in 
Chainpur. 


Kurdeg 


26,918 


+22-6 


Included in 
Kochdega. 


Palkot 


67,036 


— -2 


+ 4-4 


Kanchi 


177,685 


— -01 


+22-7 


Tamar 


111,747 


+ 9'3 


+ 92 


Karra 


90,346 


— 6-5 


—11-0 


SiHi 


76,643 


— -9 


+11-3 


Kolebira 


37,788 


+66-1 




Basia 


49,682 


+ 3-6 


> + 1'7 


Bano 


29,660 


-l-SO'7 


) 


Kochdega 


68,903 


+ 13-7 


+ 16-6 


Ijobardaga 


109,048 


+ 1-3 


+ 10 


Sisai 


63,490 


-6-7 


Included in 

Toto. 


Chainpur 


46,384 


+20-9 


+ I'l 



CHOTA NAGPUR PLATEAU. 



105 





1901. 


1891. 




Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 
Immigrants 
Emigrants 
Matural population 


306,203 
19,899 
11,689 

800,993 


813,397 
18,939 
17,621 

311,979 


291,320 
19,361 
12,261 

287,220 


302,160 
16,117 
16,792 

303.095 



products of the jungle. The district is not a healthy one. Malarial affections 
are prevalent, and also bowel-complaints, due to the unwholesome food on 
which the people live. The decade ending in 1891 disclosed an increase in 
the population of 8'3 per cent. 

The district suffered like its neighbours from short crops in 1895, 1896 
and 1899. The crop failure of 1896 resulted in severe distress, culminating 
in famine m a broad tract stretching across the centre of the district 
from east to west. In 1899 the Mahuadanr thana in the south-east of the 
district suffered most but, judging from the numbers on relief, the famine that 
ensued was less than a third as widespread as that of 1897. Both in 1897 and 
1900 the recorded mortality was above the average, but while the death-rate 
in 1897 had been exceeded in 1893 and 1894, that of 1900 was by far the 
highest of the decade and reached the unprecedented rate of 48 per 1,000. 
Fever was very prevalent, and there was a severe epidemic of cholera. The 
reported birth-rate in 1899 had been exceptionally high (53 per 1,000), and 
a high rate of mortality is usual amongst infants. It is possible that the 
famine was, to some extent, responsible for the high mortality but probably 
not to any marked extent. 

207. In the decade as a whole, the returns indicate an excess of 
births over deaths aggregating 21,099. This corresponds very closely with 
the result of the recent census, which shows an increase of 22,830 persons, 

or 3'8 per cent. The returns of 
migration are given in the margin. 
They disclose but little varia- 
tion during the decade, and if they 
are correct, they show that the district 
gains rather more than it loses by 
the movements of the people. It 
is doubtful, however, how far the 
statistics of emigration are reliable. The district is a new one, and it is not im- 
possible that its emigrants often described themselves as having been born in 
Lohardaga, and have thus been credited to Ranchi in our returns. It is certain 
that there was a good deal of emigration during the recent lean years, but this 
does not seem to be reflected in the census figures. 

The increase of population is greatest in the northern part of the district, 

where there is the greatest propor- 
tion of land fit for permanent culti- 
vation, and where the inhabitants 
belong to castes that do not emigrate 
to tea-gardens or readily leave their 
homes. The only thanas which show 
a decrease are Balumath and Latehar 
in the south-east, where the condi- 
tions are very similar to those in the 
decadent part of Hazaribagh that 
adjoins them. The Balumath thana 
is co-extensive with the estate Tosi 
which has suffered much from mismanage ment and has recently been brought 
under the provisions of the Chota Nagpur Encumbered Estates Act. 

208. Manbhum occupies the declivity between the Chota Nagpur Plateau 

and Western Bengal. It is far more open than the 
Manbhttm. districts hitherto dealt with ; the area under cultiva- 

tion is greater, and the inhabitants are more civilised. Towards the east there 
is but little to distinguish it from the adjacent parts of Burdwan and Bankura. 
In the uplands the soil is a ferruginous gravel which changes in the lower 
levels to a rich alluvium. The district is a healthy one and its population 
has grown rapidly since the first census, thirty years ago. The last decade has 
witnessed a marked improvement in the material condition of the people. The 
crops were bad in several years, as in the rest of Chota Nagpur, but the 
failure was not so great, and the people enjoyed advantages which, in the 
decade as a whole, more than compensated for their losses on account of bad 
harvests The Bengal-Nagpur Railway traverses the headquarters subdivision 
from north-east to south-west, and the branch line to Katras has opened out 



Thasas. 


Population, 
1901. 


Pekobkiaoe op 
vaeiatiou. 




1891-1901. 1881-91. 


DISTRICT TOTAL ... 

Daltonganj 

Latehar 

Balumath 

Banka 

Mahuadanr 

Chhatarpur 

Husainabad 

Garhwa 

Pathn 


619,600 

106,179 
41,938 
61,718 
36,101 
26,999 
13,157 

119,741 
93,256 
87,914 


+1'9 
-1-9 
-3-9 
+ 6-7 
• +3'2 
+ 5'8 
+7'0 
+7-1 
+6-1 


+ 8-3 

+ 33-6 

- 3-6 

+ a-O 

- 27-3 
+ S6-8 
+ 11-4 
+ 8-8 
+ 9-C 
+ 4-0 



106 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



POPDLATIOK. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


TemalP. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


65S,336 
37,391 
64,916 

680,860 


648,028 
24,728 
71,057 

694,357 


693,199 
23,729 
59,354 

628,824 


600,129 
23,362 
69,639 

636,316 



the Gobindpur subdivision, and caused a rapid development of tiie mining 
industry in the Jheria coalfield. The death-rate has been low and the birth- 
rate comparatively high. The return is no doubt still very defective, but a 
comparison of the births and deaths shows an excess of 107,744 births between 
1892 and 1900. 

209. According to the census there has been an increase of 108,036 
persons or 9'1 per cent, during the decade. In spite of the attraction 
of the coal mines the district has lost by migration. The number of female 
immigrants is slightly greater than in 1891 and there are about 14,000 more 

male immigrants, chiefly from 
Hazaiibagh, Bihar and the United 
Provinces, who have come to 
work in the mines. The emi- 
grants, however, have grown in 
even greater proportions, and the 
net excess of emigrants over immi- 
grants is now 73,853 compared 
with 71,812 in 1891.* It would 
thus appear that there has been a net loss of about 30,000 persons by migration, 
and if these be added, the natural increase in the district comes to between 1 1 
and 12 per cent. 

The figures for the different 
thanas show considerable varia- 
tions. The development of the 
coal mines has caused a remark- 
able expansion of 75 per cent, in the 
population of Jheria, and of 30 per 
cent, in that of Topchanchi. Part 
of this is due to immigration from 
outside the district and part to the 
attraction of settlers from the sur- 
rounding thanas. The latter move- 
ment accounts for the slight de- 
crease in Para and the stationary 
condition of Gaurandi, Jhalda, 
Chas and Raghunathpur. Away 
from the coal mines the growth of 
population is greatest in the Purulia 
and Manbazar thanas. The former 
contains the head-quarters of the 
, . - . district with its huge coolie recruit- 

ing busmess and an important railway station. The relatively hio-h increase in 
Manbazar is due mainly to the fact that its inhabitants are for the most part 
Hindus, belonging to castes that do not emigrate to tea gardens. 

210. The general level of Singhbum is high, but the country is fairly open 
SiNGHBHUM. except towards the south-west, where the undulating 

. . „ _,, , uplands give way to a mountainous tract clothed in 

virgm forest. 1 he population is very sparse, and there are large areas capable 
of reclamation, especially in Ghatsila and the Kolhan. The district has shown a 
contmuous and rapid growth since 1872. The climate is healthy and the inhabi- 
tants are prolific, but at the same time it is probable that a great part of the 
apparent increase prior to 1891 was due to the imperfection of the earUer 
enumerations. Since that year the people have been fairly orosperous The 
recent resettlement of the Kolhan has resulted in a revenue demand twice as 
great as that previously assessed, but the people have paid it with ease. There 
was scarcity m 1897 and in 1900, especially in the Kolhan, where the inhabitants 
ai-e chiefly improvident Hos who spend all they get and never trouble to save. 
At the same time they are better able than their Hindu neighbours to endure the 
want of proper food and can subsist, without great suffering, on various kinds of 
roots, fruits and leaves gathered in the jungles. The opening of the railway 
through the district has done much to develop trade and wages, and the prices of 
gram nave risen considerably. " i- voo ua 

* More than half the emigi-ants from Alanbhum were enumerated in Assam" ' 





Population. 


Percentage of 
Variation. 


Thanas. 










1901. 


1891-1901. 


1881—1891. 


DlSXniCX XOTAX, 


1,301,304 


+ 91 


+12-9 


Sadar Subdivision 


1,0S4,242 


+ e-4 


+ 13-7 


Purulia 


249,038 


+ 11-8 


+ 12-1 


Barahabhum 


130,330 


+ 4'9 


+ 12-9 


Manbazar 


86,083 


+ 10.4 


+ 21-2 


Chandil 


98,710 


+ 6-5 


+ 140 


Chas 


101,266 


+ -8 


+ 127 


Raghunathpur 


119,029 


+ 26 


+ 7-5 


Gaurandi 


62,741 


+ -2 


+ 14' 7 


Para 


42,654 


— 2-1 


+ 9-2 


Baghmandi 


40,582 


+ 5-4 


+ 15-2 


Jhalda 


103,009 


+ -7 


+ 11'6 


Gobindpur Subdivision^,, 


S77,tg9 


+SS-1 


■HS-6 


Gobindpur 


38,183 


+ 4'4 


+ 14'5 


Tundl ... ..T 


30,776 


+ 4-1 


+ 6"0 


Jharia 


76,003 


+ 75-1 


— 6'4 


Topchanchi 


69,327 


+ 30-2 


+ 26'1 


Niraha 


62,833 


+ 7-1 


+ 16-0 



CHOTA NAGPUR PLATEAU. 



107 



POPUIATIOH. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


"Pemalo. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Iinmigrants 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


'302,425 
18,636 
31,293 

315,182 


311,154 
18,044 
3-2,527 

325,637 


271,417 
19,635 
21,824 

273,706 


274,071 
19,774 
21,707 

276,004 



THA1IA9. 


Population, 
1901. 


PEEOEKTAeB OP 
VAEIATIOS. 




1891-1901. 


1881—1391. 


DISTRICT TOTAL 

Chaibassa 

Ohakradharpur 

Gliatsila 

Hanai-pur 


613,579 

260,404 
102,663 
220,269 
40,348 


+1S-B 

+ 9-3 

+ 18-0 
+ 13-3 
+ 15-7 


+soa 

+ 18-1 
-1- 13-7 
+ 17-3 
+ 100-0 



211. According to the vital statistics of the district the births during 

1893—1900 outnumbered the deaths 
by 56,604. The actual increase 
between 1891 and 1901, according 
to the census, is 68,091, or 12'5 per 
cent. The progress would have been 
much greater but for the adverse 
balance of migration. Immigrants 
are fewer by nearly 3,OlO while 

emigrants exceed by about 20,000 the number recorded in 1891.* 

But for this loss by emigration the increase would probably have been 

about 18 per cent. The tracts that 
show the greatest development are 
Ohakradharpur and Manoharpur 
through which the railway runs. 
Then comes Ghatsila which has 
also, but more recently, been tapped 
by the railway. The Kolhan 
which shows the least progress is 

, away from the line of railway and 

has probably sent out more emigrants than any other part of the district, 

212. The Sonthal Parganas comprises (1) a narrow strip of flat alluvial 

country running along the loop line of railway; 

Sonthal Paeganas. ^g) a belt of hill and forest stretching from Sahib- 

ganj southwards beyond Naya Dumka, the greater part of which is included 
in the Damin-i-Koh, or reservation originally intended for the benefit of the 
MaU, but now also extensively occupied by Santdls, and (3) a rolling, open 
country stretching south and west from the Darain-i-Koh, resembling in its 
general features the neighbouring districts of Hazaribagh and Manbhum. 

The district is for the most part healthy, and the Santils, who are the 
most numerous tribe, are remarkable for their fecundity ; there is much waste 
land available for cultivation, and rents are light. The district showed a 
rapid growth of population in 1881 and again in 1891, but on both occasions 
improved enumeration accounted for a great part of the increase. The 
first reliable census was that of 1891. Since that year the district has 
enjoyed good health, except in parts of Rajmabal, where malaria is prevalent. 
The vital statistics returns are, however, too inaccurate to be worthy of 
examination. Two months before the census, plague broke out in Sahibganj. 
Two hundred deaths were reported, and there was a great efflux of population. 
The crops have been fair on the whole, but there was a serious failure m 
1896 which resulted in famine in the Deoghur and part of the Jamtara sub- 
divisions in the south-west of the district. In September 1899 a heavy storm 
burst over the northern slope of the Damin-i-Koh xn the Godda subdivision. 
The precipitation of the rain was so great that the streams qmckly over- 
flowed their banks and flooded the valleys through which they flowed. Whole 
hamlets ware washed away, and over sixteen hundred human bemgs besides 
thousands of cattle and goats were drowned. The flood subsided as quickly as 
it came, and the crops escaped with comparatively slight damage. 

213. The recent census shows a net increase ot 66,9b^, or 6-^ per 

cent., a surprisingly small rate of 
development for a healthy district 
with a prolific population. The 
statistics of migration supply the 
necessary explanation. The num- 
ber of persons born in the Sonthal 
Parganas but enumerated else- 
where was 117,142 in 1891, and 
their number has now risen to 





1901. 


1891. 


POPTJIATIOH. 


Male. 


Pemale. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigranto 

Emigrants 

Natural population 


896,373 

63,191 

116,894 

969,076 


913,364 

68,334 

110,114 

966,144 


870,864 
77,396 
61,67S 

854,648 


883.411 
76,691 
66,'lfi4 

863,184 



226 008. an increase of 108,866. Most of these have left the district 
«Prmanentlv for the Barind and other parts ot Bengal, or for Assam. If thp 
SSratT amongst emigrants be assumed to be 40 per 1,000, an annual exodus 
of 4 685 perrns woulA e needed to maint a in the emigrants of 1891 at their 

• * jjost of the emigration is to the Oiissa States, Assam and Jalpaiguri. 



108 



CHAPTER 11 — VAEIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



original strength, and a further exodus of 13,634 would be required to raise it to 
the figure recorded at the recent census.* In other words, at least 182,190 
persons must have left the district during the decade. The immigrants are 
about half as numerous as the emigrants. Most of the latter also are permanent, 
but it is impossible to ascertain how far they have affected the population, as the 
figures for 1891 are open to doubt. It may, however, be taken as certain that 
the advent of new comers has been on a very much smaller scale than the 
departure elsewhere of persons born in the district. If the proportion be taken 
roughly as one-third, and it was probably much less, the lose due to migration 
during the decade would be about 120,000. If so, the natural increase must 
have been at least 10 per cent. 

214. The population of the Damin-i-Koh is stationary or decadent except 

the part that lies in the Bajmahal 
subdivision, where the collection of 
sabai grass (Ischaemum angusti 
folium) for the paper mills affords 
profitable employment. Elsewhere 
emigration has been busily at 
work, especially amongst the 
Santdils, who chafe under the res- 
trictions imposed by the Forest 
Department en the indiscriminate 
felling of timber. Outside the 
Damin-i-Koh the only tracts that 
show a decline are Rajmahal, 
Sahibganj, and Poreya. In the 
first-mentioned tract it is due 
to migration across the Ganges, 
while in Sahibganj the plague 
epidemic is alone to blame; but 
for that an increase would pro- 
bably have been recorded. Poreya 
is a poor and barren tract and, 
like the Damin-i-Koh, it has lost 
by emigration. 

The most fertile and densely- 
populated thanas are Mahagama, 
Godda, and Pakaur, and these all 
show a marked improvement. So 
also do the thanas in the south 
of the district. The reason seems to be that there are here extensive areas 
covered with forest while there is no system of conservancy to prevent the 
people from destroying it. Although therefore there is some emigration in 
search of work there is none in order to find land for cultivation. The soil in 
these thanas is more fertile than that in the hilly tracts in the centre of the 
district. 

215. The Chota Nagpur States include seven Tributary States — 
CHOT. maP.B SX.TES. ^^^°g m^k^r Korea, Sirguja, Udaipiir, Jashpur, 

b-angpur, and J3onai — which are wedged m between 
Chota Nagpur Proper and the Central Provinces, and the two Political States 
of Kharsawan and Seraikela which lie within the district of Singhbhum. 
The earlier enumerations were here very inaccurate and no useful purpose 
would be served by considering the variations disclosed by them. The 
country is for the most part an irregular mass of hill ranges and broken 
plateaux covered with dense jungle, but there are occasional patches of fertile 
land, such as the valley of the Mand river in Udaipur and parts of the 
Gangpur and Jashpur table-lands. The population is exceedingly sparse and 
in spite of the generally inhospitable character of the country there is still 
ample room for expansion. The conditions of the last decade are very similar 
to those already described in the case of the adjoining districts of Chota 
Nagpur. The people are improvident aborigines and as they spend whatever 
they earn, they are at once affected by a deficient harvest. On the other hand 





, 


Percentase oe 


Thaitas. 


Population, 
1901. 


TAKIATIOIf. 












1891—1901. 


1881-1891. 


DISXBICT TOTAL 


1,809,737 


+ 3-3 


■m-8 


Deoghur Subdivision 


397,403 


+ 4-7 


+138 


Deoeliur 

Maonupur 

Sarath 


144,838 
76,611 
76,964 


+ 2'9 
+ 4-2 
+ 8-8 


+ 10-2 
-I- 19-6 

+ 12-7 


Godda Subdivision 


390,333 


+ 14 


+ 10-2 


Godda 

Mahagama 

Poreva 

Portion of Damin-i-Koh ... 


137,906 
93,854 
69,354 
99,229 


+ 12-3 
+ 6-2 

- 2-3 

- 12-3 


+ 12-4 
-I- 133 
+ 11'2 
-1- 6-0 


JPakaur Stibdivision 


338,648 


+ 3-6 


+13-3 


Pakaur 

Moheapur 

Portion of Damin-i-Eoh ... 


73,871 
99,263 
66,624 


+ 8-2 
■4- 2-1 
+ 1-1 


+ 10-6 
+ 17-2 
+ 6-6 


Bafmahal Subdivision ... 


376,703 


■f 1 


-1- 9-6 


Rajmahal 

SambKanj 

Portion ol Damin-i-Koh ... 


93,961 
19,681 
163,071 


- 6-7 

- 26 
+ 4-8 


•4- 7-5 

+ 47-6 
+ 7-1 


Dumka Subdivision 


416,861 


+ 3t 


+110 


Dumka... 

Portion of Damin-i-Koh ... 


886,391 
80,470 


•^ 6-6 

- 26-S 


+ 12-2 
+ 3-3 


Jamtara Subdivision 


189,799 


-I- 9-8 


+ 190 


Jamtara 


189,799 


-1- 9-2 


+ 19-0 



* The method of arriTing at this figure has been explained in the foot-note on page 102. 



CHOTA NAGPUR PLATEiU. 



109 



they can subsist without much difficulty on jungle products eked out with a 
modicum of rice. Their condition since 1891 has, on the whole, been good. 
There was scarcity, not amounting to famine, in 1897, and 1900 and in the 
former year cholera raged with unusual virulence. The Bengal-Nagpur Kail- 
way, which runs through the whole length of the Gangpur State and passes near 
the boundary of Bonai and Udaipur, was opened ten years ago, and has done 

much to develop this part of the 
country. There has been a falling 
ofi in migration both to and from 
the States since 1891. In that year 
there were 97,240 settlers from 
Ranchi and Palamau, but now 
there are only 38,620. Allowing 
for deaths at the rate of 40 per 
1,000 per annum, 64,647 of the 
settlers of 1891 would be still alive in 1901, and it would seem, therefore, that 
many of them must have re-crossed the boundary and returned to their old 



Population. 


1901. 


1891, . 


Male. 


Temale. 


Male. 


Female. 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emigrants .... 

Natural population 


606,759 
64,345 
12,603 

466,017 


494,670 
60,381 
11,760 

436,089 


449,683 
78,689 
29,433 

400,427 


433,676 
74,381 
18,956 

378,260 



homes. 

Palamau 

probably 



states. 



POPOLA.. 
TIOK. 



PEROBNTAflB OF 
VABIATIOir. 



1901. 



1891-1901. 



1881—1891. 



rroxAz 



ChangbhalE 

Korea 

Birguja 

Udaipur 

Jashpur 

OangpuT 

Jfonai 

Kbareawan 

Seraikela 



The number of immigrants from places other than Ranchi and 
shows an increase. The decline in the number of emigrants is 
only apparent. The 1891 return shows that 15,949 natives of 

these States were enumerated in 
Jalpaiguri, 2,735 in Hooghly, and 
2,038 in Shahabad, but it was sur- 
mised by Mr. O'Donnell that the 
great majority of these were in 
reality natives of Ranchi and other 
districts of the Chota Nagpur Divi- 
sion, and the figures for the 
present census fully confirm this 
conclusion. It is thus difficult to 
say with any pretence to accuracy 
to what extent the States have 
gained or lost by migration during 



1,001,*29 



I9,64S 

36,113 

361,011 

45,391 

132,114 

238,896 

38,277 

36,540 

' 104,639 



+I3'4 



+ B-5 

— S-1 

+ 81 

+ 20-9 

+ 16-3 

+ 24-8 

+ W2 

+ 3-02 

+ 11'4 



Ji-30-3 



33-3 
22-2 
20-0 
12-8 
26'0 
76-7 
83-3 
13-9 
21-5 



the decade, but probably the ebb and flow have been fairly equal 

216 The States taken together show an increase ot 13-4 per cent., of 
which some part is doubtless due to a more accurate enumeration. The 
Greatest development is shown by Gangpur which has been opened out by the 
rflilwav and then come Udaipur and Bonai which have also been rendered more 
n^-ppssible The only other State that shows a large increase is Jashpur, where 
the nroportion of arable land is fairly high and where the people have benefited 
bv the introduction of sugarcane and wheat cultivation, and roads have been 
constructed from the capital to the borders of Ranchi, feirguja, Udaipur and 
GanffDur Korea alone shows a decrease. The country is here very wild and 
baS and the inhabitants are for the most part migratory aborigines 

217 The Tributary States of Orissa comprise a succession of- hill ranges, 

the eastern outliers of the Satpuras. The country is 
Teibtttaet States of Oeissi. generally mountainous, but there are several fine 
v^llevs notably those through which the Mahdnadi, Brdhmani, Baitarani 
Ind Burdbalang rivers find an exit to the Orissa p ams There are m all 
seventeen states, but many of them are very small, and Mayurbhanj and 
Snihar alone contain half the total area, and nearly half the total number 
ii.eoujii»_ ^^^ population is very sparse, but becomes greater on the 

the plains of Orissa are approached. As in the Chota 



of inhabitants 
lower levels as 



States the earlier enumerations were very defective, and the large 



KfttJ-Tiur States tne eariior euuiiic.a,uiY"° ""■- ---j — ^ — o- 

• ^?ol hrouffht out by each successive census is due in a great measure to 
Smmoyements^in the arrangements for counting, the people. At the same 
IX the^e is no doubt that the population is growing rapidly under the eegis 



;7T?riti8h rule. The greater part of the country is very healthy ; the i^abi. 
, hardv and prolific, and there is ample room for expansion. There 
gistration of births and deaths in the Tributary States. It is reported 

that theC decade has been a healthy one generally, but the Sta e of Baud 

in the south-west, has suffered from epidemics of cholera and sm^all-pox,^ ^and 

malarial affections are common there. 



tants are 
is no rej 



Cholera was especially bad in 1900. 



no 



CHAPTER 11 — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



POPDLATIOH. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. Female. 

1 


Actual population 

Immigrants 

Emii?rants 

Natural population 


969,973 
66,300 
21,295 

924,968 


977,829 
76,092 
36,194 

937,931 


849,4S0 
78,560 
13,708 

784,598 


847,260 
83,225 
22,699 

786,734 



The pilgrims to Sonepur pass through Daspalla, and the Chief of that State 

complains that cholera is' imported by 
them almost every year. The harvests 
on the whole have been good, and 
even in 1897 and 1900 there was no 
widespread famine. The crops in 
both years were short throughout 
most of the states, but with the 
aid of jungle products the people 
managed to support themselves 

without much suffering. In only a few instances were regular relief operations 

undertaken. 

218. The census of 1881 disclosed a surprising amount of immigration, and 
no fewer than 199,895 persons born elsewhere were enumerated in these states, 
inclusive of Angul. In 1891, excluding Angul, the number of immigrants had 
iallen to 161,785, and there are now only 142,ii92. The volume of immigration is 
thus declining, but it is still very considerable. At the estimated death-rate of 40 
per 1,000, the foreign-born population of 1891 would, in the absence of fresh 
settlers, have shrunk in the course of the decade to 107,560, and the excess over this 
number indicates an annual settlement of over 4,000 new comers. The number 
of emigrants has risen from 36,407 to 57,489 during the last decade, and to 

produce this result some 4,000 per- 
sons must have left the states yearly.* 
This calculation is necessarily approxi- 
mate, as it assumes that the movements 
of the people were uniform through- 
out the decade, and that the whole of 
the migration was permanent ; but it 
may perhaps be accepted as showing 
that the movement in both directions 
is now about equal, and that there is 
not at the present time any marked 
excess of immigration such as must 
have existed previous to 1891. The 
whole of the growth disclosed by the 
present census must, therefore, be 
ascribed to the natural growth of a 
prolific population and to the greater 
accuracy of the enumeration. To what extent the latter factor has contributed 
to the result it is difficult to say, as I have been unable to trace any detailed 
record of the procedure in 1891, but it probably does not account for 
more than 2 or 3 per cent., and if so, the natural growth stands at about 
12 per cent. 

219. The greatest increase is in the sparsely inhabited State of Athmallik, 
which has gamed by immigration from Baud and the Central Provinces, and in 
Hindol, which has_ also received an accession of new settlers; in both these 
States, however, it is probable that the recent census was more complete than 
that of 1 891 , and that part of the increase is due to improved enumeration. With 
the exception of Tigaria, Khandpara, and Baud, the other States show an im- 
provement varying from 13-5 to 19-6 per cent. The comparatively slow rate of 
increase m Tigaria and Khandpara is explained by the fact that the population 
is already much more dense than elsewhere. Tigaria has 492 inhabitants 
to the square mile compared with 285 in Baramba, which stands next to it in 
this respect, and Khandpara has 284 persons to the square mile compared with 
only 92 m its next door neighbour, Daspalla. With these easily explained 
exceptiOTis, the growth of the population has been greatest along the borders of the 
Orissa Division, where the level is comparatively low, and the proportion of 
arable land is relatively high. The construction of the railway through Orissa, 
and of feeder roads m connection with it, has greatly improved the communications 
and raised the prices of produce in this tract. Baud alone shows a falling 
off, which IS due, as m the case of the adjoining Khondmals subdivision of 
Angul, partly to the prevalence of epidemic disease and general unhealthiness and 
pa rtly to the emigration of the migratory Kandhs during the scarcity of 1900. 

o, Jo ^j!-*-^ ^"i ^*^'- ^'*^? *° ™pI*°? ^^^^}^ Tacancies and 2,628 to produce in the course of the decade the 
21,082 additional emigrants recorded at the census of 1901. uecaae me 





POPTJIATION. 


Percentage op 
taeiatioh. 


States. 










1901. 


1891-1901. 


1881—1891. 


TOTAL 


1,947.803 


+14-8 


+20-3 


Athgarh 


43,784 


+ 19-6 


+ 17-8 


Talcher 


60,432 


+ 14-7 


+ 48-3 


Mayurbhanj 


610,383 


+ 14-7 


+ 37-3 


Nilgiri 


66,460 


+ 18-3 


+ 10'3 


Keonjhar 


286,768 


+ 15-2 


+ 14'2 


Pal Lahara 


22,351 


+ 13-5 


+ 33-3 


Dhenkeual 


273,662 


+ 14-8 


+ 14'7 


Athmalik 


40,763 


+ 28-9 


+ 43-3 


Hindol 


47,180 


+ 24-2 


+ 12-9 


Narsinehpur 

Baramba 


39,613 


+ 17-03 


. + 3-8 


38,260 


+ 17-6 


+ 9-4 


Tigari.i 


22,626 


+ 10-1 


+ 3-4 


Khandpara 


69,450 


+ 9-7 


- 4-4 


Nayagarh 


140,779 


+ 19'4 


+ 2-5 


Eanpur 


46,075 


+ 14-9 


+ 10-0 


Daspalla 


61,9(17 


+ 14-0 


+ 9'6 


Baud 


83,260 


- 1-4 


+ 28-7 



SUMMARY. 



HI 



SrBDiTisioir. 


Populaf.ion 
in 1901. 


■Vabixtioit. 


1891—1901. 


1881—1891. 


ANGUJj 

PttSar 
Khondmals 


IBlfiU 

127,697 
M,2U 


■Hg-8 

+ 23-1 
- S-2 


+5-7 

) not ay ail. 
S able. 



220. Angul is surrounded on all sides by the Tributary States of Orissa 

and the Central Provinces. It was itself a Tribu- 
Angui and Khondmals. ^^^ g^^^^ ^^^^-j j g^^- ^^^^ ^^ ^^^ confiscated owing 

to the rebellion of the Chief. The Khondmals subdivision lies between G an jam 
in Madras and the State of Baud, whose Chief ceded it to Government in 
1885 owing to his inability to suppress a rebellion. The two tracts were 

formed into a regular district in 
1891. Their physical features differ 
in no respect from those of the sur- 
rounding States. Angul, however, is 
more open and better watered, and the 
climate is less unhealthy than that 
of the Khondmals where hill and 
jangle reign supreme. The latter 
tract is so unhealthly that outsiders fear to visit it, and many of the enu- 
merators sent up from Cuttack to assist in taking the census were prostrated 
by fever. Cholera made its first appearance in the Khondmals, at least 
for many years, in 1900. It was introduced by persons fleeing from an 
epidemic in the adjoining States of the Central Provinces and spread with 
appalling ranidity. There are no statistics of births and deaths in these 
wild hills, but it is known that the loss of life was very great. In some 
villages syphilis is extraordinarily prevalent and almost all the inhabitants are 
suffering from the disease in one stage or another. 

In Angul the rents are very low. In the Khondmals no rent is charged, 
but the people pay a contribution of three annas a plough towards the cost 
of improving communications. The inhabitants of the latter tract are mostly 
Kandhs, but the comparatively small Hindu population has succeeded in obtaining 
possession of the best rice lands. The Kandhs grow oil seeds and turmeric. 
They are indolent, improvident, and fond of drink. The people in both tracts 
are usually prosperous, but their powers of endurance have been severely 
tried by several lean years in the latter half of the last decade. There were 
short crops in 1896 and again in 1899. In Angul the cultivators were able to 
tide over the bad times with the aid of loans, but in the Khondmals relief 
operations were necessary. 

221. The recent census shows a great increase in Angul, but in the 

Khondmals there has been a loss of 
3 "2 per cent. This is amply account- 
ed for by the adverse conditions of 
the latter part of the decade, viz., the 
prevalence of cholera and other 
diseases and the scarcity, which 
stimulated emigration amongst the 
Kandhs. There was very little im- 
migration to the Khondmals except from Ganjam in Madras. In Angul, 
on the other hand, the comparatively favourable circumstances have attracted 
settlers from the adjoining States. In the two tracts together, the number 
of immigrants has risen from 9,508 in 1891 to 21,532. There were 12,753 im- 
migrants from the Tributary States (all but 1,109 to Angul), and 3,599 from 
Madras, of whom all but 93 were found in the Khondmals. The emigrants 
number 6,482 compared with 1,939 according to the previous census, but the 
return of emigration in 189 1 was not very accurate, as Angul was constituted 
a separate district just about the time of the census. 



POPUIAIION. 


1901. 


1891. 


Male. 


Temale. 


Male. 


Female, 


Actual population 
Immigrants 
Dmigranti . 
Natural population ... 


96,936 
9,S63 
2,294 

88,866 


95.976 
12,169 
4,184 
87,991- 


86,768 

4,939 

668 

81,497 


81,290 
4,669 
1,271 

80,992 



SUMMARY. 



222. We are now in a position to reconstruct the figures and to glance at 

the variations for the groups of districts which 
WmtEbngai. comprise the eight Natural Divisions into which 

the Province has been divided. West Bengal, which is coterminous with the 
Burdwan Division, has grown since 1891 by 7*1 per cent. The variations in 
the population of districts taken as a whole have been indicated in the 
map of Bengal on page 39. But the circumstances of diflterenb parts of a 



112 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 




district often vary greatly and it is, therefore, desirable to display the 

changes for smaller units. The 
map in the margin shows the 
variations in the population of 
each thana in the districts of West 
Bengal. The most progressive dis- 
trict is Birbhum which has added 
13 per cent, to its population. 
This result is due mainly to 
natural growth. The increase is 
most marked in the south of the 
district, where it represents a 
recovery from the unhealthiness of 
the previous decade, and in the ex- 
treme north, where there has been a 
considerable settlement of Sant^ls. 
Howrah, which comes next, owes 
its development to the presence of 
a large manufacturing town and 
to its proximity to the metropolis. 
No less than 17 per cent, of its 
inhabitants are immigrants attrac- 
ted by the mills and other forms 
of remunerative employment 
obtainable in Calcutta and in 
Howrah city. Excluding the 
Municipalities of Howrah and 
Bally, the rate of increase ranges 
from 5 to 10 per cent., except 
in the north-east corner which is 
wedged in between decadent tracts 
in Midnapore and Hooghly, where 
it is only 2*4 per cent. Burdwan, which follows close on Howrah with a gain of 
lO'l per cent., also owes a great part of its expansion to immigration, especially 
in the westernmost thana, Asansol, where the coal mines have created a demand 
for labour far in excess of the supply available locally, and nearly one-third of 
the inhabitants are foreign-born. The central part of the district, having 
escaped from the clutches of the Burdwan fever, has also grown with more than 
average rapidity, and the jungly and ill-drained western tract which slopes back 
from the banks of the Bhdgirathi, is alone stationary or decadent. The increase 
of 5*9 per cent, in Midnapore is the resultant of a rapid growth of the population 
along the sea-coast and the estuary of the Hooghly, and a fair natural develop- 
ment in the healthy but barren and sparsely inhabited up-lands in the west of 
the district, combined with stagnation or decline in the ill-drained depression 
that intervenes between these two extremes. The district has lost slightly by 
migration, but not to the same extent as Bankura, where the increase of 
4' 3 per cent, represents less than half of that which would have been registered 
had none of its inhabitants sought a more hospitable home elsewhere, or gone to 
eke out their local earnings by working in the metropolitan districts during the 
cold-weather months. The number who were temporarily absent at the 
time of the census was greater than usual owing to the short harvests of the 
preceding year. The southern part of Bankura has suffered most by this 
exodus of the people, and in the extreme south it has been sufficient, not only to 
retard progress, but to actually reduce the population. The eastern part of the 
district resembles the adjacent part of Burdwan and, like it, has grown with fair 
rapidity now that it is no longer subject to the ravages of the ' Burdwan fever.' 
Hooghly remains to be mentioned. This district suflfers from the same 
insanitary conditions as the west of Burdwan and the central part of Midnapore. 
It contains the busy and growing town of Serampur which affords employment 
to numerous immigrants, and if the figures for this town were excluded, the 
small increase of 1*4 would disappear, leaving the population almost exactly 
at the figure at which it stood ten years ago. 

323. Central Bengal, or the Presidency Division excluding Khulna, shows 
_ _ an increase of 5'1 per cent. This result is due 

CENTEiL Bengal. ^^.^j^ ^^ ^j^^ g^^^^ ^^^ Calcutta and the 24-Par- 

ganas, Calcutta has grown by 24*2 per cent., but here tb© greater accuracy 



SUMMARY. 



113 



CENTRAL BENGAL 



REFERENCES 

OECntASC UCttOING S PER CENT 

„_ LESS THAN S._, 

mCAE<k5E FqOM TO 5. 



. w_l5 TO 20, , 
OVER. 20 . 



of the present enumeration has obscured the tme growth. The expansion of 
?• ?®^- ^?°*' °^° ^y *^® 24-Parganas is due mainly to the rapid progress 
which IS bemg made in the reclamation of land for cultivation in the Sundar- 

bans, and to the opening of new 
mills on the banks of the Hugli. 
Between the riparian tract and the 
Sundarban area -there is a strip of 
country where the conditions are 
unfavourable to the growth of the 
population. These adverse con- 
ditions are especially marked in 
the north-central part of the dis- 
trict, where the village sites are 
buried in dense jungle, and the 
drainage is obstructed and the 
drinking water unwholesome. 
Here, as in the adjoining parts of 
Nadia and Jessore, the population 
has declined. The only other 
district in Central Bengal which 
shows a fair rate of progress is 
Murshidabad where the gain of 6-5 
would have been slightly greater 
had not the emigration of Muham- 
madans from the country east of 
the Bhdgirathi to the adj oining part 
of Malda exceeded the immigration 
of Santals to the undulating up- 
lands west of that river. The 
growth of East Murshidabad which 
is low and alluvial is only 3*1 per 
cent, while that of West Murshida- 
bad which belongs to an older 
formation and has a healthier 
climate, is 12-9 per cent. The 
central portion of the latter tract, which is still very sparsely inhabited, has added 
more than a quarter to the population recorded in 1891. The other two districts 
of Central Bengal, Nadia and Jessore, are a region of moribund rivers and 
obstructed drainage. In Jessore the village sites are old and are surrounded 
by rank jungle. Except in the south and the extreme north-east, where the 
conditions resemble those of Jessore, Nadia is more open and, its soil being more 
sandy, there are fewer stagnant swamps. The result is that while Jessore has 
lost ground to the extent of 4'0 per cent., Nadia has registered a slight improve- 
ment of 1*4 per cent., the decadence in the south being more than coimter- 
balanced by the moderate growth that has taken place in most of the other police 
circles of the district. The country round Bogula, on the Eastern Bengal State 
Railway, which showed a decrease in 1891 on account of the damage done by 
floods, and a small tract in the extreme west which adjoins the progressive part 
of Murshidabad, are the only parts where the growth of the population has 
been at all rapid. In Jessore the decadence is general, and the south-eastern 
corner is the only tract which shows even a nominal improvement. The loss 
of population is greatest in the country running west and south-west from the 
Muhammadpur thana on the eastern boundary, which possesses the evil reputa- 
tion of having been the matrix both of epidemic cholera and of the 'Burdwan 
fever.' It will be seen, in dealing with East Bengal, that this unhealthy zone 
stretches eastwards and southwards beyond the Jessore boundary, and includes 
the north-western part of Faridpur and a small area in the north-west of Khulna. 
224. North Bengal, which includes Malda and the Native States of Kuch 

Bihar and Sikkim, as well as the districts of the 
NoBTH Bengal. Rajshahi Commissionership, has added 5-9 per cent, 

to its population in the course of the decade. Excluding Sikkim, where part 
of the apparent expansion is attributable to the greater accuracy of the present 
census, the most rapid rate of increase is found in the great tea district, Jalpai- 
guri, where it amounts to 15*6 percent. This district is not a healthy one, 
and almost the whole of the increment as compared with 1891 is due to 
immigration to the Duars, i.e., the eastern portion of the district which 
was taken from Bhotan in 1865. The tea gardens are the great attraction, 




114 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



but 




__ .t _ PWM 



there has also been a considerable extension of ordinary cultivation. The 

proportion of the foreign-born 
NORTH BENGAL 1 population is high throughout the 

Duars, and varies from 38 to 55 
per cent. West of the Tista the 
little immigration that exists is 
more than counterbalanced by the 
tendency of the people to move 
eastwards and take up land in the 
Duars, and the population in this 
part of the district is decadent. 
The second place in point of 
development is held by Darjeel- 
ing, which is more populous by 
11*5 per cent, than it was in 1891. 
The greatest expansion is in 
Kalimpong, which was annexed 
at the same time as the Western 
Duars, and which owes its rapid 
growth to the advent of cultivators, 
mainly from Nepal. The head- 
quarters and Kurseong subdivi- 
sions have also grown, the former 
very considerably and the latter 
only slightly, while the unhealthy 
Terai at the foot of the hills, in 
spite of the growth of its tea 
gardens, shares in the loss of popu- 
lation sustained by the western part 
of Jalpaiguri which it adjoins. 
Bogra, with 11*7 per cent., shows 
almost the same progress as Dar- 
jeeling, but the increase is more evenly distributed and there is no part of the 
district where it falls below 6 per cent. The greatest expansion of the popula- 
tion is in the north-west corner. This tract rests on the laterite formation known 
as the Barind which extends over the adjoining parts of Dinajpur, Rajshahi and 
Malda. It was once highly cultivated but at some period, possibly about five 
or six centuries ago, it relapsed into jungle, and remained desolate and unin- 
habited until the Santals, who have been steadily pushing their way to the north- 
east, ever since the beginning of the last century, arrived on the scene, and set 
themselves to the task of reclaiming it. The east of Bogra which is on the 
bank of the Jamuna and is a great centre of jute cultivation, also shows an 
unusually rapid development. 

325. Malda with a net growth of 8*4 per cent, has great local variations. 
The east-central part of the district lies in the Barind and has shared in the 
rapid increase which is the present characteristic of that tract of country. 
The south-western portion is washed by the Ganges and, having gained consi- 
derably by alluvion, has attracted numerous settlers from other parts of the 
district and from Murshidabad, on the other side of the river, which has suffered 
a corresponding loss of territory. North and south of this progressive area, 
diluvion has been followed by emigration, and a slight decrease has occurred, 
while the centre of the district, which is low and swampy and has been very 
unhealthy of late years, has suffered a still greater loss of population. About 
half the net gain in this district seems to be due to immigration and half to 
natural growth. The increase in Dinajpur is 5 7 per cent, of which nearly 
three-quarters is due to migration. The south of the district lies in the Barind 
and is very progressive. Further north the notorious unhealthiness of the 
climate has prevented more than a very slight growth of the population but, 
with the exception of one police circle, the district is free from the decadence 
which characterises the adjacent parts of Purnea on the west and of Jalpaiguri 
on the north-east. 

Pabna (4'3 per cent.,) and Rangpur (4"3 per cent.,) which lie respectively to 
the south and north of Bogra, show approximately the same rate of growth. 
The north of Pabna which comprises the Serajganj Subdivision and is largely 
given up to the cultivation of jute, is progressive, and there has been a gain of 
y'4 per cent., while the south, which is water-logged and unhealthy and has 
suffered from floods and diluvion, has lost 2*1 per cent. Prior to 1891 



SUMMARY. 



115 



Eangpur had a long history of unhealthiness and in that year, as well as in 
1881, a loss of population was recorded. Its increase at the present census 
appears to be due largely to immigration, but apart from this there has been a 
slight natural increase, and it would seem that the tide has at last turned. In 
the estimation of the people also, the district has become more salubrious, and 
it may be hoped that the small increment now recorded is only a harbinger of 
more rapid progress during the next ten years. The greatest "improvement at 
the present census is in the south, along the boundary of Bogra. There is a 
considerable area in the centre of the district where the population is still re- 
trogressive. 

The increase of I'S per cent, in Rajshahi is the net result of a con- 
siderable growth of population in the extreme north, in the B^rind, and a 
slight improvement in the rest of the northern half of the district, combined 
with a decline in the southern part, where the drainage is obstructed to almost 
as great an extent as in Jessore and malarial fevers are very prevalent. The 
State of Kuch Bihar forms the eastern extremity of the unhealthy belt of 
country which stretches westwards as far as the Kosi and shares in the loss of 
population which has been sustained by Purnea, the Darjeeling Terai and the 
west of Jalpaiguri. The decrease at the present census is 2'0 per cent, com- 
pared with 3'9 per cent, in 1891, 

226. East Bengal with an increase of 10*4 per cent, is at present by far 

the most progressive part of the Province. The 

East engai,. climate is generally healthy, the people are most 

prosperous and a very large proportion of them are prolific Muhammadans. 

The whole tract shares in the general result but the greatest apparent 

development is in Hill 



BENGAL 



Tippera where the 
population is greater 
by 26'1 per cent, 
than it was in 1891. 
The present enu- 
meration is possibly 
more accurate than its 
predecessor, but the 
statistics of birth- 
place show that the 
State has gained 
largely by the over- 
flow of population 
from the neighbour- 
ing districts and es- 
pecially from Sylhet 
and Plains Tippera. 
Natural growth 
accounts for less than 
a third of the total 
increment. The 
British district o f 
Tippera comes next 
with an advance 18*7 
per cent, which is 
attributable solely to 
natural growth and 
affords a remarkable 
illustration of the 
rate at which the 
human race can mul- 
tiply itself when all 
the conditions are favourable. The soil is very fertile and there is still room 
for expansion, the crops have been good throughout the decacre, and the district 
has been rem^kably free from -disease of all kmds. The most rapid growth 
is in the south where there has been a great extension of jute cultivation. 
Pn Ihe rest of the district the improvement is most marked along tiie bank ot 
the Meffna; the country further east is somewhat less fertile and has suffered 
sliffhtlv from emigration. Excluding the Chittagong Hill Tracts which shows 
an increase of 16-2 per cent., attributable to a naore accurate enumeration and to 
the natui-al growth of a very sparse population, Noakhali, with a growth of 13 




116 



CHAPTER II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



per cent, stands next to Tippera. There has been some loss by migration and 
the real increase is slightly greater than would appear from the census figures. 
The most progressive part is in the north, along the Tippera boundary, but the 
whole district has contributed its quota to the increment except a small tract 
at the mouth of the Feni river where there has been a good deal of diluvion. 
Mymensingh, with an increase of 12'7 per cent., follows close on Noakhali. 
There has beeA some gain by migration, but not enough to materially affect 
the result. The western half of the district is more progressive than the 
eastern. The latter is low and contains numerous large hollows which are filled 
with water in the rains, while to the north the climate is unhealthy and a slight 
loss of population has been sustained, Dacca has gained 10*6 per cent, since 1891. 
The increase is greatest in the north-east, where extensive clearances have been 
made in theMadhupur jungle, and least in the south-west, where the population 
is already very dense and the Padma has diluviated a considerable area. This 
district has lost somewhat by migration. 

227. The three districts of East Bengal which lie to the west of the 
Padma and of the united channel of that river and the Megna, viz., Khulna, 
Backerguuge and Faridpur, show a remarkably uniform rate of growth amount- 
ing respectively to 6"4, 6'4 and 6*2 per cent. In Khulna the result is the out- 
come of a very rapid extension of cultivation in the 'south- central and south- 
western portion of the district and a steady but less rapid growth in the lil 
country to the north-east, on the confines of Faridpur, combined with a decrease 
ill the north-western corner which projects into Jessore, and in a narrow strip 
of country running from it first in a southerly and then in a south-easterly 
direction ; fever is here very prevalent. Backerguuge shows a rapid growth in 
the Ml country to the north and in the Sundarbans to the south. The progress 
is least in the part between these two extremes. The centre of the district has 
been long settled and its population is already so dense that many of its 
inhabitants are fain to seek a home in the more thinly inhabited tracts to the 
north and south. The western part of this central tract has also sustained 
damage from cyclones on more than one occasion since 1891. Faridpur has 
gained most in the central part of the tract bordering on the Padma, where 
new alluvial formations have attracted fresh settlers, and in the south where the 
bih are gradually being reclaimed for cultivation. The north-western portion 
which borders on the most unhealthy part of Jessore is decadent. In Khulna 
migration accounts for nearly a quarter of the total increase, but in Backer- 
gunge and Faridpur, it has not appreciably affected the result. 

The least progressive tract in the whole of Eastern Bengal is Chittagonff, 
where there has been an increase of only 4'8 per cent. Its soil is only to a small 
extent alluvial, but the comparatively slow development is due mainly to the 
havoc wrought by the cyclone of October 1897, and to the emigration which 
followed it. But for this the growth of the population would probably have 
been twice as great as it has actually been. 

228. South Bihar includes all the plague districts except Saran, and its 
South Bihae. decrease of 3-6 per cent, is mainly attributable to the 

direct and indirect losses caused by the epidemic 
viz., a very heavy mortality, the flight of a great part of the immigrant popula- 



SOUTH BIHAR 



tion and, in some parts, the 
failure of the census staff to 
effect an exhaustive enumera- 
tion. Except in the west of 
Shahabad, the areas of great- 
est decadence exactly coincide 
with the areas which have 
suffered most from plague, 
and tracts that have been free 
from the disease have, as a 
rule, added to their popula- 
tion. Prior to the census 
the epidemic had been most 
virulent and most widespread 
in Patna, where the popula- 
tion has declined by 8-3 per 
cent, as compared with 1891. The loss is greatest in the thickly populated 
urban and serai-urban country on the bank of the Ganges, where the mortality 
due to plague was greatest. The southern part of the district which suffered 
lea^t from plaguo has almost held its ground. 




OCCfUASt tlCLEDtHQ S «. CCHtS] 

— „ I.IUTH.N J.,.,, p 

"•uitA.c ra.n . T. S,., P 



SUMMARY. 



ii7 



Gaya, witli a net decrease of 3' 6 per cent., has sustained the greatest loss 
in the central police circles where plague has been most prevalent. There is 
also a slight decadence, for which plague is not to blame, in the south-west of 
the district, where the land is high and barren and the crops are scanty and 
uncertain. The Nawadah sublivision in the east, and a small tract which bene- 
fits by irrigation from the Sone in the north-west, have added to their popula- 
tion; both these tracts had escaped the ravages of plague up to the time of 
the census. Shahabad has lost 4-7 per cent, of the population recorded in 1891. 
The whole of the western half of the district, which has long been very un- 
healthy and marches with an extensive decadent area in the United Provinces, 
shows a comparatively heavy decrease, and so also does the north-eastern 
portion on the Patna border, where the result is attributable mainly to the 
appearance of plague shortly before the census. Three of the four police 
circles of the Sasaram subdivision, where the area under irrigation is greatest, 
alone show an increase. Monghyr, with a slight gain of 1*6 per cent., is the 
only district in South Bihar which has escaped a loss of population, and even 
here the result is due to the fact that part of the district lies on the north bank 
of the Ganges ; the portion south of that river has sustained a small net loss 
an increase in four police circles having been more than obliterated by a heavy 
loss in four others where plague had appeared, viz., the town of Monghyr 
and its environs and two police circles in the west whither the epidemic 
spread from Mokameh in the Patna district. 

229. The population of North Bihar stands at almost exactly the same 

„ g figure now as it did ten years ago, and the question 

that immediately occurs to one is how far the unpro- 

gressive state of this tract is attributable to the famine of 1896-97. I have 



NORTH BIHAR 




shown in the notes 
on the Champaran, 
Muzaffarpur and 
Darbhanga dis- 
tricts that the real, 
as well as the re- 
ported, mortality 
was less than usual 
in the famine year, 
and that no con- 
nection can be trac- 
ed between the re- 
lative severity of 
the famine and the 
variations in the 
population in the 
different parts of 
these districts; but 
it may be as well 
to review briefly 
the salient points 
the argument, so far as it depends upon the census figures, from a 
more general stand point. The stress of famine was greatest in Darbhanga, but 
this district shows the largest gain of population (3-9 per cent). Purnea 
escaped the famine altogether, but it has sustained a loss of 3-5 per cent, or 
exactly the same as Champaran where the decline is greatest in the very tract that 
suffered least from famine, Saran, which has a decrease of 2'2 per cent, was 
far less severely affected than Muzaffarpur, which has gained 1'5 per cent., and 
its loss of population is amply accounted for by the plague epidemic which 
was more virulent there than in any other district except Patna, The Gopal- 
ffani subdivision, where the famine was worst has added slightly to its popu- 
lation In Muzaffarpur and Darbhanga the great rice-growing tracts under the 
Nenal* frontier, which suffered most in the famine year, show the greatest 
0-rowth of population. The decadent tracts in Muzaffarpur and Bhagalpur 
either escaped the famine altogether, or suffered from it only ma mmor 
dearee The true causes of the decay m parts of North Bihar must, therefore, 
be sought elsewhere. Champaran and Purnea are well known to be unhealthy 
and have suffered since 1891, not only from malarial affections but also from 
severe epidemics of cholera. The outbreak of this disease in Purnea in 1900 
wis of unparalleled severity and no fewer than 46,240 deaths were laid to its 
Jccount in the annual returns of mortality. The part of Bhagalpur that has 



m 



118 



CHAPTER n — VAEIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



ORISSA 



lost population borders on Purnea and shares the uuhealthiness of which that 
district is the victim. In Saran, as already noted, plague fully accounts for 
the decrease which is greatest where that disease was most prevalent. 

230. The Orissa Division has enjoyed a placid period of peaceful develop- 
ment and the rate of growth is remarkably uniform 
^^^'^^' throughout. Cuttack has added 6-4 per cent, to its 

population, or slightly less than Balasore and Puri, both of which show an 

increment of 7*6 per cent. The 
increase is wholly due to natural 
growth and would have been 
slightly greater, but for a small 
adverse balance on account of 
migration. Throughout the 
greater part of the Division tlie 
rate of progress ranges betwen 5 
and 10 per cent. It exceeds 10 
per cent, only in two fertile but 
sparsely inhabited tracts, the one 
in the south-east of Balasore and 
the other in the east of Cuttack, 
both on the sea coast. The rate 
of increase is less than 5 per cent, 
only in the more densely popu- 
lated parts of Cuttack and in a 
strip of country running north 
and south through the centre of 
Puri where considerable damage 
has been caused by floods. There 
is a decrease only in one small 
area, in the south of Balasore, and 
here, too, floods are blamed for 
the result. The loss of population 
is little more than nominal, and 
is not of a permanent nature ; it is 
due to a large part of the male population having gone away temporarily to 
seek work near Calcutta, in order to recoup themselves for the loss of their crops. 
231. The true increase in the Chota Nagpur Plateau, which includes the 

Tributary States of Orissa and Chota Nagpur, 

Chota Nigpue Plateau. ^^^ Sonthal Parganas and Angul, has been obscured 

by the extraordinary amount of emigration that has taken place. The census 

shows a net increase of 7*8 per cent., but if there 
had been no emigration it would probably have been 
not less than 10 per cent. The rate of growth 
is greatest in the Tributary States of Orissa and 
Chota Nagpur where it amounts respectively to 
14:"8 and 13-3 per cent. The whole of this tract 
is very sparsely inhabited, and although the 
proportion of unculturable land is high, there is 
still ample room for expansion. In a few States 
great it is probable that improved enumeration 

during the decade 




REFtRENCtS 

OtCREASE LESS THAU 5 PtR CENT.,, 
INCREASE FftOM TO 5...« 

„ „ 5 TO I0„.„ . 

„ n— '0 TO 15...„ 



1 



District. 


;Estimated 

loss by 
emigration. 


TOXAZ 

Hazaribagh 

Banchi 

Kanbhum 

Singbbbum 

Sonthal Farganas 


398,000 

91,000 

128,000 

30,000 

29,000 

120,000 



IS 



where the increase is very 

accounts for a part of it, but even so, the actual growth 

probably not less than ] 2 per cent. The only States which have lost popula- 
tion are Baud in the south, where it is due to uuhealthiness and emigration 
after the scarcity of 1900, and Korea in the north, where it is due mainly 
to emigration. 

Angul which lies in the midst of the Orissa States shows a net increase of 
12*8 per cent., but while the head-quarters subdivision has gained more than 23 
per cent., the Khondmals subdivision has lost rather more than 3 per cent. 
The latter tract has been affected, but to a greater extent, by the adverse 
circumstances that have reduced the population of Baud which adjoins it and 
to which it formerly belonged. 

232. Next to Angul and the Tributary States, the greatest progress is 
shown by Singbbhum which has suffered less from scarcity and has lost less by 
emigration than, the other districts of the Chota Nagpur Division. The 
opening of the railway has benefited the district, and the tracts which show 
the greatest improvement are those through which the railway runs. The net 
increase is 13'4 per cent., while in Manbhum which adjoins it. it is 9'0 ner cent. 



SUMMART. 



119 



The most progressive tract in the latter district is in the north-west where the 
rapid development of the Jheria coal field has created a great and growing 
demand for labour. In spite of this the district has sustained a net loss by 
migration, owing to the recruitment of coolies for Assam, and the true rate of 
increase must have exceeded the census figures by 2 or 3 per cent. Ranchi 
has lost by migration more than any district except the Sonthal Parganaa, and 
its apparent increase of 5*2 per cent, represents less than half of the real growth 
of the population. More than 91,000 persons born in this district were 
enumerated in Assam. Apart from this vast emigration troubles between 
landlord and tenant have led to a movement of the population from the central 
plateau towards the west and south of the district. The migration statistics 
of Palamau show a slight balance in favour of the district, but the figures 
are not very trustworthy, and many of the ignorant emigrants probably 
returned Lohardaga (the old name for Ranchi) as their birth-place. The 
census shows an increase of 3 "8 per cent., and even if we raise this to 6 per 
cent, to allow for a probable though unrecorded loss on account of emigrants, 
the rate of progress is still small for so sparsely inhabited a district. I^'he 
decade has been unhealthy, and this is probably the reason why the growth 
of population has not been greater. The apparent increase in the Sonthal 
Parganas (3*1 per cent.) is rather less than in Palamau, but the real growth 
has been far greater. The district has sent out more than 180,000 emi- 
grants as tea-garden coolies in Assam and Jalpaiguri and as pioneers of 
cultivation in the B^rind. But for this its rate of growth would have exceeded 
10 per cent. There are two decadent tracts in the district. The Damin-i- 
Koh, which has lost by permanent emigration, and a narrow strip in the 
north-east of the district where plague broke out shortly before the census and 
caused the temporary flight of many of the settlers from other districts. 




any 

and 

that 

the 



Hazaribagh with I'l per cent, has the lowest recorded increase of 
district in the Cbota Nagpur Plateau but here, as in the Sonthal Parganas 
Ranchi, there has been a very heavy loss by emigration. It is probable 
more than 90,000 persons left the district during the decade, and if so, 
natural growth of population would be about 8 per cent. The central part of 
the district, where recruiting for tea gardens was most active, shows an actual 
decrease. In the Giridih subdivision and the Kasmar thana the coal fields 
have attracted labour, and the rate of expansion is more rapid than in the 
rest of the district. 



120 



CHAPTER II — VAEIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



233. In conclusion we may briefly notice the progress in the province as a 

whole and in each natural divi- 



Pbogeess in each natueai; division compabbd. 

Diagram showing the variation since 1873 per 1,000 
of the population in each natural division. 




sion since 1872. The diagram 
in the margin shows the varia- 
tion per 1,000 of the population 
of the different natural divisions 
at each successive enumeration. 
Between 1872 and 1881 the 
Chota Nagpur Plateau showed 
the greatest apparent improve- 
ment, but this was due mainly 
to the inaccuracy of the first 
census in a wild, remote and 
sparsely-peopled tract, where 
the difficulties in the way of a 
proper enumeration are excep- 
tionally great. Orissa, which 
came second, had suffered a 
terrible loss of population in the 
great famine of 1866, and its 
rapid^ growth was the natural 
reaction from that calamity 
during a period of renewed 
prosperity. In North and South 
Bihar, as in Chota Nagpur, the 
census of 1872 was defective, 
and the increment brought to 
light in 1881 was thus to a great 
extent fictitious. The decline in 
West Bengal was due to the Burdwan fever, which was then at its height. 
Between 1881 and 1891 the apparent rate of development in East Bengal 
and Chota Nagpur was about the same, but the latter tract again owed part 
of its increase to better enumeration, and the real growth was greatest in 
East Bengal. Then followed Orissa and North Bihar, then North Bengal, 
and then in order West Bengal, Central Bengal, and South Bihar. On the 
present occasion East Bengal again heads the list and is followed in order 
by the Chota Nagpur Plateau, Orissa, West Bengal, North Bengal, and Central 
Bengal. The population of North Bihar is stationary, while that of South 
Bihar has suffered a loss of 3 per cent. 

234. The province as a whole, is now more populous by 25 per cent, than 

it was at the time of the first enumeration in 1872. 
The centee of population. ^^^ ^^^ varying rate of progress shown by different 
districts, has caused the centre of the population to shift eastwards and south- 
wards. If we take as the centre of population the point of intersection of two 
lines drawn, the one north and south and the other east and west, in such a way 
that the population on either side of each line is exactly equal, the positicm of 
this point in 1891 was 6*4 miles due west of the Rampur Hat railway station 
whereas it is now 8*8 miles due south of it. In other words it has moved very 
nearly 1 1 miles in a south-easterly direction. This way of considering the sub- 
ject, however, is defective as it fails to recognize all the movements that are in 
progress, and leaves out of account all changes which do not pass across one or 
other of the two dividing lines. If individual parts of the Province be con- 
sidered it will appear that in Bihar the centre of population has moved to the 
east, in the Chota Nagpur Plateau and Central Bengal to the south, and in North 
Bengal to the north. 

235. The general rate of growth shows a progressive decline. The 
census of 1881 brought out an increase of 11 per cent.; in 1891 it was 7 per 
cent., and on the present occasion it is only 5 per cent. This is due in 
part to the greater accuracy of each succeeding enumeration. The pioneer 
census of 1872 was admittedly very incomplete. A fresh count of part of 
the Darbhanga district taken only two and-a-half years later disclosed an excess 
of 25 per cent, over the population recorded in 1872. A similar revision 
of the figures for Madhubani in 1876 showed a gain of 20 per cent. The 
Nadia district suffered terribly from fever between 1872 and 1881, and in 
one year lost no less than 4 per cent, of its inhabitants, yet in spite of this the 
recorded population was greater in 1881 by more than 11 per cent, than 
it was in 1872. The present Deputy Commissioner of Jalnaiffuri est.imafftB 



SUMMARY. 121 



Orissa Tributary States 

ChotaNagpnr , 

Son thai Parganas 

Darjeeling 


120,000 
130,001) 
130,000 
40,000 


• Total 


430,000 



that the population of that district was under-estimated in 1872 to the extent of 
at least 15 per cent. In 1881 the numbering of the people was carried out 
with^ far greater accuracy, and although it is impossible to gauge, even ap- 
proximately, the extent to which this affected the comparative results of the two 
enumerations, it is quite certain that a very large proportion of the apparent 
growth must have been due to this cause. It would probably be quite safe 
to assume that, but for this disturbing factor, the excess of the figures for 
1881 over those for 1872 would have been less than the increment disclosed by 
the present census as compared with 1891. 

But although the census of 1881 was very much more complete than that 
of 1872, there were still tracts where the standard of accuracy fell con- 
siderably below that attained ten years later. In 1881 there were disturbances 
in the Sonthal Parganas, and in Darjeeling many of the ignorant hill men 
fled to Nepal to escape the imaginary dangers with which the census was 
associated in their minds. In the remoter tracts of Chota Nagpur the diffi- 
culties encountered were very great, and the success in surmounting them 
was less than that attained ten years later with the aid of the experience then 
gained. Speaking of the apparent- growth of the population of the Chota 
Nagpur States, as disclosed by the census of 1891, Mr, O'Donnell says that 
" it is no doubt, two-thirds due to improved enumeration," and mentions that in 
Grangpur, two hundred villages were left out of account in 1881. It would 
probably be safe to estimate the gain due to the greater accuracy of the 
count of 1891 in these remote tracts at the difference between the increase 

then obtained and that disclosed by the present 
census, or at about 420,000 in all, to which may 
perhaps be added another 80,000 to allow for a 
fictitious improvement in Saran and other districts 
where the earlier enumeration was less complete 
than the later one. The standard of accuracy in 
1891 had reached a stage which left but little room for further improvement 
and, as compared with that census, it is probable that the general gain on this 
account at the present enumeration does not, at the outside, exceed 100,000, 
while in the districts where plague was prevalent, the census of 1901 was less 
complete than its predecessor. Taking the gain and loss together, it may be 
concluded that there has been no appreciable improvement in the matter of 
accuracy at the present census. 

If half a milKon be added to the population of 1881 to allow for omissions 
which did not occur at the succeeding census, the net increase comes to 4,636,858, 
which is still about 800,000 more than that of the decade preceding the census 
of 1901. This must be due either to (1) a lower birth-rate, (2) a higher mortality, 
or (3) an adverse balance of migration. The consideration of the birth and 
death-rates must be left to a subsequent chapter, but it may be noted here that 
the appearance, for the first time, of plague has added a new factor to the causes 
affecting mortality, and that the recorded number of deaths from this disease 
between the first outbreak in 1898 and the 1st March 1901, amounting to 
65,884, probably represents less than half of the loss of life that actually 
occurred. The cyclone of 1897 in Chittagong, which is estimated to be 
responsible, directly or indirectly, for some 50,000 deaths, is another calamity 
of a special character that cannot be left out of account. 

The record of migration between Bengal and other countries and pro- 
vinces is incomplete as we have no information of the number of persons who 
go across the Nepal boundary. The figures so far as they go, show a consider- 
able net loss, chiefly in the direction of Assam, but it does not appear that it 
has been greater during the last decade than it was in the preceding ten years. 
So far, therefore, as the causes affecting the relative rate of growth are 
concerned, migration may be left out of the reckoning. If 200,000 deaths be 
allowed for on account of plague and cyclone, there still remains a difference of 
about 600,000 between the increment in 1891-1901 and that during the previous 
decade, which is attributable either to a lower birth-rate or a greater general 
mortality.* 

236. Before closing this Chapter, there is one more point to which I should 
like to draw attention, viz., the comparative progress made by tracts of 

* The conclusions arriyed at in the chapter on age are that the mortality has not increased but that the 
birth-rate has fallen. The reasons for the decline in the birth-rate vary. In Bihar it is due to the in- 
fluence of bad seasons which has led to Tarious preventive checks on the growth of the population while 
in Orissa and Central and West Bengal the birth-rate prior to 1891 was abnormally high owing to the 
recovery, in the one case, from the famine of 1866 and, in the other, from the ravages of Burdwan fever. 

Q 



122 CHAPTEE II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



varying density of population. It is generally assumed that the tendency is 
for people to move from densely-inhahited tracts to those that are more 
sparsely populated. The extent to which this is actually the case will be seen 
by a reference to Subsidiary Table No. III. The greatest absolute increase 
has occurred in thanas with a density of less than 300 to the square mile, but 
this is mainly owing to the figures for the Chota Nagpur Plateau where the 
population is unusually prolific and where most of the police circles belong 
to this category. The proportional rate of increase in Chota Nagpur is not so 
great in these sparsely inhabited police circles as it is in some that carry a 
much greater population. North Bengal, which also contributes largely to the 
total growth of population in this group of thanas, does so owing to the recla- 
mation of the Barind and the development of the recently acquired tracts in the 
east of Jalpaiguri and Darjeeling. If Chota Nagpur and North Bengal be left 
out of account the greatest absolute addition to the population during the last 
decade has occurred in thanas with a density of 500 to 600 persons per square 
mile. In East Bengal the greatest absolute increment has taken place in thanas 
with 800 to 900 persons per square mile and the greatest proportional growth 
•in ihose with from 400 to 500 and then in those with from 900 to 1,000. West 
Bengal has gained most, both absolutely and relatively, in the thanas with a 
density of from 400 to 500. The proportional growth in Central Bengal is 
greatest in the most sparsely inhabited thanas but the actual gain is insignificant 
compared with that in thanas with a population of 900 to 1,000 per square 
mile. In North Bihar also, though the proportional increase is greatest in the 
police circles of very low density, the actual increment is far greater in those 
with a population varying from 800 to 1,000 per square mile. In Orissa the 
greatest increase from both standpoints has taken place in police circles with a 
population of from 700 to 800 per square mile. It may, therefore, be concluded 
that, although sparsely inhabited tracts may grow at a very rapid rate in special 
cases where annexation or a successful experiment in colonisation may have 
brought about a change of circumstances and so encouraged immigration, 
the general tendency is for those tracts to grow most where the general condi- 
tions of life are favourable, irrespective of the existing density of population. 
In other words climate is still, as a rule, a more important factor than the 
density of the population in determining the growth or decay of the population. 
In Bihar it seems doubtful if the most thickly inhabited tracts are capable of 
sustaining a larger population than that which they already carry, but in East 
Bengal there seems to be no area where the inhabitants have reached the limit 
which the land can support. 



SUBSIDIARY TABLES REFERRED TO IN CHAPTER II. 

Subsidiary Table No. /.—Showing the variations in the population since 187'2. 
Subsidiary Table No. i/.— Comparing the census variations with those indicated by the 

vital statistics returns. 
Subsidiary Table No. ///.—Showing the variations according to density of population. 



« 2 



124 



CHAPTEE II — VAEIATIOKS IN THE POPULATION. 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE I~Showing the variations in the population 

SINCE 1872. 



NilTJEAI. DrVIBIOHS ABD 
mSTBICIS. 



Pbbcbhtaoe op VAEIATIOIT 

IirCBEASE ( + ) OBSEOKEASE (-). 



1891—1901. 



BENGAL 



WEST BENGAL 

Burdwan ... 
Birbham ... 
Bankura ... 
Midnapore... 
Hooghly ... 
Howrau ... 



CENTRAL BENGAL 

24-PaTganaa 
Calcutta ... 
Nadia 

Murshidabad 
Jessore 



NOETH BENGAL 

Eajshabi ... 
Dinajpur ... 
Jalpaiguri ... 
Darjeeling 
Bangpur ... 
Bogra 
Pabna 
Malda 
Knch Bibar 
Sikkim 



EAST BENGAL 

Ehulaa 
Dacca 

Mymeasingb 
Faridpur ... 
Backergunge 
Xippera ... 
Noakbali ... 
Chittagong 

Do. Hill Tracts 
Hill Tippera 



NOETH BIHAR 

Saran 

Ghamparan 

Muzafiarpur 

Darbhanga 

Bhagalput 

Barnea 



SOUTH BIHAB 

Batna 
Gaya 

Shahabad ... 
Hough jr ... 



OKISSA 

Cuttack 
Balasore 
Bori 



OHOTA NAGPUE FLATBATJ 

Hazaribigh 
Banchi 
Falamau ... 
Manbhum ... ... 

Singhbbum 
Bonthal Parganas ... 
Chota Nagpur Tributary 

States .„ 

Orisss Ditto 

Angul 



CITIES 

Calcutta ... 

Howrah ... 

Cossipore-Chitpnr . 

Uanicktala 

Garden Eeach 

SerampoT .„ 

Bally 

Dacca 

Fatiu ... 

Darbhanga 

Muzaf^pur 

Monghyr ,„ . 

Bhigalpur 

Chapts ... 

Bibar 

Gaya ,„ 



+ Bl 



+ 71 

+ lO-l 

+ 13-0 

+ 4-S 

+ 5-9 

+ Vi 

+ ll'S 



1881—1891. 



+ 


Bl 


+ 


9-8 


+ 


ii-2 


+ 


n 


+ 


6-6 




i-0 


+ 


5-9 


+ 


1-0 



+ 6-7 

+ 16-6 

+ 11-6 

+ 4-3 

+ 11-7 

+ 4-3 

+ 8-4 

- 2-0 

+ 93-7 



+ 10 4 

+ 6'4 

+ 10-6 

+ 12-7 

+ 6-2 

+ 6-4 

+ 18-7 

+ 13-0 

+ 4-8 

+ 16-2 

+ 26-1 



+ -1 



2-2 
S-7 
1-6 
»-9 
2-7 
3-6 



3-6 

8-4 
3-6 
4-7 
1-6 



+ 7 OS 

+ 6-4 
+ 7-6 
+ 7-6 



+ 7S 

+ 1-1 

+ 6-2 

+ 8-8 

+ 9-0 

+ 12-4 

+ S-1 

+ 133 
+ 14-8 

+ 12-8 



+ 10-9 

+ 24-2 

+ 36'1 

+ 29-6 

+ 15-0 

+ IK) 

+ 23-6 

+ in 

+ 9-9 

- 7-6 

- 9-9 

- 7-2 

- 371 
+ 9-« 

- 19-9 

- 6-6 

- 11-3 



+ 7-5 



+ 3-9 



2-7 

4-6 

6-1 

13'1 



1872—1881. 



+ 31 

+ 11-8 

+ 11-4 

- 1-1 

+ 1-9 



+ 4-4 

- -7 

+ a-s 

-t 17-3 

+ 43'4 

- 1-6 
+ 11-2 
+ 3'9 
+ 14-5 

- 3-9 



+ 141 

+ 9-0 

+ 14-6 

+ 13-6 

+ 9'9 

+ 13-3 

+ 17-8 

+ 23-0 

+ 13'9 

+ 6'5 

+ 43-8 



+ BS 



7-4 
8-0 
6-0 
6-6 
33 
61 



+ Z-6 

+ -9 

+ '6 

+ 6-6 

+ 3-3 



+ 68 

+ 7-9 

+ 6-2 

+ 6-3 



+ 13 5 



6'4 
6-7 
8-3 
12-7 
20-2 
11-8 

30-3 
20'S 

6'7 



+ 8 3 

+ 11-4 

+ 28-4 

+ 19'6 

- 41-4 
+ 4fi'7 
•f 40-4 
+ 13-7 
+ 4-1 

- S-2 
+ 11-6 
+ 16-8 
+ 3-1 
+ 1-2 
+ in-9 

- 2-6 
+ 6-1 



Net tari- 
atioit is 

FEBIOS 

1872-1901 

INOBEABB 

( + ) OB 

Decbease 

(-) 



Meaic dbnbitt of PopirtATioir pee 

BQUABE miLE. 



+ irB + 3B-9 



s-7 



7-6 

1-1 

12-9 
6-2 



+ 11-7 

+ 62 

- 3-2 

+ 10-8 

+ 1-01 

+ 8; 



+ S-3 

+ 1-9 

+ -8 

+ 38-9 

+ 63-8 

- 2-6 

+ 6-9 

+ 8-2 

+ 6'0 

+ 15-1 



8 3 

3-1 
6-9 

15-2 
9-6 
6-2 

33-7 



+ 10 9 



3-1 
14-8 



8-4 

•7 

7-8 

2-3 

•4 

45-9 

171-2 



+ 14-0 

+ 10-6 

+ 19-4 

+ 14-9 

+ 23-1 

+ 7-7 

+ 7-8 



+ 10-9 

+ 12-6 

+ 9-1 

+ 13 9 

+ 8-6 



+ ars 

+ 31-4 
+ 3a*9 

+ 111 

+ 9-8 
+ 24-9 



+ leo 

+ 2-7 

+ 9-5 

+ 88-4 
+ 162-2 

+ -02 

+ 33-1 

+ 17-3 

+ 30-5 

+ 65 



+ 399 

+ 19-6 
+ 44-9 
+ 66-5 
+ 26*6 
+ 21-4 
+ 50-8 
+ 35-8 
+ 20-0 
+ 79-2 
+391-6 



+ ao-8 

+ 160 
+ 24-3 
+ 22-6 
+ 36-3 
+ 14-4 
+ 8-3 



+ 9-7 

+ 4-2 

+ 5-8 

+ 14-7 

+ 14-0 



+ 176 

+ 16-2 
+ 22-07 
+ 15-4 



+331 

+ 43-1 

+ SO-1 

+ 80-1) 

+ 28-9 

+ 42-6 

+ 24-6 

+ S6-9 
+ 27-7 
+ 105-2 



+ a-9 



+ 8-0 

+ 3-6 

- 10-8 
+ 18-6 
+ 4-6 
+ 8-0 
+ 14-2 
+ 7-3 
+ 22-7 
+ 11-0 

- 7-2 
+ 4-3 
+ 11-6 
+ 10-6 
+ 14-8 



+ 34-S 

+ 33-6 

+ 39-7 

+ 32-1 



+ 618 

+ 52-6 

+ 46 

+ 46-2 

+ 68-6 

+ 92-8 

+ 43-7 

+ 1 00-8 
+ 76-4 
+ 144-8 



+ 83-8 

+ 33-9 

+ 87-4 

+ 60-6 

- 40-0 
+ 756 
+ 81-8 
+ 36-1 
+ 30-8 

- 3-9 
+ 23-2 
+ 19-2 

- 39-9 
+ 15-9 

-8 
+ 1-7 
+ 6-6 



1901. 



1891. 



413 



B91 

670 
616 
426 
633 

881 



775 



42,390 
697 



6'iO 



483 

664 
397 
266 
214 
617 
629 
772 
466 
434 
21 



701 



618 
849 
628 
848 
694 
643 
24 
42 



636 

907 
607 
917 
873 
494 
378 



BU 

783 
437 
449 
527 



BOS 

B68 
620 
411 

IBZ 



167 
126 
814 
163 
331 



135 

114 



1S,11« 

42,390 

17,510 

13,583 

6,398 

9,403 

11,112 

9.331 

10,060 

16,964 

9,4«3 

7,602 

4,486 

9,4/0 

6,697 

6,007 

10,184 



1881. 



393 



BBl 

518 
466 
408 
607 
868 
1,497 



736 



34,116 
689 
684 
646 



4B8 

655 
376 
230 
192 
591 
663 
740 
429 
443 
11 



63B 

66? 
861 
548 
800 
691 
713 
614 
613 
21 
84 



63S 

928 
627 
903 
840 
481 



B31 

855 
454 
471 
519 



47S 



534 
483 



141 

166 
158 
121 
288 
145 
821 

66 
118 
101 



13,631 

34,116 

12,966 

10,474 

4,693 

9,308 

8,988 

8,360 

9,147 

18,354 

10,608 

8,198 

7,134 

8,638 

8,193 

5,302 

11,483 



366 



630 

618 
452 
397 
485 
818 
1,324 



714 



30,615 
596 

672 



439 



S66 

196 
134 
600 
605 
712 
374 
461 



B&S 

620 
761 
482 
727 
521 
606 
499 
464 



600 



488 
869 
788 
465 
870 



B17 

846 
460 
446 
602 



44S 

494 
469 
869 



134 

167 
148 
112 
256 
121 
286 



95 



t3,S69 

S0,C]6 

10,090 
8,764 
8,021 
6,344 
6,890 
7,407 
8,786 

18,961 
9,422 
7,076 
6,921 
8,529 
7,381 
6,441 

10,916 



1872. 



338 



B4S 

663 
486 
369 
490 
940 
1,246 



639 

760 

31,650 

637 



417 



141 

81 
616 
472 
658 
856 
407 



BOS 

604 
667 
371 
671 
518 
662 
611 
452 
13 
8 



B36 

781 
408 
747 
640 
432 
348 



466 

751 
413 

391 
462 



378 

425 
874 
811 



94 

110 
114 

86 
198 

85 
230 

31 

77 
46 



13,31S 

31,690 
9,841 
8,456 
8,998 
6,363 
6,110 
6,867 
7,690 

17,655 
7,677 
6.873 
7,462 
8,172 

c,«ia 

4,921 
9,649 



the 



CUtSSra?Hi^^te^^°'°''^°^''"*°^''"'"'•"'^^'^'**''^'°'"**'""''•■^»'''8=°e»"» exclusive of HiU Tippera and 



SUBSIDIARY TABLES. 



125 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE No. II — Comparing the vakiation in the actual and natural 

POPULATION OF EACH DISTRICT WITH THAT INDICATED BY THE VITAL STATISTICS RETURNS. 



DiSIBICM, 



PBorurcE 



BUEDWAN DIVISION 

Burdwan 

Birbhum 

Bankurs 

Midnapoie 

EooKhiy 

Howran 



PBJ5SIDENCT DIVISION 

ai-Parganas 

Calcutta 

Nadia i,. 

Uutshidabad 

Jesaoie 

Ehulna 



BAISHAHI DIVISION 

Baisbahi 

Diaajpur 

Jalpaiguri 

Darjeelmg 

Bangpui 

Bogta ... 

Fabna 



DACCA DIVISION 

Dacca 

Mjmensingli 
Faridpur 
Backerguoge 

CHITTAGONG DIVISION 

Tippera 

Noakhali 

Chittagong 



PATNA DIVISION 

Patna ••• 

Qaya 

Shababad 

Saran 

Cbamparan 

MuzaSaxpur 

Darbhanga 

BHAGAIiPUE DIVISION 

Mongbyr ... 

Bhti«alpur 

Purnea 

Malda 

Soatbal Fargana!! 



OBISSA DIVISION 

Onttack 
Balasore 
Puri 

CHOTA NAGPCK DIVISION 

Hazaiibagh 

Xaanchi 

Palaman 

Manbhum 

Singhbhani 



Total number 
of deaths 

reported trom 
1891.1900, 



Number ol 

deaths 

per cent, ol 

population 

of 1891. 



Sg,390,8ll9 



3^18,060 

416,422 
239,011 
858,36e 
730,461 
347,451 



3,837,47s 

487,162 
261,875 
683,496 
423,033 
717,126 
374,783 



3,813,887 

630,284 
668,923 
249,471 
93,017 
694,780 
233,938 
445,474 



3,078,601 

725,674 
921,389 
646,401 
786,137 



1,18B,13B 

461,736 
330,972 
402,427 



B,090,i7B 

600,432 
708,209 
• 677,274 
742,143 
616,031 
902,578 
843,808 



3,683,711 



667,984 
679,539 
306,672 
377,707 



1,194,133 

691,019 
312,317 
290,797 



1,388,383 

359,681 
337,203 
190,340 
286,024 
115,204 



3 
31B0 

38-84 

29-91 
29-94 
24-15 
27-75 
33-59 
89-64 

S3-!i4 

26-76 
36-92 
36-49 
83-81 
37-96 
31-82 

3B-1S 

36-83 
38-37 
36-64 
41-65 
33-63 
30-60 

sa-72 

31-S6 

30-29 
26-63 
3B-S8 
36-4S 

39-09 

25-33 
32-77 
31-19 

33-19 

33-85 
33-11 
32-88 
30-10 
33-12 
33-2? 

so-u 



S1-3S 

S2-45 
32-37 
34-94 
37-63 
21-53 



BiBIHB. 



1892—1900. 



30-79 

30-60 
31-39 

30-77 



37-83 

30-88 
29-87 
31-89 
23-96 
21-11 



Add ith 
for 
1891. 



83,99B,036 

3,300,886 

400,996 
270,442 
333,601 
800,653 
267,046 
228,348 

3,B79,%6B 

474,117 
103,920 
686,119 
471,000 
669,372 
374,737 

3,B70,96B 

474,149 
531,720 
207,697 
68,636 
640,082 
250,446 
408,337 

3,4liB,886 

851,140 

1,110,405 

636,406 

828,936 

1,47B,4S9 

636,617 

408,062 
431,760 

B,0S0,430 

668,761 
706,330 
610,864 
761,177 
574,106 
911,663 
897,649 

S,781,8B3 

729,234 
676,689 



614,193 



1,391,B37 

663,466 
338,736 
299,336 



1,B48,78B 

412,209 
396,392 
211,439 
367,242 
161,503 



Total 
1891-1900. 



3,BBB,003 

3BB,6S4 

44,665 
30,049 
37,066 
88,950 
29,672 
26,372 

386,888 

52,680 
11,647 
66,124 
62,333 
63,261 
41,637 

388,663 

62,683 
59,080 
23,078 
6,604 
71,120 
27,827 
46,371 

380,684 

94,671 

123,378 

70,601 

92,104 

163,936 

70,624 
46,339 
47,973 

687,836 

62,083 
78,481 
67,874 
84,676 
63,790 
101,284 
99,739 

309,098 

81,026 
76,188 
63,141 
32,607 
67,133 



143,803 

72,606 
87,637 
33,260 



173,087 

45,801 
44,043 
22,493 
40,8115 
17,945 



Number of 

births 

per cent, of 

population 

of 1891. 



38,880,039 

3,886,840 

445,661 
300,491 
370,667 
889,603 
296,718 
253,720 

3,868,880 

626,797 
115,467 
661,243 
623,333 
632,636 
416,374 



3,856,638 

626,832 
690,800 
230,775 
66,039 
711,202 
278,272 
453,708 



3,806,840 

946,711 

1,233,783 

706,007 

921,039 



1,639,368 

706,241 
463,391 
479,773 



8,878,386 

620,834 
784,811 
678,738 
846,752 
637,896 
1,012,837 
097,388 



3,090,948 

810,260 
761,877 
631,409 
326,076 
671,326 



1,438,030 

726,061 
376,373 
332,596 



1,730,873 

458,010 
440,436 
234,932 
408,047 
179,448 



38-9 



33-34 

32-01 
37-64 
S4'64 



33-22 



33-87 

27-86 
16-92 
39-61 
41-83 
33-49 
36-35 



38-63 

36-58 
39-99 
33-90 
29-12 
34-43 
36-40 
33-33 



38-66 

39-48 
35-53 
38-71 
4a-76 



40-li 

89-61 
44-93 
37-18 



38-S8 

35-00 
36-70 
32-94 
34-3 L 
S4-30 
37-33 
35-69 



36-01 

89-78 
36-99 
32-46 
40-01 
32-67 



37-0 

37-47 
37-83 
35-19 



37-18 



39-01 
39-37 
84-26 
32-90 



+3,189,300 



+ 338,480 



Excess or 

deficiency of 

column 6 

compared 

with 2. 



29,129 
61,480 
112,191 
169,062 
50,733 
27,361 



38,378 

39,635 
136,4118 

67,747 
100,300 

84,490 

41^91 



40,741 

3,462 
21,877 
18,696 
27,978 
16,422 
44,334 

8,234 



Increase Or 



actual popu- 
lation at 
census ol 1901, 
compared vitii 
1891. 



*3,3B8,B76 



+880,887 



+ 727,939 

+ 220,037 

+ 312,394 
+ 60,606 

+ 134,902 



+484,S30 

+ 254,606 
+ 122,419 
+ 77,306 



+487,781 

-I- 20,402 
76,602 
1,464 
103,609 
21,866 
110,259 
163,680 



■I- 408,337 



149,461 
93,893 
48,130 
19,404 

193,619 



+ 340,897 



136,042 
64,066 
41,799 



+ 433,830 



98,429 
103,292 

44,692 
122,023 

64.244 



140,695 
104,026 

46,743 
167,648 

14,986 



+ 487,903 



187,071 
165,491 
23,383 
82,238 
78,672 
76,391 



+477,757 



22,773 
84,610 
106,644 
25,803 
88,717 
90,072 
69,238 



+ 948,698 

+ 264,092 

+ 442,8S2 

+ 113,931 

+ 137,787 



+550,174 



Increase or 
decrease ip 
natural popu- 
lation at 
census of 1901, 
compared witb 
1891, 



336,066 

132,036 

63,083 



-896,617 

- 148,425 

- 78,398 

- 97,883 

- 65,498 



41,933 
110,656 



+ 144^49 



32,783 
66,267 
69,864 
69,111 
66,962 



+»75,S95 



126,087 
76,622 
72,286 



10 



+3.840,973 



+ 403,390 

+ 63,527 

+ 97,842 

+ 94,342 

+ 168,470 
68,184 

+ 56,843 



+ 386,334 



+371,637 



13,640 

69,040 

22,830 

108,036 

68,091 



143,402 
101,487 
26,104 
88,218 
93,968 
88,071 



+ 330,881 



48,065 
63,727 
89,339 
15,967 
110,296 
63,810 



+ 960,373 

+ 290,659 

+ 436,647 

+ 97,071 

+ 136,886 



848,031 

345,405 
136,869 
66,757 



337,484 

95,101 
117,664 

77,695 
208,860 

68,621 

13,433 
106,678 



+ 339,883 



102,4bl 
76,'i90 
61,413 

206,390 



366,679 

126,221 
83,173 
67,285 



+ 386,996 



81,435 
104,376 



110,077 
91,109 



. 



Wn™ -This statement is exclusive of the figures for the Chittagong Hill Tracts, Angul and the Feudatory States ; birth and death statistics are net 
J1UJ.X,. '.uA ^g^^^^g j jq these tracts. Still-births are not included. The number of such births were highest in 1899, when they amounted to 106,666, or abont 
1-2 per 1,000 of the population of 1891. 
The flmres in column 10 mclude the peisoins bom in each district, and enumerated, not only in other parts of Bengal l^ut alio in Aiiam, tbe United 
Provinces, the Central Provinces, Burma (lor Ohittpgong only) and Madras (for Puri only). 



126 



CHAPTEE II — VARIATIONS IN THE POPULATION. 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE No. III.— Showing the vaeiation in the 

POPULATION according TO DENSITY. 



(I) (Actual variation). 



Serial 
No. 



NATtJBAI DlYISIOlT. 



VARIATION IN POPULATION OP THAN AS WITH A DBNSIT1 PEE SQUAEE MILE OP— 



Less teait 300. 



1881—1891. 



1891—1901, 



300-400. 



1881—1891. 1891—1901. 



400-600. 



1881—1891. 1891—1901, 



600-600. 



1881-1891. 1891—1901, 



Total 

West Bengal 
Central Bengal 
North do. 
East do. 

North Bihar 
South do. 
Orissa 
Chota Nagpnr Plateau 



+1,767,74S 

63,637 

1 1,203 

223,920 

280,714 

113,792 

29,893 

36,866 

1,008,824 



+ 1,003,819 



26,289 
23,671 

198,382 
91,369 
34,371 
4,697 
32,712 

601,032 



+371,709 

+ 60,348 
+ 2,011 
+ 83,583 
+ 63,189 
+ 32, 1 2 1 
+ 67,529 
+ 46,774 
+ 36,164 



+363,041 

+ 37,434 

+ 22,973 

+ 88,802 

+ 124,337 

- 62,174 

- 17,221 
+ 63,198 
+ 96,692 



+^3,090 

- 3,606 

- 18,958 
+ 20,662 
+296,029 
+ 68,236 
+ 17,417 
+ 43,038 
+ 21,283 



+364,BS4. 

+ 185,965 

+ 7,265 

+ 23,996 

+ 158,168 

- 14,208 

- 26,763 
+ 33,996 

- 8,848 



+BSS,4S0 

+ 14,606 
- 18,836 
+ 36,122 
+ 300,738 
+ 131,496 
+ 11,168 
+ 30,266 
+ 16,932 



+440fi63 



21,760 
60,438 



4,608 

3,819 

14,680 

16,125 



VAEIATION IN POPULATION OF THANAS WITH A DENSITY PEE SQUARE MILE OP— 



Serial 

No. 



600-700. 



1881—1891. 1891—1901 



700-800. 





10 


+B77,619 


+ 


7,197 


— 


r8,399 


+ 


44,784 


+ 


364,091 


+ 


1 07,044 


+ 


21,861 


+ 


61.041 



11 

+SS3,13S 

+ 96,215 

- 3.109 
+ 141,238 
+ 46,218 

- 16,289 

- . 69,166 
+ 16,914 
+ 11,113 



1881-1891. 1891—1901. 



12 

+418,963 

- 2,377 
+ 60,822 

- 20,276 
+ 264,207 
+ 73,603 
+ 39,320 
+ 7,664 



13 
+318,568 



+ 19,666 
+ 17,744 
364 
+ 208,679 
+ 34,848 
- 36.782 



800-900. 



1881—1891. 1891—1901. 



14 

+ 489,786 

+ 16,681 
+ 66, 1 27 
- 36,868 
+ 186,736 
+ 149,426 
+ 38,096 
+ 20,689 



15 
+388,930 



6,273 
20,541 
326 
288,978 
61,164 
47,710 
11,019 



900-1,000. 



Otsb 1,000. 



16 

+ 173,714 

+ 29,283 
+ 19,891 

+ '43i588 
+ 92,670 
- 18,217 



+ 6,499 



17 

+ 307,998 

+ 9,486 
+ 44,073 
128 
+ 207,126 
+ 61,977 
16,668 
+ 12,123 



1881-1891. 




18 


+ 348,873 


+ 


110,517 


+ 


74,246 


+ 


;S0,346 


+ 


111,748 


+ 


10,773 


+ 


11,616 


+ 


3,130 



19 
+830,491 



101,806 
28,248 
21,140 

200,692 
72,742 
68,590 
20,640 
60S 



(2) (Proportional figures). 



Serial 
No. 



NATuBix Dinsioirs. 



VARIATION PER CENT IN POPULATION OP THANAS WITH A DENSITY PER SQUARE MILE OP- 



Ubdeb 300. 



1881—1891. 1891—1901 



300-400. 



1881—1891. 1891—1901. 



400-600. 



1881-1891. 1891-1901, 



500-600. 



1881—1891. 1801-1901, 



Total 

West Bengal 
Central Bengal 
North do. 
Eaet do. 

North Bihar 
South do. 
Orissa 
Chota Nagpnr Plateau 



+ 14-4 

+ 8-7 
+ 22-6 
+26-1 
+ 24-6 
+ 15-2 
+ 2-9 
+ 8-3 
+ 138 



+ 8-6 



+ 7-3 



+B-3 



+ 6'3 


+ 9-3 


+ 4-1 


+41-8 


+ 30 


+21-9 


+ 20-7 


+ 6-8 


+ 7-4 


+14-0 


+ 10-3 


+11-4 


+ 6-3 


+ 3-6 


- 4-6 


- 0-4 


+ 7-7 


- 3-1 


+ 7-0 


+ 6-9 


+ 8-7 


+ 80 


+ 9-8 


+ 8-4 



+ BO 

- 0-3 

- 3-3 
+ 10 
+ 14-4 
+ 4-5 
+ 3-1 
+ 4-0 
+ 9-6 



+4-B 

+11-3 
+ 0-9 
+ 1-6 
+19-9 

- ri 

- 2-4 
+ 4-8 

- 1-7 



+ B-7 

+ 10 
- 1-2 
+ 2-6 
+ 185 
+ 9-6 
+ 0-9 
+ 6-0 
+ 121 



+46 

+ 6-6 
+ 1-4 
+ 3-4 
+10-5 

- 0-4 

- 0-3 
+ 2-5 
+12-3 



VARIATION PEE CENT IN POPULATION OP THANAS WITH A DENSITY PEE SQUARE MILE OP- 



Serial 
No. 



600-700. 



700-800. 



800-900. 



900-1,000 



Otek 1,000. 



1881-1891. 1891—1901, 



1881—1891. 1891-1901, 



1881—1891. 1891—1901, 



1881—1891. 1891-1901, 



1881-1891. 1891-1901, 



10 



+ «•© 



OS 
1-6 
3-2 
13 2 
8-2 
1-4 
9-6 



+8-4 

+ 8-5 

- 0'2 
+ 7-7 
+ 2'2 

- 1-1 

- 4-8 
+ 89 
+ 7*U 



12 



+ 4-8 



•2 
2-8 
I '2 
12-3 
4-1 
2-6 
o'O 



13 



+3-6 



+ 3-6 
+ 1-8 



+ 9-6 

+ a-i 

- 3-0 

+10-0 



14 



+ 71 

+ e-2 

+ 11-9 
- 89 
+ 12-3 
+ 5-9 
+ 59 
+ 8-2 



16 



+4-1 

+ 2-4 
+ 3-8 

+11-3 
+ 1-8 
- 3-8 
+ 4-2 



18 



+ 48 



+ 5-8 
+ 5-8 



+ 4-3 
+ 4-7 
- 6-8 



+47-4 



17 



+6-9 

+ 2-2 

+12-4 
- 0-2 
+14-4 
+ 2-8 
-18-6 
+ 4-4 



18 



+ 8-S 

+ 13-0 
+ 16-1 
+ 9-2 
+ 14-1 
+ 0-8 
+ 2-6 
+ 12-1 



+3-1 

+ 7-4 
+ 2-8 
+ 8-7 
+10-2 

- S'l 
-16-0 
+71-3 

- 2-4 



CHAPTEE m— MIGEATION. 127 



Chaptn* ill. 

MIGBATION. 

237. The statistics of birthplace are contained in Imperial Table XI. 

The following Subsidiary Tables in which the 
prominent features of the statistics are pourtrayed 
will be found at the end of this chapter. 

Subsidiary Table No. I — Showing the general distribution according to 
birthplace of the persons enumerated in each district. 

Subsidiary Table No. II — Showing the general distribution according to 
the place of enumeration of the persons born in each district. 

Subsidiary Table No. Ill — Containing proportional figures of the migration 
to and from each district. 

Subsidiary Table No. IV — Showing the volume of migration between Com- 
missioners' and Natural Divisions at the present census and in 1891. 

Subsidiary Table No. V — Showing the gain or loss by migration between 
Bengal and other parts of India. 

Subsidiary Table No, VI- — Showing the number of immigrants from cer- 
tain foreign countries. 

238. The movements of the people so far as they affect the total popula- 

tion of each district have been dealt with in the last 
Vaeiotjs kinds op miohatiok. chapter and the present discussion will be directed 
mainly to the direction and character of the migration, and to the reasons that 
induce it. 

Five different types of migration may be distinguished in this Province,* v{s.-~ 

I. Casual — Or the accidental movement backwards and forwards across the 
boundary line between contiguous districts. All over the province, people are 
constantly found moving shorty distances from their original home. Amongst 
Hindus this is especially the case with women, as men usually get their wives 
from villages at some little distance from their own.f The volume of casual 
migration is for this reason much greater in Bihar, West Bengal, and Orissa, 
where Hindus largely preponderate, than it is east of the Bhagirathi, where the 
Muhammadan element is greater. Where a man's wife is a native of another 
district bis eldest child will usually be born there also, as it is the usual practice 
for the young wife to return to her parents' home for her first confinement. 
These minor movements pass unnoticed except along the line which happens to 
have been selected as the district boundary. In Subsidiary Tables I, II, and 
III migration between contiguous districts has been shown separately, but it 
does not by any means follow that the whole or even the greater part of it is 
due to movements of the casual nature here described. There maybe a genuine 
permanent progression from one district to another, such as that from Hazaribagh 
to the Sonthal Parganas in the early half of the last century. 

II. Temporary. — Due to a temporary demand for labour on roads or rail- 
ways, journeys on business, pilgrimages and the like. This form of movement 
needs no illustration. 

III. Periodic. — Due to the changing seasons. Of this nature is the annual 
exodus from Chittagong for the rice harvest in Akyab, or the visits paid to 
Bengal by Nunias and other labouring castes from upcountry during the cold 
weather months, when their crops are off the ground, and there is no work 
requiring their presence at home. 

IV. Semi- Permanent. — Where the inhabitants of one place earn their liveli- 
hood in another, but maintain their connection with their old homes, leave their 
families there, return there themselves at more or less regular intervals, and 
look forward to the time when they may again live there permanently. The 

* The classification of the difEerent types of migration is based on that adopted by Mr- Ibbetson in the 
Puniab in 1881 with the necessary modifications due to diflEerent local conditions. 

t There appears to be no religious sentiment involved, and the reason generally assigned is that if a 
wife s Barents liome is near she is very- prone to return there whenever she quarrels with her husband, 
whereas if they reside at a distance this is less easy, and the husband can keep her in greater eubjection. 
Amongst Muhammadans these considerations are outweighed by the tact that it is considered desirable to 
marry a woman of the same family. 



128 CHAPTER ril — MIGRATION. 



aettlement of Englishmen in India is generally of this nature ; so also is that 
of M^rwaris in Bengal, or of clerks who obtain employment at a distance from 
their own home. 

V. Permanent. — Where over-crowding drives people away or the superior 
attractions of some other locality induce them to settle there permanently with 
their families. The gradual development of the Sundarbans afEords an example 
of this sort of migration. 

239. The character of the migration is to a great extent reflected in the 
proportion of the sexes.* Where it is casual females will naturally be in 
excess, as almost every woman changes her residence after marriage and 
amongst Hindus, she usually marries at some distance from her parental home. 
Where it is temporary or periodic, on the other hand, except where a pilgrim- 
age is the object, the majority of the migrants will be men. Amongst pilgrims 
women, in this Province, bulk much more largely than men, but they leave their 
homes comparatively seldom for purposes of trade or temporary work. In the 
case of semi-permanent migration also, males are usually in excess. A man 
does not ordinarily take his wife and family with him until he has decided 
finally to sever his connection with his old home. It is, therefore, only when a 
movement is of a permanent nature that the proportion of the sexes will 
approach equality. 

240. The census statistics refer to the distribution of the population 

on a particular day and the volume of temporary 
MiaE^m™^''^''^*^ APPEOTiNG ^nd periodic migration will therefore depend 

very largely on the date when it i» taken. In 
respect of temporary migration it may be mentioned that in 1891 there 
were two large movements of a religious nature in progress on the day 
of the census, the Ardhodaya Yoga which drew many thousands of pilgrims 
from all parts of the country, but especially from the Eastern districts, 
to the banks of the Granges, and the Dhulut ceremony at Nabadwip which 
was attended by about 15,000 persons from the neighbouring districts. At 
the present census the only large gathering of this nature was the Oolind 
Du&dasi festival at Puri which is estimated to have been attended by about 
20,000 persons. Periodic migration is mainly of two kinds. Many of the 
labouring classes from Bihar, Chota Nagpur, Birbhum, and Bankura, visit 
Bengal Proper every season as soon as their rice crop is harvested, and do not 
return until the commencement of the monsoon a£fords them employment 
nearer home. The census is always taken in India towards the end of the 
cold weather, when the number of persons thus absent from home is at i|s 
maximum. The other main form of periodic migration is in connection with 
harvest operations. The great harvest which attracts people from other dis- 
tricts is that of the winter rice. This is over before the end of January and 
people who had gone to assist in the operations in other districts would usually 
be back in their permanent homes before the end of February. Of them, 
therefore, the present census, like its predecessor, has for the most part taken, 
no count. The jute season in some of the districts of East Bengal attracts a 
great number of labourers from Bihar, but this is during the rains and only 
those are included in the census returns who belong to the category of 
semi-permanent migrants, «.e., who do not come merely for the jute season but 
stay on during the cold weather months as palki- bearers, earth-workers, 
brick-makers, etc. The rabi or spring harvest in Bengal Proper attracts very 
few labourers from other districts. It does so to a much greater extent in 
Bihar, but owing to the prevalence of plague it is probable that the number 
of foreign reapers was much smaller on this occasion in Saran and South Bihar 
than it was in 1891. There is one more general consideration that should 
be mentioned before proceeding to a discussion of the figures; the effects of 
permanent migration are cumulative, but those of other movements are not so. 
The Western Duars of Jalpaiguri were practically uniuhabited when acquired 
from Bhutan less than forty years ago. The country is naturally fertile and 
much of it is well suited for tea. Under British rule, permanent settlers soon 
began to pour in and the waste land is rapidly being reclaimed. The 

* The extent to which the varying proportion of the sexes in the difEerent districts is due to migra- 
tion will be indicated in the chapter on sex. 



MIGRATION TO AND FROM BENGAL. 129 



Period. 


Number ol 
difitrict boun- 
daries altered. 


1872-1881 

1881—1891 

Id91-1901 


19 
24 
13 



process will doubtless continue until the pro,portion of arable land is as great 
there as it is in the adjoining districts. The original settlers are gradually 
being replaced by their children born in the district, and not by new 
comers from outside. Consequently when the land fit for cultivation has been 
opened out the flow of migration will cease and a generation later there 
will be no indication in the census returns of the movement that has taken place. 
In other words permanent migration tends to exhaust itself and die out. In the 
case of all other kinds of migration, however, the effect is not cumulative and 
so long as the circumstances remain the same the volume at each succeeding 
census will be as great as it was before. If the demand for labour increases the 
number of migrants will tend to grow in the same proportion.* 

^ 241. Finally the apparent movements of the people may occasionally be 
fictitious, and without any existence in fact. The alteration of district 
boundaries leaves the actual residence of the inhabitants imchanged, but it may 
often happen that a man born in a tract subsequently transferred from district 

A to district B may describe himself as having 
been born in district A and so go to swell the 
number of persons returned as born outside the 
limits of district B. The number of changes in 
district boundaries was less in the decade preceding 
the present census than in the two previous ones, 
and it is, therefore, probable that the returns have 
been less affected by mistakes of this nature. 

242. In the province as a whole, of every 10,000 persons 9,423 were born 

MmBiTioN BETWEEN B«Na.. ^^ the district iu which enumerated, 293 in conti- 

AND FoBBiGN CouNTBiEs. guous Qistricts 01 thc provincc, 1 67 m other parts 

of Bengal, 93 in other provinces, and 24 in other 
countries. The total amount of migration is therefore very small, and it will be 
still smaller if we exclude from consideration the casual migration across the 
borders of contiguous districts. But before considering the movements within 
the province we may glance briefly at those between Bengal and (1) other 
countries, and (2) other parts of India. The only movements of any moment 
between Bengal and foreign countries are — 

(1 ) immigration frorn, and emigration to, Nepal ; 

(2) emigration to the Colonies ; 

(3) immigration from the British Islands. 

The total number of persons born in Nepal but enumerated in this Pro- 
vince is 161,495, or slightly less than in 1891. Nearly half the total number 
are found in the Darjeeling district and nearly three quarters of the remainder 
in Sikkim, Champaran and Jalpaiguri. Most of these are permanent settlers, 
the great attraction in Darjeeling being the tea gardens. The expansion 
of the tea industry there has now practically ceased, and there is very 
little fresh immigration from Nepal, The original settlers are gradually 
being replaced by their children born in the district. The number of 
immigrants at the present census is therefore less than it was in 1891. There 
has been no change elsewhere worth noting, except in Champaran and Purnea, 
where it would seem that some of the Nepalese who were in British territory 
in 1891, must since have recrossed the frontier. We have, however, no statistics 
of the population of Nepal, and it is thus impossible to verify this inference, 
or to learn how far the influx into British territory is counterbalanced by 
an ebb of population in the opposite direction. It is believed that a considerable 
number of people go from the North Bihar districts, and especially from 
Champaran, Muzaffarpur, Darbhanga and Bhagalpur to the adjoining part of 
Nepal, but that very few go thither from Darjeeling, Jalpaiguri or Sikkim. f 

• The above prepositions are only intended to indicate the general tendency of each kind of migration. 
Periodic migration may become semi-permanent, and semi-permanent migration may become permanent. 
This subject will be dealt with further in paragraph 262 in connection with thB movement from Bihar and 
the United Provinces to Bengal. Proper. 

t In Purnea the movements of a permanent nature across the boundary are said to show no 
special tendency in either direction. They are due mainly to the matrimonial arrangements of th? 
people. Many persons living in Purnea hold land in Nepal, but they only go thither when agricultural 
operations require their presence. The Magistrate of Cliamparan thinks that the emigration to Nepal 
'exceeds the counterrailing immigration. A strip of jungle in the Nepal Terai is now being cleared for 
cultivation and this attracts settlers. The Magistrates of Bhagalpur aud Muzaffarpur are of the same 
opinion. Eents, it is saidi are lower in Nepal and good land is plentiful. 



130 CHAPTER III —MIGRATION. 



District 


No. of 
Emigrants. 


Shahabad 

Barau 

Patna 

Gaya 

Muzaffarpnr ... 

Other districts 


7,633 
2,617 
2,029 
1,423 
901 
2,316 



243. The emigration to the Colonies, though not shown in the 
census statistics, is known from special returns which are maintained 
under the orders of Government- The total number of emigrants during 
the decade 1891 — 1901 was 16,818, of whom nearly half went from 

Shahabad, and most of the remainder from Saran, 
Patna, Gaya and Muzaffarpur. On the average 
about 1 in 4 of these emigrants returns home. 
The persons born in the British Islands now 
number 11,886 compared with 9,544 in 1891. 
This is due mainly to the figures for Calcutta 
where there was a decrease in 1891, which was 
attributed by Mr. O'Donnell to some of the 
schedules on which Europeans" were enumerated 
having been lost. The industrial towns near Calcutta and the coalfields of 
Jheiia and Asansol contain more Europeans than they did 10 years previously, 
but there has been a falling off in Darjeeling due to the reduction of tea 
garden establishments. Three quarters of the British-born are males and 
only one quarter females. The persons who returned Afghanistan as their 
birthplace are chiefly itinerant traders, most of whom are only cold weather 
visitors ; almost all of them were shown as woollen cloth dealers, but a few were 
returned as fruit- sellers, hide-dealers and money-lenders. 

244:. The number of immigrants to Bengal from other parts of India, 

according to the present census, is 728,715, and the 
MiGEATioN BETWEEN Bengal correspouding number of emigrants is 879,583. Bv 

AND OTHBE PAET8 OF IjfDlA— j. , , -^ ° . i. J! • • 7. ' . „ J 

United Pbovincbs. lar the greatest amount ot immigration is from 

the United Provinces which send a continually 
growing supply of labourers for the mills of the metropolitan districts and the 
coalfields of Burdwan and Manbhum, and for earth- work, palki-bearing, etc. 
throughout the province. The total number of persons born in the United 
Provinces and States, but enumerated in Bengal, is 496,940, compared with 
365,248 in 1891 and 351,933 in 1881. These figures include migration between 
contiguous districts along the common boundary line. If this be left out of 
account, the number of immigrants from the United Provinces at the present 
census is about 416,000. Of these nearly three-sevenths were enumerated 
in Calcutta, the 24-Parganas, and Howrah.* The emigrants to the United 
Provinces number only 128,991, of whom all but about 32,000 were found in 
districts contiguous to their district of birth. Of the migration between 
contiguous districts of Bihar and the United Provinces the most notable 
featm'esare (1) the decrease in the number of settlers from Gorakhpur 
in Champaran and a corresponding increase in the number of these settlers 
in Saran ; (2) the remarkable falling-ofE in the number of Saran-born people 
enumerated in Gorakhpur, which is now little more than a third of the 
figure (70,660), returned in 1891 ; and (3) the total absence of any emigration 
from the Chota Nagpur States to Mirzapur. The great balance of migration 
in favour of Bengal, in the case of migration other than to contiguous districts 
is of course due to the great demand for labour in Bengal Proper, where the 
landless labourer is in many parts unknown and there is no local supply of 
field labourers, palki-bearers and earth-workers. The mills around Calcutta and 
the coal mines and tea gardens also need far more workers than they can 
procure within the limits of the province. The emigrants from Bengal to the 
United Provinces belong to a great extent to the educated classes, and find 
employment as pleaders or as clerks under Government or in the railway offices. 
Numerous pilgrims go from Bengal to Benares and other holy places and of 
these the greater number are women. Many well-to-do widows also settle 
permanently at Benares for religious reasons. This explains why of the total 
number of Bengal-bom persons in Benares (20,157) two-thirds are females. 
In Ballia, where the proportion of females born in Darbhanga is extraordinarily 
high (1,564 out of 1,574), the Census Superintendent of the United Provinces 
informs me that it is due to hypergamy. The low class but wealthy Bdbhans 

* The districts of the United Provinces from which most of the emigrants come are those in the 
extreme east, viz., Ballia, Azamgarh, G-bazipur, Gorakhpur, Benares, Jannpnp, Mirzannr and Allahabad 
Then come the districts immediately to the west of these, Tiz., Fyzabad, Sul^anpui Partab-'arh 'R. 
Bareli, Lucknow, Fatehpur ajid CawjipTjr. ' ^a > #a^ 



MIGRATION TO AND FROM BENGAL. 131 



and Rajputs of Darbhanga are said to be addicted to marrying their daughters 
to their poorer but better bred caste-fellows of Ballia. Except for the move- 
ments between contiguous districts and the interchange of wives, most of the 
migration between Bengal and the United Provinces is temporary, but the 
extent to which this is so will be further discussed in a subsequent paragraph. 

245. lu the case of Assam the balance of migration is heavily ao'ainst 
^gg^jj Bengal. The emigrants aggregate 503,876, an 

increase of 85,532 as compared with 1891, while the 
immigrants number only 48,296, or 5,337 less than at the time of the previous 
census. If we exclude from the account the ebb and flow of population between 
tiontigttous districts, the loss by migration is about 457,000 and the gain only 
12,000. This great exodus is, of course, mainly in connection with the tea 
industry ; most of the coolies for the Assam tea gardens are recruited in the 
Chota Nagpur Plateau and the adjoining district of Gaya and West Bengal. 
The returns maintained under the labour law show that during the decade 

1891-1900 more than a quarter of a million persons 
g^ota Nagpur Plateau .. 180,097 ^^^^ recruited in Bengal and sent up to Assam to 

Bengal Proper' and Orissa 46,'674 work on the tea gardens. Comparatively few of 
T + 1 „t., " these return to Bengal on the expiry of their 

lotal ... 252,939 ■> •• j j. ji • •, -.i , 

laoour contracts; the majority either stay on m 

Assam as garden coolies or settle down there as 
cultivators* This enormous exodus is therefore a great drain on this Province, 
and constitutes one of the main reasons for the very small growth of population 
in the districts from which the coolies are mainly drawn. 

246. Another noticeable feature in these statistics is the growing number 
Other Pbovince* of people who go from Bengal to Burma. Of the 

total number 79,262 are from Chittagong. Many 
of these ate temporary emigrants in connection with the Akyab rice harvest; 
of the remainder, about 77,000, the majority are labourers who ultimately return 
home, but many are permanent emigrants who have been settled on waste land 
grants in Upper Burma. Most of them come from Bihar, but unfortunately 
the Burma census returns a£ford no information as to the particular districts 
from which they have emigrated. f The nexti most considerable inter-provin- 
cial movement is that with the Central Provinces, but here the interchange of 
population is more even ; Bengal receives 62,181 and gives 44,360, so that 
there is a net gain of rather less than 18,000. The bulk of this migration 
occurs between the Triljutary States of Orissa and Ohota Nagpur and the conti- 
guous districts and States of the Central Provinces. Elsewhere the immigrants 
ar« mainly general labourers, earth- workers and tea garden coolies. The volume 
of migration between Bengal and Madras is about a third of that with the 
Central Provinces, but the balance in favour of Bengal is almost as great. 
Three quarters of the immigrants from this Province are to be found in 
Orissa and the Orissa States, and more than a third of the remainder in 
the 24-Pargana3 and Calcutta. There are wings of a Madras regiment at 
Cuttack and Barrackpore. Elsewhere most of the Madrdsis, other than those 
in Puri, Angul and the Orissa States, have come for employment on railways. 
Rajputana sends about 40,000 persons to Bengal, almost all of whom are 
traders, and receives barely 1,000 in exchange. Central India gives about 
33,000, and receives back only 5,000. Most of this interchange of population 
takes place with the States of Chota Nagpur. The Panjab gives 17,000 and 
gets 7,000. The occupations of the Panjabis enumerated in Bengal are various. 

* The persons born in non-contiguous districts of Bengal who were enumerated in Assam in 1891 
numbered 368,071. At a death-rate of 4) per 1,000 an annual emigration of 14,723 persons would be 
needed to maintain this number, and a further annual emigration of about 11,100 persons would be 
required to produce the excess of 88,962 shown by the present census. If none returned home, this would 
mean a total emigration of about 260,000 persons in the decade. The number of ex-garden coolies who 
return to Bengal but little, if at all, exceeds the number of persons, other than garden coolies, who go from 
Bengal to non-contiguous districts of Assam, and the number of such persons is known to he very small. 
It consists mainly of persons connected with the railway and of a few Government officers, clerks, shop- 
keepers and domestic servants. 

+ I supplied all other provinces with full details of the birth districts of the persons born in theni 
who were enumerated in Bengal, but the United Provinces and Assam were the only provinces from which 
1 received similar information regarding persons who had gone to them from Bengal. On a futurd 
occasion it would be Well to arrange beforehand for the preparation of a more complete return, at least fo* 
contiguous district^ of Madras, the CeRixal Provinces and Burma. 

& 2 



132 CHAPTER ni — MIGRATION. 



Many are carpenters, railway mechanics, door-keepers and peons, but there are 
also many shop-keepers of various kinds, chiefly dealers in woollen-cloth, shawls, 
etc. The majority are Path^ns, but there are also many Chatris and Baniyas, 
and many who described themselves as Sikhs by caste. The immigrants from 
Bombay number only 6,695, and the emigrants to that Province only 5,402. 
Many of the natives of Bombay who were enumerated in Bengal hold appoint- 
ments in railway offices, and many are shop-keepers, contractors, masons and 
coolies. There are also a few sepoys of the Bombay army stationed at Alipore. 

247. The total number of persons born in Bengal who were enumerated 

outside their district of birth was 4,494,935, or 573 
MiasATioN IN DiMEEBNT PAETs pgj. iQ QOO of tho populatlon. Of "theso, 3,279,512, 

OF THE PbOTINCE. ^ ^' i ^ AAA i J ■ i.- 

or 290 per 1 0,000, were enumerated in contiguous 
districts, 1,335,840, or 170 per 10,000 in other parts of Bengal, and 879,583, or 
113 per 10,000 in other parts of India. Immigration, both from contiguous and 
from distant districts, is most active in the neighbourhood of the metropolis and 
in North Bengal, while the volume of emigration is gi*eatest in the case of the 
Chota Nagpur plateau and North and South Bihar. Of the number of persons 
enumerated in districts contiguous to those where they were born 51 "9 per cent, 
were females. Amongst those enumerated in other parts of the Province, 
and in other parts of India 29*5 and 42"6 per cent., respectively, were females. 
The relatively high proportion of females in the case of contiguous districts 
is due, as already explained, to marriage, which usually means for women a 
move to a new home, and, in the case of Hindus, to a home in another village 
some distance away. The proportion is highest in Bihar and Orissa where 
the great bulk of the people are Hindus, and lowest in East Bengal where 
Muhammadans greatly preponderate. 

The principal statistics of the migration to and from each district will be 
found in Appendix I at the end of this volume, and it is not proposed to cumber 
the text with details that can be more readily gathered from these figured 
statements. The following discussion will, therefore, be confined to a brief 
review of the general trend and volume of these interdistrict movements and 
of the reasons for the same so far as they can be ascertained. 

248. In West Bengal, as a whole, the gains and losses due to migration 
„ „ . almost cancel each other but there are great local 

variations. Burdwan attracts labourers for its coal 
mines, iron works, paper mills and potteries in large numbers, not only from 
Bankura within the division, but also from Manbhum, Hazaribagh and the 
Sonthal Parganas in the Chota Nagpur Plateau, from Patna, Gaya, Shahabad 
and Monghyr in Bihar, and from the United Provinces. On the other hand 
it sends out numerous clerks to Calcutta and labourers to Assam, and loses 
more than it gains by the casual migration across the boundary line that 
divides it from Birbhum and Hooghly. The loss in both cases is due 
mainly to the demand in these districts for wives born in Burdwan. Birbhum 
receives a considerable number of settlers from the Sonthal Parganas for 
the purpose of cultivation, and labourers, shopkeepers, zemindars' peons, etc., 
from Shahabad and the United Provinces. Many of its inhabitants go to 
Assam as tea garden coolies, but, apart from this, most of the emigration • is 
of the casual type. Bankura sends numerous coolies to Assam, and there is also 
a great deal of periodic and semi-permanent emigration to other parts of 
Bengal, chiefly to the coal mines of Burdwan and Manbhum and the mills of 
Hooghly. The short crops of 1900 greatly stimulated migration in the season 
when the census was taken. Midnapore receives in proportion to its population 
a smaller number of immigrants than any district in West Bengal. If 
contiguous districts be excluded the foreign-born population comes mainly from 
the United and Central Provinces, Guttack and Shahabad. There is a consider- 
able permanent migration from the west of the district to Mayurbhanj and to the 
Assam tea gardens, and a fair amount of periodic emigration from the Contai, 
Tamluk and Ghatal subdivisions for employment as cultivators and field 
labourers in the Sundarbans, and as mill hands and coolies in the metropolitan 
districts. It would appear from the proportion of women amongst them that 
many of the migrants to the Sundarbans are beginning to settle down there 
permanently. 



MIGRATION WITHIN THE PROVINCE. 133 



Hooghly gains largely in its dealings with all the adjoining districts of 
West Bengal except Howrah, where the loss is probably to a great extent 
fictitious,* but it loses greatly to Calcutta and the Si-Parganas. The natives of 
Hooghly in Calcutta are chiefly petty shopkeepers and clerks. The better 
classes who find employment in the metropolis often return home daily after 
their work is over. The mills attract large numbers of labourers from the 
United Provinces, Bihar, Chota Nagpur and Cuttack ; many Oriyas also come as 
domestic servants and palki-bearers, and many inhabitants of Chota Nagpur and 
Bankura, as labourers in the brick-fields and on earth-work during the dry season. 
The emigrants whom Hooghly supplies to these districts are comparatively few 
in number and consist mainly of clerks and their families. Howrah gains 
largely from all the contiguous districts except Calcutta, and also from the 
United Provinces and Bihar. The mills, iron works, &c., in Howrah town are 
the cause of most of this immigration and we have already seen that barely one- 
third of the inhabitants of this busy manufacturing centre are district-born. At 
the time of the census extensive operations were in progress on the Bengal- 
Nagpur Railway, in connection with the goods terminus at Shalimar and 
various sidings, and these gave temporary employment to several thousand 
Coolies from Chota Nagpur, Bankura arid Midnapore. 

249. Central Bengal, from the point of view of migration, comprises two 

very different tracts. Calcutta, with its great trade 

CeNTEAI BeNQAI. y • J ± • ii.ll 1. J. 

and numerous industries, attracts large numbers not 
only from the neighbouring districts, nor even from the whole of Bengal but, it 
might almost be said, from the whole of India. Barely one-third of its inhabitants 
own Calcutta as their birth-place; all the rest have come thither from outside, 
including more than 120,000 from South Bihar, Saran and MuzafEarpur and 
about 90,000 from the United Provinces, 83,000 from the 24-Parganas, 47,000 
from Hooghly, 25,000 from Midnapore, 18,000 each from Cuttack and Burdwan, 
15,000 from Dacca and 13,000 each from Nadia and Howrah. The corresponding 
loss is very small even in the case of neighbouring districts. Elsewhere it is, 
to a great extent, duo to the return home of persons belonging to other districts 
with their children who were born in Calcutta. The other emigrants are 
probably persons belonginsr to the educated classes who have secured appoint- 
ments elsewhere. The 24-Parganas benefits by its proximity to Calcutta, and 
the mills which line the bank of the Hooghly are worked mainly by labourers 
from Bihar and the United Provinces. f Trade also brings many from other 
parts of Bengal, Rajputana and elsewhere. In addition to this the Sundarbans 
contain large areas capable of reclamation, and the settlers there include many 
persons whose permanent home is in Midnapore, Balasore, Nadia and other 
districts. Except in the case of contiguous districts the number of emigrants 
from the 24-Parganas is very small. 

In the remaining districts of Central Bengal emigration is on a much 
smaller scale. Nadia loses population to all the districts that adjoin it, even to 
unhealthy Jessore.J In the case of Rajshahi and Pabna this is attributable in 
nart to the action of the Padma which has cut away land from its south bank 
and thrown it up on the north, but the general loss by migration seems to show 
that the material condition of the district is less satisfactory than that of its 
neighbours. The local losses are to some slight extent compensated for by 
immigration from Bihar and the United Provinces. Murshidabad like Nadia has 
suffered from diluvion which explains the adverse balance of migration in the 
case of Malda and Rajshahi. It has gained by the movements of the people on 
the borders of Nadia and the Sonthal Parganas and has lost slightly along the 
Birbhum and Burdwan boundary. There is a fair amount of immigration 
from Bihar and the United Provinces but comparatively little of this is 
permanent. Many stay for years in the police or in service under the 
zemindars but they form their matrimonial connections io their own country 
and ultimately return thither. Jessor e is affected by migration to a lees 

* Howrah is in the revenue jurisdicfion of Hooghly, and there is a strong tendency amongst the 

P^°tTrnrbe^/KS2s"fS^^ the United Provinces was 95.419. The number of 

*'^l?h"ma1rcro;fn"mL'ifti^^ There is no local demand for labour at the time 

when the X er rice is reaped, and so many harvesters go from the district to help m the reaping of crops 
iuEasteLTngal These, however, must for the most part have returned home before the census. 



134 CHAPTER ni— MIGEATiOir. 



extent than any other district in Central Bengal. It loses slightly to all the 
surrounding districts except Nadia. The number of immigrants from up- 
country is insignificant. The emigrants to Khulna are probably, for the most 
part, persons who have talcen up land in the Sundarbans. 

250. North Bengal is notable for the very small number of its inhabitants 
J, _ who leave it, while it receives more immigrants 

than any other Natural Division save only Central 
Bengal. This is explained by the sparseness of its population, especially in 
the north and centre, the fertility of the soil and the generally low rates of 
rent. Rajshahi gains from all its neighbours except Dinajpur, but mainly on 
the south where the Padma has receded at the expense of Nadia and Murshi- 
dabad. * There is a considerable amount of permanent migration to the B^rind 
from the Sonthal Parganas, Ranchi and Manbhum, and the United Provinces 
and parts of Bihar supply a fair number of cold weather visitors in search of 
employment on roads and as palki-bearers, tank-diggers and labourers in the 
mulberry fields. The emigration to non-contiguous districts is small. Many 
of the landlords are absentees living in Calcutta and elsewhere, but the total 
numbers of this class is small. 

The ebb and flow of the population between Dihajpur and jalpaigurl 
are practically equal, but in all other directions the former district gains 
from its neighbours. There is also a considerable immigration from 
Nadia and Murshidabad and still more from Bihar and the United 
Provinces. Some of these foreigners have settled down as cultivators and 
others are domestic servants, but the great majority belong to the periodic type 
of emigrants who visit the district in the cold weather and return home before 
the breaking of the rains. But the most striking feature in the returns for this 
district is the enormous migration from the Chota Nagpur Plateau, and 
especially from the Sonthal Parganas, which has sent nearly 50,000 permanent 
settlers into the district in search of new homes in the Barind. A few Garo 
families from Mymensingh have also settled in the district. Jalpaiguri receives 
as settlers for ordinary cultivation in the Duars a net excess of immigrants 
from Kuch Bihar, Rangpur and Purnea, especially the two former, but its 
greatest gain is from the Chota Nagpur Plateau which supplies most of its 
tea garden coolies. Ranchi alone gives 80,000 coolies to this district, and 
the Sonthal Parganas 10,000. Many of these settle permanently, either in 
the gardens or as cultivators and cart owners, but many of them are said 
to re.tum to their homes at intervals. In the tea gardens on the higher slopes, 
at the foot of the hills, coolies from Nepal replace those from Chota Nagpur and 
many of these also find a permanent home in the district. There is a fair 
number of upcountry coolies, who are employed mainly on the roads and 
railways, but most of them return to their homes at the end of the cold 
weather. Nearly a quarter of the present inhabitants of this district are 
foreign-born and of these nearly three quarters have come from a distance. 
The corresponding loss by migration is extraordinarily small, and less than 1 per 
1,000 of the population was enumerated elsewhere. This seems to show that 
fewer of the emigrants from Chota Nagpur, or at least of those who are 
married and have children in Jalpaiguri, return home than is usually supposed. 

251. Darjeeling has an even larger proportion of foreigners, and ranks in 
this respect second only to Calcutta, barely half of its inhabitants having been 
born in the district. It has received in the Terai numerous settlers from Purnea 
and Jalpaiguri, for ordinary cultivation, and from Ranchi and the Sonthal 
Parganas, for work in the tea gardens, but the great bulk of its immigrants 
(76,301) come from Nepal, chiefly as coolies on the hill tea gardens. Most of 
these are permanent settlers. The district was very sparsely inhabited when it 
was first acquired, but it is gradually filling up and the proportion of the 
foreign born is diminishing. In 1891 more than 60 per cent, of its inhabitants 
were bom outside the district. It sends out very few emigrants and of these 
the majority are employed in various Military Police battalions. Sikkim 
stands next to Darjeeling in regard to the number of its immigrants, who 
represent more than two-fifths of the total population, and like that district 

* The rice harvest in the B4rind attracts namerous labourers from Murshidabad, but these had 
probably returned to their homes before the date of the census. 



MIGRATION WITHIN THE PROVINCE. 135 



it owes most of them to Nepal. Rangpur loses considerably by the movements 
to and fro across the borders of contiguous districts, gaining on the south 
from Bogra and Mymensingh and losing on the east, west and north to 
Goalpara (in Assam), Dinajpur, Jalpaiguri and Kuch Bihar. It gains, however, 
by migration with places at a distance, especially from Pabna, Dacca and Nadia 
in Bengal Proper, and still more so from Bihar* and the United Provinces, but 
persons from these latter places are as a rule only cold weather visitors. Their 
number was unusually large at the time of the census, owing to the construction 
of the bridge over the Tista and other railway works then in progress. 

Bogra receives more people from Pabna than it gives in return, but taking 
all contiguous districts together, the net gain is small. There is, however, a 
considerable immigration from Nadia, Saran, the Ghota Nagpur Plateau and the 
United Provinces. The immigrants from the Chota Nagpur Plateau who are 
locally known as Bunas, are found mainly in Panchbibi thana which forms part 
of the Barind. Pabna gains only from Nadia and loses to all the other sur^ 
rounding districts ; the explanation, so far as the eastern boundary is concerned, 
is that much land has been diluviated by the Jamufia. It receives a fair 
number of semi-permanent settlers from Bihar, the United Provinces and 
Hazaribagh, but not enough to counterbalance the ^aaigration to Calcutta, 
Rangpur and other non-contiguous districts. Malda benefits by an extensive 
movement of Santals to the Gajol and Old Malda thanas in the Bdrind and also, 
though to a much smaller extent, by the advent of Musalmans from Murshida- 
bad to the new chars thrown up by the Padma. It also receives numerous 
settlers from Bhagalpur and other Bihar districts and from the United Pro- 
vinces. There are very few emigrants from Malda to places at a distance, but 
it suffers a slight net loss by migration to contiguous districts other than the 
Sonthal Parganas and Murshidabad. Kuch Bihar loses heavily to Jalpaiguri, 
but recovers nearly two-thirds of its loss by immigration from Rangpur and 
Goalpara. Public works in progres,? at the time of the census were mainly 
responsible for a fair number of visitors from Saran and other Bihar districts 
and from the United Provinces. 

252. East Bengal is for the most part cut off from the rest of the province 

by great rivers which make reciprocal intercourse 
East Bengai,. unusually difficult and have gradually put a stop to 

intermarriage which is such a fruitful source of migration between contiguous 
districts elsewhere. Moreover the bulk of the inhabitants are Muhammadans who 
take their wives from places nearer home than do the Hindus. The amount of 
casual migration between East Bengal and the adjoining districts of Central 
and North Bengal is thus unusually small and the proportion of immigrants from, 
and emigrants to, contiguous districts within the Division is smaller than in any 
other part of the province. Owing to the inroads of the Padma, Dacca has sus- 
tained a small net loss from the movements of the population between it and th© 
adjoining districts. It receives a number of labourers from Monghyr and other 
districts further west, but it has lost many more people than it has gained. Its 
boatmen ply on every river in Bengal and its babus are found earning their 
Kvelihood throughout Bengal and Assam and even further afield.f There is 
also a good deal of temporary emigration of the poorer classes to assist in 
agricultural operations in Backergunge where the people are too well off to 
work as day labourers. „ . . , 

Mymensingh has also suffered from diluvion and some of its riparian 
inhabitants have crossed over to Rangpur to cultivate the corresponding 
accretions on the right bank of the Jamuna. It has also lost along the 
boundaries of Dacca and Sylhet but has gained from Tippera, whose women 
are in request as wives and also as maid servants. Its emigrants to distant 
places are very few but it receives large numbers of labourers from upcountry 
during the cold weather months, especially from the United Provinces, whose 
emigrants are more numerous here than in any district of Bengal except only 
Calcutta the 24-Parganas, Howrah and Shahabad. Faridpur benefits on the 
whole by the movements of the people across the line which divides it from 

* Saran alone seuds 22,161. , «. • ol-h ^ xl tj-i 

t Many of the best clerjcs in the Gotrenjniwit officei in Sljillong oome from the Bikrampur pargana l^ 



136 CHAPTER III — MIGRATION. 



its neighbours. It gains largely from Pabna and Dacca, owing to alluvial 
accretions, and also, though to a less extent, from Jessore and Nadia ; but 
on the other hand it loses to Tippera and Backergunge, especially to the latter, 
which it supplies with many of the day labourers of whom that district has 
no local supply. Many of the itinerant traders in boats who are found on all 
the rivers of East Bengal are natives of this district. There are a good many 
immigrants from upcountry, but these are far outnumbered by the emigrants 
to non-contiguous districts. Many of the latter are labourers in search of tem- 
porary employment in Tippera, Noakhali and Mymensingh. 

253. The balance of migration between Khulna and the 24-PaTganas is 
slightly adverse to the former, but it gains largely from the other contiguous 
districts, Backergunge and Jessore^ which supply many of the cultivators on 
new clearances in the Sundarbans. Some of these have settled permanently 
but the excess of males shows that many are still domiciled elsewhere. Khulna 
gains also by migration to and from places at a distance, but except in 
the case of Faridpur, these movements are on a comparatively small scale. 
Backergunge, as has been seen, loses to Khulna but gains largely from 
other contiguous distiicts and also from Danca. Most of its immigi-ants 
are men working temporarily as labourers. The emigration to places at a 
distance is on a very small scale and is far less than from any other tract in this 
Division except the Chittagong Hill Tracts and Hill Tippera. Tippera is 
very little affected by migration. The movements across the boundaries 
of the adjoining districts result in a slight net loss which is very nearly 
made good by the excess of immigrants over emigrants in the case of places 
at a distance. The number of people from up-country is not at present 
very large but it is rapidly growing now that the jute firms afford a lucrative 
occupation in the rains, when earthwork is no longer possible. Noakhali gains 
slightly from Chittagong but loses somewhat heavily to other contiguous tracts. 
Except in the case of Dacca, where the balance is in favour of Noakhali, there 
is but little intermigration with places at a distance. Most of thfe emigrants to 
distant places are lascars on ships. 

The Chittagong Hill Tracts and Hill Tippera attract a good many people 
from Chittagong and give very few of their own inhabitants in exchange, but 
in the case of the former they are mainly wood-cutters and other temporary 
emigrants. The emigrants from Chittagong to Tippera exceed the immigrants, 
but the former consist to a much larger extent of temporary labourers. But the 
great feature of migration in Chittagong is the large annual exodus for the Akyab 
rice harvest where the reapers are said to earn as much as a rupee a day. At the 
time of the census no fewer than 79,262 natives of this district were found in 
Burma, of whom all but 14,347 were males. There has been some permanent 
emigration of Maghs, especially after the cyclone of 1897, but there is no doubt 
that the great majority of Chittagonians enumerated in Akyab were only tem- 
porary absentees who returned home soon after the census. Many others had 
probably already returned before the census was taken. The Chittagong Hill 
Tracts receives a good many of immigrants (mostly temporary) from Chitta- 
gong, and gives a much smaller number (about a fifth) to Hill Tippera, The 
movements between this State and the Hill Tracts set sometimes in one direc- 
tion and sometimes in the other according to the whim of the migratory tribes 
who live there. Nearly one-fourth of the inhabitants of Hill Tippera are 
foreign-born. There is a strip of level and fertile, but until recently almost 
desolate, country running along the northern and western boundary of this State, 
and this is now attracting numerous settlers from Sjlhet, Tippera, Chittagong 
and Noakhali. These do not at once give up their old homes, but gradually do 
so as their new cultivation extends and Ihe country becomes more settled. 

254. The statistics for South Bihar have been affected by the prevalence 
SoiTTH Bihar. ^^ plague at the time of the census. Many of 

the inhabitants whose permanent homes were in 
other districts had fled, and the number of pilgrims was also unusually low 
while on the other hand, some of the natives of the district who would otherwise 
have been away at the time of the census, had returned home to look after their 
families. The normal amount of migration must be much greater than the 
present census would show. In Pataa the amount of inter-migration with 



MIGRATION WITHIN THE PROVINCE. 137 



contiguous districts is still very considerable, but the large proportion of females 
snows tbat it IS due mainly to the interchange of women. The number of 
immigrants from distant places is small, but the emigrants aggregate nearly 
one-twentieth of the district population. They are especially numerous in 
Calcutta where more than 30,000 natives of this district were enumerated, 
iheseareforthemostpart only temporary absentees and two-thirds of them 
are males. G-aya sends out numerous emigrants to Hazaribagh and Palamau, 
where they settle permanently, and also to Bengal Proper, especially Calcutta 
tut ^^^S^^^^^ood. The emigrants to Calcutta alone constitute more than 
halt the total number of natives of Gaya who were enumerated in non- 
contiguous districts. The immigrants from adjoining districts are only half as 
numerous as the emigrants, while thpse from distant places are outnumbered 
by the emigrants in the ratio of 27 to 1, 

The interchange of population between Shahabad and the United Provinces 
leaves the number of its inhabitants practically unaltered. It loses slightly 
to Palamau on the south but gains from the adjoining districts of Bihar. 
As with Patna and Gaya the emigrants to distant places are far more numerous 
than the immigrants. The people of this district are greatly in demand all 
over Bengal, as zemindars' peons and clubmen, but they are especially numerous 
in Purnea, North Bengal, Dacca and Calcutta. A large number of persons 
from this district also find their way to Assam. Gaya is the only adjacent 
district from which Monghyr receives more than it loses, but except in the case 
of Bhagalpur and the _ Sonthal Parganas the excess emigration is not very 
marked. The emigration to a distance far exceeds the countervailing immigra- 
tion. The places where the natives of Monghyr prefer to seek employment are 
the metropolitan districts, Dacca, Rangpur and Dinajpur. 

255. In spite of the fact that 8aran, sends out a greater proportion of 
j^ ^ „ emigrants than any other district in the Province, 

outside Chota Nagpur, North Bihar as a whole, 
is far less afEected by migration than the tract south of the Ganges. More 
than 10 per cent, of the persons born in Saran were enumerated away 
from home. About one-fifth of these absentees were found in contiguous 
districts while the remaining four-fifths had gone further afield. The emi- 
grants from this district are scattered all over Bengal Proper but are most 
numerous in Rangpur, Calcutta, the 24-Parganas and Mymensingh. Cham- 
paran is the only Bihar district, except Purnea, where the immigrants out- 
number those who have left the district. It gains largely from Gorakhpur in 
the United Provinces and from Saran, and also, though to a less extent, from 
MuzafBarpur. Migration between Champaran and distant places takes place 
only on a comparatively small scale, but those who thus leave, outnumber 
those who come to the district in the ratio of more than 4 to 1. MuzaflEarpur 
loses slightly to its contiguous districts, chiefly by the interchange of women. 
The immigrants from a distance are fewer in proportion to its population than 
in any other North Bihar district, while the number of its emigrants is exceeded 
only by those from S^ran, though they are barely one-third as numerous as 
those from that district ; they are found chiefly in the metropolitan districts, - 
Bhagalpur, Purnea, and North Bengal. 

The ebb and flow between Darbhanga and its neighbours is almost 
at a par; it loses to Bhagalpur and gains in all other directions. The 
immigrants from a distance are almost as few as in the case of Muzaffarpur, 
but the emigrants to non-contiguous places are less than half as numerous. 
The latter go by preference to the neighbourhood of Calcutta, or to Dacca and 
North Bengal. Bhagalpur shows a larger amount of inter-migration with 
contiguous districts than any other district in North Bihar. It loses to the 
Sonthal Parganas and Purnea and gains from Darbhanga and Monghyr, the net 
result being a loss of some 20,000. Et is very little afEected by migration to a 
distance, and the credit and debit balances are here almost equal. It may 
be noted, however, that (excluding contiguous districts) it is the most westerly 
district in Bengal which receives any appreciable number of immigrants 
from the United Provinces. 

It will be observed that except in the case of Champaran, the general 
tendency throughout North Bihar is for the population to move gradaally 



138 CHAPTER III — MIGEATION. 



eastwards. Saran gives to Muzaffarpur more than it gets in exchange, 
MuzafEarpur does the same to Darbhanga and Darbhanga to Bhagalpur. This 
tendency is even more marked in Purnea which gains from Bhagalpur 
and the Sonthal Parganas, and loses to Dinajpur, Malda, Jalpaigitri and 
Darjeeling, the net result being a gain of nearly 20,000. This is the only 
part of Bihar which benefits by the movements of the people to places at 
a distance; it gains nearly 40,000 from non-contiguous Bihar districts and 
8,000 from the United Provinces. The number of emigrants to a distance 
is extraordinarily small, being only 28 per 10,000 of the population. In 
respect of migration the conditions in Purnea resemble those in North Bengal 
and differ entirely from those in other parts of Bihar. 

266. Apart from the temjjprary visits of pilgrims who were specially 

numerous in Puri on the date when the census was 
^^^^■^' taken, there is but little immigration to Oiissa. 

There are numerous emigrants to the metropolitan districts, where they 
serve as palanquin bearers, door-keepers and labourers ; natives of Orissa are 
also found working as cooks and domestic servants throughout Bengal, and 
as cultivators and field labourers in the Sundarbans. There is a general 
loss by migration to the sparsely inhabited Native States which form the 
western boundary of (he division. Cuttack, being the most densely populated, 
loses not only to those States but also to Balasore and Puri, the net excess 
of emigrants being about 28,000. It loses considerably more than twice this 
number by migration to distant 'places, chiefly to the metropolitan area, 
Assam and the Central Provinces. Balasore sends more settlers to the Orissa 
States than does Cuttack, but its gains from the latter district and, to a 
less extent, from Midnapore, reduce the net deficit on account of local move- 
ments to a comparatively trifling amount. Its emigrants to Calcutta and other 
distant places are considerably less numerous than those from Cuttack, but it 
receives an equally small amount of compensatory immigration. The gain 
and loss by migration between Puri and the adjoining parts of Bengal are 
about on a par, while there is a very large apparent gain from Madras, the 
Central Provinces and the United Provinces. A very large proportion of the 
immigrants, however, were pilgrims. If these were excluded the district would 
show a net loss by migration. 

257. The Chota Nagpur Plateau is inhabited by hardy aboriginal tribes 
r, T.T -n who are remarkable for their fecundity, and as the 

Chota Naopue Plateau. t . •iir -i ,,• j > " ^«* «*<= "lo 

climate is healthy the population tends to grow 
rapidly. But the country is barren and the natural growth acts, to a great 
extent, merely as a stimulant to emigration to other places where a better 
livelihood can be obtained. Hazaribagh is the nidus from which the Santdls 
poured forth about 70 years ago to people the Damin-i-koh in the Sonthal 
Parganas. This movement in its original magnitude has long since died out • 
but the emigrants to that district are still numerous and greatly exceed the 
return flow of immigrants. There is also a considerable loss of population to 
Manbhum, where the coal mines afford remunerative employment, and to 
Ranchi and Palamau. There is, on the other hand, a considerable influx from 
Gaya and a smaller one from Monghyr. The net result of these movements to 
and from adjoining districts is a small gain, but there is a net loss of nearly 
100,000 by emigration to more distant places. Assam alone takes nearly 69,000 
persons from this district. Heavy as this loss is it is barely half that sustained 
by Ranchi which sends out more than 200,000 persons to places at a distance 
including about 92,000 to Assam and 80,000 to Jalpaiguri. Nearer home the 
interchange of population with Palamau and Manbhum is fairly even • there is 
a gain from Hazaribagh, and a heavy loss in the direction of the Chota Nagpur 
States and Singhbhum. 

Palamau gains from Gaya, Shahabad and Hazaribagh, and loses slightly 
to Ranchi and considerably to the Chota Nagpur States. The net result of this 
local migration is a gain, not large, but still sufficient to counterbalance 
the loss on account of emigration to a distance, which, so far as the figures 
go, is on a smaller scale than from any other district of Chota Nagpur. The 
Assam returns show that only 6,776 natives of this district were enumerated 
in that Province compared with ten to thirteen times that number from 



MIGRATION WITHIN THE PROVINCE. 139 



Ranchi and Hazaribagh. As already noted this may be due in part to 
many of the Palamau emigrants having returned their birth district as 
Lohardaga, the old name for Ranchi, of which Palamau was a subdivision 
until 1891, and so been assigned to the category of persons born in Ranchi. 
The migration between Manbhum and the adjoining districts discloses curious 
variations. There is a loss to the Southal Parganas on the north and a con- 
siderable gain from Hazaribagh on the north-west, an equilibrium with Ranchi 
on the west, a loss to Singhbhum and its political States on the south, a gain 
from Bankura on tlie east, and a heavy loss to Burdwan on the north-east. The 
general explanation of these figures is that the tendency of local migration is 
towards two centres, the coal mines in the north of the district and those in the 
Raniganj subdivision of Burdwan, while the former also attract labour from 
Hazaribagh and Bankura. The emigration to other districts in Bengal 
has resulted in a slight loss. The district sends nearly 70,000 emigrants to 
Assam and receives in exchange only some 4,000 from the United Provinces, 
and a few hundred from the Central Provinces. Singhbhum gains con- 
siderably from Ranchi, Manbhum and Midnapore, but loses very heavily to 
the Tributary States of Chota Nagpur and Orissa. It receives a considerable 
number of permanent settlers from Bankura, Cuttack, Balasore, and Hazaribagh, 
and of traders, labourers and other temporary residents from Gaya and 
the United Provinces. It sends out comparatively few emigrants to distant 
parts of Bengal, but the Assam return of birth-place shows that nearly 13,000 
of its natives were enumerated in that Province. 

258. The most striking features of migration in the Sonthal Parganas are 
firstly, its great volume, and secondly, the strong tendency of the people to 
move eastwards. There is a strong inflow from all the adjoining districts west 
of a line drawn approximately north and south through the centre of the district 
(from Sahebganj to Jamtara), i.e., from Bhagalpur, Monghyr, Hazaribagh and 
Manbhimi, and a still stronger ebb in the direction of all districts east of this 
line, viz., Purnea, Malda, Murshidabad, Birbhum and Burdwaa The immi- 
grants from the west exceed 83,000 while the emigrants to the east number close 
on 117 000. The great migration of the Santdls from the south and west to the 
district that now bears their name took place during the middle part of the last 
century and many of the present immigrants are probably the survivors of 
those who took part in tbis movement. The tribe is still spreading east and 
north and the full effect of the movement is not exhausted in the districts that 
adjoin the Sonthal Parganas, but makes itself felt even further away, in those 
parts of Dinajpur, Rajshahi and Bogra which share with Malda the elevated 
tract of quasi laterite known, as the B^rind. Dinajpur alone contains more 
than 48,000 persons born in the Sonthal Parganas, and Rajshahi and Bogra 
more than 8,000. The manner in which the jungles of the B^rind are being 
brought under cultivation has already been explained. These wanderings of the 
Santdls have hitherto been confined to a laterite soil and they are said to be 
averse to the payment of rent. In what direction they will spread when they 
have finished their work of reclamation in the B^rind it is impossible yet to 
conjecture. The future alone can show whether they will then accept the 
inevitable and settle down as permanent rent-paying cultivators, or move 
further afield, overcoming their dislike to alluvial soil,* or retrace their steps 
and rove once more in the infertile uplands of the Chota Nagpur Plateau. Of 
emigration from the Sonthal Parganas to more distant places the most noticeable 
feature is the exodus to the Assam tea gardens, where more than 31,000 natives 
of this district were enumerated, and to Jalpaiguri where they number more 

than 10,000. ^ , r, • j .u /-. • ow ^i. 

Angul receives from the Central Provinces and the Orissa States more than 
twice as many persons as it gives in exchange. It also benefits considerably 
bv immigration from Madras and Cuttack. The Chota Nagpur States gain about 
50 000 by migration with the districts of Chota Nagpur and the Orissa States, 
of' which more than half is due to the influx from Ranchi, where in some 

* Their avoidance of aUuvial soil may be only fortuitous and due to the fact that hitheito the more 

broken Mgh^untry. being comparatively sparsely inhabited has ofiered them what they most need 
DroKenniguwjuiiwj, ^ combined with a minimum of outside mtetferenoe. Mr, Bompas is of 

riiiSatXr^vTrX depend onVTe.istence of sdl forest and .the absence of restrictioiis on 
cE it down TWtree isTte says, to the Santal what the bamboo is to the Bengali TiUagei. 



uo 



CHAPTER III — MIGEATION. 



parts agrarian disputes have unsettled the cultivators. On the side of the 
Central Provinces the movements backwards and forwards have been 
considerable ; the net result is a very slight gain. There are nearly 8,000 
immigrants, from the United Provinces, mostly from the contiguous district 
of Mirzapur, but only 14 are reported to have emigrated to those Provinces 
and none are shown in the birth-place returns for Assam. Possibly in both 
these provinces the persons born in the Chota Nagpur States have been credited 
to some district of Chota Nagpur. The Orissa States show a net gain of about 
60,000 persons from contiguous territory in Bengal and of 7,000 from the 
Central Provinces. Singhbhum gives about half the total number of emigrants 
from other parts of Bengal, but there are also numerous settlers from Cuttack, 
Balasore, Midnapore and Puri. There is a loss to Angul and the Chota Nagpur 
States, The Assam returns show no emigration from the Orissa States to that 
province, but possibly some of the persons shown against Cuttack and Balasore 
were in reality born there. 

259. It will be convenient to summarise briefly the general tendencies of 

migration within the province. One of the most 

UMMABT. noticeable features is the great movement from Bihar 

to Bengal Proper in quest of work. The total number of persons born in the 

BicKfram showing tie proportion of immiffrants fo Bengal Proper ^9^^^^' Out enumerated in 
from Bihar, the United Provinces and Orissa. 



60 r r> 



20 » 




o 
a 



the latter, tract is nearly half 
a million, and rather more 
than half of them come 
from North Bihar. Saran 
sends out a greater propor- 
tion of these emigrants than 
any other district ; then, 
though at some distance, 
come the four districts of 
South Bihar and then, again 
at a considerable distance, 
Muzaffarpur. The emigra- 
tion from the other districts 
of North Bihar is small and 
that from Purnea is infinite- 
simal. The emigrants from 
South Bihar find their way 
chiefly to the metropolitan 
districts and especially to 
Calcutta. Only I in 5 goes 
to North or East Bengal. 
In North Bihar, on the other 
hand, the people prefer to 
go to districts of North 
Bengal, especially Dinaj- 
pur, Jalpaiguri and Rang- 
pur, and more than half 
the total number who were 
enumerated in Bengal Proper were found in this part of the Province. The 
proportion would be far higher if we omitted Saran, whose numerous emigrants 
are more catholic in the choice of a temporary home and swamp the figures 
for Muzaffarpur and Darbhanga. 

Another point deserving special notice is the way in which the natives of the 
Chota Nagpur Plateau and the adjoining parts of West Bengal are spreading 
over this province and Assam. More than 400,000 were enumerated in other 
parts of Bengal and nearly 300,000 in Assam. The Santals have been work- 
ing their way steadily north and east for 70 years or more. The other tribes 
are following their lead as pioneers of cultivation, and there are also numerous 
colonies of them in Bengal Proper, the descendants of coolies imported to work 
in the indigo factories in the days when indigo was extensively cultivated. 
Large numbers also go out every cold weather to obtain employment on earth- 
work or as field labourers. Many again take service in the coal fields. But the 



o 
a 

o 



8 § B S 

& I S § 
e 5 S 9 

^ in <o 1*^ 

REfEKENCES 

iMMIOfWNTS fROM SOUTH 9WAR-- - - 
T> n KORTH O - - - - 
n r> UNITED SROVINOea- 
>» Jf ORIBSA - 



o 
o 

03 



Note. — The baiie of each rectangle indicates the actnal number of immigrants 
and the height, the proportion coming from each locality. 



GENERAL CONCLUSIONS. 



141 



most fruitful source of emigration in the case of these tribes is their recruitment 
for the tea-gardens of Assam and Jalpaiguri. In Chota Nagpur itself the 
present tendency seems to be to work southwards. Hazaribagh gains from the 
northern slopes of the hills which lie in Gaya. Ranchi and Manbhum gain from 
Hazaribagh, Singhbhum from Ranchi and Manbhum and the Orissa States froni 
Singhbhum. To the same southward tendency we may attribute the traditional 
migration of the Oraons from the south of Shahabad to the north-east of Ranchi, 
where many of the villages occupied by them still bear Munda names. In 
North Bihar there is a general trend from west to east but on the south bank of 
the Granges no such movement is noticeable. In Bengal Proper emigration 
takes place on a comparatively small scale. The Sundarbans attract settlers 
from the surrounding districts and harvesters resort hither and to a few other 
districts to assist in reaping the winter rice. Nadia sends out more harvesters 
than any other district except Chittagong, whose inhabitants flock in great 
numbers to Akyab when the rice crop is ready for the sickle. 

260. There is no apparent correspondence between the density of 

population and migration. The greatest amount 
Po^u!!™ ^^"^ '^^ °^ of emigration is from the Chota Nagpur Plateau 

which is the most sparsely populated tract in the 
province. Saran, which sends out more emigrants than any plains district, has 

a very dense population, 
but it is not so dense as 
that of Muzaffarpur or 
Dacca whose emigrants 
(other than to contiguous 
districts) are less than 
one third as numerous. 
Chittagong, which comes 
next, has a lower density 
of population than any 
other plains district in 
East Bengal. Gaya is 
less crowded than Cham- 
paran, but its emigrants 
are five times as numer- 
ous. Monghyr has fewer 
persons to the square 
mile than Rajshahi, but 
its natives who seek a 
livelihood abroad out- 
number the emigrants 
from Rajshahi in the ratio of 8 to 1. If reliable figures showing the area fit for 
cultivation were available, which is only the case for a few districts recently 
surveyed, it is probable that a much closer connection between the two sets of 
figures could be established, but even so, there would be widedifferences due to 
the varying fertility of the soil, the rainfall and general climatic conditions, 
and the class of crops grown. Speaking generally, it may be said that Eastern 
Bengal is capable of supporting a much greater population per square mile than 
Bihar, alid that in Bihar the tracts which can support most people are those 
where rice is grown. This explains why Muzaffarpur and Darbhanga^ with 
their extensive rice tracts, are less dependent on earnings outside the district 
than Saran, which is reputed to be very fertile and is highly cultivated and well 
irrigated, but which has a comparatively small area under rice cultivation. 
Purnea, whence the emigration is least, is almost wholly devoted to the growth 

of 1*106 

861. The emigration of aboriginal tribes from the Chota Nagpur Plateau 

and the neighbouring districts of West Bengal takes 
GBNBBAt Fbatums OP Emioev geygral forms. Some of it is periodic and confined to 
TioN FEOM Chota NAffpuK. ^^^ ^^j^ weather months. To this category belongs 

the emigration for crop-cutting or earthwork in the cold weather. Some again 
is semi-permanent, such as the emigration to the coal-fields. Some again is 
permanent as in the case of the Santals in the Barind. The emigration to tea 







rtC\ MAP 






/ /SHOWJNSOIRECTIONANOVOLUME 

/j OF MIGRATION between 


^ 


xi^E 


V^f^^vAOJACENT DISTRICTS 


^3S^±M^^^^ 




jtg^^MU^II UVMENSINBH^ 






^J^[|,.^^| "T\ lfcACci»sH^-J^'""M 


^^V STATES 


V,/—^ i .^_^0«1W3A STATES I V-*ll ■ 




^^ 




m§)^¥''^'' k( { 






REFERENCES. \V^ 




^t^n, "^-Jl/?* ( THEARBOWKEADSSKOWTHEDmtCTIOtiaFMIGRATtOW.THE ^ 
.>'^)*^^ ^^IMLA VOUJMerS.WCATEDBTTHELENCTHONOTHtCKNESSOI'THe ^ 

/"'"'^ ( T^ ffCirnj^l^ LirrtSTowHiCHTHeAMowKEMSAREflrFixEorHua:- 
^ ^-^ J\l 1 y^ — lOOOO PEPSOHS 
^»>v../^"\^ /--■''TK jT "^ 20000 n 






MB »00O f> 






■1 Aoooa n 



142 CHAPTER III— MiGEATIOtl. 



gardens also generally ends in becoming permanent. The aboriginal Munda 
Oraon has, it would seem, no strong ties to bind him to his home and, in tl 
case of semi-permanent migration, he is often accompanied by his wife ai 
children. If he be unmarried, he is pretty certain to find maids of his race 
his new home, and his simple customs have not yet been sufficiently tinged 1 
Hinduism to stand in the way of his matrimonial arrangements. Consequent 
if the pay is good and the place suits him, he is readily induced to break c 
all connection with his old home and settle down permanently. He m£ 
not do this at once. Probably after the first two or three years' absence, 
longing to return to his country will seize him and he will revisit the old horn 
only to find that it has not the attractions his imagination had invested it wit 
and that such as it has, are not sufficient to outweigh the better pay and easi 
life obtainable abroad. He will again emigrate and, sooner or later, w 
give up all thought of ever going back to his native home. 

263. In the case of Bihar and the United Provinces the general form 
Geneeal Featttees op Emioea. migration is very different. The people are Hindu 
HON feomBihaeandthbUmitsd and a man who leaves his permanent home suite 
Peovinces. from many disadvantages. He is cut o£E from h 

old social group and he finds it very difficult, if not impossible, to enter a ne 
one. He has in his own country a certain circle within which he forms h 
matrimonial connections, and outside that circle it is very difficult either to gi^ 
a daughter in marriage or to obtain a wife. If he marries abroad he is in dang 
of finding himself looked upon as a sort of outcaste and of being debarred fro 
intercourse with his own people. It follows that though the struggle for existent 
is far harder upcountry than in Bengal Proper, few if any, of the people wl 
come in search of work, do so with the intention of settling permanently. Tl 
sole object is to make money with which to eke out the family income at hom 
The emigrant leaves his wife and children with his relations ; he returns home 
intervals, as funds and opportunity permit, and he cherishes the hope of spen 
ing his declining years in his native village. This he generally does, unle 
circumstances are unusually adverse, or unless disease carries him off in tl 
meantime. But it often happens that the visits to his home gradually becon 
less frequent and that the presence of a large number of his caste fellows in tl 
place where he has made his temporary home, or the acquisition of proper 
there, or the securing of permanent employment or some similar cause, may les 
him to give up all thoughts of going back to the harder life in his native counti 
and induce him to send for his wife and children and make a new home in tl 
land of his adoption. Prior to the construction of railways the difficulty 
travelling was a potent factor in inducing many upcountry men to sett 
permanently in Bengal and it is thought that the proportion who do so now 
smaller than it was formerly. 

263. The extent to which permanent settlement takes place varies a gre 
deal according to circumstances and to the caste to which the migrants belon 
Br^hmans and Rajputs who come chiefly as priests, constables, jail-wardei 
zamindars' peons and the like, very seldom bring their women with them 
form matrimonial alliances in ^Bengal. They may spend their whole life hei 
but they retain their connection with their homes, remit money regularly 
their families and visit them at intervals. Boatmen also are seldom accompani^ 
by their wives, and their visits to Bengal Proper are generally temporary, ai 
confined to the rivers on which they ply their craft. Earth-workers, pall 
bearers, syces, and mill-hands may also be said, as a class, to seldom settle 
Bengal. There are of course exceptions. Colonies of Bhars and Binds a 
found in Malda, Mymensingh and other places, and men who have secur 
permanent employment will sometimes decide to remain, either sending 1 
their families or taking a wife locally. There are also cases where entang 
merits with local women induce permanent settlement, but these are compai 
tively rare,* Amongst upcountry men who come for domestic service or 
petty shop-keepers, the number who become domiciled in Bengal is larg( 
They often find that the presence of their women adds to their earnings, a: 
having brought them, the inducements to go home are less strong. Th 

* In suet cases, caste difficulties are usually overcome by converiiou to Muhammadamsm or Vai 
BftTism. 



GENERAL CONCLUSIONS. 



143 



usually endeavour, however, to marry their children in their own country or to 
new comers of their own caste. In order to succeed in this they must retain 
their old customs and way of living. If they neglect to do so they are looked 
on as degraded, and no one will marry their daughters. The castes that take 
most readily to permanent residence in Bengal are those at the bottom of the 
social scale, the sweeper castes and Cham^rs. Sweepers, as a rule, are imported 
by municipalities with their families and form a community sufficiently large to 
be independent and self-contained. The pay they get is good and there is no 
inducement for them to return to their old homes. The Chamdrs have no 
business rivals amongst the indigenous castes of Bengal and the profit from the 
collection of hides is in inverse proportion to the number of persons engaged 
in collecting them. They have thus spread all over Bengal and small colonies 
are to be found in every district. The large proportion of females amongst 
them shows that they have come to stay. 

264. I have said that the extent to which permanent settlement takes 
place is indicated by the proportion of women amongst the immigrants, 
but it must be remembered that the railways, by reducing the difficulties 
of locomotion, have encouraged men to take their wives with them even when 
they do not intend to abandon their old homes, whereas, formerly this was 
seldom done except when permanent settlement was intended. This can be 

the only explanation of the figures 
noted in the margin unless the general 
opinion that permanent migration is 
less frequent than it was before the 
era of railways is to be set aside as 
incorrect. The proportion of women 
amongst emigrants from Bihar is 
greatest in the metropolitan districts 
whither the journey is an easy one, 



BlEIH.PLAOB. 


NrilBER OF PEMAI.¥S 

ebcmebatbd in 
Bengal. 


Pkopobtion 10 100 
Miles. 




1881. 


1891. 


1901. 


1881. 


1891. 


1901 


North Bihar 
South Bihar 
United Provinces 


42,141 
89,795 

♦ 


43,386 
48,593 
45,424 


46.896 
61,985 

84,078 


39 

40 

• 


24 
86 
SO 


22 
38 
31 



' Figures not aTBilable. 



and smallest in East Bengal which, to an upcountry man, is the least accessible 
part of the Province. At the same time the proportion of females from North 
Bihar in East Bengal is twice as great as it was ten years ago. 

265. The occupations of these emigrants have been incidentally enumera- 
ted in the previous paragraphs. The great majority 
Castbs and Occupations op are employed on work involving hard physical 
SJtb^d Peotikoes "^ ^^^ labour, such as earth-work and palki-bearing, or 

degradation, such as removing night-soil or mani- 
pulating skins. They follow numerous other occupations also, such as boating 
(from all the river districts, but chiefly from Ballia and Gorakhpur) trade, 
domestic service and service in the police or as clubmen. There are isolated 
settlements of up-country cultivators in Dinajpur, Pabna, and other places 
where waste land is plentiful, but though they are often found working as field 
labourers, they do not as a general rule obtain possession of land. 

The high castes that come chiefly to Bengal for employment are Brah- 
mins and Rdjputs. Up-country Kayasths and Mbhans are rarely met with. 
Amongst other castes the most conimon are perhaps the Tanti, Goala, Kurmi, 
Kahar, Kalwd^r, Bhar, Dosadh, Nunia, Bind, Chamar.* Except, in the case of 
the Chamdr who still prefers his own line of business, in which he is hampered 
by no competitors, caste seems to impose very little restriction on occupation, 
and all sorts of employments are followed by the upcountry men who come to 
Bengal, including many that would be deemed degrading in the neighbourhood 
of their own homes. Thus Brahmans, though occasionally returned as priests 
and pilgrim conductors, or as following some other respectable occupation, e.g., 
that of clerk, are far more commonljr found serving as peons or in the police, as 
door-keepers, cooks and even as coolies and day labourers. Many were entered 
as beggars and some as singers, but these doubtless were members of some 
wandering tribe such as the Kapm-ia, whose claim to Brdhmanical rank is very 
slender. The Tdntis who come to Bengal (mostly from Monghyr) are never 
found working as weavers, but are almost invariably day labourers, earth- 
workers and palki-bearers. 



* The above enumeration is of course far from exhausting even the castes commonly met with. Amongst 
others may be mentioned Halirai, Koiri, K4ndu, Gonr, Mallah, Kewat, P&si, Dhanuk, Dhobd, Jolaha, 
Dhuni& and Shekh. 



144 CHAPTER in — MIGKATION. 



Rdjputs follow a multiplicity of occupations, but the great majority are 
constables, door-keepers, jail warders, peons aud the like. Some were returned 
as railway porters or labourers, but the number following these despised occu- 
pations is very small. The up-country Gcald, or Ahir who comes to Bengal is 
usually a labourer, but some have shops or serve as domestic servants. Kah^rs, 
Kurmis and Dosadhs are usually labourers or miU-hands, but many of the two first 
mentioned are indoor servants and Dosadhs are often syces.. The emigrants 
from Orissa are mostly Brahmans, who are nearly always cooks, Goalas, who act 
as bearers in European households, and also as door-keepers etc., and various 
castes who work in the mills and as labourers in the metropolitan districts. 

266. Want of time prevents a full comparison of the statistics of migration 

at the time of the present census with the corre- 

CoMPAEisoK WITH 1891. sponging rctum of 1891, and a brief indication 
of the general results is all that can be given.* The total number of persons 
enumerated in districts other than that of their birth has fallen slightly (0*8 per 
cent.), but this is due to a decrease in migration between contiguous districts. 
The number of persons enumerated outside the district of birth and the districts 
that adjoin it is greater by 18 per cent, than it was ten years ago, while that of 
persons who were found in districts contiguous to that in which they 'were born, 
has fallen by 14 per cent. These results are easily explained. The diminution 
in the volume of migration between adjacent districts has occurred mainly in 
Bihar where it is attributable to the plague scare which drove away most of the 
people whose permanent homes were in the neighbouring districts. The same 
explanation is given by the Magistrate of the 24-Parganas for the smaller 
number of persons from the adjoining districts who were in his jurisdiction 
when the census was taken. There were fewer alterations in district boundaries 
in the decade preceding the present census than there had been in the previous 
ten years, and in Howrah the tendency of the people to return their birth-place 
as Hooghly, the revenue district, was more successfully restrained. There 
were also fewer religious festivals in progress on the date of the present census 
than in 1891 and these festivals attract people chiefly from the neighbouring 
districts The increase in migration to a distance is attributable in the main to 
the great industrial development which has taken place in the metropolitan 
area, to the greater demand for labour in the coal mines and tea gardens, and to 
the opening out of the Bdrind by Santals and other forest tribes. 



* Wkenever any marked divergence from the figures for 1891 was noticed, careful enquiry was made, 
and cm- figures were scrutinized anew. In Champaran, for instance, where tke number of immigrants 
fj-om Saran has fallen from 83,241 to 25,452 and that of those born in Muzafifarpur from 56,076 to 26,968; I 
caused the statistics for all the thanas contiguous to these districts to be worked out a second time direct 
trom the schedules, the result being a very slight decrease as compared with that originally obtained by 
sorting the slips. The Magistrate of Champaran explains the difference between the present figures and 
those of 1891 by saying that the best lands which attracted immigrants had probably been taken up before 
1891. But even if there had been no new immigrants the number surviving amongst those in the district in 
18^1 would far exceed the number now ascertained. Apparently some must have since gone back to their 
old homes. 



SUBSIDIARY TABLES REFERRED TO IN CHAPTER III.— 

MIGRATION. 

Subsidiary Table No. I. — Showing the actual amount of immigration to each district. 

Subsidiary Table No. II. — Showing the actual amount of emigration from each district. 

Subsidiary Table No. III. — Showing the proportional migration to, and from, each district. 

Subsidiary Table No. IV. — Showing the migration between (1) Commissioners' Divisions, 

(2) Natural Divisions. 

Subsidiary Table No. V. — Showing the gain or loss by migration between Bengal and 

other parts of India. 

Subsidiary Table No. VI.— Showing the number of immigrants from certain foreign 

countries. 



SUBSIDIAEY TABLES. 



145 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE No. I. — Showing the actual amount of Immigeation to each District. 



SisiBici Aim 
Natcbai DrviaioN 

ATBD. 



BORN IN. 



DiBTEIOT OR DiVIBIOlf. 



BENGAL 



WEST BENGAL 

Bard wan 
Birbhum 
Bankura ... 
Midnapore 
Hooghly ... 
Howrah ... 



BBN- 



CENTEAL 
GAL 

S4.Faiganas 
CalcuttSi... 
Nadia 

MuTshidabad 
Jessore ... 



NOKTH BENGAL 

Bajshahi... 

I>iaaj[pur... 

Jalpaiguri 

SarjeeliQK 

Kangpur... 

Bogra ... 

Pabna 

Halda 

Kuch Bihar 
Sikkim ... 



BAST BENGAL 

Khulna ... 
Dacca ... 
MTmensingh 
Faridpur... 
Backergunge 
Tippera ... 
Noakhali 
Chlttagong 
Do. 
Tracts ... 
Hill Tippera 



Total. 



77,B78,asa 



7,894,999 

1,374,128 
841,674 

1,086,877 

2,739,263 

909,568 

706,894 



6,978,939 

1,852,992° 
290,657 
1,608,481 
1,262,088 
1,766,119 



9,g91,991 

1,383,228 

1 ,435,077 

699, 1 57 

124,726 

2,044,765 

816,636 

1,371,421 

786,143 

622,131 

34,010 



Male. 



38,708,939 



3,898,073 

680,631 

417,4»S 

637,744 

1,362,«9 

446,166 
S4U,884 



3,B10,497 

937,963 
160,9tl4 
797,283 
617,498 
889,540 



4,713,943 

694,875 

743,183 

317,963 

61.716 

1,044,689 

414,991 

675,333 

332,569 

273,498 

17,468 



Female. 



38,869,313 



3,996,984 

693,694 
424,179 
649,133 
1,376,774 
463,112 
365,019 



3,468,443 

915,029 
129,663 
811,198 
644,690 
876,679 

4fi77,349 

686,353 

691,894 

281,194 

63,010 

1,000,076 

401,645 

696,183 

403,574 

248,633 

16,652 



Hill 



NOETHBIHAE.. 



Champaran 
Muzaffarpur 
Darbtianga 
Bbagalpur 
Fnrnea ... 



SOUTH BIHAE .. 



Fatna 
Gaya 
ghahabad 
MonRhyr 



OBISSA ... 

Gnttack ... 
Balasore ... 
Puri 



CHOTA NAGPTJE 
PLATEAU 

Hazaribagh 
Eanchi ... 
Palaman 
Manbham 
Singhbhum 
Soiithal Parganas.. 
Angul ... v' 

Ghota Nagpur Tri- 
butary Htrttes ... 
Orissa Do. 



16,706,896 

1,187,526 
2,664,223 
3,800,058 
1,864,163 
2.231,767 
2,061,239 
1,122,385 
1,341,911 

117,898 
129,431 



13,BSa,644 

2,363,085 
1,683,682 
2,667,088 
2,822,03 1 
1,981,416 
1,766,789 

7,SSS,609 

1,642,646 
2,013,819 
1,878,783 
1,982,736 



4fi81,6S4 

2,029,814 

1,041,730 

964,251 



9,498,627 

1,136,078 
1,165,869 

680,762 
1,239,245 

676,999 
1,698,212 

170,379 

896,753 
1,805,410 



COHTIOOOCB DiSTBIOI IH 
.PROVINOB. 



8,407,313 

609,773 
1,256,650 
1,93Z,U45 

a23,491 
1,124,818 
1,U48,894 

658,UU2 

634,963 

61,901 
67,667 



6,567,070 

1,076,836 

83U,5ti0 

1,286,347 

1,31>3,U01 

96i<,529 

889,420 



3,693,538 

772,321 
992,396 
909,667 

974,066 



1,989,933 

983,803 
604,308 
4^5,920 



4,694,194 



8,399,313 

677,653 
1,308,573 
1,868,013 

940,672 
1,106,949 
1,012,345 

664,383 

707,548 

66,997 
61,764 



6,983,574 

1,276,249 
863,122 
1,380,741 
1,439,030 
1,011,886 
877,369 



3,863,071 

770,224 
1,021,423 

969,116 
1,008,679 

3,091,733 

1,016,011 

637,422 
478,331 



4,798,433 



550,663 


685,426 


560,150 


695,719 


286,304 


294,458 


615,945 


623,300 


283,889 


293,110 


843,182 


855,030 


86,572 


83,807 


452,414 


444,339 


903,673 


901,737 



Total. 



Male 



136,631 

108,195 
61,438 
26,806 
31,556 
91,981 
49,461 



340,178 

66,290 
96,434 
44,233 
60,88 1 
38,799 



331,483 

46,649 
27,220 
48,210 
15,212 
23,834 
17,282 
28,496 
67,088 
21,696 
1,909 



83,431 

47,717 
48,756 
41,371 
66,415 
35,321 
38, M 5 
I 1,479 
2,638 

6,204 
23,701 



138,396 

21,742 
62,420 
71,208 
71,253 
73,196 
61,109 



89,973 

71,262 
38,891 
36,8 1 6 
69,561 



36,BBS 

22,664 
24,376 
23,837 



158,749 

36,348 
18,720 
31,386 
42,162 
25,193 
82,631 
12,766 

58,769 
104,570 



63,837 

49,925 
21,240 
9,241 
14,891 
44,772 
26,719 



143,113 

40,134 
66,110 
19,666 
21,649 
18,419 



145,394 

26,460 
13,901 
24,364 

8,455 
12,665 

8,424 
17,443 
33,995 

9,165 

1,017 



Female. 



51,090 

28,656 
26,496 
26,682 
83,377 
29,392 
23,974 
5,691 
1,615 

6,824 
13,535 



39,419 

5,874 
25,765 
24,696 
23,288 
85,189 
29,023 



36,399 

24,981 

13,789 

9,930 

26,520 



6,843 

6,482 
9,699 
6,653 



OThBE PAEIS OE PBOVINCB. 



Total. 



73,814 

68,270 
30,198 
16,664 
17,166 
47,209 
23,742 



97,066 

23,156 

40,324 
24,678 
29,332 
20,380 



103,888 

21,189 
13,319 
23,856 

6,767 
11,169 

8,858 
11,052 
33,093 
12,631 



31,401 

19,062 

22,260 

14,789 

23,038 

5,929 

14,141 

6,788 

1,023 

380 
10,166 



69,177 

15,863 
26,656 
46,612 
47,965 
38,006 



53,681 

46,281 
25,102 
26,885 
43,041 



19,710 

17,182 
14,676 
17,184 



89fi57 

15,360 
8,154 
15,390 
22,494 
11,802 
36,563 
4,996 

28,838 
47,411 



Male. 



130,g87 

33,416 

7,044 

2,577 

8,241 

33,457 

61,372 



390,473 

1 06,668 

327,907 

9,723 

13,326 

6,003 



368,393 

26,466 
96,114 
113,908 
26,044 
70,050 
I 6,062 
12,236 
22,366 
14,923 
120 



67,480 

16,304 

23, 1 05 

25,755 

11,987 

22,768 

7,701 

7,486 

6,406 

471 
2,627 



15,886 

1,809 
3,626 
3,842 
7,221 
20,600 
46,211 



8,403 

2,794 
3,084 
3,560 
9,436 



13,116 

2,119 

1,766 

10,767 



91,839 

22,414 
4,604 
1,582 
6,626 
26,716 
41,022 



948,099 



78,415 

245,389 

6,611 

9,104 

4,144 



183,543 

16,612 
60,243 
65,272 
16,172 
56,894 
10,202 
9,918 
14,927 
12,668 
111 



56,098 

13,445 
19,529 



Female. 



76,699 

19,988 
10,666 
15,990 
19,668 
13,391 
46,078 
7,768 

29,931 
57,169 



93,794 

3,596 
10,824 

1,262 
13,686 

8,569 
19,610 

2,323 

6,789 
9,412 



20,057 
6,764 
4,780 
3,903 

372 
1,790 



9,880 

944 
2,833 
2,376 
5,047 
14,436 
31,706 



3,130 

1,615 
2,159 
1,975 
6,871 



4,973 

1,323 
1,228 
3,330 



46,409 

2,266 
7,061 
1,035 
10,131 
6,039 
11,396 
:i,927 

4,812 
5,'^31 



OUIBIDE PEOVINCE. 



Total. 



10 



38,455 

11,002 

2,640 

995 

1,616 

8,741 

10,360 



79,374 

28,243 

82,518 

3,112 

4,221 

1,859 



84,851 

9,863 

34,871 

48,636 

9,872 

14,156 

4,860 

2,318 

7,428 

2,255 



11/439 

2,869 
3,576 
3,171 
2,696 
2,711 
937 
2,706 
2,502 

99 
837 



6,006 

866 
1,193 
1,466 
2,174 
6,064 
13,606 



3,933 

1,179 

925 

1,585 

3,564 



8,144 

796 

637 

7,437 



49,393 

1,340 
3,773 
227 
3,465 
3,630 
8,114 



913,138 



88,139 

16,736 
2,124 
1,162 
1 0,064 
14,276 
43,787 



300,393 



Male. 



Female. 



62,419 

133,798 

6,064 

6,890 

2,234 



194,011 

6,066 

9,669 

26, 1 05 

83, 1 35 

16,632 

6,663 

8,309 

8,444 

8,224 

22,976 



101,360 

1,696 
13,438 
47,884 

6,081 

1,896 

10,936 

378 

2,296 

189 
17,666 



12 



369,347 



63,308 

11,869 
1,45« 
917 
6,737 
10,335 
31,900 



148,684 

■ 86,404 

101,103 

4,060 

5,195 

1,922 



130,136 

4,743 
6,645 
15,288 
46,662 
11,861 
3,732 
6,797 
6,148 
6,051 
12,209 



69,389 

1,697 

10,742 

33,594 

3,904 

1,636 

6,367 

304 

1,511 

141 
9,603 



133,994 

32,873 
60,836 
12,662 
12,106 
13,843 
11,685 



63,134 

8,384 

4,139 

43,638 

7.073 



39,917 

8,161 
3,327 
18,429 



104,308 

2,939 
2,512 
6,200 
6,371 
2,818 
9,384 
6,466 



1.9" 39,118 
;4,181 28,410 



65,534 

11,634 
26,949 
6,128 
5,138 
8,381 
8,304 



38,698 

6,(t66 
2,927 
14,972 
,6,133 



18,043 

4,801 
2,308 
10,936 



53,633 

1,863 
1,825 
3,478 
4,766 
1,695 
6,242 
2,441 

20,696 
13,658 



13 



34B,911 



34J931 

4,867 

674 

235 

3,327 

3,941 

11,887 



51,711 

16,015 

3^696 

994 

1,696 

312 

73,873 

1,322 
3,024 
10,817 
36,473 
3,671 
1,821 
1,512 
2,296 
2,173 
10,766 

33,071 

99 
2,696 
14,290 
1,177 

260 
4,679 

74 
785 

48 
8,063 

68,460 

21,239 
23,386 
7,524 
6,968 
6,462 
3,381 



34,436 

2,718 
1,212 
28,666 
1,940 



11,873 



1,019 
4,798 



481,535 

1085 
687 
2,722 
1,605 
1,123 
4,142 
4,015 

18,462 
11,752 



T„ lalnaiBuii Columns 11 to 13 include 60 pereore ( *7 males and 13 females ) born in Goalpara in Assam. 
Tn S^Sanur Columns 11 to 13 Include 872 persons ( 443 males and 429 females ) bom in Goalpara in Assam. 

sS^zltirJlSit^SrST^oT^^^^^^^^ -1- -d 177 female.) born in Azamgarh. 

-4°SSSrri?t?iSre'?i,?a^^^^^^ 

?" S'rH°S^r,°V\'?l'?oT3'?ndude 1? H67eST?4tl*mtllf andl !^^^ ) Sn in Ballia, 15,340 persons ( 4,360 males and 10,980 females) in Ghazipui^ 6,008 

In ShahBbnd, Columns 11 to 13 include W^^^ 677 rerlons (1 473 males and 2,204 females) in Mirzapur. 

'''TFiT?^otX"n to M^no?ute^lTO l^?sTs (Mw'mliri anSVesO females) born'in Ganjam in Madras. 

J^S:f^7u4nyltolSii«au&e2|4p^^^^^^^ 

In the ChptaNagpm Tributary States, Colum^^^^^ j„ Madras; 8,664 persona (3,946 males and 4,708 

fema^°es?in°So?puS9%oS^^^^^^^^ P*"""' (129 "»les aid 91 females) in Bamra, 876 persons (389 males and m females) 

in Fatna in the Central rtOTinces, 



146 



CHAPTER HI — MIGRATION. 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE No. II.— Showing the actual amount of Emigration from each district. 



DiBTEIOT AND 

JfAIUIlAL Division. 

BOKH IK— 








ENUMERATED IN— 








1 


DiBiBici OB Division. 


Contiguous Disteiot 
in pbovihce. 


OlEEB FABIS O; FBOVINCE. 


Outside pbovibce. 


Total. 


Male. 


Pemale. 


Total. 


Male. 


Pemale. 


Total. 


Male. 


Female. 


Total. 


Male. 


Female. 


1 


2 


S 


4 


5 


6 


7 


8 


9 


10 


11 


12 


13 


BESQAZ 


77,378,953 


38,708,939 


38,869,313 














879,583 


504,965 


374,618 


WEST BENGAL ... 


7,894,999 


3,898,075 


3,996,934 


139,616 


70,349 


69,367 


135,983 


86,887 


49,096 


55,571 


117,366 


38,305 


Burdwan . . • 


1,374,128 


680,634 


'693,594 


62,055 


20,497 


31,553 


33,961 


19^627 


14,334 


8,398 


8,413 


4,985 


Birbhum 


841,674 


417,485 


424,179 


33,382 


12,463 


20,929 


8,424 


4,509 


3,915 


6,665 


3,914 


1,641 


'Ra.nlrriT'n. 


1,086,877 


637,744 


649,133 


107,226 


64,198 


63,023 


17,180 


10,691 


S'J!? 


22, 1 1 2 


10,380 


11,732 


■DallK urOi • . < 

Midnapore 

Hooghly 

Howrah ... 


2,739,263 


1,362,479 


1,376,774 


86,348 


44,671 


40,777 


31,403 


19,116 


12,288 


17,494 


8,443 


9,051 


909,668 


446,466 


463,112 


111,718 


64,027 


47,691 


8,436 


5,329 


*i^ 


1,687 


934 


763 


705,894 


340,884 


866,010 


21,117 


13,687 


7,430 


1,954 


1,015 


939 


326 


18:i 


143 


CENTRAL BENGAL 


6,978,939 


3,510,497 


3,468,443 


164,553 


88,096 


76,456 


55,473 


33,351 


33,333 


10,330 


6,777 


4,443 


24-Parganas 
Calcutta . 


1,862,992 


937,963 


915,029 


26,017 


11,371 


14,646 


90,196 


49,977 


40,219 


2,747 


1,669 


1,078 


290,667 


160,994 


129,663 


17,176 


8,617 


8,669 


16,066 


8,023 


8,043 


3,078 


1,382 


1,696 


Kadia 


1,608,481 


797,283 


811,198 


86, 1 77 


45,617 


40,560 


34,978 


23,948 


11,030 


2,682 


1,695 


987 


Murfihidflibad LL 


1,262,088 


617,498 


644.590 


64,680 


30,183 


31,497 


13,262 


7,912 


5,350 


764 


374 


38(1 


iMX iAap^*a\*MM»n^ w^ 

Jeffiore ... ... 


1,766,119 


889,640 


876,679 


51,744 


28,035 


23,709 


18,331 


14,983 


3,348 


1,069 


757 


802 


NOETH BENGAL 


9,391,391 


4,713,943 


4,577,349 


51,874 


38,357 


33,617 


10,144 


7,104 


3,040 


33,638 


13,694 


9,934 


Eaishahi 

Dinajpur 

Jalpaiguri 

Darjeeling 

Rangpnr 

Bogra 

Pabna ... ... 


1,383,228 


694,376 


688,353 


19,610 


9,694 


9,916 


3,493 


2,022 


1,471 


609 


225 


284 


1,435,077 


743,133 


691,894 


14,683 


6,784 


7,799 


2,218 


1,416 


802 


Ct92 


220 


172 


699, 1 67 


317,963 


281,194 


16,741 


7,114 


9,627 


345 


247 


98 


340 


194 


146 


124,726 


61,716 


63,010 


4,142 


2,147 


1,996 


760 


486 


264 


802 


495 


307 


2,044,765 


1,044,689 


1,000,076 


34,564 


16,882 


18,682 


2,145 


1,237 


908 


17,453 


9,573 


7,880 


816,636 


414,991 


401,645 


14,783 


7,576 


7,208 


656 


377 


278 


318 


166 


133 


1,371,421 


676,238 


696,133 


42,034 


24,529 


17,505 


19,895 


13,398 


6.497 


^•?If 


1,9S0 


386 


Malda ... 


786,143 


382,569 


403,674 


24,666 


11,887 


12,779 


1,932 


1,244 


688 


166 


89 


77 


Eucli Bihar ... 


522,131 


273,498 


248,6.'i3 


30,781 


15,764 


16,017 


490 


274 


216 


1,272 


723 


649 


Sikkim 


34,010 


17,458 


16,652 


2,106 


1,004 


1,102 


82 


42 


40 








BAST BENGAL ... 


16,706,836 


8,407,313 


8,399,513 


66,339 


38,911 


37,418 


60,873 


49,347 


llfi36 


133,303 


98,346 


35,056 


Khulna ... ... 


1,187,326 


609,773 


577,653 


19,683 


9,637 


10,046 


6,995 


4,306 


1,689 


205 


125 


80 




2,564,223 


1,256,650 


1,308,673 


61,212 


40,859 ' 


20,353 


53,874 


43,472 


10,402 


13,401 


10.611 


2,890 


Mymensingh 
Saridpur 
BackerguDge 
Tippera ... 
NnnfthfLli 


3,800,058 


1,932,046 


1,868,013 


48,054 


24,809 


23,246 


10,211 


8,434 


1,777 


22,300 


12,728 


9,672 


1,864,163 


923,491 


940,672 


48,843 


33,088 


15,765 


24,865 


19,681 


5,274 


2,112 


1,621 


691 


2,231,767 


3,124,818 


1,106,949 


30,375 


18,231 


12,144 


8,203 


6,002 


2,201 


434 


302 


132 


2,06r,2S9 


1,048,394 


1,012,345 


40,127 


22,490 


17,637 


2,845 


2,141 


704 


12,567 


6,736 


6,821 


1,122,386 


658,002 


664,383 


27,816 


20,862 


6,964 


5,232 


4,743 


484 


535 


629 


6 


Chittagong 


1,341,911 


634,363 


707,618 


16,414 


10,953 


4,461 


9,181 


8,359 


822 


81,442 


66,492 


14,960 


Chittagong Hill 
Tracts 


117,898 


61,901 


65,997 


1,554 


808 


746 


2 




2 


316 


301 


14 


Hill Tippera '.'.'. 


129,431 


67,667 


61,764 


114 


64 


60 


37 


"■33 


4 


1 


1 




NORTH BIHAR ... 


13,Be9,644 


6,567,070 


6,985,574 


173,737 


94,131 


78fil6 


187,834 


161,703 


36,131 


66,314 


35,467 


30,747 


Saran .» ... 


2,363,085 


1,078,886 


1,276,249 


64,161 


29,629 


2i,522 


138,902 


119,602 


19,298 


49,437 


21,937 


24,500 


Ohamparan 
Muzaffarpur 
Darbhanga 
Bhagalpur 
Pumea 


1,683,682 


830,560 


863,122 


23, r 22 


6,496 


16,626 


10,447 


8,618 


1,929 


2,508 


1,428 


1,080 


2,667,088 


l,286„t47 


1,380,741 


80,758 


26,114 


64,644 


67,325 


56,083 


11,242 


5,464 


4,310 


1,144 


2,822,03 r 


1,383,001 


1,439,030 


74,488 


27,603 


46,886 


53,198 


29,118 


4,080 


3,826 


1,722 


2,104 


1,981,416 


969,529 


1,011,886 


93,321 


46,746 


46,676 


27, 1 1 1 


17,442 


9,669 


3,873 


2,303 


1,570 


1,766,789 


889,4^0 


877,369 


32,078 


17,114 


14,964 


4,224 


2,734 


1,490 


1,116 


767 


349 


SOUTH BIHAR ... 


7,BSS,609 


3,693,538 


3,863,071 


154,043 


73,013 


8!l,039 


369,113 


190,979 


78,134 


98,735 


41,545 


57,190 


Patna ... 


1,642,545 


772,321 


770,224 


64,486 


22,767 


41,713 


70,365 


47,176 


23,190 


7,466 


4,040 


3,426 
6,697 


Gaya 

Shahabad ... 


2,013,819 


992,396 


1,021,423 


77,432 


29,749 


47,683 


81,164 


68,505 


23,669 


14,873 


8,276 


1,878,783 


909,667 


969,116 


23,206 


9,162 


14,094 


77,856 


64,229 


23,627 


68,661 


19,198 


39,453 


Moughyr 


1,982,735 


974,056 


1,008,679 


99,537 


39,037 


60,600 


66,837 


47,476 


19,361 


17,745 


10,031 


7,714 


OEISSA 


4,081,6B4 


1,989,933 


3,091,733 


\6S,B55 


38,637 


34,918 


73,166 


67,310 


6,956 


14,933 


10,046 


4,887 


Guttack ... ... 


2,029,814 


983,803 


1,046,011 


50,687 


22,923 


27,763 


64,197 


60,018 


4,179 


11,876 


8,340 


3,635 


Balasore ... 


1,041,730 


604,308 


537,422 


30,682 


10,953 


19,729 


19,171 


17,166 


2,005 


1,910 


905 


1,005 
347 


Pari 


964,251 


485,920 


478,331 


24,414 


7,603 


16,911 


3,429 


3,183 


246 


1,148 


801 


CHOTA NAGPUR 
PLATEAU 


9,493,637 


4,694,194 


4,798,433 


178,097 


79,814 


98,383 


340,375 


137,799 


t03,476 


330,645 


160,440 


160,305 


Hazaribagh 


l,r 36,078 


650,653 


685,425 


48,424 


24,123 


24,301 


32,303 


23,299 


9,004 


69,629 


36,150 


33,479 


Ranchi 


1,166,869 


560,160 


595,719 


54,476 


25,802 


28,674 


121,222 


68,102 


53,120 


89,663 


49,006 


50,547 
5,715 


Palamau 


680,762 


286,304 


294,458 


21,204 


10,307 


10,897 


2,079 


1,170 


909 


8,927 


3,212 


Manbhum 


1,239,246 


616,945 


623,300 


51,624 


21,378 


30,246 


14,564 


8,318 


6,246 


69,784 


35,219 


34,566 


Singhbhum ... 


676,999 


283,889 


293,110 


48,243 


22,714 


25,529 


2,464 


1,341 


1,113 


13,123 


7,238 


6,885 
14,816 


Sonthal Parganas 


1,698,212 


848,182 


865,080 


116,923 


66,663 


60,260 


77,842 


42,8U4 


35,038 


31,243 


16,427 


Aogul 


170,379 


86,672 


83,807 


6,133 


1,702 


3,431 


85 


65 


20 


1,260 


627 


733 


Chota Nagpnr Tri- 
butary States ... 


898,753 


452,414 


444,339 


8,136 


4,168 


8,978 


2,417 


1,706 


711 


13,800 


6,739 


7,061 


OrisBa Tributary 


























States 


1,805,410 


903,673 


901,737 


43,146 


14,767 


28,379 


1,017 


606 


411 


13,326 


5,922 


7,404 



UoiEl.— The details in columns 11, 12 and 13 do not work up to the total, as the latter includes 10,999 persons (6,444 males and 4,565 females) enumerated in French 
Chandernagore and 145,336 persons (106,040 males and 39,296 females) enumerated in other Provinces (as noted below) who were returned as bom in BenitaL 
but whose district of birth is not known, and who are, therefore, left out of account in the figures for individual districts :— . = *■ 



Total. Male. Female. 



Burma 


... 77,736 


67,290 


10,416 


Cochin 


Madras ... 


9,669 


4,970 


4,717 


Ajmir 




7,074 


4,363 


2,711 


Andamans 


United Provinces of Agra and Oudh 


... 26,706 


13,689 


13,017 


Berar 


Assam 


6,638 


4,738 


1,850 


Bombay 


Gwalior ... 


1,167 


367 


790 


Coorg 


Central India Agency 


6,039 


2,201 


2,838 


Baroda 


Hyderabad 


290 


213 


77 


Kashmir 


Rajpatana 


884 


608 


876 


Mysore 



Total, 



Male. Female. 



62 


42 


10 


395 


250 


145 


2,457 


2,220 


237 


290 


218 


77 


6,402 


8,813 


1,589 


18 


14 


4 


916 


664 


252 


198 


146 


62 


415 


289 


126 



SUBSIDIARY TABLES, 



147 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE III — Showing the propoetional Migration to, 

AND PROM, EACH DISTRICT. 



DiaiBlCT AHD NiHIEAI 

Division. 



BEXGAL 



WEST BENBAL 

Burdwan ... 
Birbhmn ... 
Bankura 
Midnapore ... 
Hooghly ... 
Honrab 



CENTRAL BENGAL 

24-Farganas 
Calcutta 
Nadia 
Murshidabad 



NORTH BENGAL 

Raishahi ... 
Dinajpur ... 
Jalpaiguri ... 
Darjeeling ... 
Bangpur ... 
Bogra 
Pabna 
Malda 
Kuch Bihar 
Sikkim 



EAST BENGAL 

Khulna ... •■■ 

Dacca 

Mymensmgh 
Faridpur ... 
Backergonge 
Tippera 
Ncakhali .•■ 
Chlttagong ;.. - 

Ohittagong HiU Tracts 
Hill Tippera .» 



NORTH BIHAR 

Sanm 
Ghampamn 
Muzaffarpur 
Uarbhanga ... 
BbagalpoT ... 
Pnmea 



NDMBEK PEK 10,000 OP PBBSEHT POPULAIIOH OP DISTKIOT 
WHO AEE— 



Immigiants. 



Total. 



117 



419 

1,033 

671 

264 

178 

1,331 

1,700 



983 

1,084 

6,571 

363 

633 

2S9 



713 



From con- 
tiguous 
districts. 



SOUTH BIHAR 

Fatna 
Oa;a 

Shahabad ... 
MoDghyr .„ 



OBISSA 

Cuttack ... 

Balasore y 

Furi 

CHOTA NAGFUR FLATEAU 

Hazaribagh 
Ranchi 
Falamau ... 
Manbhum ... 
Singhbhnm ... 
Sonthal Parganas ... 

Ch^ Nagpur Tributarj? 



Oriasa Tributary States 



14S 

624 
322 
293 
379 
261 
268 
169 
83 
650 
2,532 



SOI 

234 
696 
318 
310 
614 
676 



SOS 

507 
224 
427 
416 



167 

159 
275 
521 



364 

355 
269 
626 
477 
686 
616 
1,121 
1,045 

731 



44 



166 

706 
570 
231 

lis 

876 
682 



310 

319 
1,186 



SU 



SSI 



From 
other 
places. 



641 


319 


842 


174 


2,390 


6ia 


4,993 


611 


507 


110 


443 


202 


346 


201 


1,107 


769 


790 


382 


4,236 


323 



49 

381 
181 
106 
291 
164 
180 
100 
19 
497 
1,367 



95 



268 
244 
8S0 
273 



116 

438 
189 
187 
336 



64 

110 
228 
234 



161 

300 
167 
606 
324 
411 
467 
664 
587 

637 



Emigrants. 



NUMBEB OP PEMALES TO 100 MALES 
AMOHOSI— 



Total. 



75 



SB3 

327 

101 

33 

66 

465 

1,118 



673 

765 
6,446 

88 
161 

49 



46S 

222 

668 

1,778 

4,382 

397 

241 

144 

348 

408 

3,913 



99 

143 
138 
188 



64 

63 

1,166 



108 



144 
303 



66 
164 



9S 



36 

240 

80 



103 



47 
287 



SOS 

56 
112 
120 
163 
185 
159 
457 
458 

194 



112 



40li 

616 

626 
,312 

481 
1,170 

275 



297 

672 
428 
742 
690 
392 



85 



To con- 
tiguous 
districts. 



To other 
places. 



161 


134 


27 


109 


93 


16 


221 


212 


9 


228 


166 


62 


251 


160 


91 


184 


173 


n 


452 


295 


167 


303 


279 


24 


574 


643 


31 


371 


357 


14 



153 

207 
485 
206 
391 
170 
262 
294 
784 
149 
8 



309 

1,016 
201 
^ 557 
382 
695 
199 



676 

876 
842 
814 
890 



365 

666 
483 
285 



750 

1,276 

2,317 

619 

1,046 

1,040 

1,249 

337 

243 

295 



169 



S70 
960 
306 
1,064 
248 



SIS 

126 
203 
617 

4S6 
285 



B3 



39 

167 
231 
122 
252 
132 
189 
243 
114 
124 



ISB 



255 
447 
171 



goo 

397 
376 
118 
481 



153 

246 
286 
240 

181 

412 
459 
342 
396 
786 
646 
267 
81 



S3 



S33 

277 
165 
352 
176 
106 
27 



85 

447 
226 
225 
106 
107 

35 



Immigrants. 



Prom con- 
tiguous 
districts. 



114 



254 
83 



73 
61 
670 
26 



184 

791 
72 
264 
127 
148 



476 



479 
466 



ms 

321 

197 
46 



569 

864 
1,868 
177 
649 
264 
603 
70 
162 

74 



From 
other 
places. 



Emigrants. 



To con- 
tiguous 
districts- 



To other 
places. 



65 



114 

116 
142 
179 
119 

106 



68 

65 
73 
126 
136 
110 



73 

83 
96 
98 
80 
83 

106 
63 
97 

136 
87 



61 



101 



6 

75 



116 

270 
103 

188 

206 

108 

76 



145 

185 
182 
270 



«88 



313 
151 



93 

130 
129 
104 
87 
lis 
126 
166 
104 

120 



4S 

34 

46 
64 
49 
37 
29 
30 

31 



BS 

62 
66 

74 
74 
26 
48 
22 
46 
23 
87 

34 

19 
20 
31 
28 
IS 
42 
54 
60 
28 
79 



98 

176 

85 
120 
89 
60 
42 



111 

53 
42 
178 
50 



87 

67 
44 
104 



95 

59 
60 
65 
34 
69 
73 
100 
79 

100 



ISl 



98 

164 

168 

98 

91 

74 
64 



87 



101 



114 
84 



84 



70 

104 
50 
93 
47 
66 
78 
S3 
40 



83 

83 
256 

209 
170 
99 

87 



114 

183 
160 
153 
156 



ISS 



121 
180 



ISS 

100 
ill 
105 
141 
112 
107 
201 
9S 

192 



6S 



68 

84 
66 
86 
77 
78 
90 



68 



104 

47 



23 



6S 



102 


78 


115 


60 


136 


66 


93 


68 


117 


81 


96 


73 


71 


46 


107 


a 


95 


77 


109 


96 



31 

40 
25 
63 
28 
37 
95 
9 

ai 

5 
12 

S9 

31 

30 
20 
20 
67 
62 



58 

52 
44 
86 
47 



14 

13 

17 
15 



88 

71 

SS 

161 

94 



84 
127 
92 

120 



HOTE.-The flgures tor ' Bengal' and the total ol each natural division refer to migration beyond the limits of the province and of the natural divMion, 
respectively. 

T. 2 



148 



CHAPTER III — MIGRATION, 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE No. IV. — Showing the migration between (1) Commissioneks' 

AND (2j Natural Divisions. 

(1) Conuuissiouers' Divisions- 



DiyiBioir IS WHICH 

BOBS. 


DlTIBIOir IS WHICH EHCMEKATED. 




Burdwan. 


Presi- 
dency. 


Eajsbahi. 


Dacca. 


Chitta- 
gong. 


Fatna. 


Bhagal- 
pur. 


Orissa. 


Chota 
Nagpur. 


Peudatory 
States. 


Toiii. 




1 


2 




3 


4 


5 


6 


7 




8 


9 


10 


11 


12 




(1901... 
XOXAZ] ... 

1891... 


346,077 


777,551 


621,803 


209,789 


61,220 


242,034 


271,648 


88,835 


134,086 


349,442 


3,101,494 




337,33S 


674,800 


534,328 


306,343 


60,433 


378,774 


333,140 


60,455 


133,661 


393,334 


3,880,430 




Burdwan ...{f^\--- 





192,163 
193,506 


5,853 
6,481 


2,890 
3,943 


1,468 
1,721 


2,771 
6,631 




18,933 
44,831 


11,279 
8,640 


29,646 
38,303 


10,597 

i6,goa 


276,598 
3:3,098 




Preridency...|l|»l;:: 


60,062 


■ 


.... 


60,761 
66,3» 


85.24S 
33,866 


1,219 
1,292 


4.167 
6,686 




27,261 
31,744 


4,658 
1,228 


2,006 
1,241 


1,131 
1,321 


196,491 
193,290 




Eaj.hahi ...{1|»1;:; 


807 
1,W 


15,291 
»1,36» 




24,660 
37,644 


245 
246 


324 
1,886 




10,944 
16,783 


735 
360 


145 
686 


24,461 
29,090 


77,612 
107,301 




Dacca ...{Z\z 


3,783 
8,796 


76,107 
S7,70« 


38,097 
29,101 




36,213 
33,049 


689 
643 




2,001 
1,867 


1,138 
292 


392 
114 


3,229 
8,984 


161,640 
157,801 




CUttagong...{l|»l;;; 


515 
S94 




9,194 
6,873 


846 
680 


34,049 
86,884 




234 
106 




.172 
18 


213 
164 


70 
66 


23,800 
19,668 


69,003 
63,916 




^"t- ■■■&]- 


66,086 
3S,U4 


176,485 
14B,U3 


78,329 
68,999 


32,465 
31,414 


4,906 
4,416 




136,070 
164,669 


1,341 

988 


66,431 
66,669 


13,866 
10,367 


664,979 
622,738 




Bhagalpur...{X-; 


62,545 
SS,946 


38,248 
37,639 


129,264 
96,883 


9,647 
9,643 


1,417 
1,466 


68,116 
67,163 







417 
526 


13,840 
18,767 


1,711 
9S3 


305,096 
246,715 




Orissa ...{f,^2 


21.449 
18,i71 


47,628 
^,236 


3,543 
1,493 


1,642 
1,038 


414 
308 


168 
404 




614 
260 





3,036 
4,716 


61,174 
71,087 


139,657 
139,902 




C!hotaNagp<ir{J^l;;; 


61,312 
^,386 


19,995 
17,487 


116,044 
38,117 


892 
649 


1,418 
1,106 


10,893 
11,238 




!6,078 
(8,760 


390 
386 




93,180 
134,079 


319,202 
269,047 




Fendatoryri901... 
States. ilS91... 


1,389 
S.OU 




849 
932 


34,708 
68,706 


109 
493 


121 
704 


166 
8,803 




146 
16 


82,291 
81,140 


7,681 
3,007 




76,969 
94,824 




Outside ProT-f 1901... 
ince. \1S91 ... 


88,139 
36,976 


212,091 
m,7i7 


164,368 
170,696 


68,299 
66,739 


13,799 
16,137 


164,627 
198,986 




S0,429 
»,MS 


36,371 
86,803 


30,840 
12^63 


116,293 
106,639 


816,168 
792,608 




(2) Ifatural Divisions. 








DlVISIOK IH 


WHICH ENUMEBATBD. 








DlVIBIOK 13f WHICH 
BOEir. 
















West Ben. 
gal. 


Central 
Bengal. 


North Ben- 
gal. 


Bast Ben- 
gal. 


North 
Bihar. 


South 
Bihar. 


Orissa, 


Chota Nag- 
pur Plateau. 


Total. 




1 


2 


3 


4 


5 


6 


7 




8 


9 


10 




(1901... 
XOXAZ .«\ 

L1891... 


345,077 


761,046 


It 3,886 


251,261 


278,476 


160,809 




69,686 


358,681 


2,938,821 




SS7,3S3 


656,691 


564,595 


361,134 


340,698 


948,661 




64,509 


405,735 


3,759,306 




West Bengal ...{J^"". 




191,235 
198,617 


7,046 
9,164 


6,358 
6,668 


3,648 
4,991 


2,4U' 
6,097 




11,267 
8,640 


54,734 
86,081 


276,699 
313,098 




Central Bengal ...{J^J ;;; 


69,689 

es.sss 


....!! 


74,303 
7S,61S 


61.372 

76,884 


4,648 
4,846 


2,844 
6,018 




4,427 
1,221 


12,842 
11,743 


220,025 
227,808 




North Bengal ... {J^J;" 


1,137 
1,701 


20,446 
»8,1BS 




26,645 
39,243 


7,504 
11,048 


299 
453 




950 
411 


6,137 
9,044 


62,018 
90,062 




East Bengal ...{Jlai;;; 


4,661 
3,43S 


75,269 
8S,048 


42,695 
33,498 





831 
388 


944 
706 




1,663 
468 


1,349 
386 


1 27,202 
120,911 




North Bihar ...{]^i-"_ 


26,136 
13,667 


66,912 
63,886 


128,731 
123,900 


32,707 
30,061 




76,464 
168,988 




826 
431 


30,105 
16,130 


360,571 
390,903 




South Bihar .~[f^]z 


50,291 
e9,41S 


127,104 
112,108 


26,601 
23,911 


18,640 
18,222 


111,641 
143,901 






980 
786 


87,888 
90,786 


423,136 
418,072 




Orissa ...{^ZZ 


21,449 
18,471 


47,202 
«,767 


3,704 
1,696 


2,726 
1,736 


95 
863 


127 
864 






61,418 
79,888 


136,721 
143,464 




Chota Nagpur fl901 ... 
Plateau. 11891... 


93.675 
67,901 


32,483 
8^698 


236,896 
113,613 


3,563 
3,147 


16,315 
13,091 


16,696 
18,303 




19,966 
21,692 





418,372 
262,239 




Outside Province Jj^J"; 


88,139 
36,976 


200,395 
181,686 


194,011 
186,401 


101,360 
88,868 


133,994 
168,780 


63,134 
63,834 




29,917 
20,980 


104,203 
113,398 


816,168 
782,688 





Note.— In this statement a correction has been made on account of the obvious inaccuracy ot the birth-place return for 1891 in the Snnthsl 
PflTganas. The said returns showed amongst the persons enumerated in that district 6,888 persons bom in Nadia, 10,889 in Dinaipnr. 10 806 in Patn* lasSS 
in Gaya, and 15,146 in Saran. In hen of these figures the foUowiog, being those ol the present census, have besss safeatstuted. «fa' . S " 4S^ni?.^ 
67, Fatna 2,639, Gaya 1,64S and Saian 1,370, 



SUBSIDIAEY TABLES. 



119 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE V — Showing the Q/Mn or loss by Migeation 
BKTWEEN Bengal and other Parts of India. 











ExCIEBa as iMMiaBATIOK 




iMMIOEAyTB TO BESaAI,. 1 


EMiasAiris sBOM Bsirau. 




Pkovihcb oe Siatb. 








OVEE EMiaEATIOK. 


1901. 


1891. 


Variation. 


1901. 


1891. Variation. 


1901. 


1891. 


1 


2 


3 


4 


5 


6 


7 


8 


9 


TOTAL ... 


7«S,7i« 


S83,1SB 


+145,630 


879,B83 


836,357 


+ 23,226 


-139,811 


—268,249 


Ajmwe-Merwara 


464 


60 


+ 404 


396 


979 


684 


+ 69 


— 919 


Assam 


48,296 


63,623 


- 8,827 


603,876 


418,3M 


+ 86,582 


- 455,680 


- 364,721 


Berar 


89 


123 


34 


290 


419 


129 


201 


296 


Bomba; and States (Sindh) 


6.695 


6,474 


+ 221 


6,402 


11,218 


6,816 


+ 1,293 


- 4,744 


Burma 


1,664 


2,352 


688 


156,998 


112,069 


+ 44,929 


- 165,334 


- 109,717 


Central Provinces and Statei 


62,181 


90,997 


- 28,816 


44,360 


65,741 


- 11,381 


■1- 17,821 


-1- 36,266 


Coorg 


6 


162 


147 


18 


16 


-h 2 


13 


-i- 136 


Gwalior 








1,157 




■I- 1,167 


1,167 


... 


Madras and States ... 


27„649 


24,544 


+ ""3,106 


9,772 


"io,9S4 


1,162 


+ \i.m 


+ 13,610 


V. P. and States 


496,940 


363,248 


+ 131,692 


128,091 


206,026 


- 77,086 


+ 367,949 


+ 169,222 


Fnnjab and States 


17,442 


16,914 


-i- 1,628 


7,074 


7,730 


666 


-H 10,868 


+ 8,184 


Andamana, etc. 


168 


46 


••■ 112 


2,467 


2,866 


408 


2,299 


2,819 


Hyderabad 


662 


680 


18 


290 


1,231 


941 


+ 872 


651 


Baroda 


134 


96 


+ 38 


916 


613 


+ 803 


782 


617 


Mysore 


621 


166 


+ 456 


415 


652 


137 


-1- 206 


387 


Kashmir ... 


326 


123 


+ 202 


198 


111 


+ 87 


+ 127 


+ 12 


Bajpntana ... 


40,572 


16,962 


+ 83,610 


884 


4,106 


- 3,221 


+ 89,688 


■^ (12,867 


Central India 


23,116 


3,557 


-t- 19,559 


5,039 


18,476 


- 18,437 


+ 18,077 


- 14,919 


India (unspecified) 




1,970 


1,970 










+ 1,970 


French Settlements 


"1,012 


109 


+ 903 


'16,999 


"4,913 


-1- "'"6,086 


- ■ 9,987 


+ 4,804 


Portuguese Settlements ... 
Shan States 


690 




+ 690 




16 


- "'" 16 


-^ 690 


- "■" 16 


Cochin , 






... 


62 




■h 62 




... 


Details of Migration betv 


i^EEN CONTIGUOUS DISTRICTS OF BeNGAL AND 




Assam. 


Bom in 


Enumerated in 


1901. 


1891. 


Variation. 


Born in 


Enumerated in 


1901. 


1891. 


Variation. 


DiTmensingh ... 


Garo Hills ... 


, 2,857 


1,814 


+ 1,043 


Giro Hills 


Mymensingh ... 


611 


629 


- 118 


Ditto 


Sylhet 


16,289 


12,603 


+ 2,686 


Sylhet 


Ditto 


9,040 


11,133 


- 2,(193 


Tippera 
HillTippera ... 


Do. 


11,690 


10,819 


+ 871 


Do. 


Tippera 


7,929 


9,660 


— 1,731 


Do. 




878 


— 878 


Do. 


HillTippera ... 


18,646 


11,291 


+ 4,255 


Biangput 
Eucta Bihar 


Goalpaia 


16,611 


22,788 


— 7,177 


Gaalpara 


Rangpur 
KuchBihar ... 


872 


728 


+ 144 


Ditto 


1,144 


1,217 


- 78 


Ditto 


2,406 


3,124 


- 718 


Jalpaiguri 


Ditto 


262 


154 


+ 98 


Ditto 


Jalpaiguri 


60 


139 


— 79 


Total born in Bengal but enumer- 








Total born in Assam but enumer- 








ated in contignons districts ci Assam 


46,843 


eO,S73 


—3,430 


ated in contiguous districts of Bengal. 


36,364 


36,704 


-340 


Details of MigeatioS bet\^ 


TEES CONTIGUOUS DISTRICTS OP BeNGAL AND 


THE 


United Provinces. 


Born in 


Enumerated in 


1901. 


1891. 


Variation, 


Born in 


Enumerated in 


1901. 


1891. 


Variation. 


Ch&mparan 


GoraKhpur 


1,286 


3,977 


— 8,692 


Gorakhpnr 


Champaran ... 


21,407 


40,662 


- 19,265 


Saran 


Ditto 


24,038 


70,560 


- 46,622 


Ditto 


Saran 


24,936 


7.982 


-i- 17,014 


Bo. 


Ballia 


11,209 


13,636 


- 2,426 


Ballia 


Do. 


4,820 


4iS31 


+ 289 


ghahabad 


Do. 


8,747 


14,906 


- 6,169 


Do, 


Shahabad 


13,816 


l6,680 


— 6,714 


Ditto 


Ghazipur 


16,923 


21,700 


- 6,777 


Ghazipur 


Ditto 


16,340 


5.116 


-(- 10,225 


Ditto 


Benares 


10,221 


11,598 


- 1.377 


Benares 


Ditto 


6,003 


3,753 


+ 1,260 


Ditto 


Mirzapur 


7,487 


8,737 


+ 760 


Mirzapur 


Ditto 


8,677 


2,766 


-H 911 


Palamau 


Ditto 
Ditto 


2,151 


8,647 


- 6,396 


Ditto 


Palamau 


2,204 


1,291 


-1- 913 


Chota Nagpnr 


2 


... 


+ 2 


Ditto 


Chota Nagpur 


6,666 


6,696 


— 929 


Tributary States. 












Tributary States. 








Total bom in Bengal but enumer- 


81,063 


151,660 


-70,597 


Total bom in the United Frovinces 


96,869 


9S,16S 


T^tJmT 


ated in contignous districts of the 








but enumerated in contignons dis- 








United FrOTinces. 








tricts of Bengal. 









150 



CHAPTER m— MIGRATION. 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE No. VI — Showing the variations compared with 1891 in the number of 

IMMIGRANTS FROM CERTAIN FOREIGN COUNTRIES. 





COHTIODOUB OODSTKIBa. 


DlSIAHI COUNTKIES. 




11 




















Other 














Nepal. . 


Afghanistan. 




British Islands. 




Germany. 


France. 


European 
Countries. 


America. 


Africa. 


Australia. 




1901. 


1891. 


1901. 


1891. 


1901. 


1891. 


1901. 


1891. 


1901. 


1891. 


1901. 


1891. 


1901 


1891. 


1901. 


1891. 


1901 


1891 
























Total 


Male. 


Fe- 
male. 


Total. 


Male. 


Fe- 
male. 














13 


19 




21 


22 




1 


2 


3 


4 


6 


6 


7 


8 


9 


10 


11 


12 


13 


14 


16 


16 


17 


20 


as 


BENGAL 


161,49S 


175,328 


4,3es 


3,455 


11,886 


9,390 


3,596 


9,544 


7,548 


1,996 


359 


339 


353 


298 


837 


911 


370 


938 


170 


161 


195 


122 


WEST BKN6AL ... 


70 


48 


B73 


303 


1,101 


8S9 


363 


788 


483 


340 


14 


56 


16 


46 


33 


109 


143 


99 


8 


26 


30 


4. 


Burdwan 


IS 


3 


142 


70 


370 


280 


90 


304 


173 


131 


9 


62 


11 


45 


10 


67 


9 


81 


1 




"11 


3 


Birbhum 


1 


13 


100 


42 


21 


16 


6 


23 


19 


4 










2 


1 


1 






"2 


... 




Bankura 


1 


7 


66 


23 


9 


8 


1 


4 


4 










■.. 






4 








... 


"i 


Midnapore 


6 


6 


62 


76 


51 


35 


16 


12 


9 


"s 






"2 


... 




"2 


9 


13 


"i 


16 






Hooghly 


4 


5 


121 


65 


118 


95 


23 


69 


57 


12 










"2 


4 


1 




2 




... 


"* 


Hovrrah 


45 


14 


82 


27 


532 


406 


126 


310 


220 


90 


"5 


"3 


"3 


"i 


19 


36 


18 


"5 


4 


i'i 


■9 




CENTRAL BENGAL 


181 


675 


1,183 


585 


7,805 


6,317 


1,488 


6,11s 


4,916 


1,300 


173 


344 


181 


88 7 


608 619 


197 


186 


109 


69 


92 


79 


24-Parganas 


10 


6 


152 


68 


1,921 


1,729 


192 


?.696 


1,632 


164 


3 


69 


3 




15 


1 


26 




13 


2 


7 




Calcutta 


163 


636 


323 


276 


5,796 


4,634 


1,262 


4,325 


3,320 


1,05 


168 


173 


176 


224 


661 


601 


170 


186 


92 


49 


86 


77 


Nadia 




4 


270 


33 


46 


27 


19 


49 


34 


16 


1 








21 


10 


1 




... 


2 




1 


Murshidabad ... 


■■' 1 


i 


168 


125 


34 


21 


IS 


23 


14 


9 






i 


"3 


3 


3 






"4 


16 






JesBore 


1 


5 


279 


83 


8 


6 


2 


22 


16 


7 




"2 






8 


4 


"• 










i" 


NORTH BENGAL 


118^0 


108,787 


1,049 


890 


591 


349 


343 


793 


610 


183 


31 


4 


7 


1 


48 


19 


89 


2 


4 


2 


IS 


3 


Bajshahi 


8 




169 


81 


17 


10 


7 


22 


14 


8 






1 




2 
















Dinajpur 


32 


■"51 


121 


31 


10 


7 


3 


9 


5 


4 


























Jalpaigari 


18,649 


20,543 


223 


253 


164 


136 


28 


128 


107 


21 


"i 


... 






i 








i 








Darjeelmg 


76.301 


88,021 


33 


435 


286 


113 


173 


524 


401 


123 


27 


"1 


6 




25 


"e 


26 


"i 


1 




16 




Bangpur 


219 


43 


269 


1 


69 


40 


19 


32 


22 


10 








... 


6 


7 


1 




2 




1 




Bogra 


125 


5 


65 


43 


1 


1 




6 


4 


1 


























Pabna 


7 


10 


111 


57 


32 


23 


■■■9 


40 


32 


8 


"i 






... 


i 


"7 


i 


i 






'3 


3 


Malda 


12 


1 


41 


6 


2 


2 




9 


3 


6 








i 












2 






Kuch Bihar 


347 


lis 


16 


34 


20 


17 


' "3 


24 


22 


2 


2 


3 






"4 




"i 








"i 




Sikkim 


22,720 


... 


1 
























4 
















EAST BENGAL ... 


S04 


790 


699 


304 


870 


190 


80 


830 


170 


60 


14 


... 


18 


B 


38 


9 


6 


4 


4 


1 


32 


13 


Ebulna 


7 


1 


ISS 


49 


14 


9 


5 


6 


4 


1 


























Dacca 


S 


209 


76 


59 


75 


52 


23 


70 


49 


21 


"b 




li 


... 


23 


"4 




i 


i 




i 




Mymensingh ... 


54 


75 


21S 


112 


M 


10 


1 


15 


6 


10 










■ 1 








1 




6 


"2 
6 

2 
2 
1 


Faridpur 


1 


11 


113 


30 


27 


19 


8 


67 


65 


12 








*3 


2 






1 






2 


Backergimge 


2 


3 


42 


12 


24 


16 


9 


22 


16 


6 


"i 


... 


i 




3 


2 




1 








mppera . 


6 


2 


85 


26 


17 


12 


6 


12 


9 


3 








"i 


1 


1 


i 






"i 


8 


Noakhali 




,., 


3 


4 


3 


2 


1 


4 


3 


1 






"2 




2 


2 












Chittagong 
Ditto Hill 


"\i 


4 


23 


13 


98 


70 


28 


SI 


26 


6 


"e 


... 


4 




6 




"i 




"2 




"5 


Tracts 


70 


317 












4 


4 


















1 










Hill Tippera ... 


48 


168 


"s 


... 


••• 1 


'"1 








... 








"i 


"i 




• a. 












NORTH BIHAR ... 


43,1^ 


69,40a 


SB6 


353 


41S 


875 


164 


376 


363 


113 


83 


1 


9 


8 


36 


4 


85 


8 


4 


31 


17 


11 


Saran 


9 


4 


11 




82 


67 


26 


86 


60 


26 


2 




1 




1 




11 


2 


2 


8 






Champaran 


19,540 


34,626 


48 


"41 


78 


42 


36 


50 


33 


17 


8 




1 




12 




8 






1 




"i 
2 
e 
2 

1 


Muzaffarpnr 


9,133 


10,343 


36 


42 


131 


85 


46 


103 


68 


36 






1 




2 




1 


3 


... 




1 


Darbhanga 


7,692 


7,934 


98 


30 


36 


■ 22 


14 


77 


69 


18 


"7 




1 


5 


3 


2 




2 


i 


12 


12 


Bbagalpur 


3,968 


3,490 


70 


16 


48 


33 


IS 


34 


23 


11 


2 




6 


3 


1 




"3 




1 




3 


Purnea 


1,816 


6,012 


93 


126 


43 


34 


9 


26 


20 


6 


i 


i 






7 


"2 


2 


"i 






1 


SOUTH BIHAR ... 


13a 


SOS 


134 


817 


1,368 


1,204 


344 


1,319 


1,040 


179 


87 




11 


5 


34 


85 


36 


S 





26 


16 


s 


Pataia 


58 


211 


40 


lOO 


878 


777 


101 


952 


860 


92 


22 




S 


2 


17 


22 


10 


3 


6 




8 




Gaya 


12 


25 


27 


99 


59 


23 


31 


18 


13 


5 






4 




1 




11 


3 


1 


is 




... 


Shahabad 


20 


33 


37 


689 


74 


60 


24 


65 


46 


19 


"1 


' 


1 


... 


4 




11 




19 


8 


2 


... 


Monghyr 


42 


34 


30 


29 


257 


167 


88 


184 


121 


63 


4 




1 


"s 


12 


■3 


4 


"2 


4 




6 


"s 


QEI8SA 


S4 


97 


50 


106 


114 


81 


33 


«9 


68 


81 


2 


3 


5 


6 


13 


81 


16 


3 


e 


3 


1 


1 


Cuttack 


8 


71 


11 


35 


59 


40 


19 


65 


83 


17 






6 


1 


4 


11 


1 




2 


1 






Baiagore 


7 


26 


24 


70 


37 


28 


9 


26 


24 


2 


"2 


"3 




6 


9 


69 


13 


"3 


3 


2 


i 


'"i 


Puri 


39 


... 


15 


... 


18 


13 


5 


8 


6 


2 


• •• 










1 


2 










CHOTA NAGPUE 














































PLATEAU 


SS9 


119 


azo 


198 


319 


217 


108 


348 


161 


87 


76 


33 


6 




43 


45 


SO 


9 


6 


« 


18 


3 


Hazaribagb 


3 


3 


25 


47 


72 


49 


23 


103 


46 


67 


12 








6 




1 


3 


1 


7 






Ranchi 


19 


55 


43 


12 


39 


19 


20 


48 


37 


11 


43 


31 


"3 




27 


36 


6 




1 






3 


Palaman 


, 




211 




7 


7 






























>•• 




Manbhnm 


6 


8 


82 


"79 


76 


69 


"\1 


T4 


'"s 


'"a 


"i 


"i 


2 




"2 




i 


3 






J^ 




Singhbhum 


4 


3 


20 


9 


42 


28 


14 


32 


27 


6 


8 




1 




3 


13 


6 


3 


... 


'1 


2 




Sonthal Parganas 


237 


47 


19 




72 


47 


25 


60 


42 


8 


3 








3 


2 


6 




"4 




3 


... 


Angul 


• ■• 


■ ■• 


8 
















1 




... 


I.. 












... 






Chota Nagpnr 
















... 




... 




... 




















... 


Tributary States 


12 


3 


40 


44 


9 


7 


2 
















1 












S 




Orissa Tributary 




















... 




■•* 


... 












•*• 


... 




States 


8 


... 


63 


7 


2 


1 


1 


' 


1 




1 






... 


1 








... 


... 


3 


... 



CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



151 



RELiaiOK 



Distribution and Variations since 1891. 



267. The imperial tables dealing with the subject of religion are Table VI, 

which gives the strength of all the religions returned 
INTEODUCTOEY. ^ for cach district and state, and Tables XVII and 

XVIII which contain details of the sects, races, and ages of Christians. The 
following subsidiary tables, in which the most prominent features of the 
statistics are illustrated by means of proportional figures, will be found at the 
end of this chapter. 

Subsidiary Table No. I. — Showing the general distribution of the popu- 
lation by religion. 

Subsidiary Table No. 77.— Showing the strength, etc., of the main religions 
in each district and natural division at each of the last three censuses. 

Subsidiary Table No. 7/7.— Showing the variation in the number of 
Christians in each district. 

Subsidiary Table No. IV. — Showing the distribution of Christians by race 
and sect. 

Subsidiary Table No. V. — -Showing the distribution per 1,000 (a) of each 
race of Christians by sect, and (&) of each sect by race. 

Subsidiary Table No. F/.— Showing the distribution of the population of 
towns by religion. 

26^. The general distribution of the people by religion is noted in the 

margin. It will be seen that nearly 
two-thirds of the population are 
Hindus and rather less than one-third 
are Muhammadans. The only other 
religions with more than a few thousand 
representatives are the Animistic, 
Christian and Buddhist. Apart from 
the great predominance of the two 
main religions, the most noticeable 
f eatm-es in the figures are the relatively 
more rapid growth of Muhammadans 
as compared with Hindus, the 
• Excludes 11,397 entered as "not returned." stationary condition of the Animistic 

population, and the great increase in the number of Christians. 

-The distribution of the above religions varies greatly in difierent parts 
of the Province, and for this reason, and also in order to ascertain the causes 
of the changes which have taken place, it is necessary to examine the statistics 
for individual districts. In this section the discussion will be mainly statistical, 
and all subjects of a more general nature, which cannot be compressed within 
fairly narrow limits, will be dealt with in the following separate sections, viz., 
Sects and Races of Christians, the Muhammadans of Bengal, Hindu sects and 
Godlings and Traces of Buddhism. 

269. It will be convenient to begin with the Animists. Animism is defined 

by Tiele as " the belief in the existence of souls or 
Animists. spirits, of which only the powerful, those on which 
man feels himself dependent, and before which he stands in awe, acquire the 
rank of divine beings, and become objects of worship. These spirits are con- 
ceived as moving freely through earth and air, and either of their own accord, 
or because conjured by some spell, and thus under compulsion, appear to men 
(Spiritism). But they may also take up their abode, either temporarily or 
permanently, in some object, whether living or lifeless, it matters not ; and this 
object, as endowed with higher power, is then worshipped, or employed to 
protect individuals and commun ities {Fetiehism)."* „____ 

* Outline of the Histpry of Ancient Eeligions, page 9. 



Belision. 


NUMBEKIN— 


1901. 


1891. 


Hindus 

BrahmoB 

Silths 

Jains 

Buddhists 

Parsis 

Musalmans 

Christians 

Jews 

Animists 

Confucians 

Others 


49,687,362 

8,171 

840 

7,831 

237,893 

25,495,416 

278,366 

1,916 

2,780,480 

178 

60 


47,821,881 

2,546 

417 

7,270 

194,717 

179 

23,658,108 

192,484 

1,448 

2,763,061 

32 


Total 


78,493,410 


74,631,943« 



152 CHAPTEB IV — RELIGION. 



The term embraces the various forms of belief of all the aboriginal 
tribes of India who have not yet come under the influence of Hinduism (includ- 
ing its off-shoots Buddhism and Jainism), Muhammadanism or Christianity. 
There is no regular creed amongst these vague, unformulated beliefs, but there 
is none the less a considerable general inter-resemblance. The following 
extract from my report on the Assam Census of 1891 seems to me to set forth 
the salient features of the forms of Animism generally met with in this part of 
India : — 

" There is a vague but very general belief in some one omnipotent being, who is well- 
disposed towards men, and whom, therefore, it is unnecessary to propitiate. Then come a 
number of evil spirits, who are ill-disposed towards human beings, and to whose malevolent 
influence are ascribed all the woes which afflict mankind. To them, therefore, sacrifices must 
be offered. These malevolent spirits are sylvan deities, spirits of the trees, the rocks, and 
the streams, and sometimes also of the tribal ancestors. There is no regular priesthood, but 
some persons are supposed to be better endowed with the powers of divination than others. 
When a calamity occurs, one of these diviners, shdmans or sooth-sayers,' is called on to 
ascertain the particular demon who is ojBEended and who requires to be pacified by a sacrifice. 
This is done, either by devil-dancing, when the diviner works himself into a paroxysm of 
drunkenness and excitement, and then holds converse with the unseen spirits around him, or 
by the examination of omens — eggs, grains of rice, or the entrails of a fowl. There is a 
profound belief in omens of all sorts ; no journey is undertaken unless it is ascertained that 
the fates are propitious, while persons who have started on a journey will turn back should 
adverse omens be met with on the way." 

370. The difficulty in obtaining a correct return of the number of Animists 
is two-fold. In tlie first place they themselves have no name for their religion, 
if such it can be called, and all that they can say is that they are not Hindus, 
Musalmans or Christians, and that they believe in the same things as the rest of 
their particular tribe. This difficulty was got over by directing that the name of 
the tribe should be repeated in the column of the schedule in which religion was 
recorded. The second difficulty was more serious. The dividing line between 
Hinduism and Animism is uncertain. Hinduism does not, like Christianity and 
Islam, demand of its votaries the rejection of all other religious beliefs ; and it will 
be seen further on that amongst many of the lower castes of Hindus the real 
working religion derives its inspiration, not from the Vedas, but from the non- 
Aryan beliefs of the aborigines. Hinduism is not so much a form of religious 
belief as a social organisation, and a man's faith does not greatly matter so long 
as he recognises the supremacy of the Brdihmans and observes the restrictions 
of the Hindu caste system. 

371. The way in which Hinduism is gradually attracting the non-Aryan 

„ tribes within its fold has often been discussed, and it 

CoNTEEsioNs TO Hinduism. • j. i- j. .i i • , . > " «v» iu 

13 unnecessary to refer to the subject at any length 

here. It will suffice to say that at the present time two great influences 
are at work. The first is the contempt shown, by the general body of Hindus 
for their aboriginal neighbours, and their refusal to have any dealings with 
them. They are spurned as unclean, and gradually come to share the feeling 
themselves and to take the superior Hindu at his own valuation. The other in- 
fluence, paradoxical as it may seem, is the cajolery of certain classes of Brahmans. 
Degraded members of the priestly caste wander amongst them in search 
of a livelihood. They commence by reading some religious book, and so 
gradually acquire an influence which often ends in their obtaining the position 
of spiritual adviser to the rude inhabitants of the village they have settled 
upon. In the Orissa States and the Chittagong Hill Tracts, Vaishnava Bairagis, 
more often than Brahmans, act as missionaries of a debased form of Hinduism* 
In this way the tendency is spreading, amongst even the wilder tribes, 
to call themselves Hindus. Thus in Singhbhum the Deputy Commissioner 
reports that some Hos "style themselves Hindus and profess to believe in the 
Hindu gods and goddesses. Some of them have taken to wearing the Br^hnia- 
nical thread." In parts of the Chota Nagpur States, certain Pans call themselves 
D^s and set up as twice-born Hindus, and in Baramba, many Kandhs and Savars, 
who were returned as Animists in 1891, claimed that' since then they had 
taken to Hindu forms of worship, and were in consequence allowed to be 
classed as Hindus. In Mayurbhanj some Santals have accepted the ministration 



♦ See, for example, Tribes and Castes of Bengal, volame I, page 173. 



DISTRIBUTION AND VARIATIONS SINCE 1891. 



153 



of Vaishnava preachers and now call themselves Hindus. One of the curious 
features of the movement inaugurated by the Kharwars or Santal revivalists 
was their leaning towards Hinduism. Occasionally, but very rarely, there is a 
reaction. Mr. Bompas tells me that at the present moment there is a movement 
of the sort in the Sonthal Parganas, where the women have broken their lac- 
bangles and taken once more to home-made cloth instead of the imported 
article. 

272. The instructions to the enumerators were to the effect that each 
„ person's statement as to his religion should be 

UnCBBTAINTY of the EETUBN. iJ-Ui.- i.-il- K 111 

accepted, but m practice this was oiten overlooked, 
and the census officers took it upon themselves to decide whether a man was a 
Hindu or not. Many held to the fiction that a man cannot, become a Hindu 
unless he is born one, and many others could not reconcile themselves to enter 
a man as a Hindu, merely because he said he was one, when it was apparent 
to all that in his customs and mode of life he still preserved much that was 
repugnant to Hindu ideas of purity and clean living.* Thus in the Sonthal 
Parganas the Deputy Commissioner writes : — 

"In some parts a good many Santals have been entered as Hindu by religion. This, 
I am afraid, depended largely on the idiosynoraey of the Charge Superintendent." 

The general tendency was to enter the various tribes as Animists in the 
places where they are chiefly found, and where they and their mode of life 
are familiar to all, and to show Ihem as Hindus in places at a distance from their 
tribal head-quarters, where they are not so well known. Thus, in the Sonthal~ 
Parganas, barely one-tenth of the Santdls were shown as Hindus, while in 
Malda two-thirds of them were thus recorded and in Dinajpur rather more than 
a quarter. More than 99 per cent, of the Oraons in Ranchi were entered as 
Animists, but barely one per cent, in Jalpaiguri.f 

273. According to the returns, the Animists are most numerous in Ranchi 

and Singhbhum, where nearly half the population 
DisTEiBUTioN on Akimists. ^^^ rotumed under this head. In the Sonthal Par- 
ganas and the Chota Nagpur States more than one-third of the inhabitants are 

Animistic and in Angul 



-~i MAPSHOWINeTOEDISTRIBUTIONOf 

ANIHIISTS IN BENGAL 









/'--^ L f^Js 




j«^^;?Clr 


^"Tp/r^^'^") 




\ /jt!aon.J^^\ 


:±Xp[ 






uou— tJS^^^^.-^,^ \ 






/ V 1 




"References 


W^ 




fR0M0TO5««CLNT >^ 




i> fl TO S •• 


" 




zx 


- 




■> S5TOS1 ■■ 


•• 




.. 44 " 


- 





more than a fifth. In 
all the other tracts of 
the Chota Nagpur 
Plateau the proportion 
is 8 per cent., except in 
Palamau, where it is 
only 4 per cent. In 
the rest of the Province 
the proportion of Ani- 
mists, according to the 
census figures, is gener- 
ally only nominal ; they 
are nowhere very num- 
erous, but the real pro- 
portion is higher than 
that indicated by the 
census, owing to the 
tendency of census 



officers above alluded to, to enter them as Hindus in places where they are not 
^^nV'lT Th„«. in Jalnaiffuri, where only 2 per cent, of the population has 



Thus, in Jalpaiguri, 



'''"^tCr;tuiiedrthe¥undrsrOrdon's,'and Santals would alone represent 
8 per'ceVt! of th^ .district population, Had_^they^^_l^een^d.tn^^^^^^^^ 



been 



Amm'ism and Hinduism in the proportion which is found to exist in the districts 
whence they chiefl y come. 

—.-^^^^^Z^rts 7 the -"^^;o7^^ -!« above 

referred to. and it was -'f ^ that tbe ceBS ,t^^^^^^^^^^ ^^ ^ ^.^^^ ^ ^^ 

ltJ!S^Tr^o,nInl the former L Hi^du., just because they may choose, to say they are. the returns 
are rendered ^correct." discrepancy in the case of Hindu and Animistic Oraons taken separately. 

* ^ ^^'Jran?s males greatly predX^^^^ and almost all were shown as Hindus, while then- wives 
ffiSrwrrtSd^f hom^were entered as Animists, 



15i 



CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



274. The practical concentration of the Animistic religions on the barren 
uplands of Chota Nagpur is due to the comparative inaccessibility and poverty 
of this tract. Successive streams of immigrants from the North- West poured 
down the course of the Ganges and spread over the level country on both sides 
of that great river, but the hilly tract beyond was left untouched. The original 
inhabitants of the hills and of the plains were doubtless closely allied, but 
while those of the hills were left to their own devices, their congeners in the 
plains were either subjugated, like the Musahars, or peaceably converted to 
Hinduism, like the Rajbansis, or driven back into the hills, like the Ordons and 
the main body of the Bhuiyas. It will be seen in the Chapter on Language how 
the Aryan dialects have supplanted the non-Aryan throughout the plains districts 
and are now slowly ousting them from their last strongholds in the hills, and the 
subversion of the earlier creeds has proceeded pari passu with the disappearance 
of the tribal languages. The only noticeable difference between the distribution 
of Animists and that of the non-Aryan languages, as shown in the map on 
page 314, is that the latter are found not only in the Chota Nagpur Plateau but 
also in the north-east and south-east of the Province, where they are mostly 
spoken, not by Hindus, but by Buddhists, who will be treated of in a subsequent 
paragraph. 

275 A comparison of the figures for individual districts discloses some 

curious variations between the results of successive 

Vaeiation since 1891. . T, • ,i i. n- ■■ i i ^°°'-\° 

censuses, especially m the case of Smghbhum in 
1881 and'Angul in 1891. These marked differences are explained by the diffi- 
culties attending a correct differentiation between Hindus and Animists and by 
the personal equation of the census staff. They show clearly that much reliance 
cannot be placed on the figures for any particular tract, but when this large 
Province is being dealt with as a whole, it may perhaps be assumed that indivi- 
dual peculiarities of treatment tend to cancel each other, and to leave the total 
for the Province practically unaffected. At the present enumeration for 
example, the Animistic population has gained by a more correct classification of 
religions in Angul and has lost by the indiscriminate entry as Hindus of the 
aboriginal emigrants to Jalpaiguri, Malda, and othea- districts. We may 
assume that on the whole, the classification of Animists is neither more nor 
less accurate than at the previous census. 

The aboriginal tribes are well known to be prolific and yet the persons 
whose creeds have been classed as Animistic have increased by only 1 per cent, 
since 1891. This is due, partly to a very large amount of emigration of persons 
belonging to the aboriginal tribes to Assam tea-gardens, and partly to numerous 
conversions to Hinduism and Christianity. The leaning of these rude tribes to 
Hinduism has already been discussed. The methods and success of the 
Christian propaganda will be dealt with further on. 

276. We have seen that nearly two-thirds of the whole population are 

DisTBiEUTioK o. HiNDtr.. ^^?*^"'- /^^y ,^T« most numerous in Bihar and 

Orissa and in a string of districts along the eastern 
edge of the Chota Nagpur Plateau and the western fringe of Bengal which 

^^ link these two tracts 

together. Their pre- 
dominacce is disputed 
in the Chota Nagpur 
Plateau by the Ani- 
mistic forms of belief 
already described, and 
in Bengal Proper by 
the followers of the 
Prophet. The propor- 
tion of Hindus steadily 
diminishes towards the 
east, until in Bogra it 
falls to 18 per cent. 
Ith Pabna, Kajshahi, 
Mymensingh, Noakhali 
and Chittagong, only 
about a quarter of the 



MAPsKawmeTHEOisiKiBuitDiior 
HINDUS w BENGAL 




DISTRIBUTION AND VARIATIONS SINCE 1891. 155 



inhabitants are Hindus, whereas in Bihar, if we exclude Purnea, where Bihar 
and Bengal meet, at least eight-ninths of the population acknowledge the 
supremacy of the IBrahmans. In Purnea, west of the Mahdnanda, two-thirds of 
the inhabitants are Hindus while to the east of it two-thirds are Muhammadans. 
In the north-east and south-east the rivals of the Hindus are neither Muham- 
madans nor Animists, but Buddhists. The greatest stronghold of Hinduism in 
this Province is Orissa, where more than 97 per cent, of the population profess 
this religion. 

277. In the Province, as a whole, the Hindus have increased by nearly 4 
-rr ,on. V^^ cent, during the decade. The improvement is 

VAEIATIONS SINCE 1891. ^ i. i. • il. rtl. j. VT ni x l ,i 

greatest m the Uhota Nagpur Plateau, where they 
are more numerous by 10 per cent, than they were in 1891. In West and East 
Bengal and in Orissa the increment is about 7 per cent., and it exceeds 5 per 
cent, in Central and North Bengal. In North Biha,r the Hindu population is 
stationary, while in South Bihar it has fallen by about 3^ per cent. 

The changes in the strength of any religion depend on three causes, viz., 
the reproductive power of its adherents, migration, and conversion. As an 
instance of migration we may refer to the movement of natives of Bihar 
and the United Provinces to Central Bengal, while as regards conversion, we 
have already seen how the non-Aryan tribes are gradually being enveloped 
in the folds of Hinduism. There is also a tendency on the part of this 
religion to grow at the expense of the small Buddhist population still surviving 
on the north-east and south-east outskirts of the Province. Thanks to the 
energy of its missionaries. Buddhism gained a much wider range than 
Hinduism has yet attained, and although it has gradually been supplanted by 
the latter in India Proper, it is still the religion of many on the borders" of 
this Province. But even here it is gradually being pushed back. In Nepal 
the Hindu religion, backed up by the ruling dynasty, is steadily gaining ground. 
In the Chittagong Hill Tracts the contest is more' even, but here too the 
victory will probably rest ultimately with the Brahmans. The following ex- 
tract from Mr. Risley's account of the Chakm^s is interesting as throwing light 
on the manner in which Hinduism is still attacking the retreating outposts of 
its ancient rival: — 

" The Ohakmas profess to be Buddhists, but during the last generation or so their practice 
in matters of religion has been noticeably coloured by contact with the gross Hinduism of 
Eastern Bengal. This tendency was encouraged by the example of E^j^ Dharm Baksh 
Khan and his wife Kalindi Eani, who observed the Hindu festivals, consulted Hindu astro- 
logers, kept a Chittagong Brdhman to supervise the daily worship of the goddess Kali, and 
persuaded themselves that they were lineal representatives of the Kshatriya caste. Some 
years ago, however, a celebrated Phoongyee came over from Arakan, after the Edja's death, 
to strengthen the cause of Buddhism and to take the Eani to task for her leanings towards 
idolatry. His efforts are said to have met with some success, and the RAni is believed to 
have formally proclaimed her adhesion to Buddhism." 

278. It would b'e interesting if we could form an idea of the extent to 
which Hinduism has gained during the decade by causes other than natural 
growth, but the subject is too complicated to enable even an approximate esti- 
mate to be arrived at. We know that there are about 130,000 more immigrants 
from the United Provinces than there were ten years ago, and it is probable 
that the majority of these are Hindus. The Animistic population of Bengal 
shows a growth of only 1 per cent., whereas, in the absence of emigration to 
Assam, and conversion to other religions within the Province, it would pro-; 
bably have grown by at least 12 per cent. The difference between this and the 
actual growth, or about 313,000, is due to emigration to Assam and conversions 
to Hinduism and Christianity. The latter religion has taken about 60,000, 
which leaves 253,000 to be accounted for by emigration and conversion to 
Hinduism. Unfortunately we have no means of ascertaining the proportion of 
the emigrants from Bengal to Assam who would have described themselves as 
Animists before they left theif homes. We have also no means of apportioning 
the emigrants to Burma between Hindus and Muhammadans. It may, 
however, be assumed roughly that, excluding gains by conversion from amongst 
the Animists and Buddhists, the increase during the decade would have 
approximated more nearly to 3| than to 4 per cent.* On the other hand there 

» The enumeration of Sikkim by religion has added 38,000 to the number of Hindus. 



156 



CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



has been some loss by conversions to Miihammadanism, and it will be seen 
further on that the Muhammadans have grown during the decade almost twice 
as rapidly as have the Hindus. How far this is- due to the conversion of 
Hindus, and how far to the greater fecundity of the Musalman population, will 
be discussed in paragraph 310. 

279. Prior to the enumeration of 1873 it was thought that Muhammadans 

were most numerous in Bihar, but it was then clearly 
established that this is by no means the case, and 
that theMusalmans of Bihar are greatly out-numbered by those of Bengal Proper. 
In East Bengal, two-thirds of the inhabitants, and in North Bengal nearly 
three-fifths, are followers of the Prophet, while in North Bihar less than a 

sixth, and in South 



DiSTEIBTJTION OF MUHAMMADANa. 



MAP SHOWING THE OlSTRIBUTIONOf 
MUHAMMADANS IN BENGAL 




of 



Bihar less than a 
tenth, of the popula- 
tion acknowledge his 
authority. The pro- 
portion of Muham- 
madans is smallest in 
Orissa, where it is less 
than 2A per cent. Of 
individual districts, 
Bogra, with 82 per 
cent., has the greatest 
proportionate Musal- 
man population; then 
follow Rajshahi with 
78, Noakhali with 
76, Pabna with 75, 
and Mymensingh and 
Chittagong with 71 
the places famous as 
the residence of the 



per cent.* None of these districts contain any 
the head-quarters of Muhammadan rulers. Dacca was 
Nav?d,bs for about a hundred years, but it contains a smaller proportion of 
Muhammadans than any of the surrounding districts, except Faridpur. Malda 
and Murshidabad contain the old capitals, which were the centre of Musalman 
rule for nearly 4| centuries, and yet the Muhammadans form a smaller 
proportion of the population than they do in the adjacent districts of 
Dinajpur, Rajshahi and Nadia. Bihar, Bhagalpur and Monghyr were 
important Muhammadan cities, but in spite of this the Muhammadans, comprise 
barely a tenth of the population of the districts in which they lie. This 
distribution of the Muhammadan population is significant in connection with 
the source from which it springs, which will form the subject of enquiry 
further on. 

280. The Muhammadans have increased by 7'7 per cent, during the last 

decade. The greatest expansion is in the Chota 
Nagpur Plateau, where it is 15'0 per cent., then 
follow East Bengal and Orissa with 12"3 and ll-O per cent., respectively. In 
South Bihar there has been a falling off of 3'0 per cent., in sympathy 
with a general decline in the population of that tract. The actual incre- 
ment in the number of Muhammadans is about the same as in the case 
of the Hindus, but the proportional growth is nearly twice as great. This 
is due in part to the local distribution of the two religions. The Muham- 
madans are most numerous in the progressive districts of East Bengal, while 
the districts of Bihar, which are for the most part stationary or decadent 
contain the greatest number of Hindus. But this is only a partial explanation! 



Vaeiation since 1891. 



* T.^"^ proportion of Muhammadans m some areas is obscured by great local variations within tho 
boundaries o± a district. We hare already seen how, in Purnea, two-thirds of the iohabitantg east of ihl 
Mahananda are Muhammadans and less than one-third in the tract west of that river. Similarly inRan^niir 
about three quarters of the residents of the Gaibandha subdivision, which adjoins Bogra and Mymensinnlh 
are Musalmans, compared with about three-fifths in the rest of the district. In the Sadar and H&aa^hl^l- 
subdivisions of Nadia, considerably less than half the population is Muhammadan, while in the north-n»»t 
6f the district the proportion rises to 70 per cent. The Narayanganj subdivision of Dacca is three-auartpr. 
Mundiumadan but in the rest of the district the proportion is less than three-fifths 



DISTRIBUTION AND VAEIATIONS SINCE 1891. 



157 





F£BCEtlTA.aB c? 




IB CREASE, 


Natttbai, Division. 




Hindus. 


Muaal- 
mans. 


■West Bengal 


+ 7-1 


+ 8-6 


Central 


+ 5-6 


+ i-5 


North „ 


+ 6'S 


+ 6-3 


Bast 


+ 6*9 


+ 12'3 


North Bihar 


+ O'S 


+ O'B 


South „ 


- S-6 


- SO 


Orissa 


+ 6-7 


+ 11-0 


Chota Nagpur Plateau ... 


+ 10-1 


+ lB-0 



Teas. 


Number of Christians. 


1872 

1881 

1891 

1901 


91,063 
128,134 
192,484 
278,366 



The Muhammadans have grown more rapidly than the Hindus in every Natural 

Division except North Bengal, where the rate is 
the same for both religions, and Central Bengal, 
where the Hindus have the advantage. In • 
both these cases the result is due entirely to 
migration. The immigrant population has 
grown very largely, and the great bulk of 
the new settlers are Hindus. In North 
Bengal, moreover, the enumeration of Sikkim 
by religion has added 38,000 persons to 
the Hindu and only 21 to the Muhammadan 

population. The reason why the latter should grow more rapidly than their 

Hindu neighbours will be discussed further on. 

281. The Christian community comprises Europeans and other foreigners, 

Eurasians and native converts. The total number 

HEISTIA.N8. ^£ Qiij,jgtians, who now considerably exceed a 

quarter of a million, has been growing rapidly during the last 30 years, 

and there are now three times as many as there 
were at the first census in 1872. The converts are 
most numerous in the Ranchi district, where three 
distinct missions are at work amongst the abori- 
ginal Mundas and Ordons, and there are now 
124,958 Christians compared with only 36,263 
in 1881. Calcutta comes next with about 38,000, but this number includes 
about 28,000 Europeans and Eurasians, and the total strength has not grown 
very greatly duriog the last 20 years. Then follow the 24-Parganas with 
about 14,000, Dacca with 11,500, the Sonthal Parganas with 10,000, and Nadia 
and Palamau with about 8,000 each. The only other districts where the 
number of Christians exceeds 4,000 are Darjeeling, Faridpur and Backergunge. 
The distribution by race and sect and the various missions at work will be 
noticed in the next section. 

282. The total number of Buddhists is 237,893, compared with 194,717 

at the last census. The increase is due partly to 

Btddhists. ^jjg inclusion of 20,544 Buddhists enumerated in 

Sikkim where there was no return of religions in 1891 : but there has also 

been a considerable increase in several districts, the figures for which are given 

in the margin. The Calcutta Buddhists are chiefly 
immigrant Chinamen. There is a small Buddhist 
colony in the Baramba State in Orissa, an 
interesting survival of the time when Buddhism 
was the predominanli religion in India. The 
persons in question are Saraks by caste and still 
inter-^mairy freely with the so-called Sar^ki T^ntis 
of the Moghalbandi, who now describe themselves 
as Hindus. This interesting community will be 

further dealt with in the chapter on Caste. 

It is well known that at the Council of Jalandhar, held by the Scythian 
King Kanishka about the end of the first century of our era, a split occurred 
amongst the Buddhists, some following the purer doctrine preached by Buddha 
himself with all the difficulties it placed in the way of attammg salvation, while 
others extended it to all and, by idealising Buddha and his attributes, gradually 
added new Buddhas and Bodhisats, who assisted m the work of salvation, and 
introduced numerous gods and demons as objects of worship. The former or 
southern school, contemptuously called by its opponents the Hinaydna, or Little 
Vehicle, is represented by the Buddhism of Ceylon and Burma, while the latter 
or MahlyAna, is the basis of Tibetan Lamaism and also of the Buddhism of 
Npnal Its gradual debasement in Tibet has been ably described by Colonel 
Waddell, and it was probably this form of Buddhism which prevailed in Bengal 
and gradually became more and more tinged with T^ntrik developments and 
corrupt, until at last it was driven out by the Hindu revivalists. 

283 The Buddhists enumerated m North Bengal are either natives of 
the Himalayan State of Sikkim, or immigrants from Bhotan, Tibet and Nepal. 





Number of Budd- 
hists in— 




1901. 


1891. 


Chittagong Hill Tracts 

Chittagong 

Darjeeling 

Jelpaiguri 

Backergunge 

Calcutta 

HillTippera 


83,137 
64,973 
64,044 
6,291 
7,220 
2,903 
6,999 


74,128 
61,615 
40,620 
2,609 
6,080 
2,199 
4,734 



158 



CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



The great maiority are Tibetans, Lepchas andMurmis. In Chittagong and 
the Chittagong Hill Tracts, those who profess this religion f^ mainly Maghs 
and Chdkmas, but there is also a fair sprink mg of Tipar^s (about 3,000) in 
the Hill Tracts, who described themselves at the census as Buddhists. In the 
Tippera State the Tiparas now call themselves Hindus; but this country was 
formerly a great Buddhist centre, and some sacred shrines there were yisited by 
the Tibetan traveller Buddha Gupta Ndth, who travelled m India in the 7th 

centu^ry^t j^.^.^^ ^^^ formerly supposed to be a comparatively recent ofE-shoot 

of Buddhism ; but modern research has shown that 
Jaihs. it ig quite as ancient as the latter, and was founded 

independently by a Kshattriya Prince, named Vardh am ana or Mahavira, who 
was born at Vaisali^, near Patna, about 599 B.C. He at first became a monk ot 
the order of Parsvandth, but subsequently left it and founded an order o± his 
own, one of the leading tenets of which was absolute nudity. He became 
known as a Jina, or spiritual conqueror, from which the term Jam is denved. 
His followers were most numerous in North and South Bihar, and came chieHy 
from the ranks of the Kshattriyas and Vaisyas. The artizan classes were but 
little influenced by his propaganda. He died about 527 B.C. About 200 years 
later a section of the Jain monks abandoned the habit of nudit;^, and this 
led to a schism, the two sects being known, respectively, as " Svetambara or 
clothed in white and '' Digambara" or naked (sky-clad). The former made 
a collection of sacred books about 300 B.C., which is still in existence, and has 
of late attracted the attention of Professor Buhler and other scholars.§ 

285. The chief point of difference between Jainism and Buddhism is that 
the former rejects the doctrine of Nirvana, and believes that when the soul has 
been delivered from the trammels of successive existences it begins a spiritual 
life in some indefinable mansion of the blessed. The Jains worship the saints 
who have attained this spiritual life. Chief amongst these is Parsvandth, whose 
order Mahavira originally entered, and who is regarded as the latter's im- 
mediate predecessor. His image is found in many Jain temples, and from him 
the sacred hill of Paresndth takes its name. Buddhism, says Dr. Hoernle, was 
more practical than Jainism, which was comparatively speculative and unen- 
terprising, and having an active missionary spirit developed into popular re- 
ligions in Ceylon, Burma, Tibet and other lands far beyond the borders 
of India. 

Jainism also differed from Buddhism in that it admitted its lay adherents 
into communion with the order ; devotional services were held for them, they 
were bound by vows, and rules were framed to regulate their position and 
conduct. They thus formed an integral part of the community. Buddhism, 
on the other hand, gave its lay adherents no share in the monastic organisation, 
and held no services for their benefit. Consequently when the Brahmanic re- 
vival of Sankar Acharjya came, and was followed by Muhammadau persecu- 
tion and the destruction of monasteries, Buddhism in India simply disap- 
peared. Jainism, on the other hand, still survives as the religion of many of the 
Baniya castes, who represent the ancient Vaisyas. Chief amongst these are 
Agarwdls (Digambari) and Oswals (Svetdmbari), though both castes include also 

*^Tlie Maghs of Chittagong consist o£ two classes: (a) descendants of Arakanese immigrants who 
came when Arakan was conquered by the Bunnese in 1785, These are the most numerous, especially in 
Cox's Bazaar : and (6) descendants of Magh women by Bengali fathers. These are called liajbansis or tiarua 
Maghs. , . . ^ 

t Tippera is mentioned by TarAnath as a place where, in his time, the Tantrik form of Suddhism was 
popular. 

t For a full review of recent discoveries Dr- Hoernle's able Presidential Address to the Asiatic Society 
of Bengal in February 1898 may be referred to (Proceedings, February 1898). The Jains themselvesJiaTe 
begun to interest themselves in their ancient history, and a society has been formed with the object of 
promoting a systematic investigation. 

§ Dr. Hoernle points out that neither Buddhism nor Jainism are religions in the strict sense of the 
word, but are rather monastic organisations of a type very common about the period when they were 
founded. Their rules and observances, and their tenderness for life and aversion to meat, are largely drawn 
from those of similar Brahmanic orgamsations, but the latter had gradually come to exclude all who 
were not brahmjns, and tbis led to opposition, as a result of which the non-Drahmanical orders discontinued 
the reading^ of the Vedas and were thus forced outside the pale of Brdhmanism. They did not represent 
a revolt against the tyranny of caste but only against the caste exclusiveness of Brahman ascetics ; caste 
as such was fully acknowledged by them. Lastly, the Buddhist or Jain priest only acted as the spiritual 
guide of his followers ; for their religious and ceremonial observances Brahman priests had always to b^ 
called in. 



BISTEIBUTION AND VARIATIONS SINCE 1891. 159 



many who are Hindus. It may be mentioned here that this religious schism 
seldom operates as a bar to marriage any more than do differences which are 
purely sectarian. The Jains themselves do not consider that they are a 
separate religious community, and at' the census many returned their religion 
as Hindu. The number of Jains shown in our returns is only 7,831 compared 
with 7,270 in 1891, but the true number is probably greater. 

280. The Brahmo Somaj, founded by Rd]& Ram Mohan Roy, is too well 

known to need detailed description. It is divided 
/ B HMOS. £jj^^ three sections, the Adi or 'original,' the 

Nababidhdn or ' New Dispensation ' and the Sddhdran or ' common ' Samdj, but 
all alike believe in the unity of the Godhead, the brotherhood of man, and direct 
communion with God in spirit without the intervention of any mediator. 
The differences which exist are ritualistic and social rather than religious. The 
A'di Samdj, or oldest section, is also the most conservative. While discarding 
all idolatrous forms, it follows as closely as possible the rites of Hinduism, and 
draws its. inspiration solely from the religious books of the Hindus, especially 
the Upamshads, and not from the Bible or Koran. It has only once allowed a 
non-Brd,hman to o6Bciate as its minister. Inter-caste marriages are not allowed, 
and a considerable agitation was raised when one of its Brahman members 
recently married the daughter of the Mahdraja of Kuch Bihar. In other respects 
the restrictions of the caste system sit lightly on the members of the 
Samdj, but they are particular to style themselves Hindus, and before the 
census of 1891 they submitted a memorial intimating their desire to be entered 
as Theistic Hindus and not as Brahmos. The leader of this section is 
Maharsbi Debendra Ndth Tagore. 

The Nababidhan Samiij, or Church of the New Dispensation, also known 
as the Bharatbarshiya Brahmo Samaj was founded by Keshab Chandra Sen. 
It is mote eclectic and has assimilated what it considers just not only in the 
Shastras, but also in the religious teachings of Christianity, Buddhism and Islam. 
The present leader is Babu Pratap Chandra Mozoomdar who, like Keshab, 
is a Baidya by caste. Inter-caste marriages, though not greatly disapproved 
of, are rare.* It is not clear how members of this communion would return 
themselves at the census. Probably many of them would prefer to call 
themselves Hindus, unless their caste happened to be a humble one, in which 
case they might describe themselves as Brahmos. 

287. The Sadh^ran Brahmo Samdj is the most advanced of these churches. 
It relies, like the Nababidhan, on the teachings of all religious systems, but is 
more uncompromising in its disapproval of ritual and set forms of worship. It 
rejects altogether the system of caste. It is also strongly opposed to the par da 
system, gives its women a liberal education and allows them an equal voice in all 
matters of church government. It freely permits inter-caste marriages not only 
in theory but in practice. Thus, a covenanted civilian who is a Brahman, has 
married the daughter of a Kdyasth; and the daughter of a well known retired 
civilian of the Eiyasth caste is married to a civilian of the Baidya caste. There 
are numerous similar cases. The members of the Sddhdran Brdhmo Sam^j, from 
being a religious sect, are thus gradually becoming a separate caste, recruited 
from a variety of different sources, but mainly from the ranks of the Brahmans, 
Baidyas and Kdyasths. Other castes of similar origin are by no means 
unknown in Bengal, but the Brahmos are far more select than their earlier 
prototypes. 

I'his section is uncompromising in its rejection of all the essentials of what 
is commonly regarded as Hinduism, and most of its members doubtless described 
themselves as Brahmos in the census schedules. It may, I think, be assumed 
that the majority of the 3,171 persons returned as Brdhmos at the census were 
members of the Sadharan Brahmo Samdj. The number is small but growing. 
In 1891 only 2,546 persons were returned as Brahmos, and in 1881 only 788. 
In spite of its numerical insignificance the community is very influential and 
it numbers amongst its members some of the best known men in the country. 
Most Indian gentlemen who have received an European education join 
this community, not so much perhaps on account of religious conviction as 

* It is, of course, well known that the founder gare his daughter in marriage tq the Maharaja of Kuch 
Bihar. 



160 CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



because of the freedom which it allows to them from the irksome trammels of 
caste and from the necessity of undergoing a ceremony of purification. 

288. The few persons returned as Confucians are Chinamen living in 
„ Calcutta. Confucius, or Kong-fu-tse, was a sage 

who laid down an elaborate moral code but predica- 
ted nothing regarding God. Confucianism is the State religion of China, It 
has little outward ceremonial, and the study, contemplation and performance of 
the moral precepts of the ancients constitute the chief duties of its adherents. 
Many of the most ardent amongst them profess to be Agnostics, but they often 
render to Confucius and to their ancestors homage very little short of worship.* 
Confucianism is thus not a religion in the ordinary meaning of the 
word, and although most Chinamen revere its founder, they generally, es- 
pecially in Central and Southern China, subscribe also to the teaching either of 
Buddha or of Lao-tse. The latter was a contemporary of Confucius. His 
system, known as Tao-ism, recognises the divinity of the five planets, as re- 
presenting the five elements of the earth. All the powers of nature are deified 
and many are symbolised by mysterious dragons. The priests of the cult 
deal largely in astrology and exorcism. Of the Chinese enumerated in Bengal, 
none returned themselves as Tao-ists, and the Confucians represent only one- 
thirteenth of the total number. The rest were all entered as Buddhists. There 
were no Confucians in the returns of the last census. 

Races and Sects of Christians. 

289. Of the total number of Christians, 27,489,t or 9*9 per cent., belong 
^ ^ to European and allied races; 23,114, or 8-3 ner 

Gekebal Disteib^tion by Eace. ^^^^_^ J^ Eurasians, and 227,7,63, or 8 1-8 per cent., 

are native converts. I have treated as Eurasians all persons who returned 
themselves as Anglo-Indian ; but even so, it is certain that the figures for 
Europeans include a good many persons of mixed descent. From enquiries 
made after the census it was found that in one district ^^ Dacca) 14 out of 63 
persons, who had described themselves as Europeans, were in reality Eurasians. 
If this represents the general proportion of Eurasians who were -wrongly 
returned as Europeans, the actual number of the latter would fall to 21,380, 
while that of the Eurasians would rise to 29,2234 

According to the birth-place statistics the total number of persons enu" 
merated in Bengal who were born in Europe, America, Africa, and Australia 
was only 14,070, and if an addition of 50 per cent, were made on account of 
persons of pure European parentage bom in India, the result would agree very 
closely with the figure obtained by deducting 23 per cent, from the total 
returned at the census. There is, however, no reason for taking the number of 
Indian-born Europeans as 50 per cent, of those of foreign birth, and it is 
probable that the actual number is considerably greater. The total number of 
Europeans and allied races includes 5,198 children under 15 years of age ; 
most of these must in any case have been born in India, and if so, the allowance 
of 50 per cent, would give only about 2,000 adult Europeans of Indian birth. 
However this may be, the return is clearly more accurate than that of the last 
census, when the Eurasians accounted for only 39 per cent, of the combined 
population of the two races, compared with 46 per cent, on the present occasion. 

The figures for Eurasians include 2,221 Feringis, all of whom were enu- 
merated in Dacca, Backergunge, Chittagong, and Noakhali. These claim to be 
the descendants of the Portuguese who infested the mouth of the Megna in 

* It has been said that the real religion of the Chinese as a nation is ancestor worship. From 
birth to death the chief aim of every Chinaman is propitiation of the dead. Whatever may be his 
nominal religion, his first care is to sacrifice to the spirits of his ancestors. There was a time in the 
history of the Eoman Catholic Missions in China when it was seriously debated whether ancestor worship 
should be permitted to the converts or not. It was urged in support of this strange proposal that 
the permission would enormously increase the number of converts, and that the Church could gradually 
be purged of the irregularity after it had assimilated the new material thus induced to accept its teaching. 

t Includes 1,081 Armenians. 

j It is doubtful if the general proportion of misdescription would be as high as it was in the case of 
Dacca. The return of Eurasian children in schools, for example, would probably be absolutely correct* 
and so would be that of the poorer classes of this community whose schedules were filled in, not bv 
themselves, but by the enumeraters. 



RACES AND SECrS OF CHEISTIANS. 



161 



EuBASIAIfS. 



S,A.CE. 



Aqe. 



0-15 



European British sub- 



Other Europeans 

Eurasians... 

Armenians 

Total 



Male. 



Pernale. 



2,316 
188 

3,650 
109 

6,158 



15-60 



2.324 

175 

3,859 

91 

6,449 



Male. 



Female. 



12,273 

1,189 

6,820 

440 

19,722 



5,122 

497 

5,552 



11,430 



,'60 and over 



Male. 



1,178 
213 



2,517 



Female. 



825 
113 

1,114 
64 

2,106 



JVoife.-Poringhia aie here excluded from the figures tor Eurasians. 

to the number who are volunteers, has 



ntz$\wo-tH"/s olTe f"*^ •''"*""^^-* ^^°"' ^^^^ ^^ *h« Europeans and 
290 -A r;?rffT;^''''^^'^"^w«^««"u°ierated in Calcutta 
290. A-ongstEuropeans thoseofBritishnationalitygr^a^preponderate, 
Nationality OF EuEOMANs. and represent 91 per cent, of the total t The 

are most numerous, then Fi3h L1 °.r*^T "f ^°"^^^*^a J' ^^^'^«- ^^ermans 
non-British EuronennT w«, ^ H'®'? Austrians. About half of these 

engaged inburer nlhTre^rrtr p'^ " ^'^'"**^' ."^^'^ *^^3^-^ -°«% 
of the Roman Cathblic and lSLvI \ T'^'l'^^';^^ ^^'^"^ ^'^ missionaries 

busings and some ottrelSret^^^^^^^^^^^ ''' ^'^^''^ '^ 

No useful purpose would be served by dwelling at any bn^th on the a.e 

^AaBA..s..o.EnH0P.A.sA.i, statistics of Europeans fnd EuVsS The pZ 

cipal fi gures are reproduced in the margin, and 
further details will be found in 
Table XVIIJ. It may be noted 
that of the European British 
subjects 73-4 per cent, are bet- 
ween the ages of 15 and 50, and 
that in the case of other Euro- 
peans, Eurasians and Armenians 
the corresponding percentage is 
71-1, 54-4 and 64-7, respectively. 
A special return of the males 
of these classes, with details as 

tostanceof the Military- Dep-^rtro;! T^^t EplrCSes^' *d» 
15 and over greatly outnumber the females ^ 

291. More than three-fifths of the Europeans belong to the Anglican com- 

less than one-tenth, but it isS^^^^^^^ 

some of those who described themselves as belonging to the Church of Cknd 
were brought up as Presbyterians Of the Eurasians, more than half are Roman 
Catholics and nearly two fifths belong to the Anglican communion. Less t W 
one^tenth belong o al the other sects combined. The propoiSn of Roman 
Catholics 18 swollen by the inclusion of the 2,221 Feringis, of whom all Tu^ 
194 belong to this persuasion. 

292. The collection of information regarding the sects of Native Christians 

was a matter of special difficulty, owing to the 
ignorance of the persons concerned and of the enu- 
merators who recorded the particulars regarding them. Some months before the 
census, enquiry was made in every district as to the missions at work and the 
villages in which converts were found. When the required particulars had 
been collected, the district officers were asked to see that special instructions en 
the subject were given to the supervisors and enumerators concerned. The 
heads of the various missions were at the same time requested to instruct their 
converts as to how they should describe themselves. In spite of this all sorts 
of strange entries were found. Some of these could easily be classified, with 
reference to the information collected before the census regarding local names 
of missions, but others could only be diagnosed after enquiry in the district. 
As an instance I may mention " Christian Wdst6."J Wastd seemed at first to be 
intended for Wesleyan, but enquiry on the spot showed that it v/as meant for 
University, and that the persons thus described were converts of the Dublin 
University Mission, Another difficulty was that many were merely returned 

* The chapter on Caste (paragraph. 696) contains a fuller description of this community. 

t Armenians are here left out of account. 

J The references to district officers with a view to local enquiry were very numerous, and were not by 
any means confined to the subject of sect. Doubtful caste entries were referred in great numbers and 
also doubtful combinations of age and civil condition, doubtful returns of language, occupation, religion and 
the like. Special enquiries were also made in the case of certain infirmities returned at the census. We 
made as many references as we thought that the district stafi would be nble and willing to cope' with, 
and in some cases the compliance with our numerous requests for information must have constituted a 
serious addition to the ordinary work of the district officer. But the amount of local investigation that 
was practical was by no means equal to the amount that was desirable, 

f TIT 



Sects of Nativb Christians. 



162 CHAPTEE IV — EELIGIOK. 



as "Christian" or as "Protestant." Enquiries were made in as many cases as 
possible and the return was corrected in accordance with the repljes received 
from the district officers. But enquiries could not always be made, and in the 
end about one Native Christian in every sixty had to be entered in the final 
tables as of sect unspecified * It is probable that the majority of these belonged 
to one or other of the various Protestant sects, but the total number is so small 
that it does not appreciably affect the details. 

So far as the returns go, about two-fifths of the Native Christians are 
members of the Roman Catholic Church; nearly one-third are Lutherans; 
rather more than a seventh belong to the Anglican communion, and nearly one- 
eleventh are Baptists. The other denominations combined account for only 
about one in every 19 Native Christians. 

293. The total number of Native Roman Catholics is now about 90,000, 

compared with 78,000 in 1891. There- has thus 
EoMiN Catholic Missios8, ^^^^ ^^ increase of 15 per cent. The great centre 

of Roman Catholic Missionary enterprise in this Province is the district of 
Ranchi, where its converts exceed 54,000 or about three-fifths of the total 
number in the Province. In this district and Palamau combined, there has 
been an increase of about 17 per cent, during the decade. The next most 
numerous community of Roman Catholic Native Christians is in Dacca, 
where the number exceeds 10,000; then comes Calcutta with 4,000, the 24- 
Parganas with 3,000 and Nadia and Champaran with 3,000 each. Although 
small in point of numbers, the Roman Catholic Mission in Champaran has 
an interesting history. There are two main centres, at Bettiah and Chuhri, 
The former was established about 1740 by Father Joseph Mary, an Italian 
missionary of the Capuchin Order, who was passing near Bettiah on his way 
to Nepal when he was summoned by Rdj^ Dhruva Shah of Bettiah to attend his 
daughter, who was dangerously ill. He succeeded in curing her, and the 
grateful Raja invited him to stay at Bettiah and ga^e him a house and about 
90 acres of land. The Chuhri Mission owes its origin to some missionaries 
who left Italy in 1707 for Tibet. Two reached Lhassa and were followed by 
others. They built a mission-house and chapel ; but as soon as the number of 
their converts began to increase, they incurred the ill- will of the Grand Lama 
and were forced to leave. They then settled in Nepal (in 1713) and established 
missions at Khatmandu, Patau and Bhdtgdon. They received grants of land 
from the New^r kingsf and prospered considerably until 1769, when the Newar 
dynasty was overthrown by the Gorkhas who were instigated by their priests 
to exterminate the Christians, Being warned in time, the missionaries, with 
sixteen families of their converts, fled to Bettiah and were given a small land- 
grant at Chuhri. Many of the present Christians in Chuhri are the descendants 
of the original fugitives from Nepal and still speak their old language, but they 
have intermarried to a considerable extent with the Native Christians of Bettiah 

294. The Lutherans have rather more than 69,000 converts compared with 

LHTHBRAN MxSSIO.8. Z^Lf'^^^- ^ '^l^' . 91^^^ '^^^'^''^ "^^^^^Cr aboUt 

57,000 are m Ranchi, 5,000 m the Sonthal Paro-anas 
3,500 m Smghbhum, nearly 2,000 in Manbhum and 1,000 in the Chota Nagpur 
States. Elsewhere the number is small and consists probably of emigrants from 
the places named above„ The mission in Ranchi, where most of the converts 
of this denomination are found, was originally known as Gossner's Mission 
and was started by six German missionaries in 1846, Twenty- three years 
later there was an unfortunate disagreement and the Mission was split up 
into two sections, the one enrolling itself under the Society for the Pro 
pagation of the Gospel and the other retaining the name of Gossner's Mission 
The progress made during the decade in the Ranchi District has been pheno- 
menal. X en years ago the number of converts was less than 19,000 and 
.f now three times as great. Some years ago the Mun das were greatly 
agitated by disputes with their landlords ; their cause was espoused by the 

a ir.\?2^^^hl'hZ t? "^T"^ Y^ ^^^^ ^°*«'«d ^"^ *^« schedules as " Christian." A still smaller number 
iUS'as^tSer'ro^t^T^^^^^^^ --' -^^ ^^^ orders of the Census Com^J^rn'e? 



RACES AND SECTS Ob' CHRISTIANS. 163 



missionaries and it is thought by some that political reasons may have arti- 
ficially augmented the number of professed Christians. Unlike the Hindus, 
the Mundas receive apostates from Christianity back into their community, and 
it is said that cases of backsliding are by no means rare. We must, therefore, 
wait for the next census before we can pronounce how far the wonderful 
progress made in the past decade is genuine and permanent. 

295. Although barely half as numerous as the Ijutherans, the Native 

^ ^ Christians of the Anglican communion are much 

CHtTECH OP EXGLAI.D CoNVBKTs. ^^^^ ^j^^j^ ^-g^g^^ ^^^^ ^^^ Proviuce, and many 

of them are drawn from classes amongst whom the obstacles, social and 
otherwise, which stand in the way of an open profession of Christianity are 
far greater than is the case with the primitive tribes of the Chota Nagpur 
Plateau. Their largest community is nevertheless in Ranchi, where it represents 
the seceders from Gossner's Mission, and numbers about 13,000 compared 
with rather more than 10,000 in 1891. The difference between the progress 
made by this mission and that attained by the Lutherans is very marked, 
but it must be remembered that there are 2i Lutheran missionaries compared 
with only three belonging to the Church of England, and that the former 
have seven out-stations in different parts of the district, while the latter are 
congregated at the district head-quarters. 

Next to Ranchi the Nadia District, with nearly 6,000, contains the largest 
number of Native Christians of this denomination. The Nadia mission was 
founded by the Church Missionary Society in 1831, fifteen years after 
the inception of the first mission in Burdwan. In 1838, when much relief 
was being given to sufferers from famine, 600 families, or about 3,000 souls, 
placed themselves under Christian instruction, and in the following year 900 
persons were baptised at the same time. These wholesale admissions to the 
Church included many who were not true converts, and for many years there 
was much trouble in consequence. Not only did many apostatize, but great 
difficulty was experienced in putting down caste distinctions ; and even to the 
present day many of the Native Christians of Nadia preserve the memory of their 
old social distinctions, and those from a high caste will not willingly associate 
or eat with others of low origin. The advent of a Roman CathoUc mission 
in the district has not increased the capacity of the missionaries to deal with 
these difficulties, but in spite of them the number of professed Christians of 
this persuasion appeals to have grown by about 19 per cent, since 1891. 
Amongst other important missions of the Church of England are those in the 
24-Pargflnas, Calcutta, and the Sonthal Parganas. 

296. The BaptistSj with a total strength of more than 19,000, have their 

head-quarters in the swamps of Backergunge and 
Baptists. Faridpur, where they have been working amongst 

the Chaaidals or Namasudras since 1834, and where the number of their converts 
now exceeds 7,000. The first Baptist Missi(m in this province was established 
in Jessore in 1802 but the number of Native Christians in this district who 
were returned as Baptists at the present census is only 276.* Next to Backer- 
gunge and Faridpur, Cuttack, with 2,000 Native Christians, is the most 
important centre of Baptist Missionary enterprise in this province. The mission 
there was founded in 1823. i ..,.„,, r., , 

297. The only other mission that need be mentioned is that oi the Church 

of Scotland whose missionaries are now at work in 
Pbesbtteeians. various parts of the Darjeejing and Jalpaiguri 

districts The work began in 1870, but it is only in recent years that marked 
nroffxess has been made. No natives of the Darjeeling district were returned 
as Presbyterians in 1891, and the total number of Native Christians was only 
298 Ai the present census the number returned as Presbyterians is 1,775, 
and' there are also 243 Protestants unspecified, who have been added to the 
Anfflican communion in accordance with the general scheme of classification, 
and 76 Native Christians whose sect was not returned. Most of these also 
were OTobably Presbyterians. If they be added the total comes to 2,091. 
According to the Church returns kept by the mission the number of converts 

* in Khulna; wHici was till recently p_art of jQSsore, there are about 1 000 Native Christians of the 
Bantist ^eioSion The Baptist Mission in Backergunge now has a rival m he Oxford Mission, which 
JlfstartdXre ih 1895 and hai gained about 500 converts, chiefly m the Bansal and Gaurnadi thanas. 

X 2 



164 



CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



is considerably ia excess of these figures, but the difference was brought to my 
notice at a very late stage when it was no longer possible to make proper 
enquiries into the cause of the discrepancy.* 

298. The classes most receptive of Christianity are those who are outside 

the Hindu system, or whom Hinduism regards as 
Oeigin op Native Cheisiians. Aggraded, and it is for this reason that the missions 
in the Chota Nagpur Plateau have so much greater apparent success than 
those in the plains, while of the latter, the most flourishing are those whose 
work lies amongst depressed communities such as the Namasudras of Backer- 
gunge and Faridpur. Amongst the higher Hindu castes, there are serious 
obstacles in the way of conversion, of which family influence and the caste 
system are the greatest. By accepting Christianity a man at once cuts himself 
off from all his old associations and is regarded, even by his own family, as an 
outcaste. Moreover, the prospect of such an occurrence is viewed with the 
greatest dread, and when any one is suspected of an intention to become a 
Christian, the greatest possible pressure is put on him by all his relations 
and friends, in order to make him change his mind. The inducements to 
conversion in such a case must be exceptionally strong, and the catechumen's 
character must be one of unusual independence, before he will take the final 
step and allow himself to be baptised. 

The influence of Christian teaching is no doubt far reaching, and there are 
many whose acts and opinions have been greatly modified thereby, but 
amongst the higher castes the number who at the present time are moved to make 
a public profession of their faith in Christ is very small. At one time there 
seemed a prospect of numerous converts being gained from the ranks of the 
educated Hindus, but the efforts of Keshab Chandra Sen and other eloquent 
Br^hmo preachers turned their thoughts and aspirations into another channel. 

299. The Christian Missions, or at least those of the Protestant faith, do 
not recognise caste, and in most parts Native Christians were simply entered 
as such without any reference to their origin. But amongst converts who 
had never been under the caste system, i.e., who belonged to tribes, not castes, 
there is no more objection to the retention of the old tribal name than there 
is to an Englishman distinguishing himself from a native of France. Amongst 
converts of this class, therefore, the tribe of origin was usually entered in the 
caste column. When this was done, the information was tabulated and the 
result has been noted, for the tribes concerned, in the column of remarks in 
Table XIII. The figures for some districts are very complete and here they fully 

confirm what has been said above 



Caste or Tribe. 


No. of 


Caste or Tribe. 


No. of 




persons. 




persons. 


Ranchi. 




Darjeeling. 




Ordon 


fi0,888 


Lepcha 


1,333 


Munda 


fil,60B 


Khamba 


198 


Kharii 


10,367 


K4mi 


136 


Bhnija 


. 833 


Murmi 


133 


Lohir 


501 


Gurung 


86 


Chik 


198 


Mangar 


84 


Pin 


132 


Limbn 


77 


Turi 


118 


New4r 


67 


Ahir 


234 


Orion 


60 


Knrmi 


29 


Sikkim, Ehotia ... 


43 


Asur 


23 


Damai 


33 


Santil ... ... 


16 


Munda 


14 


Eiiput 


13 


Gharti 


12 


Chamar 


8 


Khas 


11 


Unspecified 


362 


Sarki 


9 






Tibelan 


8 


Singhbhwn. 




Tikhi 


G 






Sharpa, Bhotia ... 


4 


Manda 


4,m 


Nepali 


212 


Ho 

Or&on 


901 
198 


Unspecified 


212 


Unspecified 


1,335 






Chota Naffpur 




Mymeniinghi. 




States. 








Munda 


644 


Giro 


989 


Orion 


346 


Unspecified 


a« 


Uuspecified 


862 







Note-— The mfcrmation tor Palamau and the Sonthal Par- 
garas was too incomplete to be recorded. It may be mentioned 
howeyer, that in Palamau, although " Native Christian" was the 
usual entry in the casle column, the language of 7,214 out of 7 897 
was Orion. 80 that most of the converts may be held to have been 
recruited from this tribe. 



* The Mission returns show 2,578 Natiye 
Dnars of Jalpaiguri. 



regarding the classes who are most 
readily brought under the influence 
of Christianity. In Ranchi, for ex- 
ample, of 125,000 Native Christians, 
all but a few hundred belong to 
one or other of the aboriginal 
tribes, Or^on, Munda and Kharia. 
The_ persons returned as of Loh^r 
origin, are doubtless recruits from 
the aboriginal blacksmiths, more 
correctly known as Kol Lohara, 
and the Ahirs are probably cattle- 
keepers of non-Aryan descent. The 
converts from the ranks of Hinduism 
are very few in number, and even 
these do not usually come from tie 
higher strata of Hindu society. The 
figures for Singhbhum and the Chota 
Nagpur States, though less complete 
than those for Ranchi, point clearly 
to the same conclusion. In Mymen- 
singh_ four- fifths of the Native 
Christians were returned as G^ros 



Christians ia Darjeeling, 200 in Sikkim and 366 in the 



MDHAMMADANS OP BENGAL. 165 



and it is probable that of the remaining fifth, who did not state their origin, 
many belonged to the same race. In Darjeeling, the greatest success is 
met with amongst the Lepchas, who constitute nearly half the total number of 
Native Christians in the district. Then follow the Khambus, another non- 
Hindu tribe, and then the Kamis, or blacksmiths of Nepal. The last mentioned 
are Hindus, but their social position is a very degraded one. 

As regards the inducements to conversion, Colonel Dalton writes as follows 
regarding the Oraons : — 

" If we analyse the -views of most of the Orfon converts to Christianity, we shall I think 
be able to discern the influence of their pagan doctrines and superstitions in the motives 
that first led them to become catechumens. The Supreme Being, who does not protect 
them from the spite of malevolent spirits, has, they are assured, the Christians under his 
special care. They consider that, in consequence of this guardianship, the witches and 
bhuts have no power over Christians ; and it is, therefore, good for them to join that body. 
They are taught that, for the salvation of Christians, one great sacrifice has been made, and 
they see that those who are baptised do not in fact reduce their live stoct to propitiate the 
evil spirits. They grasp at this notion ; and long afterwards, when they understand it 
better, the mystical washing away of sin by the blood of Christ is the doctrine on which 
their simple minds most dwell." 

The Muhammadans of Bengal. 

300. A Muhammadan gentleman has recently published a book in which 

he attempts to controvert the statement made by 
Origin of the MuHAMMiDANs ^j. Beverley in the Census Report for 1872 that 
OF Bbngal. "the existence of Muhammadans in Bengal is due, 

not so much to the introduction of Moghal blood into the country, as to the 
conversion of the former inhabitants, for whom a rigid system of caste discipline 
rendered Hinduism intolerable," and to prove that they are mainly of foreign 
extraction.* His argument may be summarised as follows : — 




tunes, . . - - 

ed the Diwani in 176-5. The Musalman rulers attracted their co-religionists 
from other countries. They appointed Saiads, Moghals and Afghans as their 
officers of State, and granted rent-free lands to men of learning and piety. lu 
spite of numerous resumptions numbers of such grants are still extant, chiefly 
in the Rarh country, and many parganas and villages still have Persian 
names showing that they once formed part of estates owned by Musalmans.f 
Their ' armies were also composed of foreigners who likewise settled in the 
country. Bengal was, moreover, a great asylum for Muhammadan refugees 
from Upper India, especially during the time of the independent kings (1338 to 
1576 ). At the downfall of the Ghori dynasty and during the reign of 
Muhammad Tughlak, numerous families sought shelter in Bengal. In Akbar'a 
reign, many religious teachers were deported to this province. Large numbers 
again were attracted by the wealth and fertility of the country. Those who 
came remained as permanent settlers, and it is from them that the present 
Muhammadan population is chiefly descended. The Musalmans are far more 
prolific than the Hindus, and it is, therefore, not surprising that their 
descendants should now outnumber the indigenous population. 

301. It was never intended by Mr. Beverley to deny that many of 
the leading Muhammadan families can trace their origin to foreign sources. 
This is admitted by all. The Nawdb Bahadur of Murshidabad, for instance, is 
a Hasan-ul-Husaini Saiad, and there are in most districts several well known 
fainilies of foreign descent who have preserved the purity of their blood by 
refraining from intermarriage with families of more dubious ancestry.J It is 
also beyond doubt that owing to the Muhammadan law of inheritance and other 
causes many families of foreign origin have gradually sunk and become merged 
in the general mass of the population, and that the numerous soldiers of fortune 

* .. rpi^g Origin of the Muhammadans of Bengal " by Khondkar Puzli Eubbee ; Messrs Thacter, Spink 

* *^*i'rw«f nkS" (1214-27) Nasir-ud-din (1426-57) and Husain Shkh (1498-1621) are specially men- 

T walJd^-uu-ux^ V fiio sotHement of noble or pions Mnhammadans. 

^'"'^t MoSfSeToTthlfcat'egoS^a^^^^^^ Aans o'r Saiads. Very few call themselves Shekhs. 



166 



CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



^3= ~ 

Locality. 


Number of 
Muhammadans, 


Proportion per 
10,000 
population. 


Punjab 

United Provinces 

Bombay (with Bind.) ... 

Madras 


14,141,122 
4,567,296 
1,835,037 
2,477,610 


6,261 

1,796 

1,389 

641 


BENGAL 


35,4,95,416 


3,248 


North Bihar* 
South 

■West Bengal 
Central Bengal 
North Bengal 
East Bengal 


2,221,942 
744,608 
1,084,820 
8,773,821 
6,876,408 
11,220,427 


1,621 
966 
1,317 
4.875 
6,873 
6,617 



and their followers who once found a livelihood in Bengal must have left chil- 
dren behind them whose descendants are still alive. This, however, does 

not in any way account for the fact that 
there are more than 25 millions of Muham- 
madans in JJengal, or explain their local 
distribution. In Bihar, which first came 
under Muslim rule, the proportion of 
Muhammadans is far smaller than it is 
in Bengal Proper, and although in the 
latter tract, Muhammadans are numerous 
in the neighbourhood of the old capitals at 
Gaur, Panduah, Rajmahal and Murshid- 
abad, near which most of the land grants 
.ExdudesKishanga.ni.subdivisi<,noiPttmea which lies are fouud, they are far less 80 than in 
EastofMahinanda. Eastem aud N.orthem Bengial, whither 

the stream of immigration must have been comparatively thin and attenuated. 
Even near the old capitals the Muhammadan settlers always sought the higher 
levels, and they would never willingly have taken up their residence in the 
rice swamps of Noakhali, Bogra and Backergunge. The number of old 
Muhammadan families is very small in East and North Bengal, and yet it is 
there that the Muhammadans as a class are more numerous, not only than 
in any other part of Bengal, but than in any other part of India. Again, the 
early invaders were chi«fly Pathdns, not Arabs, and yet the Muhammadans of 
Bengal who call themselves Shekh outnumber those who profess to be Pathans* 
in the ratio of 50 to 1. The number of Moghals in this Province is quite 
insignificant, but that of soi-disant Shekhs, is more than twenty times as great as 
the estimated population of Arabia.f Many of these 'Shekhs,' moreover, have 
only recently begun to claim this appellation. They were formerly known as 
Atraf in South and as Nasya in North Bengal ; the latter word is still commonly 
used by outsiders, thoug^h the people concerned now prefer to describe themselves 
by a more j pretentious name. 

The small extent to which Muhammadans bulk in the population when 
their numbers are not added to from outside is shown by the fact that in Orissa, 
the last stronghold of the Afghdns in this Province, wh-ither they fled after 
Akbar defeated them in Bengal, and where they were granted extensive jagirs, 
the proportion of Muhammadans to the total population is only 2| per cent. 

302. Mr. Abu A. Ghaznavi, a leading Muhammadan gentleman of Mymen- 
singb, who has prepared an excellent account of the Muhammadana of that 
district, and who is a strong supporter of the theory of the foreign origin of the 
Muhammadans, admits that local converts bulk largely in the total. His con- 
clusion is that "roughly speaking 20 per cent, of the present Muhammadans are 
lineal descendants of foreign settlers, 50 per cent, of them have an admixture of 
foreign blood and the remaining 30 per cent are probably descended from Hindu 
and other converts." In another part of his essay, Mr. Ghaznavi makes some 
observations which seem to point to a larger proportion of local converts than 
the above estimate would indicate. He says : — 

" Besides the few families of unquestionable foreign extraction there are other families 
in considerable numbers who have an admixture of foreign blood in their veins. There are 
22 distinct villages where most of their families reside." 

There are more than 2| million Muhammadans in Mymensingh, and nearly 
10,000 villages. The writer seems to be referring only to the Tangail sub- 
division of the district, but even so the Muhammadans residing in twenty-two 
villages can form but a microscopic proportion of the total Muhammadan 
population. 

* The persons returned as Pathans and Moghals are less than 43i,000 and 19,000 respectively. 

The fact that the speech of the Muhammadans differs slightly from that of the Hindus is sometimes 
brought forward as a proof of their foreign origin, but this is really no test. All Muhammadans look on 
Ar«bic as their sacred language and they interlard their conversation with any Persian or Arabic words they 
can pick up from their Mullahs or froni their religious books. The grammar remains Bengali and it is only 
some of the Tooableij which are changed. The better educated converts often deliberately abandon their 
native language. The Garpeda Uhuiyas of Balasore furnish an illustration of this. They are descended 
from a Krahman and the females are still so far imbued with Hindu prejudices that they abstain from beef. 
But they have completely given up the use of Oriya and now speak Hindustani even in the family circle, 

t According to the Statesman's Year Book fr.T 1901, page 1127, the population of Arabia is estimated 
to be 1,063,000. 



MUHAMMIDANS OP BENGAL. 167 



Mr, Ghaznavi's essay was one of a series wMch I collected from all the 
districts in tbe Province. The almost unanimous conclusion of all other report- 
ers in Eastern and Northern Bengal was that the great bulk of th« Muham- 
madan population is there descended from local converts. Another writer from 
Mymensingh (also a Muhammadanj expresses the opinion that the local 
Muhammadans " are chiefly descendants of local converts," and in the report 
from Bogra it is stated that:— 

" I have on many oocasiona seen Muhammadans whose features are identical with those 
of members of the Kooh caste with a decided Mongolian expression." 

The survival of Hindu names and Hindu superstitions is constantly dwelt 
on in these reports but this subject will be adverted to in more detail furttier on.* 

303. The above reports refer to the general character of the Musalman 
population in most parts of East and North Bengal. There are occasional 
exceptions, e.g. in 'Chittagong, where there was an old Arab settlement of 
traders and adventurers.f Mr. Allen notices this in his Settlement Report 
where he says that :— 

" The high cheek bones, hook noses and narrow faces of many of the inhabitants of 
Ohittagong proolaim their Arab origin. Again the muscular, bull-necked, strong-featured 
and thick bearded dweller on the chars is a verj different creature from the fleshless, feature- 
less, hairless inhabitant of the interior of the district. These differences are racial, the former 
being descendants of soldiers of the Moghal armies while the latter are probably of mixed 
origin." 

And even in places where the general appearance of the Muhammadans 
most closely resembles that of their Hindu neighbours, there are often cases 
of atavism, where the full eye, Semitic nose, high stature and strong beard show 
unmistakeable traces of foreign blood. It is not contended that even in Bengal 
Proper the ordinary Muhammadans are all of purely Indian descent, but it is 
certain that, of the total number, those who are wholly Indian or in which 
the Indian element greatly preponderates, form by far the largest proportion. 

bOfd. In this connection it is important to notice the opinion of that able 

and close observer, Brian Hodgson. Speaking of 

" In a word Visva Singh with all the people of condition apostatised to Hinduism ; the 
country was re-named Bihar ; the people Rdjbansi j so that none but the low and mean of thia 
race could longer tolerate the very name of Kooh, and most of them being refused a decent 
status under the Hindu regime, yet infected like their betters, with the disposition to change, 
very wisely adopted IsMm in preference to helot Hinduism. Thus .the mass of the Eoch 
people became Muhammadans." 

Buchanan Hamilton, an -equally capable judge, was of the same opinion:-^ 

"Although the followers of the Kor£n form tbe largest proportion of the inhabitants of 
this district (Eangpur), there is little reason to suppose that many of them are mtTuders. 
They seem in general, from their countenances, to be descendants of theorigmal mhabitants. a 

The above extracts refer to the origin of the Muhammadans of North 
Bengal Dr. Wise has dealt with the subject for Dacca and the neighbouring 
districts, and his remarks Are so complete that I may perhaps be pardoned for 
giving a somewhat lengthy extract from them,|| 

" The enthusiastic soldiers, who, in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, spread the 
faith of Islam among the timid races of Bengal, made forcible conversions by the sword, 
and, penetrating the dense forests of the Eastern frontier, planted the crescent m the villages 
of Svlhet • Tradition still preserves the names of Adam Shdbid, Sh^^h Jal^l Mujarrad, and 
Kdrfdrma's^hib, as three' of the^ most successful of ihese enthusiasts. ,.,.,. 

As early as AD. 1S38 a Muhammadan King ruled over the Eastern districts from 
Sutindrgaon, and for a century and a half that «ity-was the provisional residence of the rulers 

* THssometintesdeniedrthattlie praralenee of Hindu sapeKtitions is a proof of the Hiadu origin of 

* It IS sometuaBB aemc equally well be due to the religious torpor 
the P«°P^^„^°imIdans wmSl' pTev^HedTt the beginning of British rule. This might possibly explain 
amongst the f^"^*'".'^"'**^twimrt?inrarfi in the minoritv. but it could never do so where they form the 
the facts in places where ^^f^^^lZ-^^'^^Z-TSIi^ affect each other to some extent, but a atrong 
bulk of the PoP-^l^tion. l^^ ^[°{^^%°^^^r^^^v^^, way before a tolerant, amorphous and polytheistic 
monotheistic reWnhke^ha^^^^^ ^ woien, who in this country are always the most 
rser^lt^t riot SSrs, who-are chUy inauenced by Hindu idea.. 

t J.A.8 B., 18?3, Pt. I. page m. 
-J Bstavs on Indian Subjects, Vol. 1, page, 108. 

r Ihe feainXs IfS'e"' &, c«nmunicated by Mr. Bisley from Dr. Wise rpapers to the 
Jovial of The ITiatic Society of Beugal, 1891, Pt. HI. page 28. 



168 CHAPTER IV — ^RELIGION. 



of Bengal. Although situated on the borders of the Empire, and surrounded by brave and 
aggressive races, Sunnfirgaon attracted crowds of holy men, whose mouldering tombs still mark 
the site of the ancient city. From it was summoned the preceptor, who trained J al41uddin 
in the doctrines of his intolerant creed, and to its families of Khw4nd-kar8, Eastern Bengal 
looked for its supply of Muhammadan instructors. During the five centuries and a half of 
Muhammadan rule in Eastern Bengal, we only hear of one wholesale persecution of the 
subject Hindus, and that was waged by Jaliluddin, from A.D. 1414 to 1430. The only 
conditions he offered were the Koran, or death ; and it is said that rather than submit to such 
terms, many Hindus fled to K^mrup and the jungles of Assam and Xachhar, but it is 
nevertheless probable that more Muhammadans were added to Islam during these seventeen 
years than in the next three hundred. 

In Muhammadan histories no mention Is made of any large Muhammadan immigration 
from Upper India ; and we know that in the reign of Akbar the climate of Bengal was 
considered so uncongenial to the Moghal invaders, that an order to proceed there was 
regarded as a sentence of banishment. The Viceroys and nobles governing Bengal amassed 
wealth rapidly, and returned to spend it in the luxurious places of Delhi and Agra, while 
only a few officers and private soldiers, having married into native fanoilies, remained and 
settled in their new homes. While, therefore, each seat of Government, and each Military 
Station, was in early times more or less a centre of missionary agitation, we find another 
agency from across the seas working towards the same ends, uninfluenced by the policy of the 
Delhi Court. On the South-Bastern frontier of Bengal, a hardy and enterprising class of 
Muhammadans have been settled from the earliest historical times ; and long before the first 
European landed at Chittagong, Arab merchants carried on an extensive and lucrative trade 
with its inhabitants, and disseminated their religious ideas among the people. How or when 
the dwellers on the coast became Musalman is unknown, but when Barbosa visited 
Bengal at the beginning of the sixteenth century, he found the inhabitants of the interior. 
Gentiles, subject to the King of Bengal, who was a Moor ; while the seaports were inhabited 
by Moors and Gentiles. He also met with many foreigners, both Arabs, Persians, 
Abyssinians and Indians, and adds, " Every day many Gentiles turn Moors to obtain the 
favour of the King and Governors." Caesar Frederick and Yincent Le Blanc, who were in 
Bengal about 1570, also inform us that the island of Sandip was then inhabited by Moors. 
In the sixteenth century, therefore, Chittagong was a centre from which an unceasing 
propagandism was carried on. 

Wherever Muhammadan rule existed, slavery was developed, and during the centuries 
of misrule and oppression, through which Bengal passed, slavery was accepted by the Hindus 
as a refuge for their troubles. Bengal has for its encouragement of slavery always possessed 
an unenviable notoriety, and the Delhi Court obtained, not only its slaves, but also its 
eunuchs, from the villages of Eastern Bengal. The incursions of Aseamese and Maghs, 
the famines, pestilences and civil wars impoverished and hardened the people and drove them 
in sheer desperation to sell their children as Musalman slaves. The treatment of these 
slaves was humane, and their position comparatively a good one, as they were allowed 
to marry, and their families, supported by the master, added to the number of Isldm. 

Stories of forcible conversion, such as the following, are however narrated by the 
Muhammadans themselves, without any feelings of shame or astonishment. While the 
Muhammadan population was still scattered, it was customary for each householder to hang 
an earthen water-pot (badana) from his thatched roof, as a sign of his religious belief. 
One day a Maulavi, after some years' absence, went to visit a disciple, who lived in the centre 
of a Hindu village, but could not find the " badand." On enquiry he was told that the 
Musalman villager had renounced his faith and joined an outcast tribe. On his return 
to the city, the circumstances being reported to the Naw^b, a detachment of troops was 
ordered out, the village surrounded, and every person in it compelled to become Muhammadan. 

Another class of Hindus voluntarily turned Muhammadans, as the only means of 
escaping punishment for murder or adultery, as this step was considered full atonement for 
either crime.* 

In later times this compulsory system was still further extended. The tyrannical 
Murshid KuH Khdn enforced a law that any Amal, or zaminddr, failing to pay the revenue 
that was due, or being unable to make good the loss, should, with his wife and children, be 
compelled to become Muhammadans. Furthermore, it was the. common law that any Hindu 
forfeiting his caste by a breach of regulations could only be reinstated by the Muhammadan 
Government, and if it refused to interfere, the delinquent remained, an outcast, ultimately 
taking shelter in the ranks of the Faithful." 

305. But the most convincing testimony is that afforded by the exact 

measurements carried out by Mr. Eisley. The 
^^^^^'^^^°^°'^^™'^^^ coNCLTT- average Cephalic index (proportion of breadth of 

head to length) of 185 Muhammadans of East 
Bengal is almost identical with that of 67 Chanddls. The nasal index (propor- 
tion of breadth of nose to height) of the Muhammadans was greater than that 
of the Chandd.l6 but not very different from that of the Chandala' half-brothers, 
the Pods, and in any case a broad nose is characteristic of the Dravidian 

* "Bernier " Vol. 1, 144. " Voyages de Le Goowz," p. 157. 



MDHAMMADANS OF BENGAL. 169 



rather than of the Aryan and Semitic types. These measurements show 
clearly that the foreign element amongst the Muhammadans of East Bengal is 
very small. The author of the book already referred to has protested strongly 
against the manner in which the subjects for measurement were chosen, i.e., 
against the selection of ordinary cultivators and the exclusion of all Muham- 
madans of birth, but his protest seems to be based on a misunderstanding. 
The object of the measurements was to ascertain the affinities of the low class 
Muhammadans of East Bengal who form the great bulk of the Muhammadan 
population of that part of the Province. There is no question as to the foreign 
origin of many of those of the better class ; the difference between the coarsb 
features and dark complexion of the ordinary villagers and the fair skin, and 
fine features of some of the gentry is apparent to all, and it was precisely foi? 
this reason that instructions were given to exclude the latter from the 
operations of the Anthropometric survey.* There have been no measurements 
of the Muhammadans of North Bengal, but there seems no reason to doubt that, 
if they could be taken, they would fully confirm the popular view that they are 
for the most part very closely allied to the Rdjbausis amongst whom they live 
and whom they closely resemble in feature. 

306. It seems to me that there can be no doubt as to the local origin of 

most of the Muhammadans of East and North 

EsTiMATB OF pEopoBTioN OF Bengal. lu othef parts of the Province also the 

MnHTM"M.i,Aro. CLT '^' general opinion is that the lower classes of Muham- 

madans are recruited mainly from local converts. It 
is impossible to form an exact estimate of the relative strength of the two 
elements, the Indian and the foreign, but it may be said generally that almost the 
whole of the functional groups, such as Jolaha and Dhuni^, throughout the Pro- 
vince, the great majority, probably nine-tenths, of the Shekhs in Bengal Proper, 
and a large proportion of them, possibly half, in Bihar are of Indian origin. 
The foreign element must be looked for chiefly in the ranks of the Saiads, 

Pathans and Moghals. Even here there are many 
who are descended from Hindus, and it will be seen 
in the chapter on Caste that high caste converts are 
often allowed to assume these titles and, in some 
cases, to intermarry with those who are really of 
foreign descent. Their number, however, is pos- 
sibly only a small proportion of the total and may 
be neglected. If the above estimates be taken 
as a basis, it would appear that the strength of the 
foreign element amongst tlie Muhammadans of 
Bengal cannot, at the most, exceed four millions, or 
say, one-sixth of the total number of persons who profess the faith of Islam. 

307. It has already been noted that the affinities of the Muhammadans of 

East Bengal seem to be with the Pods and 
Classes jEOM which convbbts (jhandals and those of North Bengal with the Raj- 

bansis and Koches. The conclusion is based, not 
only on their striking physical resemblance to their neighbours, but also on the 
fact that the proportion of Hindus of other castes in these parts of the country 
is, and always has been, very small.f The main castes are the Rdjbansis 
(including Koches) in North Bengal and the Chandals and other castes of non- 
Aryan origin in East Bengal, so that even if the different groups yielded converts 
in equal proportions, the absolute number of converts from such castes would 
be much greater than from others. But, except in the case of forcible conver- 
sion, it' is not likely that the proportions were at all equal. The Musalman 
religion, with its doctrine that all men are equal in the sight of God, must 
necessarily have presented far greater attractions to the Chanddls and Koches, 
who were regarded as outcastes by the Hindus, than to the Brahmans, Baidyas, 

• It would be most interesting if a second series of measurements could be taken for the better classes 
of Muhammadans. .Nothing would more clearly bring out the difference between their orii;in and t\at of 
their co-religionists of lower rank. 

t The Koches are generally supposed to have spreadMn any numbers only as tar westwards as the 
Mahananda which runs through the Purnea district East of that river, where the bulk of the population 
is Eoch, no less than two-thirds of the population are Muhammadans, while to ihe west of it where 
the Koch element is weak, less than one-third of the population was returned under this relip,ion. This too 
iu spite of the fact that the old Muhammadan capital in Puruea lay in the centre of the latter tract. 



Ea.cg. 


Ndmbee. 


Saiad, 

Pathan 

Mosfhal 

One-tenth of Shekhs 

in Bengal Proper. , 
H alf of ditto in rest 

of Bengal. 


' 236,468 

423,740 

18,678 

1,952,723 

1,092,976 


Total 


3,724,584 



170 CHAPTER IV — RELIGIOy, 



and Kayasths, who in tli6 Hindu caste system enjoy a position far above their 
fellows. The convert to Islam could not of course expect to rank with the 
higher classes of Muhammadans, but he would escape from the degradation which 
Hinduism imposes on him ; he would no longer be scorned as a social leper ; 
the mosque would be open to him ; the Mullah would perform his religious 
ceremonies, and, when he died, he would be accorded a decent bilrial. The 
experience of the Christian missionaries in Bengal at the present day points 
to the same conclusion. Converts from the higher Hindu castes are rare, and 
it is amongst the non-Aryan tribes of the Chota Nagpur Plateau and North 
Bengal, and amongst the Chand^ls of Backergunge, that the greatest success 
is met with. 

It is not contended that the higher castes did not contribute their quota, but 
it was undoubtedly a comparatively small one,* and obtained usually by force or 
accident, rather than by a voluntary adhesion to the tenets of the Koran. This 
seems clearly indicated by the history of Muhammadan families of known Hindu 
origin. The Piralis, for example, became Muhammadans because they were out- 
casted on account of having been forced to taste (or smell) forbidden food cooked 
by a Muhammadan, and they still retain many Hindu beliefs and customs.f The 
Eajas of Kharagpur were originally Khetauris, and only became Muhammadans 
because, after being defeated by one of Akbar's generals, the acceptance of Islam 
was made a condition of being allowed to retain the family estates. J The pre- 
sent E^ja of Parsouni in Darbhanga is descended from Raja Purdil Singh, who 
rebelled against the Emperor and became a Muhammadan by way of expiation. § 
The family of Asad AU Khan, of Baranthan in Chittagong, is by origin a branch 
of the Srijukta family of Naopara. Their ancestor, Syam Rai Chaudhuri, was 
deprived of his caste by being forced to smell beef and was fain to become a 
Muhammadan. Jadu, the son of Rajd Kans, the only Hindu king of Bengal, 
embraced the Muhammadan religion in order to be allowed to succeed his father. 
In Backergunge many Hindus became Musalmans after the Maghs had passed 
through their houses and so caused them to be outcasted.|| 

308. This leads to the question how far the conversion of Hindus generally 

was voluntary and how far it was due to force. The 

ETBODs OP ooNTEEsioN. Moghals wcTo 38 a rule, tolerant in religious matters, 
but the Afghans who preceded them were often very fanatical. It does not 
appear, however, that the Afghan rulers of Bengal often used force to propagate 
their faith, and the only organised persecution of the Hindus is that of 
Jalaluddin, mentioned by Dr. Wise, who is said to have offered the Kor^n or 
death, and who must have effected wholesale conversions.^f But although therd 
was no general attack on the Hindu religion, there are numerous traditions 
of conversions on a large scale by enthusiastic freelances, such as the renowned 
3hah Jalal of Sylhet. In Mandaran thana in the Arambagh subdivision of 
Hooghly, where the Muhammadan population preponderates over the Hindu, 
there is a tradition that Muhammad Ismail Shah Ghdzi defeated the local 
Raja and forcibly converted the people to Islam. These traditions are not con- 
^rmed by history, but history tells us very little of what went on in Bengal 
during the reigns of the independent kings, and, when even the names of some 
of them are known to us only from the inscriptionsion their coins, while there 
ip no record whatever of many of the local satraps, it is not to be expected 



* It will be seen, moreorer, further on, that the converts from the higher castes do not usually assume 
the designation of Shelsb- ' 

t Some only of the Piralis are Muhammadans. Others have succeeded to a certain extent in recover- 
Jng their ori^nal caste and have remained Hindus. They are named after Pir Ah the dewan of Khan Jahan 
All or Ehanja ^li who ruled in the south of Jessore about four centuries ago. Pir Ali, whoso proper 
name was Muhammad Tahir.was a Srahman apostate, and. like all renegades, he probably proved a 
worse persecutor of his origiaal faith than others wko were Muhammadans by birth. Very little is 
known of Pir Ali, but a good deal of information regarding his master will be found in Sir James 
Westland's ' Jessore,' pages 11 to 22, 

t Statistical Account of Monghyr, page 179. 

§ It would be interesting to carry this enquiry further and to trace the cause of conversion in other 
families of known Hindu origin, such as the Dewan families of Pargana Sarail in Tippera, and of Haibat- 
nagar and Jangalbari in Mymensingh, who were formerly £rahmans, the Pathans of Majhouli in Darbhanga, 
whp sprang from the family of the Baj4 of Narhan, etc. Amongst early Brahman converts may be men- 
tioned Murehid Kuli Khan and the dreaded iconoclast, K&.\k Pahar. 

II Beveridge's History of Backergunge, page 340. 

%■ Dr. Wise, as we have seen, conjectures that there were more converts to IsMm during the seventeen 
years of this crusade than in the next three hundred. 



MUHAMMADANS OP BENGAL. 171 



that, even if forcible conversions were common, there would be any written 
account of them. There must doubtless, here and there, have been ruthless 
fanatics like the notorious Tippu Sahib of more recent times, who forcibly 
circumcised many of his Hindu subjects and perpetrated many acts of the 
grossest oppression, and the h/ot that Muhammadan mosques were often con- 
structed of stones taken from Hindu temples, clearly shows that, at some 
times and in some places, the Hindus were subjected to persecution at the hands 
of their Musalman conquerors. Several cases in which persons belonging to 
the bigher castes were forced to become Muhammadans have been quoted above, 
and these are doubtless typical of many others. We read, for instance, in the 
accounts of Chaitanya's life, that two of his leading disciples were Brahmans 
who had been compelled to embrace the faith of Islam. 

In spite, however, of the fact that cases of foiicible conversion were by no 
means rare, it seems probable that very many of the ancestors of the Bengal 
Muhammadans voluntarily gave in their adhesion to Islam. The advantages 
which that religion oflfered to persons held in low esteem by the Hindus, have 
already been pointed out, and under Muslim rule there was no lack of pious Pirs 
and Fakirs who devoted their lives to gaining converts to the faith. There 
were special reasons which, during the early years of the Muhammadan supre- 
macy, made conversion comparatively easy. Although the days when 
Buddhism was a glowing faith had long since passed, the people of Bengal 
were still to a great extent Buddhistic, and when Bakhty^r Khilji conquered 
Bihar and massacred the Buddhist monks assembled at Odontapuri, the common 
people, who were already lukewarm, deprived of their priests and teachers, were 
easily attracted from their old form of belief, some to Hinduism and others to 
the creed of Muhammad.* The higher castes probably found their way back 
to Hinduism, while the non- Aryan tribes who had, in all probability, never 
been Hindus, preferred the greater attractions of Islam. , 

309. The dislike which educated Muhammadans have for the theory that 
most of the local converts in Eastern and Northern Bengal are of Chandal and 
Koch origin seems to be due to the influence of Hindu ideas regarding social 
status, according to which these tribes occupy a very degraded position. 
This, however, is merely due to the fact that they are of known non-Aryan 
origin. If, instead of the British, the Hindus had succeeded the Moghals as 
the paramount power in India, and the Muhammadan faith had gradually grown 
weak and its votaries had attorned to Hinduism, the Moghals and Pathans would 
have been given much the same rank as that now accorded to the Chanddls 
and Koches. These tribes were formerly dominant, and it is only because they 
have lost their political supremacy and have fallen under the yoke of the 
Brahmans, that they have sunk to their present low position.f _ In the days of 
their supremacy they were accorded Kshattriya rank, and it is certain that, if 
they had maintained their independence, they would no more have been regarded 
as low castes to-day, than are the descendants of the Moghal conquerors of Delhi. 
They are in fact alHed by race to the Moghals, but while they entered India 
from the north-east, the latter did so from the north-west, and came earlier 
under the influence of the greatest proselytising religion, next to Buddhism, that 
Asia has yet seen. The Moghals are converts, just as much as are the Chandals. 
It is only a question of time and place. The Christian religion prides itself as 
much on converts from one race as on those from another, and except for 
tho influence of Hindu ideas it is not clear why the Muhammadans should not 
do so too. 

* As noted elsewhere, the Pods and Chandals were probably the dominant tribes in the kingdom of 
Paundra Vardhana and to this day traces of the Bnddhlst faith can still be found in the working religion of 
the Pods. Amongst the Koches also, traces of Buddhist influence still survived when Kalph Pitch visited 
the country in the 16th century (J. A. S. B. 1873, part I, page 240). mt. • .i.- ■ i. . 

t The present depressed condition of these castes is due to political reasons, ihere is nothing mherent- 
Iv low in them, and at one time they epjoyed a considerable amount of oivilis ition. Speaking of the Hhars, 
who once ruled on the north bank of the Ganges from Monghyr to Oudh, and whose skill is evidenced by 
the remains of numerous embankments, tanks and forts, Sherring points out that they were not by any means 
a barbarous race He adds : -The more I investigate the matter, the stronger do my convictions become that 
thp Hindus have learnt much from the aboriginal races, but that, in the course of ages, these races have 
bepn so completely subdued, and treated with such extreme rigour and scorn, that in the present condition 
of abieot debasement in which we find them, ve have no adequate means of judging of their originalgenius 
and power. " fHindu Tribes and Castes," Vol. I, page 363.] The Bhars have for the most part disappeared 
owing to alsorption into other social groups (e.flr. the PasiP). Those still knowa by the old tribal name 
occupy a very degraded position arid are frequently swineherds like the Kaoras. 

1 2 



172 CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



310. We have already seen that the Muhammad ans are increasing more 

rapidly than the Hindus, and the question arises as 
EAK^D "bowt°h orMUHiMMlDAN to thc reasoDS why this should be so. I have made 
POPULATION. particular enquiries as to the number of conver- 

sions at the present day and the general opinion is that it is not very great.* 
Occasionally an eloquent Mullah obtains a few genuine converts but, as a 
rule, the persons who cross over from the one religion to the other do so for 
material, and not for religious, reasons, e.g., a Muhammadan takes a Hindu widow 
as his second wife, or a Hindu widow is detected in an intrigue with a Muham- 
madan and, being outcasted, is fain to seek an asylum in the ranks of Islam, or a 
Hindu falls in love with a Muhammadan girl and has to adopt her religion before 
he can marry her. There are no doubt occasional instances of a genuine 
change of faith, but these form only a small minority. I have endeavoured 
to collect information regarding recent cases of conversion and the causes 
which are assigned for them, and the result is given in Appendix II. The 
most noticeable feature disclosed by the various reports is the very small 
number of such cases which have come to notice and, unless the information 
received is very defective, it is clear that the main explanation of the relatively 
more rapid, growth of the Muhammadan population must be its greater 
fecundity. One great reason for this is that the Muhammadan widow re-marries 
more readily than her Hindu sister. The higher Hindu castes throughout the 
Province, and in Bengal Proper most of the other castes also, forbid their widows 
to marry a second time. The statistics of age and civil condition show that 
of every 100 Hindu women between the ages of 15 and 40, more than 16 
are widows, whereas amongst the Musaimans the number is only 12.t There 
is also less inequality in the ages of husband and wife Ihan is often the case 
amongst Hindus. The Muhammadan again has a more nutritious dietary 
than the Hindu and his fecundity is proportionately increased. Moreover, in 
Eastern Bengal at least, he is usually better off. The Hindu has scruples 
about leaving his home, and will rather stay on there and suffer some privation, 
owing to his holding being too small to meet the needs of a growing family, 
rather than move elsewhere. The Muhammadan has no such prejudices and 
it is he who occupies the chars of the great rivers of East Bengal and extracts 
bounteous crops from the fertile alluvial soil. Even in India, the growth of 
the population is regulated to a great extent by the material condition of the 
people, and there can be no doubt that the comparatively rapid increase of the 
Muhammadans is in part attributable to their being as a class in better circum- 
stances than their Hindu neighbours. 

311. In Bihar a converted Hindu of the Brahman or Kayasth castes is 

usually allowed to call himself Shekh and to asso- 
Rank and DBsiaNATioN OF (.fate Bud intermarry with genuine Shekhs. A 

CONVBBTBD HiNDDS, n'-Ll- Tt ^ • i. • 1.1. • , 

Babhan or Kajput m the same circumstances, 
becomes a Pathan, but the lower castes have to content themselves with the 
title Nau-Muslim and it is only after the lapse of some years that they are 
gradually recognised as Shekh. In Mymensingh high caste converts are given 
the title of Khan and call themselves Pathans. 

Amongst the earlier converts, and especially in the functional groups, Hindu 
names and titles are still very common. Names such as Kdli Shekh, Kdlachdnd 
Shekh, Braja Shekh or Gopal Mandal are constantly met with. When a 
Mullah effects a conversion at the present day, he usually gives the neophyte 
a new name, but it is often chosen in such a way as to give some indication 
of the old one ; Rajani for example becomes Ridz-uddin. This reminds one 
of the way in which a Muhammadan of low social position gradually assumes 
a more high sounding designation as he rises in life, which has given rise 
to the saying— 

" Age thdke Ulla Tulla Sheshe hay Uddin, 
Taler Mdmud upare jay Kapdl phere JaddinP 

* There are a few exceptions. The reporters from Midnapore, Champaran and Monghyr are of opinion 
that considerable progress is being made. 

■f It is not only that the actual proportion of widows is greater amongst the Hindus, but also that when 
a widow has an intrigue and becomes pregnant, if a Hindu, she generally commits Hbortion ; whereas 
if she is a Muhammadan^ she welcomes the prospect of a child as an inducement' to her paramour to take her 
into his zenana. 



MUHAMMADANS OP BENGAL. 173 



The saying can best be illustrated by the successive changes of name 
of a hypothetical Meher Ullah, who becomes first Meheruddin, then Meheruddin 
Muhammad and then Muhammad Meheruddin. He will probably at this stage 
prefix Munshi, then add Ahmad, and finally blossom into Maulavi Muhammad 
Meheruddin Ahmad. In North Bengal a well-to-do Nasya calls himself Sarkdr, 
and if he continues to prosper, he becomes in turn Paramanik, Chaudhuri and 
Munshi, and eventually, if his circumstances are sufficiently good, he assumes 
the title of Maulavi. 

312. The two main sects of Muhammadans are of course the Sunnis and 

the Shiahs. The former accept the authority of all 
MuHAMMiDAN Sects. ^^^ successors of Muhammad, whereas the Shiahs 

look upon the first three, AbuBakr, Omar, and Osman, as interlopers, and regard 
Ali, Muhammad's son-in-law, as the first true Khalifa. They also greatly rever- 
ence bis martyred sons, Hasan and Husain. Sect was not returned at the 
Census, but it is known that, with the exception of those of Moghal origin, the 
great majority of Bengal Muhammadans consider themselves Sunnis, although 
at the same time they exalt Hasan and Husain and observe the Ramsdn as 
strictly as the Shiahs. The reUgious writings of the Sunnis consist not 
only of the Koran, but also of the Hadfs or traditional sayings of Bluhammad 
not embodied in the Kor^n. These are in themselves hard to understand, but 
there are four recognized glossographers, and the followers of their commen- 
taries are called after them, being known respectively as Hdnafi, Shafai, 
Maliki and Hambali, The difference between these sects is very slight, but 
the main characteristic of the Hanafis, which is practically the only one 
known in Bengal, is that the traditions are freely interpreted in the light of 
analogical reasoning, whereas the others take their stand against any 
modification of the actual words of Muhammad. Some, who interpret the 
traditions for themselves, without following any particular Imam, call them- 
selves Ahli Hadis, ' people of the tradition,' or Ghair Mukallid, 'those who 
do not wear the collar ' (of any Imdm). 

313. In the 17th century a new sect of Muhammadan pnrists arose in 

Arabia who rejected the glosses of the Imdms and 
The Wahabbi movement— denied the authority of the Sultan, made compara- 

Mixrr '"''^^ ^""^ ^'"'°'' *^^®^y ^'g^* °* *^^ authority of Muhammad, forbade 

the offering of prayers to any prophet or saint, and 
insisted on the necessity for waging war against all infidels. 1'hey were called 
Wah^bbis after their founder, Muhammad Wdhab of Nejd. Their doctrines 
were introduced into India by Saiad Ahmad Shah of Kai Bareilli, who pro- 
claimed Sijihdd or holy war against the Sikhs in 1826, and founded the colony 
of fanatics on the North- West frontier. Saiad Ahmad and his disciple, Maulavi 
Muhammad Ismail, gained many converts who, in this Province, made Patna 
their head -quarters, whence they sent out emissaries to propagate their 
doctrines all over Bengal and Bihar. 

Before noticing them, however, we may refer to a movement, similar but 
independent, in East Bengal which was originated by Haji Shariat Ullah, the 
son of a Joldha of Faridpur, who returned about 1820 A.. D. from Mecca, 
where he had been a disciple of the Wdh^bbis, and disseminated the teachings 
of that sect in Faridpur and Dacca.* Amongst other things he prohibited the 
performance of Hindu rites and the joining in Hindu religious ceremonies, 
the preparation of Tasias (models of the tomb of Hasan and Husain) and the 
praying to pirs (saints) and prophets. He also held that India was Ddru-l-harh 
/the mansion of war j, where the observance of the Friday prayers is unlawful 
and the waging of war against infidels is a religious necessity.f He gained 
many followers, chiefly amongst the lowest classes. His son Dudhu 
Miyan, who succeeded him, was even more successful and acquired ft 

* This note so far as it refers to religious movements in East Bengal, is based mainly on Dr. Wise's 
Dosthumous paper on "The Muhammadans of EasteraBengal," contributed by Mr. Eisley to the J. A. S. B. 
for 1894 The few modifications that I have made are the outcome of further enquiries made on the 
basis of what Dr Wise wrote. Isolated efforts of Muhammadan Maulavis to combat Hindu superstitions 
are constantly coming to notice. They may meet j^ith success for a time, but ^e leamngs to Hindu 
snuerstitions and symbolism are so deeprooted m the hearts of low caste converts from Hinduism that, 
when the movement has spent itself, they frequently relapse and revive their old idolatrous practices. 

t The modern followers of this sect deny that they hold India to be Daru-l-haro, but u is 
impossible to say if this is really the casie. 



174 CHAPTER IT — ^KELIGIOK. 



paramount influence amongst the Muliammadan cultivators and craftsmen of 
Dacca, Backergunge. Faridpur, Noakhali and Pabna. He partitioned the 
country into circles and appointed an agent to each to keep his sect together. 
He endeavoured to force .all Muhammadans to join him, and made a deter- 
mined stand against the levy of illegal cesses by landlords, and especially 
against contributions to the idol of Durgd. He made himself notorious for his 
high-handed proceedings, was repeatedly charged with criminal offences and, 
on one occasion at least, was convicted. He died in 1860. 

314. Concurrently with this movement other reformers were spreading the 
g. , r doctrines of the Patna School, the most successful 

of whom was Maulana Karamat Ali of Jaunpur. He 
made two important modifications in the tenets of his leaders. la thejfirst 
place he did not altogether reject the glosses on the Hadis. He recognised 
that there were imperfections and contradictions, but he held that they were 
not sufficient to justify the formation of a new sect. Consequently he and his 
followers are generally regarded as belonging to the Hdnafi sect. Secondly, in his 
later years at least, he declared that India under English rule was not Ddru-l- 
harb, and consequently that infidels are not here a legitimate object of attack 
and the Friday prayers are lawful. He strongly denounced the various 
Hindu superstitions common amongst the people, and especially the offering of 
Shirnis or cakes to the spirits of ancestors on the Shah-i-lardt. He also prohibited 
the use of music and the preparation of Tdsias. On the other hand, he held 
that holy pirs possessed a limited power of intercession with God and enconr- 
aged the making of offerings at theii* tombs. Karamat Ali died in 1874. 
His mission was ably carried on by his son Hafiz Ahmad, who preached all over 
East and North Bengal and died only about three years ago. There are 
numerous other preachers of the same doctrines, of whom Shdh Abu Jiakr, of 
Furfura in the Hooghly district, is one of the most famous. The Hazrat 
of Banaudhia in Murshidabad is also well known ; but he owes his influence less 
to his intellectual qualifications than to his reputation as a saint endowed with 
miraculous powers. 

3 1 5. These two reformed sects are collectively known as Farazi,* ' followers 

Sect «omenclatdeb. «* *^® ^*,^^.?f "^f.^ Hafiz, ' one who remembers his 

prayers,' Hidayati, ' guides to salvation,' or Sbara, 
'followers of the precepts of Muhammad' as distinguished from the S^biki, 'old ' 
Berabi ' without a guide,' Bedaiyati or Beshdra, by which terms the unreformed 
Muhammadans are generally known. The distinctive name of the followers of 
Kardmat Ali and his successors is^ Ta'aiyuni, ' those who appoint,' from their 
practice of appointing from their number a leader who decides religiouii 
questions and takes the place of a Kdzi, thereby making the observance of the 
Friday prayers lawful. The followers of Dudhu Miydn are called Wdh^bbis by 
the Ta'aiyunis, but the name is held in bad odour, and they themselves prefer 
the appellations of Muhammadi, Ahli-hadfs or Rafi-yadain, the last name beino- 
given with reference to their practice of raising their hands to their ears 
when praying, whereas the ordinary Sunnis fold their arms in front and the 
Shiahs allow them to hang dpwn.f They are also sometimes called Amini 
because they pronounce Amen in a loud voice like the Shafai sect, and not in 
an undertone like the followers of Abu Hanifa. La-Mazhabi, 'no doctrine ' ia 
another designation given them, because they reject all doctrines except those 
contained in the Koran. 

816. Since Dadhu Miydn's death his sect has been gradually dwindling in 

numbers, and at the present time the followers of 
MA^Ti'TsFcr^"^'^ °^ ^"''' Karamat Ali greatly outnumber them all over 

Eastern Bengal. In Khulna it is estimated that only 
1 per cent of the Muhammadans are of the Rafi-yadain persuasion, and it is 
only in Faridpur and Bogra that this sect still holds its own. Dudhu Miyan's 
son, Saijuddin Khan Bahadur, still has great influence in Faridpur, especially 
amongst the cultivators and Jolahas in the south of the district. In Bogra the 
number of this sect is said to be small, but growing. It is reported from that 

* This term is aometiraes said to he applicable more particularly to Dndhu Miyan's party. 
t The sects, other than that of Dudhu Mijan, ate sometimes kncwn collectively as the 'Adam rafa ' or 
those who do not raise their hands. ' 



MUHAMMADANS OF BENGAL. 175 



district that they are not very well affected towards Government, and that 
every family sets aside a handful of rice daily for religious objects. This is 
collected by the local head of the community, and it is suspected that the 
proceeds are used for promoting a JiMd. 

317. Owing, it may be, to the Wdhabbi trials, the reformers in Bihar have 
_, „ not hitherto gained the success achieved in Bengal, 

but at the present time considerable activity is 
being shown by the leaders of the Ahl-i-Hadis, as the modern representatives 
of the "W ahdbbis prefer to style themselves. Patna seems to be still the head- 
quarters of the sect, but unfortunately I am without information regarding 
that district. In the other districts of South Bihar the number of its adherents 
is still very small. In Gaya it is reported that the only Wah^bbis are police- 
men from Patna. The movement in North Bihar was inaugurated by Maulavi 
Nazir Husain, a native of Monghyr now resident in Delhi, and others. The 
tenets of the sect appear to be intermediate between those of the two branches of 
the reformed church in Bengal Proper. As regards the question whether India is 
Ddm-l-harb or Ddru-l-Isldm opinion appears to be divided, but Friday prayers 
are enjoined. The hands are raised in prayer, and the 'Amen' is pronounced 
in a loud voice. The use of music, the celebration of the Muharram festival, the 
offering of the shirni to the manes of ancestors, and the veneration of pirs are 
strictly forbidden.* In Muzaffarpur the movement at first gained ground rapid- 
ly but at present it is making slow progress. In Darbhanga and Champaran it 
is still spreading, but in the latter district it is estimated that the total number 
of its adherents is stiU less than a thousand. In Saran the amount of success 
hitherto achieved is very small. In the Sonthal Parganas the reformed 
doctrines are being energetically propagated amongst the local Muhammadans 
and with a considerable amount of success. In, all cases, it is the AjMf or 
lower class of Muhammadans who are most attracted by the preaching of the 
reformers ; the bettor classes generally hold aloof. 

318. The propagation of these new doctrines frequently leads to much ill- 

feeling between the adherents of the different sects. 
Disputes between eival sects. ^^^ ^^^^^ -^ ^^f^^^^ danger of a breach of the peace. 

It is reported from Champaran that the disputes between the Mukallids and 
Ghair Mukallids would more than once have ended in bloodshed but for 
fear of the law, while in Faridpur it was thought necessary a few years ago 
to direct a preacher of Karamat Ali's persuasion to leave the neighbourhood 
of Sibchar, the head-quarters of the Dudhu Miyin sect, in order to prevent 
a breach of the peace between the two parties. In the Nilphamari Sub- 
division a Maulavi from Peshawar was sentenced to imprisonment a few years 
ago for abetting a riot with the object of preventing the carrying of Tasias in 
the celebration of the Moharram. As an illustration of the way in which these 
religious discussions are carried on I give below an extract from a report 
received from the Magistrate of Bogra:— 

A sort of Babdj (religious oontroversy) took placfr recently at Jamalganj between the 
Hdnafis and the Eafi-yadains which ended with the use of most filthy language by both 
parties. Since then each party is trying to outbid the other. Two Madrasas have been 
started" in the locality, one by the Hanafis and the other by the Eafi-yadains. In November 
last a Muhammadan reformer, Munshi Meherulla of Jessore, was invited by the Hanafis to 
deliver lectures on the superiority of the Muhammadan religion in general, and more especially 
on that of the Hdnan doctrine. The feeling of the two' sections had by that time grown so 
bitter that they both applied to me for protection. The Munshi, however, delivered excellent 
lectures on the necessity for reform of the Musalman community and gave offence to 
none Now and then he threw a -word at the Hindus telling them that the Muhammadan 
relieion does not inculcate the duty of making war for the spread of religion or of killing 
the Kaffir if he would not accept "the true faith." I mention this as it indicates that the 
present reformers of the community are actuated by a conciliatory spirit. 

319. The unreformed Muhammadans of the lower and uneducated cla,8ses 

are deeply infected with Hindu superstitions, and 

TJneefobmed Muhammadans. t^eir knowledge of the faith they profess seldom 

extends beyond the three cardinal doctrines of the Unity of God, the Mimoa of 

Muhammad, an d the truth of the Koran, and they have a very faint idea of 

^ m,^ ^PTipration of Pirs and also of Muhammad himself is deaonnced as *to-A, i.e., as asmmng to 
them a partaersMp with the Deity, or powers which belong to God alone. 



176 CHAPTEK IV— RELIGION. 



the differences between their religion and that of the Hindus. Sometime* 
they believe that they are descended from Abel (Habil) while the Hindus owe 
their origin to Cain (Kdbil). K^bil they say killed H^bil and dug a grave 
for him with a crow's beak.* 

320. Before the recent crusade against idolatry it was the regular practice 

of low class Muhammadans to join inthe Durga Puja 

Hindi; Scpeestitions. ^^^ ^^-^^^ g.^^^ religious festivals, and although 

they have been purged of many superstitions, many still remain. In particular 
they are very careful about omens and auspicious days. Dates for weddings 
are often fixed after consulting a Hindu astrologer ; bamboos are not cut, nor 
the building of new houses commenced, on certain days of the week, and 
journeys are often undertaken only after referring to the Hindu Almanac to see 
if the proposed day is auspicious. When disease is prevalent Sitala and Rakshyd 
Kali are worshipped. Dharmardj, Manasa and Bishahari are also venerated 
by many ignorant Muhammadans.f Sasthi is worshipped when a child is born. 
Even now in some parts of Bengal they observe the Durga Puj^ and buy new. 
clothes for the festival like the Hindus. In Bihar they join in the worship of 
the Sun, and when a child is born they light a fire and place cactus and a sword 
at the door to prevent the demon Jawan from entering and killing the infant. 
At marriage the bridegroom often follows the Hindu practice of smearing the 
bride's forehead with vermilion.J In the Sonthal Parganas Muhammadans are 
often seen to carry sacred water to the shrine of Baidyandth and, as they may 
not enter the shrine, pour it as a libation on the outside verandah. Offerings 
are made totheGrdmya devat^ before sowing or transplanting rice seedlings, and 
exorcism is resorted to in case of sickness. Ghosts are propitiated by offerings 
of black fowls and pigeons before a figure drawn in vermilion on a plantain 
leaf. These practices are gradually disappearing, but they die hard, and 
amulets containing a text from the Koran are commonly worn, even by the 
MuUdhs who inveigh against these survivals of Hindu beliefs. 

321. Apart from Hindu superstitions there are certain forms of worship 

common amongst Muhammadans which are not 
DOEATioN OF lEs. bascd ou tho Koran. The most common of these 

is the adoration of departed Pirs. It should be explained that the priesthood 
of Islam is two-fold. The law and the dogmas are expounded by the Mullah 
or learned teacher; the spiritual submission to, and communion with, the deity 
is inculcated by the Pir or spiritual guide. There are four famous Pirs who are 
universally revered throughout the Muslim world, and all subsequent Pirs 

have belonged to one or other of their spiritual 

(2) ABrisHAK'sHAMi OP Chisht. systems.§ They trace back their line of spiritual 

(3) MomuMN Naksh-band. guides in an unbroken series to the Prophet, who 

(4) Abdul Kadie Sohae-Waedi. ^ jg g^yi^^ ^^^ fountain head of all Pirs. With 

the exception of the Ahl-i-Hadis or Wahdbbis, almost all Muhammadans of the 
Sunni sect go through the ceremony of initiation by a Pir. The disciple or 
Muridll places his hands in the hands of the spiritual guide and declares his 
belief in the Muhammadan creed, the unity of God, the mission of the Prophet, 
the truth of the Koran, the existence of angels and the day of resurrection; he 
then promises to live a virtuous life and to abstain from sin ; he calls on the 
guide and his spiritual predecessors up to the Prophet to witness his declaration, 

* There are some verses which give espression to this belief, but I have been able to obtain only the 
first two lines: — 

Hdbiler pharjjanjdrd, 
Isldm haila tdrd. 

It may be interesting to mention here that some of the Bnnas of Nadia and Jessore believe that 
Balaram and AUah are identical. 

They say : MuTch Makkah, Bil Kordn. 
HArer upar Ohdm 
Tdite beteche Scdardm. 

t Goats are often made over to Hindus who perform the sacrifice on their behalf. 

j Sometimes sandalwood paste is used instead of vermilion. 

§ As with the Bishops of the Christian Church there is a regular system of ordination, and every 
Pir traces his spiritual descent from the Prophet himself thron^h one or other of the four great Pirs 
mentioned above. There seems to be but little difference in the cults originating with these Pirs, except 
the followers of Abu Ishak of (whisht make use of music and singing and keep the image of their spiritual 
guide before the mind's eye. These practices are forbidden by the othem. 

II The reformed sects object to the words Pir and Murid, and replace them by Ustad and Shagird 
which do not connote the same degree of submission on the part of the disciple. 



MUHAMMADANS OF BENGAL. 177 



and concludes by afSrming that he has become a member of the particular 
spiritual communion to which his Pir belongs. The disciple must thenceforth 
think of his Pir and of the vows he has made at least once daily, and he 
is visited at intervals by the latter who comes to rekindle his zeal. 

Sometimes Pirs of exceptional sanctity are credited with supernatm-al 
powers. Asgar Ali Shah in Muzaffarpur has this reputation, and many persons, 
Hindus as well as Muhammadans, the educated as well as the ignorant, when 
afflicted with illness or other calamities, wait upon him for relief. His suppliants 
offer him money and food, but he seldom accepts their presents. He spends 
most of his time in a state of abstraction. 

"When a holy Pir departs from this life, he is popularly believed to be still 
present in spirit and to offer his daily prayers at Mecca or Medina, and his 
dargah or tomb becomes a place of pilgrimage to which persons resort for the 
cure of disease, or the exorcism of evil spirits, or to obtain the fulfilment of 
some cherished wish, such as the birth of a child, or success in pending litiga- 
tion.* The educated stoutly deny that Pirs are worshipped, and say that they 
are merely asked to intercede with God, but amongst the lower classes it is 
very doubtful if this distinction is clearly recognised, even if it acjtually exists. 

322. Of Indian Pirs the greatest is perhaps Hazrat Moinuddin Ohisti, 

who was born in Persia in 1140 A.D. and came to 
Notes oi. some pamous Pibs. j^^ -^ ^^^^^ ^^^ ^^^^^^ ^^ ^^^ Prophet, who appear- 
ed to him and -told him to spread the faith in this country. He died at Ajmir 
in 1234 and his dargah there is visited by pilgrims from all parts of India. 
According to Ferishta, Akbar himself often visited this shrine on foot. The 
late Raja of Tikari, Ran Bahadur Singh (a Hindu), paid it annual visits and 
made valuable offerings. He firmly believed that the Tikari Raj was a 
gift to his family from this Pir, and that it was by his favour that he won 
his law-suits, a faith which was once severely shaken when the decision in 
an important case was given against him. In Bengal, almost every district has 
its dargah, where vows are registered and offerings made, by Hindus as well as 
Muhammadans, in the hope of gaining some material benefit, or of being cured 
from disease. The offerings usually consist of sweetmeats, but sometimes clay 
figures of horses are given and, on special occasions, goats and fowls are sacri- 
ficed.f These offerings are usually the perquisite of the Mujdwir, or custodian 
of the tomb, who is generally a fakir. A few of the more famous of these 
Pirs are noted below : 

(1) Machanddli Saif. Tomb near Ganga Sagar in the 24-Parganas. 
There is a story that one day a barber was shaving this saint when he suddenly 
disappeared. He returned shortly afterwards dripping with perspiratioii, and 
on being questioned explained that a ship had run aground, and as the crew 
had appealed to him, he bad gone to pull it into deep water. The barber 
laughed incredulously, whereupon he and all his family died forthwith. 

(2) Khdn Jah^n Ali, Dargah at Rambijoypur in the Bagirhat subdivision 
of Khulna. Miraculous cures are said to be effected at his tomb, and there is a 
special yearly festival when people come to make offerings. Khan Jahan is 
mentioned in Sir James Westland's Account of Jessore as a great local magnate, 
but the account there given of him does not indicate that during his lifetime ho 
possessed any specially large stock of sanctity. According to_ tradition he 
became pious in his old age and entered his tomb, while still alive, to escape 
from a punitive force sent against him by Jahangir. 

(3) Shdh Sultdn. Dargah at Mahdsthan in Bogra. The story goes that a 
fakir appeared before Parasuram, the last Hindu king of Mabdsthan, riding 
upon a fish. He prayed for a piece of land large enough for hioi to spread a 
mat, on which to sit and pray. The king granted his request, whereupon the 

* £ propos of this adoration of Pirs and the wonderful acts attributed to them, there is a Persian 
proverb " I'he Pirs don't fly ; their disciples make them fly." 

t Mr O'Malley writing of the Gaya dargahs says :~ 

The toinbs of these Pii-s are visited in great numbers by the pious ; sweetmeats are offered, passages 
of the Kovin recited and some ofEering, such as a sheet for the tomb, is made. Sometimes to the sound 
of music AoZ/fcai takes place, i.e., one of the audience becomes suddenly inspired and professes to have 
been transported to the presence of God or of the Pir. He becomes ecstatic and loudly cries "Hakk hsi.^' 
Shaking his body and head he rises to his feet and dances fantastically, ihe whole assemoly rises m 
his honour, the fanatic repeats his cry, and when exhausted sits down. The audience sits down with him 
an4 waits till the divine afflatus inspires someone else. 



178 CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



mat begau to ^row miraculously, and gradually spread over the greater part 
of the kingdom. He eventually dethroned Parasurdm and established a 
Muhammadan kingdom. Parasurlm'a daughter drowned herself in the Kar4- 
toya to escape being married to the fakir, who was now known as Shah Sultan, 
and the place where she did so is still called Siladebi's Ghat in remembrance 
of her. A fair is held at the Dargah every year and is attended by large 
numbers both of Hindus and of Muhammadans. To the Hindus, however, 
a dip in the sacred river at Siladebi's Ghat seems to be the chief attraction. 

(4) Pir Baclar of Chittagong is the guardian saint of sailors. He is 
invoked by the boating classes, Hindu as well as Muhammadan, when they start 
on a journey by sea or river as follows : — 

Amar4 ^chhi polapan. 

Gaji achhe niklidindn. 

Shire G-anga darij-ci. Panch Pir 

Badar Badar Badar. 

Which may be translated thus : — 

" We are but children, the Ghdzi is our protector, the Ganges river is on 
our head. Oh Five Saints, Oh Badar, Badar, Badar," This Pir, who is said to 
have arrived at Chittagong floating upon a stone slab, is mentioned by Dr. Wise, 
according to whom he is no other than one Badruddin, who was for many 
years a resident of Chittagong, died in 1440, and was buried in the Chhota 
Dargah of ^Bihar. The local story of his arrival is that Chittagong was at 
the time the. abode of fairies and hobgoblins, and that no one could live 
there. ^ The saint begged a space for his lamp. This was granted and when 
he lit it, its magic power was so great that the spirits were frightened away. 
An old Portuguese resident of Chittagong who died recently used to aver that 
the saint was a Portuguese sailor, the only survivor from a shipwreck, who 
floated ashore on a raft and became a Muhammadan. There is a hillock in 
front of the Commissioner's house which is reputed to be the place where Pir 
Badar lit his lamp, and here candles are burnt nightly, the cost being met by 
contributions from Hindus, and even Feringis, as well as from Muhammadans.* 

(5) Shah ^hmadOaisu Daraz. Dargah at Kharampur near Akhaura in 
Tippera. He fought on the side of Sh^h Jalal (whose shrine is in Sylhet town) 
agamst Gaur Gobind, the Hindu king of Sylhet, and was killed in the battle 
His severed head and one of his wooden shoes were found by a Kaibartta who 
was fishing in the river and, to the latter's great astonishment, the head began 
to speak. The Kaibai-tta embraced the Muhammadan faith and erecteda 
tomb to the saint, of which his descendants are still the Ehddims or custodians 
A former Mah^rajd of Hill Tippera ^a Hindu) made a grant of rent-free land 
for the maintenance of the shrine, and offerings of cattle, money and sweetmeats 
are constantly made there by all classes of people. Many miraculous cures are 
said to have resulted from the appeals made to this holy man. 

(6) KhwajaMirzaHalim. Shrine at Mehsi in Champara'n. Many miracu- 
lous feats are attributed to this saint, such as drawing enough milk from a 
cow, which had never been in calf, to satisfy the thirst of his many followers 
There is a date-palm near the Dargah, and it is said that when a Kalwar once 
attempted to tap it, m order to obtain the juice for the manufacture of intoxi- 
cating dnnk (which is forbidden to Muhammadans), blood flowed from the tree 

There is a tradition that there was formerly an inscribed stone at the gate 
of the tomb with the magic aid of which thieves could be unerringly detected 
and the stolen property recovered. Jung Bahadur, says the legend, removed 
this stone to Nepal, and when the samt remonstrated, he promised to erect a 
cenotaph m his memory The original Dar^«Hs a great place of pilgrimage 
and an annual fair is held there at which some thousands attend It is visited 
by persons for all sorts of purposes, but mainly by those who desire to be 
blessed with children or who are suffering from some lingering disease 

(7) One of the most modern saints is Patuki S^in who lived near the 
Court House at Motihan and died only 30 or 40 years ago. He was illiterate 
a nd m his lifetime had no great reputation. It was only aft er his death 

*. ^'^•, .^.- C- Hamilton, c.s.. is disposed to identify Pir Badar with Ktw^ja Khizr. ' Badar inTjWti-I 
S orxSir. K^rn^t^c^S^nor'' ^ ''''''^'- ^'^ '<^-««-«on.^he says. e.p.atV"^ £" 



MUHAMMADANS OF BENGAL. 179 



that he achieved the reputation of holiness; a striking illustration of the 
proverb — 

BarM to Mir 
Ghdtd to Fakir 
Mard to Pir. 

" If he grew rich, he became a chief, if poor, a beggar, and if he died, he 
blossomed into a saint." 

The tomb of this Pir was erected by a Hindu money-lender of the Kalw^r 
caste, and his reputation is already so great that about half the residents of 
the town believe in his miraculous powers and pray for his assistance, flis aid 
is especially invoked by litigants in the Courts, and their ofEerings form a 
considerable addition to the income of the custodian, an orderly peon of the 
District Magistrate's establishment. The Mdrwdris make an annual ofEering to 
this saint and his aid is also sought by the women of the town, who visit°his 
tomb in a body with a band playing various musical instruments. 

Space forbids a further enumeration of the numerous local Pirs, but there 
are many others of considerable renown, such as Hazrat Makhdum Sharifuddin 
of Bihar town, the author of ' Maktubat Sadi,' and Hazrat Makhdum Shah Abul 
Fateh of Tangaul_ in Hajipur who, amongst other feats, threw his nephew 
into a river, while in a fit of abstraction, and recovered him unhurt six years 
later,_wheu he came to his senses and was told what he had done. On another 
occasion he made a river change its course for several miles in order to obtain 
a drink of water. 

323. Closely allied to the adoration of Pirs is the homage paid to certain 

mythical persons, amongst whom Khwaia Khizr 
^Mtthicai jeesoks. KHwijA stands pre-eminent. ^ This personage appears to 

have been a pre-Islamic hero of the i\rabs * and 
is said by many to be the ' servant of God ' mentioned in the Koran, whom 
Moses found by following in the track of a fried fish which miraculoualy came 
to life, and who rebuked Moses on several occasions for his undue curiosity. f 
However this may be, Khwaja Khizr is believed at the present day to 
reside in the seas and rivers of India, and to protect mariners from shipwreck. J 
He is invoked by them, and is also propitiated by the more ignorant Muham- 
madans, at marriages and during the rainy season, by the launching in rivers 
and tanks of leras or small paper boats, decorated with flowers and lit up with 
candles. Food is also distributed to the destitute in his name, or left on the 
bank to be picked up by the first beggar who passes. 

324. Ghazi Miyan is generally said to be the nephew of Mahmud of 
„ , „ Ghazni and to have died, fightin;? against the infidel, 

gSzi.'' ^'" "" after performing prodigies of valour. He is called 

the Prince of Martyrs and his tomb at Bahraich is 
visited by crowds of pilgrims. Large immbers of the Dafdli, Kunjra and 
similar low Muhammadan castes of Bihar go to visit this tomb. As usual, there 
are comparatively few of his worshippers who can give an account of him and 
some of the stories received are very vague. According to one reporter he 
perished in a fire on the eve of his wedding. 

Zindah Gh^zi, from Zindik-i- Ghazi ' conqueror of infidels, ' rides on 
a tiger in the Sundarbans,§ and is the patron saint of wood-cutters whom he is 
supposed to protect from tigers, and crocodiles. He is sometimes identified with 
Ghazi Miyan and sometimes with Gh^zi Madar. One Muhammadan gentleman 

* Some say he was a prophet or Paighambar born a thousand years before Muhammad. 

t Sura Ealif, Chapter XVIII. The Hindus of Upper India call Khw4ja Khizr, Jlaja Kidar, 
which clearly connects him with Alkhedr who, according to Sale, is also identified with the same 
'servant of God." He is of ten confounded with Phineas, Elias and St. G-eorge, and his soul is supposed 
to have passed through them all by metempsychosis. He is supposed to have become immortal by finding 
out, and drinking of, the water of life. The name Khizr or 'evergreen' was given him because every 
spot he sat on became covered with green grass. Part of these fictions were taken from the Jews who fancy- 
that Phineas was Elias. (Sale's Koran, Vol. II,- page 131.) According to Dr. Wise, Alkhedr is no other 
than Alexander the Great, but this seems incorrect. There is a legend that Alexander the Great wanted to 
diink the water of everlasting life and was conducted to the spring by Khwaja Khizr, but finding it 
surrounded by a crowd of decrepit old men, who, though still alive, could not stir, he was disgusted at 
the sight and returned to the upper world without tasting the water. 

X His special connection with water is due to his having wandered all over the waters of the world 
in search of the water of everlasting life. 

§ In Wadia there is a Pir Sher Ali who is reputed to ride on tigers. 

a2 



180 CHAPTER IV — EELIGION. 



tells me he is Badiruddin Shah Madar who died in A. H. 840 fighting against 
infidels* Songs are sung in his honour and ofi'erings are made after a safe 
return from a journey. Hindu women often make vows to have songs sung to 
him if theij children reach a certain age. His shrine is believed to be on a 
mountain called Madaria in the Himalayas. 

325. Satya Pir or Satya Narayan, as he is often called by Hindus, is an 

indefinite entity whose origin it is most difficult 
Satya Pxe. ^^ ^^^^^^ jj^ j^ worshipped both by Hindus and 

Muhammadans and is supposed to have the special _ power of conferring 
happiness. According to one tradition he was an inhabitant of Bagdad of the 
name of Mansar Hallak. He uttered the words "I am the truth," whereupon 
he was killed for blasphemy, but his blood then repeated the words. His body 
was burnt but his ashes continued to cry " I am the truth." 

326. According to Dr. Wise, She'kh Sadu was Maulavi of a Mosque at 

Amroha in Rohilkand. Mr. O'Malley tells me that 
Shekh bADu, .^ g^^^^ ^^ .g supposed to have been a student 

at Ganj Moradabad. The story runs that he found a lamp with four wicks and, 
on lighting them, four genii appeared and announced that they were the slaves 
of the lamp, and at his service. He used them for the purpose of debauchery, 
but was eventually killed through the intervention of another genius and was 
buried at Amroha. The spirit of the Shekh is worshipped all over Bihar, 
especially in Graya. People, chiefly women, are often possessed by him, and 
when this happens, they shout out extracts from the Kordn or, if illiterate, a 
string of gibberish which passes muster for Arabic amongst their equally 
ignorant neighbours. When this happens, sacrifices of goats and fowls are 
offered to the Shekh to appease him. People liable to be possessed are 
supposed to have supernatural powers and are often summoned in cases of 
illness or trouble to find out the cure. The usual answer is that a sacrifice of 
a goat or cock must be offered to Shekh Sadu. 

327. The last of these mythical persons deserving of mention is Sultan 
, Shahid who is reported only from Gaya. He is 

worshipped all over the district by low class Muham- 
madans and also by Hindus of the lower castes. He is variously said to be 
the body-guard and paramour of Debi, and in any case, he seems to be very 
closely connected with that goddess. A "pindi" or small altar is invariably 
erected to him near the temples of Debi, and cocks are offered to him before 
her worship is commenced. 

328. This discussion of some of the less orthodox aspects of Muham- 
„ . p madanism would not be complete without a 

reference to the elusive "Panch Pir." The place 
of worship is usually a small tomb with five domes, or a simple mound at the 
foot of a Pipal {Jicus religiosa) or banyan tree {Jicus Indiea.) Offerings of goats, 
cocks, sweetmeats, etc., are made in order to obtain children, or get rid of some 
incin'able disease, or to ensure success in business, etc. In the minds of the 
ignorant the expression is usually associated with some of the best known Pirs 
and mythical personages, such as Ghazi Miyan, Pir Badar, Zindah Qhazi, 
Shekh Farid, Khw^ja Khizr, and even Shekh Sadu. The actual persons vary 
from place to place, but the veneration for the Panch Pir is universal, not only 
amongst the Muhammadans but also, as we shall presently see,t amongst 
Kalwdrs, Halw^is, Telis, Bhuiy^s and many other castes of Hindus in Bihar. 

Amongst the educated the term is sometimes taken as referring to the 
" Panjtani pak, " or five holy persons, who, according to the Shiahs, are 
Muhammad, A'li, Fatima, Hasan and Husain, while many Sunnis interpret the 
same expression as meaning Muhammad and the first four Khalifas, whom they 
call the Ghdr yar, or four friends of the Prophet. It seems very probable 
that the idea of the P^nch Pir may have arisen from a misunderstanding 
of the words "Panj tani pak." Dr. Wise conjectured that the word 'five' is used 
vaguely as indicating an indefinite number, in the same way as ' half-a-dozen ' 
is sometimes used in English, but if so, it is not clear why there should be a 
collective tomb for these Pirs in addition to their individual shrines, nor why 
there should invariably be a representation of exactly five separate tombs, 

* Otlxer legends are given by Dr. Wise in the Essay already mentioned. ) f Paragraph 338. 



HINDU SECTS AND CODLINGS. 181 



According to Mr. Ghaznavi the words are more a mode of expression than 
indicative of any real cult, and are applied to a man who does not know his 
own mind and is constantly following new doctrines. This, however, seems at 
variance with the fact that the Pdnch Pir are specifically worshipped. 

Hindu Sects and Codlings. 

329. There was no return of sect at the census. In Bihar the distinctions 

in question are ill-defined and the more ignorant 

Sects op Hindus. ^j^^^^^ ^^^j^ g^^ j^ difficult to Say to which of the 

conventional divisions of Hinduism they belong. But in Bengal and Orissa, 
owing to the great Vaishnava movement inaugurated by Chaitanya, the case 
is otherwise and thel-e would be but little difficulty in obtaining a fairly 
accurate record of the sectarian distribution of the population. The two 
great sects are the S^kta and the Vaishnava. The latter is predominant through- 
out Orissa, the Orissa States and the south of Midnapore, where the great 
object of adoration is the quondam Buddhist idol of Jagannath at Puri, who is 
worshipped as a representation of Krishna. In Bengal Proper the Vaishnavas 
are in the majority in Central Bengal, but in the east, north, and perhaps the 
west, the Saktas are still the more numerous. The great majority of the race 
castes are Vaishnavas, especially the Kaibarttas and Chandals and the R^jbansis 
properly so-called, but the Tipdras in the extreme east and the KochesandMeches 
in the north* are Sdktas. The Subarnabauiks and many of the Nabasakha group 
of castes are for the most part Vaishnavas and so also are the majority of the 
Baidyas of the Srikhanda Samdj. Other Baidyas and all classes of Brdhmans 
and Kdyasths, on the other hand, are usually of the Sdkta persuasion. 

In Bihar, as has already been stated, the dividing line between Saktas 
and Vaishnavas is less clearly defined, and, except in the case of certain 
ascetics, the worship of one God is not necessarily exclusive of that of another, 
as it is in Bengal Proper, where a strict Vaishnava will not even name Kali and 
Durgd, or the leaves of the Bel tree, which are largely used in connection with 
the relio"ious ceremonies of the Saktas. The reason seems to be that Bihar was 
never so deeply infected as Bengal with the worst forms of Sakta worship, and 
that the Vaishnava revival of Chaitanya which represented a revulsion from 
Saktism never spread thither. On the other hand, there are a variety of sects, 
many of which are based on an attempt to reconcile the differences between 
Hinduism and the creed of Muhammad, such as the Ndnak Shdhi, Kabirpan- 
thi and Panchpiriyd. Others again are Sauras or sun worshippers, and others 
pay special reverence to Goreiya, Sokhd and other minor deities, or godlings 
as Mr. Ibbetson has aptly called them, unknown to orthodox Hinduism. 

330. Saktism is based on the worship of the active producing principle 

(Prakriti) as manifested in one or other of the 
AKTisM. goddess wives of Siva (Durgd, Kdli, Parvati,', 

the female energy or Sakti of the primordial male, Purusha or Siva. 
In this cult the various forces of nature are deified under separate personalities, 
which are known as the divine mothers or Matrigan. The ritual to be 
observed, the sacrifices to be offered, and the mantras, or magic texts, to be 
uttered, in order to secure the efficacy of the worship and to procure the fulfil- 
ment of the worshipper's desire, are laid down in a series of religious writings 
known as Tantras. The cult is supposed to have originated in East Bengal or 
Assam about the fifth century.f Kali is said to be the same as IJurgd but she 

* For the probable distinction between Eoch and E&jbansi the Chapter on " Caste " should be 
referred to (paragraph 617). . . , 

t For an account of the evolution of Tantrik worship and the addition of female counterparts to the 
male gods previously worshipped, and of the influence which it had both on Hinduism and Buddhism, 
the reader is referred to a paper in the Asiatic Quarterly Beview for 1894 (page 139) by Colonel 
Waddell l M.S. Ihe genesis of Durga and Kali is given in the Markandeya Puran, which is said by a well 
known Hindu writer to be the "holiest of the holy works of the Hindus "and to be recited in almost 
every household as a charm. Durga is there described as havinfi her origin in the energy which issued 
froin the mouths of Vishnn, Siva and Brahma, and from the bodies of the other gods when hard pressed by 
Moh shasnr and his army of Asuras er non-Hindus. This energy amalgamated and became a female. Kali 
in her turn' issued from JJurga's head. The two, however, are merely different forms of the same p.-rson. 
The head-quarters of T^ntnk worship was probably Eamakshya in Assam. The chaiacier in which the 
original Tantras were written was Bengali, not Devanagri, and there are clear indications that they were 
introduced into Tibet Nepal, and Gujarat, from Bengal. Moreover, in the Mahtoirvana Tantra the three 
kinds of fish mentioned as fit for sacrificial use are the Sal, Bol, and Eui, all characteristic of Bengal 
diet The Yogini Tantra, by its innumerable local references, was cleaily composed in Assam. 



182 CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



can assume any number of forms at the same time. The characteristic of 
Durga is beneficence, while Kali is terrific and bloodthirsty. In the Kalikd 
Puran the immolation of human beings is recommended* and numerous animals 
are enumerated as suitable for sacrifice. At the present time pigeons, goats and, 
more rarely, buffaloes, are the usual victims at the shrine of the. goddess. The 
ceremony commences with the adoration of the sacrificial axe ; various mantras 
are recited and the animal is then decapitated at one stroke. As soon as the 
head falls to the ground, the votaries rush forward and smear their fore- 
heads with the blood of the victim. The great occasion for these sacrifices is 
during the three days of the Durg^ Puja.t The opposition between Saktism and 
Vedic Hinduism is expressly stated in the Mahanirvana Tantra where it is said 
that the mantras contained in the Vedas are now devoid of all energy and 
resemble snakes deprived of their venom. In the Satya and other ages they 
were effective but in the Kali Yuga they are, as it were, dead. 

331. Modern Vaishnavism, as preached by Chaitanya, represents a revulsion 

against the gross and debasing religion of the 
Vaishnavism, Tantras. Chaitanya was a Baidik Brahman and was 

born in Nabadvip in 1484. He preached mainly in Central Bengal and Orissa, 
and his doctrines found ready acceptance amongst large numbers of the people, 
especially amongst those who were still, or had only recently been, Buddhists. 
This was due mainly to the fact that he ignored caste and drew his folio svers 
from all sources, so much so that even Muhammadans followed him. He 
preached vehemently against the immolation of animals in 'sacrifice and tbe use 
of animal food and stimulants, and taught that the true road to salvation lay in 
Bhakti, or fervent devotion to God, He recommended Radha worship and 
taught that the love felt by her for Krishna was the best form of devotion. The 
acceptable offerings were flowers, money, and the like, but the great form of 
worship was that of the Sankirtan or procession of worshippers playing and sing- 
ing. A peculiarity of Chaitanya's cult is that the post of spiritual guide or 
Gosain is not confined to Brahmans, and several of those best known belong to 
the Baidya caste. They are all of them descended from the leading men of 
Chaitanya's immediate entourage. The holy places of the cult are Nabadvip, 
Chaitanya's birth-place, and in a still greater degree, Brindaban, the scene of 
Krishna's sports with the milk-maids, which Chaitanya and his disciples 
reclaimed from jungle, and where he personally identified the various sacred^ 
spots, on which great shrines have now been erected. At Nabadvip the most 
important shrines are in the keeping of Brdhinans who are themselves staunch 
Saktas. 

332. In course of time the followers of Chaitanya split into two bodies, 
those who retained, and those who rejected caste. The latter, who are also 
known as Jat Baishtams or Baii'agi, consist of recruits from all castes, who 
profess to intermarry freely amongst themselves,^ and, except for the fact that 
outsiders are still admitted, they form a community very similar to the ordinary 
Hindu caste. Its reputation at the present day is tarnished by the fact that 
most of its new recruits have joined owing to love intrigues, or because they 
have been turned out of their own caste, or for some other sordid motive. Those 
who have retained their caste and are merely Vaishnavas by sect are, of course, 
in no way connected with the J^t Baishtams just described, and their religion 
is on the whole a far purer one than that of the 8aktas. The stricter 
Vaishnavas will have nothing to do with Saktism and are vegetarians, but 
amongst the B^gdis and other low classes, many of the professed followers 

* It is said that by such a sacrifice Debt (Kali) is pleased for a thousand years. The frequent 
occurrence of human sacrifices in ancient Assam' was discusted by me in a paper contributed to the 
J. A. S. B. In 1898 (Part III, page b6). 

t Great stress is laid on the exact performance of the prescribed ritual and the correct utterance of the 
mantras, failing which the sacrifice loses its eiflcacy. There are three main subdivisions of the Saktas. The 
Dakahinacharis or right-handed, who are comparatively free from sensuality, and do not otfer wine or flesh 
to the deity, the Bamacharis from whose school the majority of the Tantras have emanated, and the Kaulas 
or extremists. It is unnecessary here to describe the details, but it may be mentioned that the five 
essentials of worship amongst the extreme school are iish, flesh, wine, mystical gestures with the fingers, 
and sexual intercourse. During the orgies, miscalled worship, unlawful food becomes lawful, and all dis- 
tinctions of caste are for the time being ignored. For further details the account given by the late 
Jogendra Nath Bhattacharya in his book on " Hindu Castes and Sects," and a series of papers on the 
Tantras by the Hev. K. S. Maodonald may be referred to. 

X Casta distinctions are not entirely obliterated, and the recruits from the higher, hold aloof from 
those from the lower, castes. 



HINDU SECTS AND CODLINGS. 183 



of the sect -will freely eat animal food and follow in the Durga procession, 
though they will not on any account be present when the sacrifices are 
offered Tip. 

There are numerous Vaishnava sects, some of which, like those of Ramanuja 
and Ramdvat, are independent of Chaitanya, while others are debased off-shoots 
of the great movement inaugm^ated by him. I shall not attempt a general 
account of these or other sects but shall merely refer to one or two which 
<;ame specially to notice in the course of the census operations, and regarding 
which a certain amount of fresh information was obtained.* 

333. Amongst the latter day offshoots of Chaitanya's teaching, one of the 

most curious is that of the Kartabhajas, the wor- 
HE AET BHAJis. shippcrs of tho Karta or headman, or as they prefer 

to call themselves Bhab^janas or as Bhagawanis, the men of God.f They call 
their creed the Satya Dharma, or true faith, while outsiders are known as 
Aihika or children of the world. The founder of thejsect was a Sadgop named 
Rdm Smaran Pal, more generally known as Karta Baba, who was born about 
two hundred years ago, near Chakdaha in Nadia. His birth as an incarnation 
of the Almighty is said to have been foretold by a religious mendicant (appa- 
rently a Muhammadan) known as the Fakir Thakur alias Kvl Chdnd, to whom 
numerous miracles are attributed, and who appears to have presided over the 
youth's up-bringing and to have been largely instrumental in obtaining recogni- 
tion for him as the incarnation of the Divinity. Next to Fakir Thakur his chief 
disciples were twenty-two mendicants known as the Bdish Fakir, who were 
endowed with miraculous powers and obtained many converts in all the dis- 
tricts of the Presidency Division. Karta Baba died at Ghoshpara near 
Chakdaha, at the age of 84, and was succeeded by his son Rdm Dulal alias 
Dulil Chand, who is popularly believed to be a re-birth of Fakir Thdkur. He 
organized the sect and laid down its precepts in a series of songs supposed 
to have been uttered by him in his sleep. J He was very successful in pro- 
pagating tke new faith and obtained converts in all parts of Bengal, and 
even in Orissa and the United Provinces. Ram Dulal was succeeded by two 
of his sons in turn. Then followed a quarrel between his grandsons, and now 
there is no longer a single spiritual head. The disciples can select, each for 
himself, any male member of the family whom he may choose as the object 
of his homage and adoration. Each has his own ffadi or seat where the 
offerings of his votaries are deposited. It is needless to say that under these 
conditions the popularity of the sect is declining. 

334. The main doctrines inculcated appear to be: — 

( 1) There is only one God, who is incarnate in the Karta. 

(2) The Mahashay or spiritual guide must be all in all to his Barati 

or disciple. A man may question a Mahashay's fitness before 
becoming his disciple but never afterwards. A Bardti can 
obtain salvation only through his Mahashay. § 

(3) The mantra or religious formula of the sects must be repeated 

five times a day as a means of salvation and of obtaining mate- 
rial prosperity. || 

(4) Meat and wine must be abstained from. 

(5) Friday must be held sacred and should be spent in religious 

meditation and discussion. 

(6) There is no distinction in the cult between high caste and low, 

or between JEUndus and Mahammadans or Christians. Any 

* Further information regarding Hindu sects will be found in H. H. Wilson's " Religious Sects of the 
Hindus," Mr. Bisley's "Trihes and Castes of Bengal," and in tke late Jogendra Nath fihattacharya s 
"Hindu Cas_t^e^a^an^^ ec^^^_ ^^^^ ^^^ seem to he wholly confined to the Kartibhajfi, sect, and it is oftea 
naed as a STuonym for Bhagwat, a name applied to Muhammadans who are under a vow to abstain from 
meatlnd fish and may be sfen wearing the characteristic necklace of the Bairagi. The number of such 
M^aidanTis smJu but they are occasionally to be met with both m Bengal and m Bihar. 

+ These have been ooUected and printed. They are known as the Bhaber Git. 

t The Mahashay h usuaUy the member ot the sect to whom the convert owes his conversion.. A 
Mahlshay isexpecteatobo thoroughly well acquainted with the Bhaber Git. to attend ^'i\'«^'#,'°'J« 
WivalsYtGh^para where he must present his own andlus disciples' contributions, and to be able to 
nromote the s^Xal!and still more the material welfare of his own disciple, e.g by healing their diseases, 
promote the spiritual, an ^^,j^^ ^ j^^^ ^„lia (^^1 Qhand ) is lord of all I move accord- 

ing I yo^ plea Sre I do not live apart from you but am always with you. Oh gi-eat Lord ! 



184 CHAPTEE IV — EELIGIOSr. 



one, whatever his caste or race or creed, can not only become a 
member of the sect, but can also obtain high rank in it. 
It has happened more than once that a Muhammadan or a 
low caste Hindu has become the spiritual guide or ]\[ahdshay 
of a Brdhman. No outward sign of adherence to the sect 
is required, A Brahman may keep his sacred thread and 
a Muhammadan ia not required to shave his beard. It is only 
in their intercourse with each other at religious meetings 
that social and racial distinctions are ignored.* In their 
dealings with the people of the outside world or Aihika the 
Kartabhajas observe the ordinary social restrictions. And even 
with other Kartabhajas the usual rules in respect of marriage 
are not relaxed ; a Hindu of one caste would never give his 
daughter to anyone but a member of his own caste. 

335. It is said that the Muhammadan Kartabhajas do not circumcise their 
male children, nor enter the mosque, nor listen to the preaching of the Maulavis; 
they do not even believe in the Kor^n, and the only point in respect of which 
they still follow Muhammadan practice is that they bury their dead, and do 
not cremate them. According to a Hindu writerf the exhibition of fervid 
love is the only form of religious exercise practised by the Kartabhajas. At 
their secret nocturnal meetings they sing some songs regarding A'ul Chand, 
Krishna or Gauranga as a cloak for familiarities that cannot be described. 

There are four annual festivals when the votaries assemble at Ghoshpara 
in large numbers. The chief is the Dol Jatr^ when from fifteen to twenty 
thousand persons collect together. The principal spots visited by them 
are the Samajghar where the first Karta's wife lies buried, the Dalimtaldi 
or spot where the second Karta's body was placed on the way to the burning 
ghat, where a fine pomegranate tree immediately sprang up, and the Him 
Sdgar or tank consecrated to Ram Dul^l by a former Mahar^jd. of Burdwan. 
This tank is said to possess wonderful properties and immersion in it is supposed 
to cure various diseases and deformities. At the Samajghar and Dalimtala also, 
valuable hints are communicated in some occult fashion to persons suffering from 
incurable diseases or seeking the fulfilment of their desires. "With this object 
offerings called mdnasik (chiefly money) are made by the devotees. The Karta 
for the time being is also supposed to work miraculous cures. 

The census yields no information as to the number of persons following 

this seel. The great majority entered their 
religion as Hindu or Muhammadan as the case 
might be. In the Jessore district only a few 
persons, as noted in the margin, returned their 
religion as Kartabhaja or Bhagawani. Having 
regard to the entries iu the caste column, these 
have been classed in the census tables as 
Muhammadans, and it is reported that they are still 
generally regarded as belonging to this religion. 
In point of fact this is not the case, but there was no object in showing separately 
the few who described themselves as Kartdbhaj^, when the great majority 
of the persons belonging to the sect were otherwise returned. 

336. The sects founded by Kabir and Nanak are too well known to 

need detailed description. Kabir was one of the 
.S^r^^'"^"" ^"''^ ^""^^''^ disciples of Uamanand, and preached about 

the end of the fourteenth century. He was a weaver 
by caste or, as some say, the son of a Brdhman widow who was brought up 
by weavers. He endeavoured to build up a religion that would embrace Hindu 
and Muhammadan alike. The foundation stone of his creed was that there is 
only one Grod, that the Grod of the Hindus is God also of the Muhammadans 
and that he may be invoked either as Ali or as 'Rdm. On his death both 
Hindus and Muhammadans claimed his body, the Hindus in order to bum and 
the Muhammadans to bury, it. 

* They have secret signs by which they can recognise each other, 
t Jogendra Nath Bhattacharya. 



Religion. 


Caste. 


Number. 


EarUbbaj^ 






Bliagaw4ni ... 


Shekh 


44 




JolAha 


^ I 


Eartibbaj^ 


Ebagaw^ni 


Ditto 


Bhagawani 


21 


Ditto 


Slielth 


18 


Ditto 


Jolilii 


108 


Bhagawtoi 


Shekh 


8 




Total ... 


208 



HINDir SECTS AND GODLINGS. 185 



Many of the lower castes of Bihar, such as Chamars, Dosddhs and the like, 
belong to this sect, but those so returned in the caste colunin at the census were 
probably Sadhus or Fakirs belonging to the sect, who wan der about the 
country singing songs in honour of its founder. Although probably in 
the first instance a pupil of Kabir, Ndiaak achieved a far greatev reputation 
as the founder of the religion of the Sikhs which, under Gobind the tenth 
Guru, was transformed from a purely religious, into a political, association. 
An account of the ordinances of this religion will be found in paragraphs 
260 to 267 of Mr. Ibbetson's Report on the Census of the Punjab in 1881. 

The Nanakpanthis of this Province are followers of the teaching of 
the original founder, and are found chiefly amongst the Kumhars and Dosadhs, 
and other low castes. Those returned under this head at the census were 
probably itinerant mendicants. 

337. The Seo Narayanis are a small sect founded about two centuries ago 

by a Rdjput named Seo Narayan of Ghazipur. 
Seo N^batani. r^^^^ believe in one formless {nird/cdr) God, forbid 

idolatry, and venerate their original Guru, whom they regard as an incarna- 
tion of the Almighty. The eating of flesh and drinking of wine were forbidden 
by the founder of the sect, but this rule has now been relaxed.* Mantras were 
composed by the founder, to be uttered from time to time during the day, e:g., 
when bathing. The sacred book of the sect is known as the Sabda-Sant or Guru 
Granth. It contains moral precepts and declares that salvation is to be attain- 
ed only by unswerving faith in God, control over the passions, and implicit obedi- 
euce to the teachings of the Guru. The Guru is said to be held in such respect 
that all his leavings are most scrupulously partaken of by his disciples. Their 
great annual festival is on the 5th night after the new moon of Magh, when they 
assemble in the house of one of their fraternity, and sing songs and read extracts 
from the Guru Granth. When a man wishes to become a Seo N^rayani, he 
selects one.of the sect, belonging to a caste not inferior to his own, who imparts 
to him the iwawj'ra of initiation. He is then enjoined to have faith in God 
(Bhagaban) and the original Guru, and is given a certificate of admission. This 
is done in the presence of several members of the sect, whose names and 
addresses are noted in the certificate. All jsastes are admitted, but most of the 
disciples come from the lower grades of society, such as the Tatwa, Chamdr 
and Dosadh castes. The cult was formerly more popular that it is now and 
higher castes are said to have supplied it with recruits. 

The Seo Nardyanis bury their dead, and one of the great inducements to 
join the fraternity is said to be the knowledge that they will give a decent 
burial to their comrades when they die, and will not allow their bodies to be 
touched bv sweepers. Their funeral processions are conducted with some 
pomp, and^ are accompanied by songs and music. The ordinary caste restric- 
tions are observed, save only in the case of the extremists who adopt an 
ascetic life. It was probably people of this latter class who were returned as 
Seo Narayanis in the caste column of the census schedules. 

338. One of the most curious forms of belief, even in this country of 

extraordinary religious developments, is that of the 
Panchpibitas. Panchpiriyas. How the sect originated cannot now 

be ascertained, but it seems clear that it is one of those syncretic cults which 
arose during the time of the Muhammadan supremacy, when the thoughts of 
many were turned to the reconciliation of the religious differences which existed 
b<}tween the ruling race and their subjectsj. The Panch Pir form one of the 
main objects of adoration, not only of many Muhammadans, but also of numer- 
ous Hindus in Bihar, such as Halwais, K^ndus, Binds, and Muriydris, who often 
worship them as their family deities. They are usually represented by a small 
mound on a clay plinth erected in the north-west corner of the room. A panja 
of iron resembling the human hand with a band of yellow cloth at the wrist is 
placed on the plinth near the mound. Every Wednesday the mound is washed, 
incense is burned before it and offerings of flowers are made. On special occa- 
sions sacrifices are offered, either of go ats or cocks. Where the votary is^ 

* A stbrv is told in iiisiification of this relaxation to the effect that a certain ywa of the sect on being 
nrpssed bv some European gentlemen to eat their forbidden articles, at last agreed, on condition that a 
S shonid &st be spread over the table. This was done, and when it was removed iho meat was found 
to have been miraculously convert^ into sweets and the wine into milk. . , , \^ ^ , 

t 'ih.e penonnel of the five Pirs has already been discussed in connection with the Muhammadans, 

A A. 



186 CHiPTER IV— BELIGIOIT. 



Hindu he often engages a DaMli Fakir to perform ceremony on his behalf. 
The Panehpiri5'a Hindus eat the flesh of goats killed by Muhammadan butchers 
in accordance "with the forms prescribed by their religion and -will not touch the 
flesh of animals which have been sacrificed before a Hindu God. They do not, 
however, neglect the worship of Hindu duties. 

339. We have been dealing hitherto with sects thrown off from orthodox 
^ . Hinduism, There is, however, another aspect of 

WoBSHiP OP kon-Aetak deities, heterodoxy. Thereligion actually professed by the 

people contains much that is foreign altogether to the teachings inculcated in 
the Shastras. The way in which non-Aryan tribes are received into the Hindu 
communion has already been adverted to. The great points on which the 
Brdhmans insist are the recognition of their own supremacy and the existence of 
certain Hindu gods, and the observance of certain restrictions in the matter of 
food and drink and social practices. But the acceptance of Hinduism does 
not, as does that of Christianity, necessitate the abandonment of all other forms 
of belief, and if the conditions made by the Br^hmans are complied with, they 
are quite content to leave their neophytes in the undisturbed possession of their 
old pantheon, and there is nothing to prevent them from worshippiag in their 
own way, with their own priests, their own peculiar gods and devils, in addi- 
tion to the Hindu gods at whose worship none but Brahmans can offiiciate. It 
thus happens that all the lower, and many even of the more respectable, castes 
reverence numerous minor deities, who have appropriately been dubbed god- 
lings, who are quite unknown to Vedic Hinduism. Where the worship of any 
one of them is specially popular and therefore profitable, it is in time identified 
with Kali, herself a creation of Tantrik Hinduism, or s( me other recognised 
divinity of the Hindu pantheon, and its worship is taken charge of by the 
Brahmans.* 

Considerations of Space and time forbid anything approaching a complete 
enumeration and description of the various godlings worshipped in this 
province, but it will be interesting to notice a few of the better known ones. 
But before doing so, I propose to give a short account of the religion oi the 
Tip^ras as an illustration of the transitional state between Animism and 
Hinduism through which many of the recognised Hindu castes have probably 
passed at some earlier period. With very few exceptions the Tipar^s were 
returned at the Census as Hindus, but it will be seen that their religion is still 
of a very irregular type. As time goes on, they will gradually drop the least 
respectable members of their pantheon ; others will be identified with orthodox 
divinities, and their worship, with the accompanying perquisites, will be appro- 
priated by the Brahmans, while a few will survive as godlings who will hold 
a position similar to that of those to be described in the subsequent paragraphs 
of this section. 

340. The religion of the Tiparas is a curious mixture of Hinduism and 

ieeugiok op the TiPiBis. ^""TTu ^^J^"^^^ ^"^f^^^ have found their May 

to the hills and inculcated a belief in the Hindu 
deities and in the sacred character of the cow. But the old tribal gods have 
not yet been ousted and they are worshipped side by side with those of the 
Hindus by tribal priests called A!nchai or Ochai (cf. Ojh^). Their own gods and 
goddesses are : 

(1) Matdikatar (now beginning to be identified with Siva and Durga). 

(2) Tuinia,t a river goddess (now said to be the same as Gangd.) 

« The way in which the Brahmans have incorporated non-Aryan religious ceremonies and beliefs in 
order to gain the adhesion of the tribes with whom they came in contact, may perhaps find an illnstralion 
in the following account given in Hooter's HimalayaD Journals (vol. 1, page 364) of a ceremony performed 
by a Lama or Buddhist priest to appease the spirits of the woods and waters:— 

" The Lama had come provided with a piece of bark, shaped like a boat, some juniper incense and a 
match-box, with which he made a fire, and put it on the boat, which he then launched on the lake as a 
votive cfiering to the presiding deity. Taking a rupee from me, the priest then waved his arm aloft, and 
pretended to throw the money into the water, singing snatches of prayers in Tibetan, and at, times shriek- 
ing at the top of his voice to the L'ryad who claims these woods and waters as his own." 

As the author observes, this invocation of the gods of the Vfoods and waters forms no part of Bud- 
dhism or i.am4 worship, but the crafty Lama modifies his practices to suit the requirements of the Animistic 
Lcpchas who support him, and he is content witb their recognition in return of the spiritual supremacy 
of the church. In the same way the Lamas acknowledge the day on whicu the pagan Lepch^ from time 
immemorial have made ofierings to the genius of Kinchinjunga, by holding it as a festival of the church 
throughout Sikkim. 

t Dui or Tui is the common word for water in the Bodo group of langnages, to wLich TLpdra 
belongs, Jf(i is aijaffi? meaning 'great'; it also means mother.' 



HINDU SECTS AND GODEINGS. 187 



(3) Gardia and Kdlaia (said to be K^rtika and Ganesh). 
(4:) Sdngrama, the deity presiding over the Himalayas. 

(5) Lampra or Khabdi, tne god who rules the sky and ocean. 

(6) Bur^s^, the forest deity. He is old and carries a mace; his home 

is in the woods. . 

(7) Burasa's son, the god of death (Yama). 
C8) Bani Rao and Thunai Rao. 

(9) Maimungma* the goddess of paddy and wife of Thunai (said to be 
Lakshmi). 

(10) Khttlangma,* the goddess of cotton. 

(11) Burhirak, seven goddesses, six of whom are married to Bani; the 

seventh is a virgin. They pre^de over witchci-aft. 

Of the above, numbers (6), (7), and .{U) are malignant ; the others are all 
benevolent. Ldmpra is worshipped with offerings of sun-dried (Atap) rice. 
To Mat^ikatar and Sangrama goats are sacrificed, and to the others offerings are 
made of fowls, ducks, pigeons, swine and spirits. The family gods of the 
Tipara kings are known as the Chauddha Debata— the fourteen Gods, They 
include Tuima, Lampra and Burasa ; the rest are ordinary Hindu deities. The 
worship is conducted not by Br^hmans but by the tribal Gch^is. The head 
priest of the shrine is called the Chantai; and his assistants are Ndrayans and 
Galims. Goats and buffaloes are sacrificed at the shrine. In former times 
human beings also were immolated and several veritable holocausts are recorded 
in the Raj mdla or chronicles of the Tipdra kings.f 

The chief festivals are five in number. At the beginning of the Hindu 
year Garaia and Kaldia are adored. Tuima is worshipped in Agrahayan ; 
a white cotton thread is stretched from the nearest river ghat to her shriae 
in the village, and this no one may cross. After the harvest has been 
gathered, two young girls are, dressed up to personate the goddesses of paddy 
and cotton. They are richly clad and decorated with flowers and ornaments, 
and after they have been given a princely repast, a pig is sacrificed before them. 
Lastly, in ^shar there are two festivals in honour of the fourteen gods at inter- 
vals of ^ fort.night. On both occasions numerous goats are immolated, and 
work of all kind is strictly tabooed. 

841. In the introduction to his book on the Popular Religion and Folklore 
PoruLAE FOEMs OF BBLiEF. of Northcm India, Mr. Crooke writes :— 
"The general term for the great gods of Hinduism, the Supreme triad — Brahma, Vishnu 
and Siva— and other deities of the higher class which coUeotively constitute the Hindu 
official Pantheon is Deva or ' the Shining ones.' They are the deities of the richer or higher 
classes, and to the ordinary peasant of Northern India these great gods are little more than a 
name. He will, it is tru«, oooasionally bow at their shrines; be will pour some water or 
lay some flowers on the image or fetish stones which are the special resting places of these 
divinities or represent the productive powers of Nature. But from time immemorial, when 
Brahinauiam had not as yet succeeded in occupying the land, hia allegiance was bestowed on 
a class of deities of a much lower and more primitive kind. Their inferiority in rank to the 
greater gods is marked in their- title. Ihey are called ' devata ' or ' godlings,' not ' gods,' " 

Taking Mr, Crooke's book as my model I have instituted enquiries on the 
same lines in Bengal. I began by drawing up a brief note on the subject based 
on such information as was already available in Mr. Risley's book on the "Tribes 
and Castes of Bengal," and elsewhere and circulated this as a basis for further re- 
search. I have received an excellent series of reports from the gentlemen who 
undertook the enquiry in different parts of the province, but want of time pre- 
vents me from dealing with them at any length here, and it must suffice to indicate 
very briefly the different forms of popular religion common amongst the masses 
of the people in different parts of the province. So far as I have been able 
to digest the material collected, the minor deities, or godlings, may be grouped 
under the following heads :— 

(1) Godlings of nature. 

(2) Godlings of disease. 

(3) Snake godlings. 



P*ge633. ^^^ 



188 CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



(4) Deified heroes or the sainted dead. 

(5) Malevolent spirits and ghosts 

(6) Aboriginal deities now identified with Kali or other members of 

the orthodox Pantheon. 

(7) Other aboriginal objects of worship. 

(8) The Gramya devata and spirits of the sacred grove. 

Godlinga of Nature. 

342. Amongst the godlings of Nature the Sun, Surjya or Graharaj (king 

of the planets), takes the first place. The Sun god 
Thb Sun. ^^^ ^^^ ^£ ^^^ great deities in Vedic times, but 

he has now fallen to the rank of a godling. At the same time he is _ still 
widely worshipped, especially in Bihar and amongst some of the Dravidian 
tribes of Chota Nagpur. There are temples in his honour at various places, 
notably at Kanark near Puri and atGaya.* Amongst his smaller temples may 
be mentioned one at Amarkund near Berhampore in the Murshidabad district 
where he is worshipped as Gangaditya and is represented by an equestrian image 
made of stone. In Cutback the visible representation is a circle painted red. 
In Mymensingh he is represented as a being with two hands of a dark red colour 
mounted in a chariot drawn by seven horses. The higher castes worship him 
daily while bathing and a libation of water {arghya) is made in his honour 
before other gods and goddesses are worshipped. The Gdyatri or sacred verse, 
which each Brahman must recite daily, is dedicated to him. Sunday is sacred to 
him, and on that day many abstain from eating fish or flesh ; in some districts 
salt also is abstained from. The Sundays in the month of Kdrtik are specially 
set aside for his worship in Bihar and parts of Bengal. The great festival in 
his honour, known as the Chhat Pujd, is held on the 6th day of the light haK of 
Kartik when the people gather at a river or pool and ofEer libations to the setting 
sun, and repeat the ceremony on the following morning. They also make ofiferings 
of white flowers, sandal paste, betel-nut, rice, milk, plantains, &c. Bfdhman 
priests are not employed, but an elderly member of the family, usually a female, 
conducts the worship. Even Muhammadans join in the Chhat Pujd. In Eastern 
Bengal the Sundays of Baisakh (occasionally M%h) are held sacred, and low 
caste women spend the whole day wandering about in the sun carrying on the 
head a basket containing plantainsj sugar and their offerings. On the last 
Sunday of Baisakh the pujd is performed, and a Brdhman priest officiates. In 
Noakhali widows • stand on one leg facing the sun the whole day. In 
Mymensingh unmarried girls worship the Sun in Magh, in the hopes of 
obtaining a good husband and, so it is said, a satisfactory mother-in-law. In 
Puri, Hindu women desirous of obtaining male offspring worship him on the 
second day after the new moon in A'sin. The Sun is often credited with heal- 
ing powers in all sorts of disease, such as asthma, consumption, skin diseases, 
white leprosy and severe headaches. 

343. The Sun is a male deity, but in Rajshahi he has a female counterpart 
called Chhatm^ta, who is worshipped, chiefly by females, on the sixth day 
of Kartik and Ohaitra. On the previous day the devotee takes only rice or 
wheat cooked in milk without salt, and on the day of the ceremony she fasts 
till evening, when she goes to a tank with plantains and cakes, and bathes facing 
the setting sun. She then returns home, keeps vigil throughout the night 
and repeats the ceremony in the morning. The offerings are then eaten by 
the worshipper and her friends. 

In Chota Nagpur the sun holds a very high place in the primitive beliefs 
of the aboriginal tribes. The Oraons identify him with Dharmesh, the supreme 
lord of all, and worship him twice a year, and also at weddings. He holds 
an equally exalted position under the name Singbonga amongst the Mimdas, 
Bhumijs and Hos, who worship him with offerings of fowls and country liquor, 
and amongst whom the most binding oath commences with the statement "the 
Sun God is in the sky. " The Haris in Birbhum sacrifice a goat to the Sun on 
the Sunday following the new moon in F41gun. 

* The most celebrated temple is at Ajodhya in t^e United Provinces. 



HINDU SECTS AND GODLIUGS. 189 

344. The earth is venerated as the mother of all living things and the giver 
The Eaeth °^ .^^^ iood, and is regarded as a benignant female 

deity. She has various names such as Bhudebi (the 
earth goddess), Basundhara (the wealth bearer), Dhartf Mai (mother earth"', 
AmbubAchi and Basumatf Thdkurani. She is held in great reverence by all, and 
pious Hindus chant her mantras [Asan suddhi) before commencing the worship 
of any great god, and do reverence to her when they rise in the morning. The 
dying man is frequently laid on the ground, and so is the mother at the time of 
parturition. Newly married couples must sleep on the earth for the first three 
nights. When a calf is born the Godlas allow the first stream of milk from 
the cow to fall to the ground in her honour. The earth is often worshipped 
before entering a newly-built house and on the birth of a child. In Orissa 
she is worshipped in the course of the marriage ceremony. Before sowing 
is commenced she is propitiated with offerings of flowers and milk, while the 
Lepchas and the tribes of the Chota Nagpur Plateau offer sacrifices of goats 
and fowls. The great festival in connection with the worship of tha earth is 
in Ashar. On the first day of that month she is supposed to menstruate, and 
there is an entire cessation of all ploughing, sowing and other agricultural 
operations, and widows refrain from eating cooked rice. On the 4th day the 
bathing ceremony is performed, in accordance with the Hindu idea that a 
woman who menstruates is unclean until she bathes on the 4th day. A stone, 
taken to represent the goddess, is placed erect on the ground and the top of 
it is painted with vermilion. The housewife bathes it with turmeric water 
and a betel-nut is placed on a piece of wood close by. The stone is then 
bedpcked with flowers and offerings of milk, plantains, etc., are made. 
The Ghanddls worship the earth on the Pans Sankranti day ; and in the 
spring, when the Sal tree blossoms, the Ordons celebrate her nuptials with 
the Sun with all the ceremonies of a real marriage. The Musahars, Bhuiyds 
and other low castes otFer sacrifices of goats and fowls. In former times the 
Kandhs immolated human beings to fertilise the earth and procure good crops. 

345. The moon is held to be as a male deity of a very mild disposition. 

He is depicted as a handsome man with a wheat 
™^ °°^' coloured complexion. He is often regarded as the 

deity who presides over crops, while elsewhere he takes charge of the education 
of children, and is credited with the power to heal wounds and certain 
diseases, especially those of the eye. The date for his worship varies and in 
many places it is performed only by women. There is a very general super- 
stition that, if any one but a worshipper should happen to see the moon on the 
day fixed for his worship, they will suffer a loss of reputation. To prevent 
worse from happening, a person who unluckily sees the moon on such an 
occasion takes up five stones and, after touching his forehead with them, 
throws- them on his neighbour's roof. If the latter then abuses him, it is 
believed that atonement has been made, and that no further evil will result. 
Sometimes a special ceremony called Chandrdyan brat is performed to avert 
evils arising from an ill-omened conjunction of stars shown in a child's horos- 
cope. The moon is also worshipped by some of the non-Aryan tribes, e.g., 
the Binjhias who kno^ it as Nind-Bonga. 

346. Besides the earth and the moon, the other planets are also wor- 

shipped on certain occasions, but with less cere- 
Othee Planets. ^^^^ rpj^^ ^^^^ important are Sani (Saturn) 

and Rahu, the demon who causes eclipses of the sun.* Sani is regarded as the 
son of Surjya, and is supposed to be very malevolent and to have great 
influence over the destiny of men. He is much dreaded and is carefully propi- 
tiated either on Saturdays or on particular occasions when astrological 
calculations indicate that a visitation from him is to be specially feared. He 
has no image but is represented by an earthen pot filled with water. A seat 
is placed in front of it and on it are laid five fruits and five flowers. A 
Brahman priest officiates at the ceremony, and the prasdd or offering, which 
consists of a sort of pudding made of flour, plantains, sugar and milk, must be 
eaten on the spot by the devotees, who must wash their mouths carefully 



» Eclipses oic the moon are said to be caused by another demon, Ketu. 



190 CHAPTER IV— -RELIGION. 



before leaving. If any casual visitor should arrive while the ceremony is in 
progress, he must wait till it is concluded and eat a share of the prasdd ; otherwise 
he will incur the godling's displeasure. Rahu is generally considered to be 
a K^kshasa and is the patron godling of the Dosadhs who claim to be 
his descendants. They worship him on a Tuesday in Bais^kb or Jaishta> 
without the intervention of a Brahman, with the aid of a caste priest or 
Bhagta who, under the imagined influence of the divine afflatus, walks barefoot 
over fire, stands on the sharp edge of a sword, and does other wonderful feats. 

317. Numerous rivers are sacred, but the greatest of all is the personified 

Ganges who is said to have sprung from the feet 
^'^^^^" of Vishnu. She is a benignant , deity, said by 

some to be the wife of Siva, and worshipped daily, and also on the occasion 
of certain ceremonies. Low caste Hindus throw offerings of fruits and sweets 
into the river when bathing, and its water is believed to be so sacred that to 
touch it will purify any one. It has special virtue on the occurrence of certain 
yogas or auspicious conjunctions of the planets, when large crowds assemble on 
its banks in order to wash and be eiean. Goats are sacrificed on these occafjions, 
and in some parts they are thrown alive into the river, whence they are taken 
and eaten by the Mallahs. Other offerings are the perquisite of a special class 
of degraded Brahmans known as Gangd/putra. Sometimes the goddess is 
represented by a simple earthen jug filled with water and surmounted by a 
mango twig, and sometimes as a female figure with four hands, riding on a 
makar, or fabulous marine monster like a shark. In this form she is worshipped 
by the fishing castes of Bengal Proper who sacrifice white goats to her before 
starting on a fishing expedition, and also on some special occasion, the date of 
which varies.* Pilgrims at Gaya offer their first pinda (rice cake) to her in the 
name of their deceased ancestors. In the Sonthal Parganas a woman worships 
her on the 6th and 12th days after giving birth to a child. She goes to a river 
or pond and pours oil on a slab of stone, on which she then draws five perpendi- 
cular lines and prays for entire restoration to health. Certain ascetics perform 
a special penance in her honour called jalsdin, which consists in spending every 
night in the month of Magh seated stark naked on a small platform erected over 
the river, engaged in such prayer and meditation as their sufferings from the 
cold will allow. The town of Tribeni in Hooghly is held to be specially holy, 
because the three sacred streams— the Ganges, Jamuna and Saraswati — which 
meet at Allahabad here once more separate from each other. 

348. The Brahmaputra is sacred only on the Ashokashtami day in Chaitra 
when large numbers of pilgrims resort to its banks to bathe. The Baitarani 
in Cuttack is held in great reverence by all Hindus on account of its bearing the 
same name as the Indian Styx, which all must cross after death before they can 
reach heaven. Pilgrims to Jagannath worship on its banks and make offerings 
of cows, etc., to Brdhmans, so that they may safely cross the river after death. 
In Muzaffarpur and Darbhanga the Kamald, is worshipped as the younger 
sister of the Ganges, and receives similar offerings of goats, which are thrown 
alive into the river and are then taken by the Mallahs. Women pray to this 
river goddess for issue, and she is worshipped when new tanks or wells are 
excavated. Children are taken to its banks when their "heads are first shaved. 
Various other rivers are sacred, e.g., the Karatoyd, the Ddmodar, the Falgu, 
the Barali, &c. There are also several water godlings who are worshipped 
without reference to any special river. Of these two of the best known, 
Khwdja Khir and Pir Badr, are Muhammadans and have already been 
mentioned. The Chandals of Central Bengal worship a river god called 
Bansura who is supposed to protect fish from injury by evil spirits. Koild 
Mata of Bihar is usually supposed to be a goddess, but it is sometimes 
held to be a male called KoiU Bihi and identified with Varuna. When wells 
are excavated, a male idol is made of wood and a ceremony of marriage 
between it and the goddess is performed. In the form of Koila Bab^ this is the 
favourite deity of the Gonrhis who regard him as an old, gray-bearded person 
and make him offerings of grain and molasses before casting a new net or 
starting on a commercial venture. Pigs are also sacrificed to him. The Koches 



Jaishta 



* In Dacca this festival takes place in Magh and in Backergunge on the 10th day of the new moon in 

>it.a. 



HINDU SECTS AND GODLINGS, 191 



and Rdjbansis venerate Hudum Deo who is identified with Indra and i» 
represented as riding on a white elephant called Airabat In Diuajpur thia 
godling seems to be androgynous and is represented by two figures, male and 
fenjale, made of clay or cowdung. When drought is feared the women make 
offerings of curds, parched rice and molasses and dance round the images at 
night, performing many obscene rites and abusing Indra in the foulest language, 
in the hope of compelling him to send the much needed rain. Jalkjimari 
Debi is a goddess who is believed in Murshidabad to preside over rivers and 
tanks, and is worshipped by the fishing and other low castes to secure immu- 
nity from drowning and from the attacks of crocodiles. A stick is placed in a 
bowl of water and offerings are made of fruits, sweetmeats and goats, which 
are divided between the worshippers and the priest, who is frequently a Barna 
Brdhman. Mineral springs {Dawdipdni) are adored by the Lepchas. The 
hot springs at KAjgir are also supposed to possess religious efficacy and pilgrims 
from far and near go to bathe in them. 

349. The worship of mountains is most common amongst the original 

tribes. The Mundas, Santals, Mabilis and other 
Mountains. tribes of Chota Nagpur revere a mountain god called 

Marang Buru or Bar Pahd.r to whom they sacrifice buffaloes, etc., with the 
aid of the tribal priest {pdhn or haiga). 

The chief visible habitation of this god" is a bluff near Lodhma where 
they assemble and offer sacrifices. The Lepchas and the Nepal tribes worship 
mountains, mountain tops and the saddles between ridges. The worship of 
mountains plays a smaller part in the religion of the plains people but it is 
not altogether absent. The mighty chain of the Himalayas is held sacred by 
all Hindus and is worshipped by the higher castes on certain occasions, with 
the aid of Brdhman priests. It is personified as the father of Pdirvati, the wife 
of Siva ; it contains the elysium of Uttara Kuru and is celebrated as the abode 
of many a sage and ascetic. Sacrifices are offered to the bluff near Lodhma 
referred to above by Hindus of all castes and even by Muhammadans. The 
rock called Dharmasil^ at Gaya, which is supposed to have been placed there 
by Brahma to hold down Gay^sur, the local demon, is ailso regarded as sacred. 

850. The most sacred of all trees is the Pipal (/c«s religiosa). It is said 

that the trunk is the habitation of Brahma, the twigs 
^^^^' of Siva and the leaves of the other gods. It is 

known as Basudeva and water is poured at its foot after the morning bath, 
especially in the month of Bais^kh and when people are in difficulties. It is 
considered very meritorious to plant these irees by the way side and to con- 
secrate them* (Pratisthd). The Bel {aegle marmehs) is the sacred tree of Siva; 
its leaves are indispensable in performing the worship of Siva and Sakti, 
and for this reason pious Hindus of the Vaishnava sect will not so much 
as mention its name. When the tree dies, none but Brahmans may use the 
wood as fuel. It is believed to be a favourite tree with certain spirits who 
teke up their abode in it. The Tulsi, or holy basil plant, is to the Vaishnava 
what the Bel is to the S^kta, and the plant is to be seen in the courtyard of all 
members of this sect. It is watered after the daily bath, and in Baisaikh a pot 
filled with water, which drips though a hole in the bottom, is suspended over 
the plant. In the evening a lamp is lit at its foot. Hari is believed to be always 
present in it. Its leaves are essential for the proper worship of Vishnu. They 
are believed to have a certain medicinal effect in the case of malarial affections 
and are much used by native practitioners. The Karam tree {neuclea parvifolia) 
is considered sacred in Chota Nagpur, and its festival is held by the Oraons 
with great rejoicings at the time of the harvest home. A branch of the tree is 
fetched from the forest by the young men and women of the villa,ge, to the 
accompaniment of singing, dancing and the beating of torn torn. It is stuck in 
the ground at some place inside the village and decorated with lights and flowers. 
The people join in a general feast and, when they have eaten and drunk, they 
soend the night in merriment and in dancing round the branch. Next morning 
at dawn it is thrown into the nearest river, and the spirit of evil is believed to 
be removed with it.f The aboriginal immigrants to Bogra from Chota Nagpur 
pay similar venerati on to the plantain tree after reaping the dus crop. G-oats 

* Tt. ^anv Tiarta the planting of mango trees is regaKded as an act of religious merit, .and the planter of 
in """."X i""/^^ , , ^, assured of a home in heaven so long as ram drips f ro^ its lenve^. 
'"'^'tm.^iZuntouSX^ by the:Eharw4if Of Mirzapu^r is giv.n by Mr.;Orcoke. 



192 CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



and pigs are sacrificed to it. The bamboo is worshipped before weddings, and 
after the ceremony, the bridal garland is thrown into a bamboo clump. 

Codlings of Disease. 

351. Various godlings such as Surjya, Dharmaraj, &c., are credited with 

the power to cure disease, but under this head 1 
SiTALA Ai,!. THE SETBN SISTEB8. ghall^efer Only to those whose connection with 

disease is specially intimate. Of these the best known and most widely wor- 
shipped is Sitald who is also known as Basanta Burh( (the old lady of 
spring^ or Basanta Chandi. She is popularly regarded as one of seven 
sisters who are variously said to be the seven forms of A'di Sakti, the 
primordial energy, or the seven principal Yoginis or followers of Parvati. 
However this may be, she and her six associates, Bddi Mata, Phul Mata, 
Pansahi Mata, Gulsulia Mata, Kankar Mata, and Malhal are the presiding 
deities over the poxes and especially small-pox. Kankar is the most feared, 
but her attacks are rare; Phulmata and Pansahi Mata attack children under 
7; Badi Mata attacks them between the ages of 7 and 15, and Gulsulia Mata, 
at any age. In many places a shed is erected outside the village for the seven 
sisters, who are represented by seven balls of clay placed in a line. Sweet- 
meats, flowers, etc., are offered, and goats and pigeons are sacrificed by the 
better, and pigs by the lower, castes. In the event of a severe epidemic, 
even the high castes offer pigs to the seven sisters, but they employ Dosadhs 
or other people of low caste to perform the actual ceremony. It is generally 
conducted by females. Chamars worship the seven sisters, not for protection 
against epidemics, but to obtain the spread of cattle disease. 

352. But although the seven sisters are thus collectively worshipped, they 
are, at the present day, overshadowed by the special veneration paid to Sitala 
in particular. She is generally regarded as the goddess of small-pox, and her 
name, 'she who cools', is given because, if properly propitiated, she can allay 
the burning sensations which accompany that disease. She is generally 
represented as a naked female, painted red and sitting upon an ass, with a 
bundle of broomsticks (symbolical of the sweeping away of the epidemic) in 
her hand, an earthen pot under her left arm, and a winnowing fan upon her 
head. In Burdwan she is said to be a four-armed figure riding on a lion. 
Sometimes the image is a piece of wood or stone with a human face carved 
on it, besmeared^ with oil and vermilion and studded with spots or nails of gold, 
silver or brass in imitation of the pustules of the disease. In Jessore and 
Noakhali she takes the form assigned to her in the Purdns of a white figure in 
a state of perfect nudity, while in Orissa and Champaran she is represented by 
an earthen pot. In Ehulna she is regarded by the Pods, not merely as the 
goddess of small-pox, but as their main deity, and if a persyn is carried off by a 
tiger, or his crops are destroyed by wild animals, it is thought that it is because 
he has incurred the displeasure of the goddes?. Elsewhere she is worshipped 
only when epidemics of small-pox or measles (and sometimes cholera) break out 
or when children are inoculated or vaccinated. Sometimes the image remains 
in a special temple, and sometimes it is kept by Muchis, Doms and Haris, who 
serve as its priests and carry it about begging, or by A'eharji Brahmans, or by 
Kumhars whose ancestors were inoculators. When the higher castes worship 
Sitala, they do so with the aid of a Brahman priest. 

353. The offerings consist of milk, flowers, fruits, sweets, rice, betel-nuts, 
vermilion, hel leaves, etc., and sometimes a goat. The priest usually takes 
the offerings, except when it is a goat, in which case he gets only the head' 
When an offering is made in order to procure the restoration of a particular 
person to health, it is often thrown away and not eaten. The general method 
of worship, m which Mubammadans often join, is the same as that of Olai 
Chandi which will be described below, but in the case of the lower castes, 
such as Doms, Hans, B^gdis and Muchis, one of the devotees sits before the 
idol, waggjng his head, until he is inspired to say what is the cause of the out- 
break and how the deity is to be propitiated and persuaded to stamp it out. The 
Acharji Brahmans profess to treat cases of small-pox, but they do little beyond 
xe^tmg mantras and touching the patient with a twig of the nim (Zidir- 
aehta^nd^ca)y,h^<,h is Sitala's favourite tree. In Patna a small piece of iround 
near the patient's bed m smeared with cow-dung and a tire is lit there, on which 



HINDO SECTS AND GODLINGS. 193 



ghi is poured and incense burnt. A Mali is called in who sings songs in honour 
of Sitala, while the patient is given sweetmeats and fanned with a twig of the 
nim tree. 

Low class Hindus and Muhammadans are often afraid to have their 
children vaccinated lest they should incur the wrath of this godling. In parts of 
Northern and Eastern Bengal the Basantl or Basant^rf puj^ is celebrated with 
some pomp. On the advent of spring, parties of women go from door to door 
singing songs of SitaM and begging for money to perform the ceremony. They then 
assemble at the appointed place with offerings of grain, wild flowers and the like. 
The worship is performed by the women alone, and they subsequently partake 
of the food in common, regardless of caste restrictions. 

354. Ghantakarna is the husband of Sitala. He was a great hero and a de- 

voted follower of Siva by whom he was vested with the 
KAENA. power to cure cutaneous diseases. He is worshipped 

in the early morning of the last day of F^lgun, when a representation is made of 
him with cow dung on the outside of a blackened earthen pot. A few cowris, and 
a piece of cloth stained yellow with turmeric, are placed on this and everything 
is then ready for the pujd which takes place on the road in front of the house, and 
is conducted by the housewife, who covers the image with ghetu flowers which 
she arranges with her left hand. The offerings consist of rice and ddl. After 
the ceremony the village urchins break the pot to pieces. This godling has 
been reported only from Bengal Proper and Orissa, but he is probably known 
in Bihar also. He is mentioned by Mr. Crooke as a gate-keeper in many of the 
Garhwal temples. 

355. The goddess of cholera in Bengal Proper is known as Ola Bibi or 
, Olai Chandl. She is claimed as their own by 

^* ^^^' Muhammadans as well as Hindus. The latter 

often regard her as a form of Chandl, who again is merely a form of Kali. 
She is malevolent. Sometimes she is represented as wearing a gown and riding 
on a horse, but usually the emblem consists of an earthen pitcher placed under 
a nim tree. The priest is generally a Muhammadan or a low caste Hindu, but 
in Hooghly he is often a Goal^'s Brdhman. The pujd is usually made on a 
Tuesday or Saturday during the bright fortnight of the moon ; the offerings 
are various, but a goat appears to be the favourite one. 

356. In Bengal Proper several forms of K^li are credited with special 

powers over epidemics. The chief of these is 
Bakshya Kill. Rakshya Kali. She has the usual form of 

Kdli and when an epidemic breaks out, she is worshipped at midnight 
by all castes of Hindus, usually at a place where three roads meet. Sometimes 
she is worshipped at a burning ghat and is then known as Shashan Kali. In 
the latter form she is sometimes adored at a thanksgiving service after 
the harvest when the crops have betn unusually good. Another form of 
Kali as a disease godling is Marak, who is worshipped in Bogra on the bank 
of a river. Brdhmans oflSciate as priests, and the ceremony is conducted with 
the most scrupulous care ; any deviation from the prescribed rites is believed 
to cause great ofEence to the goddess. On the night following the ceremony 
the imao-e is thrown into water. The offerings consist of buffaloes, goats, sheep, 
rice flowers, fruit, hel leaves, sweetmeats, etc. They are afterwards divided 
between the priest and. the worshippers. Poor people who cannot afford the 
regular ceremony lay their offerings at the foot of a pipal or banyan tree,* 
preferably on the last day of Paus or the first day of Baisakh. In former 
times human beings were frequently sacrificed to KaK.t ^ 

357. A local godling named Achal Ray is reported irom Hooghly where 

he is reputed to effect miraculous cures in cases 
Achal EIt. ^f pj^thisis and ophthalmia. His shrine is near 

* These trees are known as Kali gaohh. „ , _, , .• j i,- i, ■ i. • t a 

+ Tn this connection a curious practice called Ehappar may be mentioned, which exists m parts of 
■av I WliPn an epidemic of cholera or small-pox breaks out, the local exorcists march out in the 
direcd n of Kali's ihrine in Calcutta, followed by the villagers carrying four or five new earthen pots in 
1° 1 iJ;„»T^^« is kept burning. As they go, they keep on shouting Kali mai ki jai and invoking the 
Lddrss bv her various names. A sheep, dedicated to the goddess, often accompanies the procession They 
w arain from the villagers whose houses they pass and leave this and the other articles m some adjoining 
^^fjp the people of which carry them on in (heir turn. Few if any, of the ongmal procession reach 
Calcutta. The sheep, it is said, is kiUed and eaten by some of the lower classes. 

B B 



J94 CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



Dhaniakh^li where a fair is held in his honour on the full moon day of Baisakh. 
His image is a block of stone some three feet in length. The priest is a fisher- 
man, and through him all castes, even Br^hmans, make their offerings. 

368. Jwara Narayan, also known as Jwara Bhairab and Jwarasur, is 

the fever godling of Jessore and the surrounding 
jwAEA Naeatan. districts. He is said to have been specially 

created by Siva to fight on the side of Ban E^ja, when appealed to by that 
monarch, for help against Krishna's invading army. His image is of a sky- 
blue colour, with three heads, three feet, six hands, and nine eyes. He is wor- 
shipped mainly by the lower castes, with the aid of a Brahman priest, when 
malarial fever is prevalent or when a member of the family recovers from a 
dangerous illness. Goats are sacrificed, and offerings are made of rice, fruit, 
milk and sweets, The worship is performed on a Tuesday or Saturday at some 
place outside the village and the idol is left there afterwards. 

359. The cholera godling of Orissa is called Jogini ; but she acts, not on 

her own account, but under the control of her mis- 
^°'^^^^- tress Bimald. Consequently when cholera breaks 

out, it is BimaU and not Joginl who is ostensibly propitiated with offerings of 
fruit, sweetmeats and other comestibles, But Joginl is not altogether neglect- 
ed, and a portion of the prasdd is carried with beat of drum to a retired spot 
near the village, where it is left in front of a long bamboo post, driven into the 
ground and crowned with garlands of flowers, which is supposed to represent 
her. A Brahman officiates as priest. 

360. There is another cholera godling, also a female, named Didi 

Thdkrun, whose worship seems to be confined 
DiDi THiKBTTN. ^^ Burdwan. It is said that once, during a cholera 

epidemic in the village of Ramchandrapur, a woman of the Muchi caste 
found a glittering white stone in a tank and took it home. That night an 
old woman appeared to her in a dream, and taught her how to worship the 
stone and so dispel the disease. She proceeded to carry out her instructions 
with the desired result, and since then, the worship has been continued. 
The full moon day of Baisakh is the most suitable day for the ceremony. 
The priest is a Muchi, but all castes of Hindus, and even Muhammadans, make 
offerings. The Hindus offer goats, sweetmeats, &c,, and the Muhammadans, 
ducks and cocks, 

361. There are other disease godlings, but space forbids their complete 

enumeration. Chaitan Thdkuranl is worshipped bv 
Othebpisease godlings. ^ R^jbansi women in cases of illness or barrenness. 
Her picture is painted in black on a pith frame which is hung on a split bamboo 
inside the house, A plantain leaf with a bunch of plantains is placed below 
and smeared with oil and vermilion. Flowers, parched-rice, plantains and 
molasses are offered, and the night is spent fasting in vigil and prayers. 
Next morning the image is thrown into the water and the offerings are 
eaten by the family. Hachr^ is an old female deity said to preside over 
contagious diseases in Rajshabi. She is worshipped at the foot of a large tree 
on the last day in F^lgun, and is offered ashes, cast away rags, hair 
and other impure articles. A broom is sometimes suspended at the door to 
avert her evil influence. Chamdd is the chief god of the Mdlpaharias, but he 
is worshipped mainly with the object of averting disease. When an epidemic 
breaks out, vows are made to worship him, and lots are then cast to decide in 
whose house, and at whose cost ihQ pujd, which is an expensive one, shall take 
place. Decorated bamboos are set up as his emblem, and pigs, goats and fowls 
are sacrificed and subsequently eaten. Men only take part in ceremony and 
women are not allowed to be present. 

362. K^naiya, a male godling of a benignant character, is worshipped 
in times of disease by x)<(i Meches.* A deoshi officiates as priest, and prays 
that the sickness may be stayed; goats and pigeons are sacrificed, Masnd. 
a son of Burhi, is a malignant godling of the Koches and Rajbausis and most 
diseases, and even lunacy arid drowning, are ascribed to his malign in- 
fluence. His image, which is made of pith or clay, is that of a hideous 
black dwarf, and he is believed to reside in water. His puj'd is conducted at 

* Query — Is this the same as K&laia of the Tipar^s ? 



HINDU SECTS AND CODLINGS. 195 



dead of night and even Muhammadans join in it. Red flowers, vermilion, 
rice, plantains, fruit and fried fish are offered and then thrown into vs^ater. 
Small coins are also given. Pigeons are sacrificed by Hindus, and fowls by 
MuhammadanvS ; these are the perquisite of the H^ris, who beat the drum during 
the ceremony. When it is over, the image is carried to three crossroads and left 
there with, the idea that the ev^il spirit will then move on to another village. 
Rdm-du is the small-pox godling of the Lepchas, and in Patna Amasam Bibi, 
who is believed to be a deified lady doctor, is invoked to assist in the recovery 
of convalescents. Kasi BAba, who will be described more fully further on, is the 
malevolent spirit which, in some parts, is supposed to send disease amongst 
cattle. He is sometimes identified with Grosdw^n. In Rajshahi the correspond- 
ing godling is a female named Bhogeswari. Abgay Bonga is the Santal 
deity who dwells in the cowshed and is worshipped when cattle disease 
breaks out. A Naiya acts as priest and sacrifices a hen or a goat, taking the 
head as his share while the body goes to the worshipper. 

Snake godlings. 

363. Of all the snake godlings, Manasa, in Bengal Proper at least, 

holds the foremost place. She is said to be the 
MANAsi. mother of Astik Muni, the sister of the snake king 

V^suki and the wife of Jarat K^ru Muni, but some say she is the non-Aryan 
mortal Manasa who has found her way into the Hindu pantheon. She is also 
known as Bishahari* and is worshipped by Hindus of all castes in order to 
secure immunity from snake bite. She^s benignant, if properly propitiated, 
but if neglected, or if the ceremony in her honour is not performed with 
strict observance of rule, it is said that some one jn the family is certain 
to die of snake bite. She is worshipped in various forms. Sometimes a simple 
earthen pot is marked with vermilion and placed under a tree, where clay snakes 
are arranged round it and a trident is driven into the ground ; sometimes the 
plant called after her is taken as her emblem, and sometimes an image of a small 
four-armed female of yellow colour, her feet resting on a goose, a cobra 
in each hand and a tiara of snakes upon her head. Sometimes she is 
believed to take up her abode in the pipal tree. In places where snakes 
abound, most families have a shrine dedicated to her in their homes, and some- 
times a separate room is set apart for her. On the Dasahard day a 
twig of the Manasd plant {Euphorbm Ugularia) is planted in the courtyard and 
worshipped on the fifth day of the moon, the Ndgpanchami day. It is thrown into 
the water when the image of Durg^ is immersed at the Durgd Puja.^ Manasa is 
also worshipped on the last day of the solar monthsof Sraban and Bhadra. Songs 
about the goddess are sung, especially those recounting her dealings with 
Chand Sad^gar, a merchant of Gandhabanik caste,t which a,re said to be 
based on a legend found in the Padma Purdn. Amongst the higher castes the 
worship is performed by JSrahmans, but the H^ris, Bauris and Doms perform the 
ceremony themselves. In Birbhum a Bagdi or Dom priest, called Dhardm?. 
pandit, sometimes professes to be inspired by the goddess, and foretells future 
events and prescribes medicines to those who consult him. In Dinajpur Mdlis 
and Oih^s of the Koch tribe act as priests. It is a common practice to draw a 
line round the house with cowdung to represent a snake, the idea being other 
snakes will thus be prevented from entering. ^ 

364. Manasa has a sister named Jagat Gaurl who, in West Bengal, is also 

credited with power over cobras and other snakes. 

OTHBR SNAKE GODLINGg. g^^ .^ ^^^^^ ^^ ^^^^^ ^^ ^ thrOUO, wlth & cHld On 

her lap. At her shrine at Narikeldanga a Barna Brdhman officiates in her 
worship, except in the case of Doms and Haris who sacrifice pigs to her. 
From the fact that the Hindus do not object to this practice so long as the 
animal is slaughtered behind the altar, and not in front of it, it may be 
surmised that the control of the shrine has only recently been usurped by 
its present priest. A fair is held in her honour on the fifth day of the 

# T_ the Padma Puran this is said to be the case, but the two are not always thought to be identical. 

+ Mah4mahop4dUT4yaHara Prasad Sastri has shown that Manas4 worship was very prevalent m the 
time of OhaUanyranl tas brought to light a Bengali poem on the subject, written by one Bipra DaB, m 

1496 A. D. . 

B B 2 



196 CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



moon in the month of Jaishta. Ndg is credited in Bihar with much the 
same powers as Manasd is believed to posses in Bengal Proper, but he occupies 
a less prominent position and his worship is a simpler scale. On the Ndg- 
panchami day some milk and parched rice are placed near the door of the kitchen 
which is closed for a few hours. A line is then drawn round the house with 
cowdung, and the ofierings are given to the children to eat. 

Ananta Deb is regarded in Bengal Proper as a benignant deity who confers 
various temporal benefits, but in Orissa he is looked on as the king of snakes 
and is worshipped on the 14th day of Bhadra for 14 years in sufccession.* _ If a 
man dies before he has completed the fourteenth year of the worship, his son 
is obliged to continue it on his behalf. He is represented by a figure of a snake 
made of silver or copper with fourteen knots along the body. In Rajshahi, he 
is figured as a man seated on an elephant with an umbrella over his head. 

The snake god of the Lepchas is named Ami. He is a benignant deity 
and is believed to watch over the fields and to afflict paddy thieves with 
aches and swellings. 

Deified Heroes. 

365. Goreiy^ or Dilligoria is a male hero of Dosadh origin. He is said 

by some to have been a bandit chief. In the songs 
GoEEiTA. Bnng in his honour, he is spoken of as a great warrior 

who came with a few followers from Delhi, many hundred years ago, and died 
fighting at Mehnawan near Sherpur, in the Patna district, where his chief shrine 
still is. He has another great shrine at Goreiya village in Saran. He is 
worshipped throughout Bihar by all Hindus, especially by the Dosddh, Dom, 
Gonrhi, Kahar, Sunri, and similar castes, but even the highest castes often 
reckon him as one of their dii penaies. Numerous representations of him, 
consisting of stones or little mounds of earth daubed with vermilion, may be 
seen in most Bihar villages. These are usually placed near the entrance of the 
house or in the kitchen to ward off diseases and evil spirits. 

When a man returns home from a distant place his first care is to pay 
his respects to this godling, and to offer him sherbet and food. His favourite 
sacrificial offering is the pig. It is sometimes sacrificed by a Dosddh or Gorait 
i.e., priest of Goreiyd,, and sometimes it is thrown into a fire whence it escapes, 
to be immediately caught, killed and eaten by the Dosadhs. 

In Rajshahi there are said to be two Goreiyds, one of Delhi and the 
other of Besarh, and they are held to be of the female sex. But here, as in 
Bihar, the priest is a Dosadh, and the pig is the most acceptable sacrifice. 
In Manbhum the priests are usually Kharw^rs. In Hazaribagh this godling is 
represented by a peg driven into the ground near the cowshed, and is believed 
to preserve cattle from disease. 

366. Sailesh, another deified hero of the Dosadhs, is represented by a 

clay figure of a man, mounted on an elephant, 
*^^^^^" attended by two horsemen, one on each side, and 

by a flower-girl standing in front. The horsemen are said to be Matirdm, his 
younger brother, and Chuharmal a Dosadh bandit. The images are changed 
every year in Afsarh and the cost is met by contributions from the whole 
Dosadh community. On this occasion various offerings are made, including 
betel-nuts, hemp and tobacco, and a pig is sacrificed to Sailesh and a sheep 
to Chuh^rm^l. The blood of the sheep, mixed with milk, is drunk by the 
tribal priest or Bhagati^ who forthwith becomes possessed and endowed with 
second sight. Large quantities of spirits are consumed by the worshippers, 
and the attendant musicians sing, as loudly as they can, songs in honour of 
the hero. 

367, K^rikh, like so many other godlings of this class, was a Dosadh. Hii 

father, Yotitab Pangiai, lived in Nepal. Although 
^™°' very pious he incurred the displeasure of the Sun- 

god, and was afflicted with leprosy, so retired to a forest where he died. When 
his son Karikh grew up, he went in search of him and found the skeleton and, 
by propitiating the Sun-god, secured his restoration to life. He himself 
became a- staunch Hindu, led a very pious life and was endowed with 

'" '" - - " " ~" ,1.1 . ' J I ^1 I 5 

* 4-oanta was Tishn^'s favourite anal^e, which formed his couch (Ananta Shajya), 



HINDU SECTS AND GODLINGS. 197 



miraculous powers, On his death he was deified and a shrine was erected to 
him at Paudaul. His followers are mostly Goalds and Dosadhs, but there 
are others also, including Kayasths and Talis. He is worshipped at various 
festivals, and also when children are first shaved and when disease is prevalent. 
Milk, sweetmeats, cloths, ornaments, etc., are ofi'ered and a goat is sometimes 
sacrificed. His votaries abstain from alcoholic drinks and never, eat flesh on 
Saturdays or salt on Sundays. 

368. Larik was a Goala of Bhagalpur who deserted his wife and went off 
with the daughter of the local chief. , He performed prodigies of valour in his 
encounters with various rdjas. After an absence of twelve years he returned 
to his forsaken wife, but installed his mistress in the neighbourhood.* He is 
particularly worshipped by people of his own caste but he also occupies a high 
place in the veneration of all the low castes in the district, who make him 
offerings of rice and milk in the hopes of recovering lost cattle with his aid. 
He has a temple at Hardi in the Madhipura subdivision. 

369. It is not necessary that a man should be a Hindu to be worshipped by 
jj- jj. Hindus after his death, and several of the best known 

deifierl heroes are Muhammadans. Alman Sdhib of 
Hooghly was a Musalman saint whose spirit is now worshipped by Hindus and 
Muhainmadans alike. The dust from his shrine near Boinchi, if rubbed on the 
body, is said to remove all kinds of rheumatic pains. The present priest of this 
shrine is a Musalman Fakir, but the post was formerly held by a low caste Hindu. 
Another godling of this category is Mlra of Darbhanga. His father was a 
powerful prince whose favourite slave Nujd rebelled against him, and with the 
aid of Durga, eventually defeated and imprisoned him. Mfra at the time was 
still unborn, but when he grew up he marched against Nuja, defeated him and 
released his father. He offended the great god -Dharmar^j by killing a cow in 
his temple but made timely submission and was forgiven. He is worshipped 
mainly by the Sunris who offer him shirnis through the intervention of a 
Musalman Fakir. There is one female godling of this class, Amind Sati, who 
is generally supposed to have been a Musalman in her lifetime. She is the 
sister of the Pdach Pir. Some of her worshippers endeavour to identify these 
personages with the five Pandavas and say that Amina was their wife, but the 
fact remains that her priest is usually a Muhammadan Dafali. The Ahirs, 
Kahars, Lobars and other castes of similar rank sacrifice cocks to Amin^, while 
the better classes offer rice cooked in milk and wheat cakes made with ghi, 

370. A mar Singh was a Rajput who lived near Barh in a village when all 

the other inhabitants were Mallahs. He was killed 

Othee Deified Heeoes. ^^ ^j^^^ ^^^ ^j ^^^^^ ^^^ ^^^^ ^^^^ ^.^^ ^^ haunted 

them and caused them annoyance in various ways until they promised to worship 
him. He is now revered throughout Bihar, especially by Gonrhis and Surahiya's. 
A goat is sacrificed under a pipal tree, and the head is thrown into some river. 

Gobind Raut was a cowherd who valiantly killed many tigers and at his 
death was deified by the Ahirs. He is invoked when disease attacks the cattle, 
and milk is offered in his honour. Stone images of hini are carried from 
village to village and his deeds are recited in song, chiefly in the month of 
Asvin. Baranda is an Oraon godling who in Palamau is believed to be a 
female formerly resident in Nagpur, while in Ranchi he is regarded as a male- 
volent male living in the hills, and always endeavouring to enter a house in 
order to bring misfortune upon it. Tasteless food is offered in order to 
drive it away in disgust. In Palamau it is worshipped once in three years 
after the harvest home. Each family performs its own ceremony at which 
an aboriginal priest or baiga officiates. A she goat is sacrificed after being . 
induced to eat rice from the hand of the priest. It is then cooked and its flesh 
partaken of hy all present, the priest receiving a double share. 

There is a good deal of uncertainty about the origin of Kdsi B^ba and the 
reasons for his deification. According to some, he was a Bind, while others 
pretend that he was a Goala. Some say he was killed by a tiger while hunting 
in the forest, others that he died in consequence of a Brahman's curse; and others 
again, that he committed suicide at his zamindar's door because of the oppres- 
sion to which lie had been subjected. He is now worshipped by Ahirs, Binds, 

* The stcfy of I-arik is told at length in a paper by ESsh iJihari Bo?e, [j.a.s.b., 1871 page 141 J, 



198 CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



Gareris and Nunias, He is sometimes regarded as a disease godling of cattle, 
and has already been mentioned in this connection. He is worshipped in 
Sraban or Kartik, in an open field, where milk, wheat, flour and rice are offered 
to him^ and then consumed by the worshippers. The Ahirs make a figure oi 
Eusa grass to represent him, while the Binds use a flag flying from the top of a 
bamboo, 

Halka Debf is believed to have been a Rakshasf, who vexed the early Aryan 
invaders. They at last succeeded in killing her, and to prevent her from 
returning to life, they burnt a huge fire over her corpse. In parts of Bihar the 
occurrence is celebrated yearly on the last day of Falgun. Fuel is collected 
from all the houses in the village, and piled up in a place outside the village, 
where it is set alight and, while it is burning, flowers are thrown into it 
and the young men go round it singing obscene songs. It is said by some 
that the celebration marks the departure of the old, and the advent of the 
new, year ; but, if so, it might be expected to take place on the last day of the 
year, which is not the case. R^ni Das and Noa4 Chamain are revered by the 
Chamars,* D^nu Bfr by the Kahars ; Jadu Bfr by the Barhis, and Shyam Singh 
by the Doms. 

Ghosts and Evil Spirits. 

371. There is a general belief — especially amoogst the lower castes — that 

the spirit of a person who dies a painful or violent 
Gbneeal chaeaotee op spibiis. ^^^^^^ ^^ ^f ^ suicide, remains on earth near its old 

home, and causes all kinds of evil to persons in the neighbourhood who may be 
unfortunate enough to fall foul of it. The general name for such evil spirits 
is Bhut in the case of males, and Preiini in the case of females. Whenever a 
person suffers from an illness presenting any unusual features, it is attributed to 
possession, and a remedy is sought, not in medicine, but in exorcism. The 
exorcist, or Ojhd is believed to have in his power a Ihut of greater power, and 
by means of mantras, or incantations, he forces his own familiar spirit to drive 
away the one which is causing the trouble. Sometimes also he resorts to physical 
force, such as blows with a shoe or a broomstick, applying red pepper and 
turmeric smoke to the nostrils, etc. In the south of Gaya, a bhut, when under 
proper control, is a valuable possession and a marketable commodity — the usual 
price being about Rs, 20. When the sale of a hhut has been arranged, the Ojhd 
hands over a corked bamboo cylinder which is supposed to contain him. This 
is taken to the place, usually a tree, where it is intended that he should in future 
reside ; a small ceremony is performed, liquor being poured on the ground, or 
pindis (small mounds) erected in his honour, and the cork is then taken out, 
whereupon the bhut is supposed to take up his abode in the place cliosen for 
him. His function is to watch the crops and guard them from thieves, and 
if any one should be hardy enough to steal from a field thus guarded, he is 
certain to be stricken by the bhut, and in a few days will sicken and die. 

372, Of all male bhuta the most dreaded is the Bdrhdm, or Brahma Daitya, 

the spirit of a Brahman who has died a violent 
^*° ^' death. Such spirits are specially powerful and 

malicious. Sometimes they are represented as a headless trunk, with the 
eyes looking from the breast. They are believed to inhabit large trees by the 
side of a river or in some lonely place, whence they throw stones at travellers 
and lead them astray on dark nights, and woe betide the unfortunate who 
ehould give one of them cause for offence, e.g., by unwittingly felling the 
tree in which he has taken up his abode, or who was in any way responsible for 
his death. He can only escape the evil consequences by making the Bdrhdm 
his family deity and worshipping him regularly. In Bihar he often becomes 
the tutelary deity or Dihwdr of the whole village. The worship is usually 
performed under the tree, usually a banyan, which he is supposed to frequent. 
The trunk is painted vermilion and a mound of earth is erected, on which are 
placed clay figures of horses or elephants, and offerings are made of flowers, 
betel-nuts and the like. The worship is conducted by a special priest 
called the Bhaktd, who is not necessarily a Brahman, and occasionally he 

• A full account of Nond is given in Mr. Crooke's Book on the Popular Eeligion and Folklore of 
Northern India. 



HINDU SECTS AND GODLINGS. 199 



is inspired by the spirit and utters prophecies, which are implicitly believed 
in by the devotees. Some Rarh^ms are more famous than others, one 
of the best known being Jaydeb Dube also known as Bhay Haran (fear 
dispeller) whose shrine is at Dadri Asthan in Monghyr. It is said that some 
four hundred years ago he cured a Khetauri Rdja, who lived at Dadri, and was 
in consequence given a grant of land there. This was subsequently resumed 
by force, whereupon Jaydeb committed suicide, and his spirit at once began 
to afflict the B^ja. He is now worshipped by Hindus of all classes when 
suffering from disease, or desirous of male offspring, usually on a Monday ; 
offerings are made of goats, cloth, sweets, milk, fruit, etc., which are taken 
by the priest, a BrShman. Another well known Barham, Harsa Pandit, 
hails from the Rajshahi district. He was the priest of a certain Raja of 
Chainpur. His house was pulled down by order of the Rani, and the priest in 
revenge starved himself to death, heaping curses on the Raja and his 
family all the while. His spirit has now a seat reserved for him in the 
palace, where he is daily worshipped, and people go to his shrine from far 
and near In Motihari town, Bischha Barham has a famous temple, where 
even Muhammadans make offerings, through the Brahman priest who pre- 
sides there. Mahil, who is worshipped as the family deity of the Sukarwar 
Rajputs, may perhaps be mentioned here, though he is not strictly a B^rhdm. 
A Rdjput of this clan, having no offspring, consulted his priest, a Sakaldvipi 
brahman, named Mahil. The latter told him to stand next morning at a 
certain cross road and to behead the first person whom he might meet. 
To his horror and surprise Mahil himself appeared. He would have drawn 
back, but the Brahman told him not to hesitate to carry out his advice, and 
merely stipulated that he should be installed as his family god. The Rajput 
then killed him, and he has ever since been worshipped by the clan. 

373. Of other classes of hhuts, one of the best known is the B%h^ut or 
Q „ spirit of a person killed by a tiger, who assumes the 

form of a tiger with a hucaan face. Some take 
the form of a cow and are known as Qobhut. A miser is often believed 
to return to earth to watch over his money and is called Jak or Sur. 
The hhut of a Muhammadan is called a Mdmdo. In Jalpaiguri the spirit 
of a person who has lived a very infamous life, or who has died by decapi- 
tation, becomes a particularly malevolent bhut known as KandhaMtd (cut off 
at the shoulder) and, being headless, he has no ears to hear the charming 
of the ojM who is therefore powerless against him. He haunts marshy and 
lonely places, like the Barham, and leads travellers astray. Sudden deaths, 
for which no reason can be assigned, are attributed to his evil influence. 

374. But the most malevolent of all spirits is the Churel or Kichin, the 

spirit of a woman who dies in child-birth. Her 
Chtjrbl. £gg^ ^^g turned backwards, she has no mouth, and 

she haunts filthy places. She is specially feared by women, whom she attacks 
during the menstrual period or at the time of parturition. Sometimes she 
falls in love with young men, before whom she appears in the form of a beauti- 
ful girl neatly dressed and decked with ornaments, and whom she eventually 
kills by a slow process of emaciation. Like other similar spirits she can only 
be ejected by exorcism. The fear of the Churel is by no mean confined to 
Hindus, It is even more dreaded by the aboriginal tribes, and amongst the 
Bhuiyas of Keonjhar, if a woman should die before delivery, the embryo is 
extracted from the corpse and the bodies are burnt on the opposite banks of a 
hill stream. As no spirit can cross water, and the mother cannot become a 
witch unless united to her child, this precaution is believed to avert all risk of 
evil to the villagers. 

The Grdmya Devatd. 

375. Almost every village has its special tutelary deities (one or more) 
which preside over the welfare of the community. These are called the 
Gramya Devata and are worshipped on the occasion of every religious 
ceremony and also on special occasions, e.g., when disease breaks out or a newly 
built house is occupied for the first time. The landlord of the village cele- 
brates the pujd, usually under a pipa1 or banyan tree, while each ryot performs 



200 CHAPTER IV — EELIGION. 



his own ceremony at home.* Sometimes a Brdhman officiates but frequently 
the people conduct the worship themselves. Sometimes there is no visible 
representation of the godling, but in Bihar a mound or stone is erected under 
a tree and smeared with vermilion. In Hooghly an earthen pot is filled with 
water and a mango twig is placed on the top, which is then covered with a piece 
of new cloth. Various ofierings are made, usually of food cooked or uncooked, 
and goats are sometimes sacrificed ; the offerings are generally taken by the 
family but in Hooghly they are the perquisite of the^ Bhuinmdli. The 
Koches and their congeners worship the Grdmya Devata at acurious cere- 
mony, called gamhhira, when the young people of the village disguise them- 
selves, personating the deities, and dance. The festival, which takes place in 
Chait or Baisakh, lasts for several days. 

Some village deities are less local than others and have obtained a wider 
vogue. These usually have a sylvan home, eg., DholAi Chandi, who inhabits 
a tree or grove which is held sacred by all. Pieces of brick and rags are tied 
to the branches, as an offering to procure the welfare of children, and people 
make obeisance whenever they pass her abode. Bana Durg^ is a sylvan deity 
of Mymensingh, who is also worshipped on behalf of children, and to whom 
sacrifices are made pigeons and goats, which are subsequently taken by people 
of low caste. 

376. The worship of the Grdmya devata seems to be connected with the 
animistic idea, which sees spirits everywhere, and in all manifestations of nature, 
and it is carried out with the greatest zest amongst the aboriginal tribes of the 
Chota Nagpur Plateau where the jdhird, sarna, or sacred grove, the small patch 
of virgin forest preserved from the axe as a refuge for the sylvan deities, who 
would otherwise have no local habitation, is peopled not by one or two, but by 
quite a number of godlings. Marang Buru is the chief Gramya devata of the 
Santals. He is known also to the Mundas and Hos, but these tribes believe 
that he resides on the summit of high hills ; the latter look on him as a disease 
godling. All these tribes worship him in the same way. A handful of rice is 
deposited in three places in the sacred grove, and the animal chosen for the 
sacrifice, usually a goat, is made to eat it, after which the headis severed at one 
blow. The head is taken by the Naiya, or priest, and the body by the members 
of the family. The fame of this godling has spread to Malda where he is 
known as Marang Deva and is worshipped to secure immunity from fever. 
A circle is drawn on the ground with powdered rice and a goat is sacrificed 
inside it. Another notable denizen of the sacred grove in Singhbhum is 
Desauli Bonga or Kara Sarna who, though malignant protects those who duly 
propitiate him from disease and other calamities. His festivals take place in the 
month of Magh, in Chait when the &&1 tree flowers and again in A'sarh. He is 
also worshipped in time of drought and when illness attacks a family. Amongst 
the other godlipgs of this class may be mentioned Thanpati of the Savars, 
Juangs, Bauris and Bagdis, Sarna Burhlof the Ordons andDuar Pahdr or Dura 
of the Cheros. 

General Remarks, 

377. The above notes merely indicate some of the main forms which the 
I.C.MPZBT.KESS OP BI8CUSSI0K. P^P^Jar fligion of tho peopk takos and they are 

admittedly very incomplete. Not only is the notice 
of the godlings dealt with very brief, but manyj and indeed whole classes, 
have been left undiscussed. I have not mentioned the various aboriginal 
deities, such as the androgynous Burhd Burhi, Bathu, and Graj ja, who have 
still been only partially admitted to the Hindu pantheon, nor others, such as 
Sankar, Banskali, Mangalchandi and Kankini who have been adopted as 
forms of Kali, nor the godlings of special castes, such as Gandhesvari 
of the Gandhabaniks, Ganesh janani of the Mayras, Gaurinath of the 
Kandus, Kulain of the Yakhds, Kangalima or Satiraa of the Baruis, Magadhes- 
vari of the Maghs, &c. It would be impossible to deal fully with the matter in 
a Census Report, but before leaving the subject I will refer very briefly 
to the worship of Dharmaraj or Dharma Thakur whose recent identification 
with Buddha will be discussed in the next section. 



* In Orissa the village godlings are feminine and are called Grim Deoti or Thakiirani. Each Tillage 
has its own godling, whose position was recognised in the first regular sattlement of Orissa whea a piece of 
land was left unassessed {mdfi grdm deoti) for her worship. 



TRACES OF BUDDHISM IN BENGAL. 201 



By some Dharmaraj is regarded as Yama and by others as the Sun. Some 
_^ again consider him to be the God of snakes, and 

some a form of Siva or of Vishnu, He is 
usually worshipped by a low caste priest, a Pod, a Jugi, a Dom or a 
Bagdi. In a few places he has temples, but, as a rule, he is represented by a 
shapeless stone daubed with vermilion and placed under a tree. In a village 
in the Arambagh subdivision he is worshipped in the form of a tortoise. 
His shrines are common all over West Bengal and also in Dinajpur, Murshidabad 
and the 24-Parganas. He is frequently believed to possess certain curative 
powers and his priests administer medicines as specifics for various diseases. 
Hogs, fowls and ducks are sacrificed before him, and offerings are made of 
rice, flowers, milk and pachwai, but never of cooked food. The worship takes 
place in the months of Baisakh, Jaishta and Asarh, on the day of the full moon, 
and in some places on the last day of Bhadra. All castes, even Brahmans, make 
offerings through the medium of the officiating priest. 

378. It may be pointed out in conclusion that while the earth, sun and 

moon, and certain large rivers, are worshipped 
FoEMs OP woESHiP oFTEi. LOCAL, throughout tho province; many of the other objects 

of adoration are revered only in certain localities. The veneration of deified 
heroes is more or less confined to Bihar, while snake worship prevails mainly 
in West, and parts of North, Bengal. The tribes of the Chota' Nagpur 
Plateau and some of the Himalayan tribes give the spirits of the mountains 
a high place in their pantheon while in the greater part of Bengal Proper 
the old aboriginal godlings have, as a rule, been taken over by the Brahmans 
as forms of Kali and other orthodox deities, and have thus lost their identity. 
It is only in the extreme north and east that deities who are admittedly non- 
Hindu, still command the worship of men, while in the West, Buddhism still 
ekes out an obscure and precarious existence. 

Traces of Buddhism in Bengal. 

379. When the East India Company gained a foothold in India Buddhism 

seemed to have disappeared from the land, and 
Di^ovEEiEs OP CoLBBEooKE although Its doctrincs were mentioned, in order 
^^° °" ■ to be refuted, in the philosophical works of the 

Hindus, the word was little more than a name to the Pandits, and was 
absolutely unknown to the common people. The philosophic side of Buddhism, 
as ascertained from Hindu sources, was first investigated by Colebrooke,* but it 
is to the indefatigable researches of Brian Hodgson that we owe the discovery 
of Buddhism as a living religion in Nepal. While resident at Khatmanda 
he investigated the subject closely and the results are embodied in a most 
interesting paper in the second volume of the transactions of the Royal 
Asiatic Society. I He showed how the philosophic agnosticism of Buddha 
gave way to the theory that the Adi Buddha, by his union with the primordial 
female energy called Prajna, gave birth to five Buddhas, who each produced 
from himself by dhydna (meditation) another being called his Bodbi-satwa 
or son. The chief of these latter was Avalokita who, with his Sakti T^ra, 
eventually became the keystone of northern Buddhism. There arose also 
numerous other Buddhas, demons and deities, all of which were objects of 




spirit. 

parts of the Bodhi-satwas, occupied the most prominent position, and the 
esoteric cult of these female deities became every whit as obscene as that 
practised by the Kaula or extreme sect of Sakta Hindus. Since Hodgson's 
time, numerous students have attacked the subject and the early history of 
Buddhism and its modern developments in other countries are now well 
known. :[: 

* J. K. A. S., Volume 1, pages 549—579. 

t This and subsequent papers on the same subject have been reprinted in the " Languages, Literature 
and lieligion of Nepal and Tibet " Trnbner and Co., London, 1874. 

X One of the best of recent worts on the subject is, "The Buddhism of Tibet, or Lamaism" by Gol„ 
Waddell, i.m.s. 

C 



202 CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



380. All tins time it was assumed that, except in Burma and on the 

borders of Burma, Nepal and Tibet, Buddhism had 
w/mBuddh""'' °^ DHAEMiEij disappeared from India. This, however, has 

been proved to be a mistake by the researches of 
Mahamahopadhydya Hara Prasad Sastri who has shown that a corrupt form 
of Buddhism still survives in the shape of Dharma worship which is current 
amongst the Pods, Doms and other castes of low rank, and which has already 
been described in the notes on Popular Hinduism. Dharma or Dharmaraj, 
it would seem, is none other than Buddha himself. The discovery was an- 
nounced in an article in the Journal of the Asiatic Society for 1895 and the 
result of this and further researches were embodied in a pamphlet published 
in 1897 called the "Discovery of Living Buddhism in Bengal." I circulated, 
as a basis for further enquiry, a note giving a brief outline of the facts and 
arguments adduced in this pamphlet, but without much result beyond the 
collection of further information regarding the extent to which Dharma worship 
prevails. The reports thus received were shown to the Pandit, who has 
favoured me with a rdsumd of the main points in his argument, which is 
reproduced verbatim in the following four paragraphs : — 

381. "We learn from the Si-u-ki that during the first half of the seventh 
century Buddhism was the prevailing religion in Bengal. The author, the 
celebrated Chinese traveller Hiuen Sang, mentions indeed the heretics; but it 
is not known who these heretics were. Some of them undoubtedly were 
Brahmanists. 

" During the three or four centuries which followed the composition of the 

Si-u-ki, the Brdhmaus came from Kanauj with their 
six™h ce™^'''' "^ ™ ^^^r .^aitlif'^1 adherents, the K^yasthas, and a silent 

religious and social revolution was accomplished, in 
which the Brahmans had everything to gain, and the Buddhists everything to 
lose. Traces of the existence of Buddhism as a living religion can be found 
even up to the sixteenth century, and then it is completely lost in the populous 
plains of Bengal, Bihar and Orissa. In the outlying districts, however, in 
hill tracts, and in neglected nooks and corners, it is still professed by a few 
thousands of men. Thus in Chittagong there are the Baruas who profess 
the Buddhist faith and belong to the southern school of Buddhism. They 
think that they obtained their Buddhism from Burma and Ceylon, and 
that within the last two or three centuries. The Chittagong Hill Tracts is 
a professedly Buddhist district, and the inhabitants seem to have adhered to 
their Buddhism from very ancient times. Their Buddhism is not altogether of 
the southern school, because they have their temples of gods and goddesses. 
In the Sub-Himalayan regions bordering on Bengal, the Bhotias and some 
other hill tribes profess Buddhism greatly mixed up with the superstitious 
observances of degenerate later times known as Mantra-yana, Vajra-yana 
Kala-chakra-yana, Lamaism and Devil-worship. The Newars of Nepal 
profess what they call Hinduism, but in their estimation it has two Mdr- 
gas oic ways— the Siva-Mdrga and the Buddha-Mdrga. Half the Newars are 
Buddhists. Though they profess to be Maha-yanists, they have mixed up 
their faith with much that belongs really to the subsequent Ydnas of Buddhism. 
But they still adhere to Indian Buddhism, and have not borrowed anything from 
Lamaism. In the Orissa Tributary Mahals there is a State known as Baud, the 
Chief of which derives the name from Buddha, and says that Buddhism is still 
professed by a considerable portion of his subjects. The Savaras on the borders 
of Orissa are said to be still Buddhists. The Savaras who cook in the great 
temple of Jagannath are supposed to belong to the same religion. There is a 
small, industrious, but very turbulent, community iu Barisal, known as the MagM% 
comrnunity, who profess Buddhism. They seem to have settled in that maritime 
d.i8trict smce the sixteenth century, when the Arakanese, known to the Musalman 
rulers of Bengal as Maghs, were the terror of Lower Bengal and the Bay. 

" These are the only jjeople who still profess Buddhism on a soil iii which 
that rehgion was first preached, where it flourished for thousands of years, but 
alas ! where it is completely forgotten. 

" The traces of Buddhism up to the sixteenth centmy, mentioned above 
consist of many references in books, colophons of manuscripts and inscriptions'. 



TKACES OF BUDDHISM IN BENGAL. 203 



Thus we know from Tibetan sources that the great monk, Dipankara Shri 
Jn^na, known in Tibet as Atisa, was inyited from Vikrama Shila in Magadha to 
Tibet in the eleventh century to reform the Buddhist faith prerailing there. 
There is a copy of Bodhicharyavatara-tlka by Prajna Kaza Shrijnana copied in 
the same century. The copyist speaks of the author as tdlapdddndm, showing that 
he was a pupil of the author. A copy of the Astasahasrika prajndparamita 
made at N^landa is to be found in the Asiatic Society's collection, bearing the 
date of the sixth year of Mahipaladeva, who reigned in the same century. 
In the twelfth century, the great Naiyaika Gangesopadhydya, a scholar of 
Mithila, whose date is universally accepted amongst pandits as 750 years before 
this time, wrote his work with the avowed object of dispelling the darkness of 
Pasandas, i.e., Buddhism. In the same century Siilapani, the great writer on 
Hindu law and ritual*, mentions the Buddhists as a naked people whose very 
sight is to be avoided. In the BalUla Charita we find Byd-dom-pa fighting with 
BalMla to avenge an insult offered to the Buddhist priest of Mahasthan. in 
the thirteenth century there is an inscription at Sravasti dedicating a Buddhist 
temple for the purposes of Buddhist worship, and in the same century a Buddhist 
priest from Tamluk went to Lower Burma and instituted a reformation along 
with other Buddhist priests of the place. His deeds are recorded in the Kalydm 
inscriptions. In the fourteenth century a Bengali Brahman became a convert 
to Buddhism and proceeded to Ceylon, where the reigning king Pardkrama Vihu 
made him the sole supervisor of Buddhist religious establishments in the 
kingdom. In the fifteenth century Buddhist manuscripts were still copied in 
Bengal, and a manuscript copied about the middle of the century is now in 
the Cambridge collection of Mepalese Buddhist manuscripts. 

382. " In the sixteenth century Chaitanya is said to have met Buddhists in 
Southern India aud Nityananda in the Himalayan regions. Chuddmani Ddsa, 
one of the biographers of Chaitanya mentions the Buddhists as rejoicing at 

his birth. In the seventeenth century Buddha 
Dts^p™D.''' ^'^^°^ Buddhism Quptandtha wandered in various parts of India and 

found Buddhism flourishing in many places. Then 
it is lost altogether. For two or three centuries Buddhism was absolutely un- 
known in India. The revival of Sanskrit learning fostered by European 
Orientalists brought Buddhism again to the notice of the Indian public, and 
it became a problem how to account for the complete disappearance of Bud- 
dhism. Brian Hodgson thought that Ndthism was the bridge which joined 
the corrupt Buddhism of later days with the Tantrik-Hinduism of modern times. 
There were Ndthas or Lords who boasted of having attained miraculous powers 
and who had numerous followers. They were all Buddhists. But their Buddhism 
was not of the strictest kind. The Saivas claim some of them as their Gurus. 
But the rest were undoubtedly Buddhists. These belonged to the lowest 
classes of people— Haris, Doma and Chanddls. This Nathism appears also to 
have been the bridge which united Ldmaism, on the one hand, and. the Gurus or 
spiritual guides of the Hindus, on the other. Both these proceeded from the 
same sort of man- worship which is the essence of Ndthism.* 

383. Brian Hodgson's explanation solves only one or two points of the great 
problem connected with the disappearance of Buddhism. A few more points are 
solved by the fact that the writers of Tdntrik compilations among the Hindus 
incorporated as many of the Tdntrik Buddhist divinities as they could 
possibly do without jeopardizing their reputation for orthodoxy. For instance, 
they incorporated Manjushri, Kshetrapdla, Tdra, without even changing their 
names or their functions. But still there were divinities to whom,_ even with 
their wonderful power of adaptation, they could not venture to give a place 
in their Pantheon, and one of these is Dharma. Dharma is the second personage 

in the Buddhist Trinity. In the Mahdydna school 

MoDBEN SuBviTAis. j^^ £g changed into Prapid, an abstract idea in 

the feminine, meaning supreme knowledge, and in the Mantra-ydna the 

feminine idea became Tdrd, a female divinity with five manifestations. The 



* This adoration of the Guru is one of the most characteristic features of the Vaishnava revival in 
Beneal. The Vaishnavaa say:—" When Hari ia angry the Guru is our protector, but when the Guru is 
angAr we have no one to pretect us. This service veneration o£ the Guru i8 called Gunipadasraya, 
[Sketch of the Eeligious sects of the Hindus, page 103], 



o 



04 CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



processes of spiritaalisatioii proceeded further and the Buddhists conceived 
of an Adi Buddha and an A'di Tira probably Kdhkd. 

" The word Dharma, thus slipping from the second personage of the 
Buddhist Trinity, became confined to the Stupa worship, the visible emblem 
of Buddhism, to the ignorant multitude. Dharma- worship remained confined 
to the lowest classes of the people — the dirtiest, meanest and most illiterat^e 
classes. All sorts of animal sacrifices are offered before Dharma, and the 
drinking of wine is one of the chief features of his worship. All the lowest 
forms of worship rejected by the Br^hmans gradually rallied round Dharma, 
and his priests throughout Bengal enjoy a certain consideration which often 
excites the envy of their highly placed rivals, the Brdhmans, who, though 
hating them with a genuine hatred, yet co^et their earnings wherever these are 
considerable, and there are instances in which the worship of Dharma has 
passed into Brdhman hands and has been, by them, transformed either 
into a manifestation of Siva or of Visnu. 

384. *' Doubt has been expressed in many quarters regarding the identifica- 
tion of Dharma worship as a survival of Buddhism, and it is, therefore, desirable 
to recapitulate the facts and arguments by which this has been established. 
Dharma is meditated upon as SMnya Murtiov void. The great goal of Buddhism 
is Sunyatd. " As the lamp is extinguished, so is the soul extinguished." This 
is the original idea of annihilation preached by Buddha. In later times, in 

the hands of the schools, this idea came to be 
TO b'e' BoLh' ''''''"' ^^""* termed Sunyatd, concerning which neither existence, 

nor non-existence, nor a combination of the two. can 
be predicated. It is void, zero. In Hindu systems of philosophy we find the 
Buddhists credited with the theory of the evolution of entity from non-entity, 
and that very non-entity is the essence of Dharma, and in that form his votaries 
are required to meditate upon him. This is an undoubted Buddhist idea. 
The ceremonies and fasts in honour of Dharma all take place on the full moon 
day of Baiahdkh, the birthday of Buddha. The ignorant worshippers, all of 
them, are aware that Dharma is very much respected in Ceylon. And what 
religion has a greater vogue in that island than Buddhism ? The Dharma 
worshippers are fully aware that Dharma is not an inferior deity ; he is higher 
than Vishnu, higher than Siva, higher than Brahma, and even higher than 
Parvati, His position is indeed as exalted as that of Brahma in Hindu philo- 
sophy. In fact, one of the books in honour of Dharma gives an obscure hint 
that the work has been written with the object of establishing the Brahm^hood 
of Dharma. The representation of Dharma in many places is a tortoise. 
Now a tortoise is a miniature representation of a stupa with five nitches for 
five Dhy^ni Buddhas. At Salda in Bankura an image of Buddha in 
meditative posture is still actually worshipped as Dharma. 

" The worshippers of Dharma are unconscious of the fact that they are 
the survivors of a mighty race of men and that they have inherited their 
religion from a glorious past. Political and social revolutions of centuries 
have brought them to the lowest point of degradation. But if they ever 
become conscious of the fact that they are the survivors of the Indian Buddhists 
the ciyihzers of Asia, they are likely to be better men and more useful members 
of society. Dharma-worship prevails in the whole of Western Bengal and in 
almost every village there is a temple of Dharma. There are also many places 
consecrated to Dharma, where annual and other festivals take place in his 
honour." 

385. The only fresh Hght thrown on this interesting subject by the census 

rn a , ^ is tho fact that Buddhism is still professed bv thp 

The SAEiKS OP Baeamba STILL ao..^lr= ^j; rp- • i t> i r^y^f^"^"- "> •'"« 

Buddhists, fearaks pt Tigaria and Baramba and the adjoining 

, ,. , ^ , , part of Guttack. The Saraks of Chota Nagpur are 

believed to have been formerly Jains, but those here mentioned are still 

professed Buddhists. Their religion is gradually being merged in Hinduism, 

but It still possesses many distinct features and they possess religious books of 

their own, one of the most important of which I have had transcribed, and have 

given the copy to the Mah^mahopsldhydya who informs me that it is of consider- 

able value. An account of these Saraks will be found in the Chapter on Caste.* 

* Paragraphs 778 to 780. 



SUBSIDIARY TABLES. 



205 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE I — Showing the general distribution of the population by religion. 



Belioioh, 



1901. 



Number. 



Proportion 

per 10,000 

ol the 

population. 



1891. 



Number. 



Proportion 

per 10,000 

of the 

population. 



1881. 



Number. 



Proportion 
per 10,000 

of the 
population. 



Percentage of variation, 

increase (+) or 

decrease (— ) 



1891.1901. 



1881-1891. 



Net varia- 
tion. 



1881—1901. 



MXXDVS. 



PROTINCE .„ 

West Bengal 

Central ,, .., 

North „ 

East „ 

North Sihar 

South „ 

Oriasa 

Choia Nagpnr Plateau 



iausALarA\s. 

PEOVINCE 

Vfeit Bengal 
Central „ 

North „ 

£a8t „ 

Korth Bihar 

South „ ... ..I 

Orissa 

Cliota Nagpur Plateau 

CHRISTXAirS. 



PEOVINCE 

West Bengal 

Central „ 

North „ 

East ., 

North Bihar 

South „ 

Orissa 

Chota Nagpur Plateau 



AJflMZSTS. 



PROVINCE 

West Bengtl 

Central „ 

North „ 

East ,. 

North Bihar 

South „ 

Oiissa 

Chota Nagpur Plateau 



BVDDBISXS, 

PROVINCE 

■West Bengal 
Central „ 
North „ 
East 

North Bihar 
South „ 

f^MQAA 

Chota Nagpur Plateau 



OTHERS. 



FBOVINCE 

West Bengal 
Central „ 
Noith „ 
East „ 
North Bihar 
South „ 

Chota Nagpur Plateou 



^,687,362 

6,866,164 
3,883,367 
8,938,626 
6,514,026 
11,679,533 
6,963,680 
4,034,657 
6,918,610 



DS,49S,416 

1,084,880 

3,773,321 

6,876,408 

11,220,427 

2,241,942 

744,608 

102,981 

461,009 



»7S,366 

9,463 

61,141 

9,193 

26,944 

6,374 

4,623 

5,1)04 

166,634 



a,780,468 

290,124 

12,4.30 

107,290 

32,760 

3,375 

2,693 

8,393 

2,323,413 



S37,89S 



3,003 

70,946 

163,014 

62 

23 

4 

765 



13,903 

417 
6,723 
2,816 
937 
844 
992 
200 
977 



6,330 

8,319 
6,018 
3,937 
3,251 
8,372 
9,02t 
9,719 
7,023 



3,948 

1,317 

4,876 

6,873 

6,617 

1,621 

966 

248 

-458 



36 

12 

79 
9 

16 
4 
6 

12 
159 



354 

351 
16 
107 
19 
2 
4 
21 
2,358 



30-3 



4 
71 
96 



1-7 

1 
8 
S 
1 
1 
1 



47,881,681 

6,400,340 
3.678,792 
3,739,863 
6,156,984 
11,565,405 
7,230,974 
3,778,688 
6,280,636 



23,658,108 

999,191 
3,610,166 
5,579,466 
9,986,781 
2,230,730 

768,020 
92,742 

392,023 



193,484 

6,312 
60,656 
3,358 
22,013 
4,062 
4,608 
4,638 
96,847 



2,753,061 

282,671 

9,720 

41,769 

30,660 

24,742 

3,706 

2;559,79S 



194,717 



23,289 

604 
6,859 
3,617 
6,868 
1,W8 

989 
1,147 
2,527 



6,407 

8,323 
6,000 
3,974 
3,360 
8,864 
9,029 
9,746 
6,877 



3,170 

1,300 
4,907 
- 6,929 
6,505 
1,616 
969 



86 



3 

14 
2 
6 

12 
106 



368 



13 

44 



71 




2,281 


3 


43,128 


46 


148,165 


96 


31 




44 




129 





2,684 



26 



45,451,969 

6,207,409 
3,664,584 
3,623,644 
4,673,715 
10,933,137 
7.010,150 
3,533,788 
6,905,642 



91,705,641 

968,429 
3,612,893 
5,883,389 
8,641,406 
2,093,874 

779,284 
86,336 

361,030 



128,134 

4,460 
47,790 
1,880 
18,169 
3,820 
4,061 
3,976 
43,998 



2,055,408 

219,614 

837 

7,468 

84,766 

16,569 

7,183 

4,361 

1,714,620 



155,809 



1,937 
19,379 
133,427 



7 
696 



39,979 

8,679 

3,997 

3,402 

233 

23 

60 

1,469 

27,116 



6,536 

8,396 
4,998 
4,009 
3,476 
8,379 
8,987 
. 9,738 
7,343 



3,132 

1,296 

4,926 

6,966 

6,360 

1,606 

999 

236 

437 



18 



296 

297 

1 

e 

63 

13 

9 

12 

2,182 



223 



5-7 

6 
6 

4 



39 

-7-1 
B-5 
6-3 
6-9 
•2 
3-6 
6-7 

10-1 



7'? 

8-5 
4-6 
6-3 
12-3 
0-6 
3-0 

iro 

16-0 



44-5 

49'9 

20-6 

173-7 

22-3 

32-6 

0-3 

7 '8 

61-7 



•9 

2-6 
27"8 
156'8 

6-8 
86-3 
27-3 



1-6 



932 

23-9 

81-6 

64-6 

10-02 

677 

60-0 

9C-9 

11-9 



40-3 

31"0 
14'7 
22-2 
87-9 
49-7 
OS 
82-6 
61'S 



5-S 

3-1 

S'2 

3*2 

lO'S 

B-e 

31 

6-9 
6-3 



89 

4'2 
2-7 
3-6 

16-9 
6-5 
1-4 
8-6 

11-6 



50-9 

41-5 

5-9 

78-6 

21-2 

6-0 

13-7 

16-6 

-120-1 



33-9 



+ 1,061-2 
+ 459-3 

63-8 
+ 49-3 

48-4 



37-« 



+ 24-9 

80-4 
+ 17-7 

+ 112-a 

+ 11-06 



■t- 1,742-8 
•(■ 24-7 



41-7 



83-6 

46-6 

6-3 

2,847-6 

7,196-6 

1,648-3 

21-9 

9II-7 



9-3 

10-4 
8-9 
8-6 

17-9 

8-9 

-6 

14-1 

17-1 



17-4 

13-1 

7-4 
9-1 

31-3 
7-0 
4-4 

20-6 



+ 117-2 



■V 1. 
+ 1 



112-1 
27-8 

388-9 
48-3 
40-6 
14-1 
25-8 

256-0 



35-9 

32'1 
,365-0 

336-6 
61-3 
79-6 
62-6 

116-3 
35-5 



•»■ 62-7 

76-8 
■H S5-03 
-I- 266- 
■^ 22- 



42-9 
9-9 



65-9 

88-7 

48-2 

in 

802-1 
3,569-6 
1,653-3 

86-4 
96-4 



206 



CHAPTER IV — RELIGION. 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE II — Showing the Proportional strength of the main religions in each 

DISTRICT AND NATURAL DIVISION AT EACH OF THE LAST THREE CENSUSES. 



NAIUEAL DrviSION AND 
DISTBIOI. 



FBOriXCH 



■WEST BENGAL 

Burdwan 

Birbhum 

B&Qkura 

Midnapore 

Hooglily 

Howrau 



CENTKAL BENGAL 



24-Farga,n!ia 

Calcutta 

Kadia 

Murshidabad 

Jessore 



NORTH BENGAL 

Biajshahi 

Dinajpur 

Jalpaiguri 

Darjeeling 

Eisngpur ... 

Bogra 

Pabna 

Malda 

Kuch Bihar ... 

Sikkim 



BAST BENGAL 

Ehulna 

Dacca 

Mymensingh ... 

Faridpup 

Backerguuge ... 

Tippera 

Noakhali 

GMttagong ... 

Gbitta^ong Hill Tracts 

Hill Tippera ,„ 



NORTH BIHAR 

Saran 

Champaran 

MnzafEarpur ... 

Barbhanga 

Bhagalpur 

Fnrnea 



SOUTH BIHAR 

Patna 
Gaya 
Shahabad 
Monghyr 



ORISSA .,. 

Cnttack 
Balasore 
Puri 



CHOTA NAGPTJR PLATEAU ... 

Hazaribagh ,., 

Ranch! 

Palamau 

Manbhum ,., ... ,„ 

Singhbhum 

Bonthal FaiKanas 

Tributary States, Chota Nagpur 

Ditto, Orissa 

Angul 



Hjirons. 



Proportion per 10,000 of the 
population. 



6,330 



8,319 

?,968 
7,289 
8,740 
8,845 
8,207 
7,908 



5,018 

6,304 
6,605 
4,056 
4,827 
3,871 



3,937 

2,223 
4,636 
6,790 
7,542 
3,605 
1,804 
2,614 
4,982 
7,019 
6,491 



3,2S1 

4,941 
8,729 
2,781 
3,786 
8,115 
2,939 
2,404 
2,352 
2,915 
6.877 



8,37Z 

8,318 
8.5U 
8,771 
8,786 
8,977 
5,761 



9,02i 

8,835 
8,935 
9,271 
9,029 



9,719 

9,708 
9,645 
9,819 



7,023 

8,100 
3,995 
8,605 
8,703 
4,321 
6,613 
6,146 
9,133 
1,1f& 



1891. 



0,4,07 



8,333 

8,030 
7,436 
8,604 
8,822 
8,142 
7,925 



6,000 

6,277 
6,617 
4,192 
4,958 
3,905 



3,974 



4,814 
6,698 
7,665 
3,720 
1,833 
2,659 
6,021 
7,023 



1881. 



3,360 

4,863 
3,899 
3,011 
3,836 
3,159 
3,125 
2,468 
8,344 
2,405 



8,364 

8,818 
8,651 
8,771 
8,787 
8,911 
6,866 



9,029 

8,848 
8,933 
9,276 
9,033 



9,746 

9,712 
9,744 
9,815 



6,877 

8,247 
3,941 
8,319 
8,150 
4,235 
6,134 
6,496 
9,028 
9,987 



6,B36 



8,393 

8,049 
7,764 
8,743 
8,878 
8,033 
8,009 



4,998 

6,202 
6,260 
4,388 
6,174 
3,962 



4,009 

2,239 
4,787 
6,320 
8,171 
8,892 
1,880 
2,753 
5,343 
7,094 



MtJSALMAMa. 



Proportion per 10,000 of the 
population. 



1901. 



1891. 



1881. 



3,473 

4,849 
4,090 
3,233 
3,957 
3,286 
3,36J 
2,577 
2,430 
1,997 
1,022 



8,379 

8,826 
8,679 
8,774 
8,825 
8,973 
5,824 

8,987 

8,772 
8,902 
9,262 
9,006 



9,738 

9,717 
9,688 
9,833 



7,34g 

8,371 
8,889 



9,869 
6,403 
9,899 
7,639 
7,603 



3,S48 



1,317 

1,876 
2,236 
658 
664 
1,769 
2,059 



4,873 



2,948 
6,895 
6,077 
6,124 



3,873 

7,763 
4,957 
2,902 
870 
6,367 
8,182 
7,483 
4,807 
2,967 
4 



6,617 

5,046 
6,226 
7,141 
6,190 
6,829 
7,054 
7,687 
7,153 
398 
2,616 



i,esi 

1,181 
1,475 
1,226 
1,211 
1,002 
4,238 



963 

i,i4r 

1,064 
725 
961 



348 

278 
264 
170 



4SS 

1,016 
353 
845 
483 
88 
840 
86 
40 
19 



3,170 



1,300 

1,921 
2,127 
424 
651 
1,832 
2,043 



4,907 

3,661 
2,981 
6,762 
4,946 



3,939 

7,774 
5,101 
3,266 
448 
6,271 
8,140 
7,337 
4,720 
2,950 



6,303 

5,129 
6,064 
6,902 
6,145 
6,791 
6,867 
7,533 
7,168 
453 
2,693 



1,613 

1,181 
1,438 
1,227 
1,209 
962 
4,141 



959 

1,134 

1,060 

720 

942 



S39 

273 
244 
165 



439 



845 
446 
59 
691 
76 
37 



3,193 

1,396 

1,898 
2,053 
444 
652 
1,937 
1,966 

4,936 

3,733 
3,178 
5,573 
4,809 
6,036 

3,936 

7,760 
6,200 
3,591 
627 
6,099 
8,119 
7,244 
4,632 
2,896 



6,330 

6,144 
6,867 
6,682 
6,026 
6,669 
6,635 
7,415 
7,082 
718 
2,818 



1,603 

1,173 
1,410 
1,224 
1,174 
944 
4,170 



999 

1,213 

1,097 

747 



333 



251 
158 



437 

961 

297 

834 

430 

61 

696 

66 

41 

17 



Ahimists. 



Proportion per 10,000 of the 
population. 



1901. 



334, 



3S1 

137 

466 
799 

434 



16 

6 



85 



107 

U 

401 

194 

138 

20 

18 



209 

4 



19 

3 

"74 



164 



15 
2 



3t 

"79 



3,338 

867 
4,600 

421 

792 
4,678 
3,493 
8,749 

818 
2,226 



1891. 



368 



368 



429 
970 
621 
19 
3 



13 



74 
1 



44 



72 



a 

26 



258 
17 



90 



1 

46 



18 



122 



18 



3,384, 



1881. 
10 

396 

397 

46 
182 
812 



10 
65 
40 



63 



6,148 
13 



80 
4 



36 

13 

"'46 



3, 133 



764 


663 


6,068 


6,471 


724 


861 


1,391 


408 


6,617 


14 


4,141 


3,863 


3,423 


33 


916 


2,313 



OlHEBB. 



Proportion per 10,000 of the 
population. 



1901. 



11 



68 



13 

19 
10 
3 

7 



91 



67 

647 



11 
S 



83 

3 
6 

114 

1,960 

8 

1 

3 

2 

10 

3,605 



113 

10 

45 

4 

24 

£6 

7 

9 

490 

6,684 

354 



1 

14 

3 

3 



12 

14 
12 
11 



161 

17 

1,062 

129 

22 

113 

64 

19 

9 

2 



1891. 1881 



33 

9 

10 



80 

70 
£02 
46 



33 



13 

44 
1,887 
7 
1 
4 
1 

10 



113 



46 
2 
20 
60 
8 
9 
4fi7 



18 
2 



13 

15 
12 
20 



110 

13 
671 
112 

13 

89 
34 
6 

20 

1 



13 



46 



IS 

7 
1 
I 

17 
10 
31 



7* 



19 



37 



113 



17 
45 
3 

8 

488 

7,285 

12 



IB 

19 
16 

9 



89 

6 

343 

6 

220 



SUBSIDIARY TABLES. 



207 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE III — Showing the variations in the number op 

Christians in each district. 



T^^omT%T^m 


NUMBBB 


OE Ohkjstiahs in— 


Tabiatiou. 1 


UISTBICT. 


1901. 


1891. 


1881. 


1891- 


-1901. 


1881- 


-1891. 


1881—1901. 


1 


a 


8 


4 




6 




6 


7 


morxNCE 


878,366 


19S,484 


138,134 


+ 85,88S 


+ 64,350 


^150,33Z 


WEST BENGAL 


9,4,63 


6,3ia 


4,460 


+ 


3,151 


+ 


1,853 


-^ 5,003 


Burdwan 


2,960 


1,408 


910 


+ 


1,652 


+ 


498 


-H 2,060 


Birbhiiin 


819 


622 


48 


+ 


297 


-H 


474 


+ in 


Bankura 


S6S 


132 


66 


+ 


231 


+ 


76 


+ 307 


Uidnapore ... 

Hooghly 


1,974 


1,645 


740 


+ 


429 


+ 


805 


-H 1,234 


769 


633 


665 


+ 


126 


— 


22 


+ 104 


Howrah 


2,S8S 


8,072 


2,061 


+ 


516 


+ 


21 


+ 637 


CENTRAL BENGAL 


61,14:1 


B0,6S6 


47,790 


+ 10,485 


+ 


!l,866 


-1- 13,351 


a4-Parganas ... 


13,822 


12,982 


10,192 


+ 


840 


+ 


2,790 


+ 8.630 


Cnloutta 


87,925 


28,997 


30,214 


+ 


8,928 


— 


1,217 


+ 7,711 


Nadia 


8,091 


7,297 


. 6,422 


+ 


794 


+ 


876 


+ 1,669 


Uurshidabad 


391 


640 


470 


— 


149 


+ 


70 


79 


Jessore 


912 


840 


4S2 


+ 


72 


+ 


348 


+ 420 


NOETH BENGAL 


9,193 


3,3B8 


1,880 


+ 


5,835 


+ 


1,478 


-H 7,313 


Bajshahi 


851 


105 


121 


+ 


246 


— 


16 


+ 230 


Dinajpur 


779 


511 


457 


+ 


268 


+ 


54 


+ S22 


Jalpaienrt ... 
Darje^iog ... 


2,486 


357 


159 


+ 


2,129 


+ 


198 


+ 2,327 


4,467 


1,602 


842 


+ 


2,965 


+ 


660 


+ 3,626 


Bangpur 


458 


348 


86 


+ 


110 


+ 


267 


+ 367 


Bogra 


40 


16 


27 


+ 


25 


— 


12 


-^ 18 


Pabna 


166 


162 


114 


+ 


4 


+ 


48 


+ 52 


Halda 


178 


72 


26 


+ 


101 


+ 


46 


+ 147 


Kuch Bihar 


143 


291 


48 


— 


148 


+ 


243 


+ 95 


Sikkim 


136 






+ 


136 







+ 135 


EAST BENGAL 


S6,934 


SZ,013 


18,1S9 


+ 


4,931 


+ 


3,854 


-1- 8,775 


Elinlna 


1,275 


963 


747 


+ 


312 


+ 


216 


+ 628 


Dacca 


11,666 


10,476 


8,797 


+ 


1,080 


+ 


1,679 


-1- 2,759 


Mymeneingh 


1,291 


211 


161 


+ 


1,080 


+ 


60 


+ 1,140 


Fariipiir 


4,641 


3,639 


2,748 


+ 


1,102 


-l- 


796 


+ 1,898 


Backergnngo 


6,691 


4,669 


8,717 


+ 


932 


+ 


942 


+ 1,874 


Tippera 


293 


182 


199 


+ 


110 


— 


17 


-H 93 


Noakbali 


662 


641 


688 


+ 


21 


-1- 


63 


-H 74 


Ghittagong ... 


1,237 


1,191 


1,056 


+ 


46 


+ 


136 


-1- 182 


Chittagong Hill Tracts 


262 


18 


49 


+ 


234 


— 


31 


-1- 203 


HiUTippera 


187 


133 


113 


+ 


4 


-1- 


20 


■V SI 


NOKTH BIHAE 


3,374 


4,053 


3,830 


+ 


1,333 


+ 


!i33 


-t- 1,554 


Saran ... ... ... 


814 


278 


282 


+ 


36 


_ 


4 


+ 32 


Champaran ... 


2,417 


2,100 


1,936 


+ 


817 


+ 


164 


+ 481 


Muzaffarpur 


719 


• S71 


372 


+ 


348 


— 


1 


+ 347 


Darbhanga ... 


710 


880 


326 


+ 


330 


+ 


66 


+ 385 


BhagiilpuT ... 


776 


536 


578 


+ 


239 


— 


42 


+ 197 


Purnea 


439 


8S7 


327 


+ 


62 


-t- 


60 


+ 112 


SOUTH BIHAR 


4,6S3 


4,608 


4,051 


+ 


IS 


•1- 


557 


+ 673 


Patna 


2,662 


2,838 


2,588 


_ 


271 


-l- 


246 


26 


Gaya 


253 


174 


96 


+ 


79 


-1- 


78 


-t- 167 


Bbahabad 


376 


277 


276 


+ 


98 


+ 


1 


+ 99 


Monghyr 


1,433 


1,324 


1,091 


+ 


109 


+ 


233 


+ S42 


ORIBSA 


S,004 


4,638 


5,076 


+ 


366 


+ 


663 


+ 1,038 


Cnttack 


8.662 


2,723 


2,342 


_ 


71 


-1- 


381 


+ 310 


Balasoro ... ... 


1,274 


1,075 


816 


+ 


199 


+ 


280 


-*■ 469 


Puri 


1,078 


810 


819 


+ 


238 


+ 


21 


-1- 269 


CHOTA NAGPUR PLATEAU... 


156,634 


96,847 


43,998 


+ 


59,787 


+ 


53,849 


+113,636 


Hazaribagh ... 


1,168 


889 


652 


+ 


274 


+ 


3S7 


+ «11 


Bancbi 


121,968 


75,698 


36,263 


+ 


49,265 


+ 


39,430 


-f 88,695 


Palamau ... ... 


7,908 


6,676 


18 


+ 


1,232 


+ 


6,668 


+ 7,890 


Manbhnni ... 


2,910 


1,582 


562 


+ 


1,378 


-1- 


980 


+ 8,3Bg 


ginghbhnm ... 


6,961 


4,864 


2,988 


+ 


2,097 


+ 


1,87« 


+ 3 973 


Sontbal Parganas 


9,875 


6,948 


3,066 


.+ 


3,932 


+ 


2,887 


+ S,819 


Tribatary States, Ohota Nagpu 


r 1,876 


528 


106 


+ 


1,848 


+ 


423 


-I- 1,771 


Ditto, Orissa 


960 


703 


457 


+ 


247 


+ 


246 


+ 49S 


Augul 


SS 


19 


7 


+ 


14 


+ 


12 


+ 28 



208 



CHAPTEK IV — RELIGION. 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE IV. — Showing the distribution op Christians by 

RACE AND SECT (AcTUAL NUMBEES.) 





EUKOPBAir. 


EuZASIkS. 


Native. 


Total. • 




Sect. 


















Variation 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


Male. 


Female. 


1901. 


1891. 


+ or - 


1 


2 


3 


4 


6 


6 


7 


8 


9 


10 


IngHoan Communion ... 


10,862 


5,920 


4,402 


4,241 


18,034 


17,565 


61,024 


48,960 


+ 12,074 




334 


200 


19 


IS 


3 


3 


574 


436 


+ 139 


Baptist \ 


314 


289 


355 


856 


10,392 


9,915 


21,621 


14,747 


+ 6,874 


Congregatlonalist •„ 
Greek ... 


66 
99 


47 
28 


11 

22 


10 
2 


947 

8 


971 
8 


2,051 
167 


1,264 
r92 


+ 797 
25 


Indefinite belief 


6 




1 




1 





8 


13 


- 5 


Lutheran and allied deno- 


198 


82 


6 


1 


84,727 


84,567 


69,680 


23,475 


+ 46,105 






















Methodist 


431 


291 


232 


S38 


1,290 


1,276 


3,868 


917 


+ ^'^il 


Minor denominations ... 


67 


28 


23 


14 


2V7 


129 


628 


439 


+ 89 


I'resbyterian 


1,813 


685 


287 


343 


1,711 


1,949 


6,691 


^'^•W 


+ ^'^Si 


Eoman Catholic ... 


.'i.710 


1.911 


6,067 


6,207 


44,429 


45,870 


108,194 


90, ri7 


+ 18,077 


Sect not returned 


140 


79 


66 


107 


1,740 


1,948 


4,070 


7,208 


- 3,138 


Total 


18,029 


9,460 


11,480 


11,634 


11S,B63 


114,301 


978,366 


193,484 


+83,883 



SUBSIDIARY TABLE V.— Showing the distribution per 1,000 {a) op 

EACH RACE OP CHRISTIANS Br SECT, AND {I) OF EACH SECT Bl' RACE. 





Eaobb disteibfted by sect. 


Sects disteibuied by eace, | 


Sect. 


















European. 


Eurasian. 


Native. 


Total. 


European. 


Eurasian. 


Native. 


Total. 


1 


2 


3 


4 


. 5 


6 


7 


8 


9 


Anglican Communion ... 

Armenian 

Baptist 

Congregationalist 

Greek 

Lutheran and allied denomina- 
tions. 

Methodist 

Minor denominations ... 
Presbyterian ... 
Roman Catholic 
Sect not returned 


610 

20 

23 

4 

6 

10 


374 

1 

31 

1 

1 


166 

89 

9 

"■"301 


2Jg 

2 

78 

7 

260 


276 
930 
28 
55 
760 
4 


142 
69 
33 
10 

144 


683 
11 

939 

935 
96 

996 


1,000 
1,000 
1,000 
1,000 
1,000 
1,000 


26 
3 

87 

205 

8 


1 

27 

631 

7 


11 

2 

16 

397 

16 


14 

2 

24 

389 

14 


187 
161 
358 
52 
54 


148 
70 
94 

113 
40 


665 
769 
548 
835 
806 


1,000 
1,000 
1,000 
1,000 
1,000 


Total 


1,000 


1,000 


1,000 


1,000 


99 


83 


818 


1,000 



SUBSIDIARY T ABLE VI. — Comparing the distribution by religion op 

THE Urban and Rural population. 







NUMBEE BEE 10,000 OF UEBAN POPTJIATIOH 
WHO AEE.— 


NUMBEE PEE 10,080 OP KUEAL POPULATION 
WHO AJIE.— 


Natueal Divisions. 


c 


1 

1 




s 
o 


4^- 


1 


9 

n 


i 


O 


■a 

m 
1 

'S 
<1 


1 
O 


1 

TOTAL 

West Bengal ... 
Central „ ... 
North „ ... 

East 

North Bihar ... 

South , 

Orissa 

Chota Nagpur Platet 


lU 


2 

6,939 

8,168 
6,717 
5,370 
6,286 
7,292 
7,334 
8,641 
7,601 


■i 

3,794 

1,747 
2,915 
4,210 
4,561 
2,628 
2,693 
1,290 
1,699 


4 

174 

85 

891 

115 

68 

70 

59 

162 

374 


5 
19 

""404 


6 

S4 

3 

. 66 

301 

85 

9 

14 

7 
22 


7 

6,397 

8,331 

4,629 
3,906 
3,201 
8,406 
9,156 
9,769 
7,016 


8 

3,373 

1,286 

5,323 

6,91)8 

6,667 

1,689 

839 

204 

436 


9 

38 

6 

28 
7 

15 
2 
2 
6 
166 


10 

373 

377 
20 

no 

20 
3 
4 

21 
2,392 


11 
31 

69 

97 

2 



CHAPTER V — AGE. 



209 



dhayt^r 1. 



AGE. 

386. The statistics regarding the age-distribution of the total population, 
J. and of the adherents of each religion in the Province 

EFBEEKCE TO TATISTIC3. ^^ ^ wholo, and in each district, will be found in 

Imperial Table VII. Similar information for a number of selected castes is 
given in Table XIV, but the age periods selected for these tables are somewhat 
less elaborate than those for Table VII. The following subsidiary tables at 
the end of this chapter illustrate the more important points in the statistics by 
means of proportional figures : — 

Sulsidiary Table I. — Unadjusted age return of 100,000 of each sex. 

Subsidiary Table II. — Age distribution of 100,000 of each sex, at each of the 
last of these Censuses, for the Province as a whole, and for each Natural Division. 

Subsidiary Table III. — ^Age distribution of 100,000 of each sex by religion. 

Subsidiary Table IV. — Age distribution of 1,000 of each sex in certain castes. 

Subsidiary Table V. — Proportion of children under 10 years of age, and 
of persons over 60, to persons aged 20 to 40, and also of married females to total 
females of certain ages. 

Subsidiary Table VI. — Proportion of female children under 12 to married 
females, and of married, to total, females in certain castes. 

Subsidiary Table VII. — Showing the reported death-rate at certain ages in 
1897 and 1900. 

387. There is no question but that the return of age is the least reliable of 

all the statistics collected at the Census. Even in 
iNAcctJEACToiTAGEEETtrEN. Eugknd it was Stated iu the Census Report for 

1891 that " not improbably the greater number of adults do not know their 
precise age and can only state it approximately." Amongst adults, says a 
leading statistician, " there is a great tendency to. return ages at some exact 
multiple of 10" while in the case of children under 5 years of age, "the 
vagueness with which parents use the terms 'one year old' 'two years old' 
etc., when the children are only in their first or second year respectively, is a 
cause of considerable error."* There is also a wilful mis-statement of age on 
the part of women, while there is a marked tendency for old persons to 
overstate their ages. 

If the age return is thus inaccurate in England it is infinitely more so 

Diagram showing the actual number of males returned in India. Nothing is more, COm- 

at each age. jnon when a witness is asked 

his age in court, than for him to 
reply bis challis ' twenty to forty,' 
or to say that he has not the 
faintest idea on the subject. The 
Enumerators were almost as ig- 
norant on this subject as the 
enumerated, and it must be con- 
fessed that the entries made in the 
schedules were often little better 
than very wild guesses. The 
tendency to select certain round 
numbers is far greater than it is 
in England, and the inaccuracy 
of the entries for children under 5 
years of age is still more marked. 
It will be seen from the diagram in 
the margin, which has been pre- 
pared from the unadjusted return 
for males (Subsidiary Table I), 
that the children shown as 5 years 
of age are more than twice 




,„ *„ — ■*) -W ''tiOt' 70- 99' 
NoTB— The figure! at the bottom indicate ago and those at the 
Bide the number of persons returned at it. , . ,, " • i ■■ i ;i„J 

as numerous as those of 1 year, but that they are c onsiderably exceeded 



« Dr. Newsholme, in the third edition of his book on Vital Statistics, page 2. 



DD 



210 CHAPTER V — AGE. 



by the number of males returned at the ages of 10, 13, 25 and 30. In a 
progressive or stationary population, however, the greatest number should be 
at the age " under 1 year " and it should steadily decrease from year to 
year. That it does not do so is due mainly to the tendency, already alluded 
to as existing even in Europe, to fix on certain favourite numbers. If the 
vagueness in respect of age, of which this is an indication, were the only 
error in the returns, and if there were no general tendency either to over- 
state or to understate ages, it would be possible by an elaborate system 
of adjustment or smoothing, to elimioate the defect, and to deduce a fairly 
accurate estimate of the actual ages of the population. It will be desirable, 
therefore, to consider the figures in some little detail. 

388. The instructions which were given to the enumerators were : — ■ 

Enter the number of years which each person has completed. For infants less than 
one year old enter the word ' infant,' 

The figures for children under 5 years of age show remarkable fluctua- 
tions. The number returned as between 1 and 2 
teaeT'''' °^ ^^"°=^^ ^^^^= 5 years of age is barely half the number under 1 year, 

and the latter again is smaller than the number aged 
2 years and still smaller than the number aged 3 years. Finally, the total 
number of children under 5 years of age is less than the number over 5 but 
under 10. _ The main features of these variations are not new, nor are they con- 
fined to this Province ; they are common to all Provinces both at the present and 
all previous enumerations. 

The very small number returned as 1 year of age appears to be due in 
part to the rule that children under 1 year of age should be entered as ' infants.' 
The object of this provision was to avoid the confusion between months and 
years, which would arise if the ages of such children were stated in months. 
This source of error was probably obviated, but, on the other band, many 
children over 1 year of age who were still unweaned and were, therefore, 
popularly regarded as infants, were shown as such in the Census schedules and 
were accordingly classed as "under 1 year of age" in the course of tabulation.* 
But the main reason appears to be that it is the usual practice to count the 
current year as part of a person's age. This has been proved to be the case 
in the Punjab, and the enquiries I have made indicate that it is usually so in 
Bengal also.f In the earlier years of life, however, the tendency is checked to 
some extent by the use of the terms derh, " one and a half," and drkdi "two 
and a half." As soon as a child ceases to be classed as an infant he is described 
as " derh baras," or one and a half years of age, and the Enumerator would enter 
him as 1. When he has completed 18 months or so, he will be called two 
years old, until he passes the age of two, when he will be described as " arhai 
baras," or two and a half, which will be taken by the enumerator to mean 
2 years. The age return for "two years" will thus include all children from 
1| to 2|. After 2^ years a child will ordinarily be called 3 till he has passed 
his third birthday. There is no word denoting 3^ or other similar fractions, so 
that according to the general system of counting the current year, the 
tendency would then be to call him 4, and so on for the higher ages. 

389. So far as these considerations go, it would seem that the word 
" infant " will include all children under one year of age, and also some over 
that age who are still at the mother's breast, that the year 1 will include such 
children between the ages of 1 and U as are not classed as " infants," and also 
possibly some children under 1 year of age who should under the rules have been 
entered as " infant;" the year 2, all children from about 1^ to about 2| years of 
age, and the year 3 those from 2^ to 3 ; while from 4 onwards, the age 
actually retuJmed will be a year in excess of the actual facts, so that the 
return for the years 0—5 J will include only those who have not completed their 
4th year ; while that for 5—10 will include all who have completed their 4th, 
but have not completed the 10th year of their age. There are, however, other 

* The birth returns show a considerably larger number of births in 1899 than in either 19C0 or 1898 
it .i'le sa^''^°x'T,?''? IS noticed in England, and it has been suggested that a more accurate return 
would be obtained if the instructions were modified accordingly. (Journal of the Institute of Actuaries for 
i900,-page d68.) Ihe practice in this respect is not uniform throughout Bengal and there are places where 
there is said to be no special tendency to return either the cardinal or the ordinal year of one's aee 
.t. -K^^J'?'!^ '^ 'f®^"* all children under 6. Similarly '6-10' refers to those who have Dassed 
theu 5th, but have not yet reached their 10th, birthday, paseett 



INACCURACY OF AGE EETURN. 



211 



complications. It was distinctly laid down in the instructions that only the 
number of completed years should be counted, and where the enumerators 
were well drilled and supervised this must have affected the return to some 
extent. _ As a general rule, however, I doubt if special attention was given to 
the detailed explanation of this rule. The tendency of the people to count 
the current year of age was not specially pointed out before the census, and 
apart from this, the general feeling amongst the higher officers was that the 
age return must, in any case, be so very unreliable, that there was nothing to be 
gained by laying much stress on the subject, especially when there were so 
many other matters where the time devoted to instruction would be more likely 
to produce good results. No doubt obvious mistakes in the age column would 
be corrected, when they came to notice in the course of testing the schedules, 
but in other respects I doubt if any special effort was generally made to secure 
accuracy in a return where accuracy cannot be expected.* 

390. According to the general explanation, the number of children entered 
as 3 years of age should be below the actual number of children of this age, but 
this does not seem to be the case. The reason is that " 3 " is a favourite number, 
and that its losses in the one direction are counterbalanced by a tendency to 
describe as 3 years of age, children who are no longer infants, but are not yet 
old enough to be shown as 6, the next number to which natives are specially 
partial. Another source of error is the omission of a certain number of infants 
from the returns. It is believed that the proportion of persons who escaped 
enumeration was exceedingly small, but it is' probable that of those who were 
left out of account, the great majority were children of tender age. The Census 
refers to the state of the population on the 1st March 1901, but the preliminary 
record was prepared about six weeks before this date. At the final enumeration 
there was no alteration of the ages of persons still living, but those who had 
died in the interval were struck out, while infants since born should have been 
added. t It is, however, not unlikely that some of the births, which occurred 
after the date of the preliminary record, escaped notice wben the Enumerators 
made their rounds, on the night of the actual Census, to bring the preliminary 
record up to date. According to the Census the total number of infants, i.e., of 
children under one year of age, was 2,264,527. The vital statistics of the Pro- 
vince show that in the twelve months preceding the 1st March 1901, the total 
number of births was 2,698,379, to which should be added about 146,000 for 
areas where birth registration is not in force, making a total of about 2,844,000 
altogether. According to the life statistics of the proclaimed clans in the United 
Provinces, to which reference will again be made further on, about 29 per cent, 
of infants die during the first year of life. If it be assumed that the births and 
deaths are distributed equally over each month, J the number of births reported 
would indicate a total of about 2,432,000 infants in existence at one time. So 
that even if the return of births includes all which take place, which is certainly 
not the case, the Census figures for infants under one year of age would seem to 
be incomplete. It is, however, impossible to say how far this is due to omissions 
and how far to the neglect of the rule that children under one year of age should 
be entered as infants. Occasionally the number of months may have been 
entered and mistaken for years in the course of tabulation, while some may have 
been entered as I year of age. 

* The variations between the returns for neighbouring tracts were often remarkable. Thus in 
Tippera two charges not far apart disclosed the following figures for the local Muhammadans : — 



Chabob. 





1 




2 


s 


4 


Total 
0-5 


Total 
6—10 


u. 


P. 


M. 


T. 


M. 


F. 


M. 


P. 


M. 


F. 


U. 


P. 


M. 


W. 


V. 
XVIII. 


736 
947 


766 
917 


448 
83 


470 
Hi 


1,064 
926 


a.oai 

969 


924 
702 


944 
796 


1,02S 
646 


963 
873 


4,186 
S,409 


4,173 
3,669 


4,664 
4,138 


4.B91 
4,066 



The results were noticed and specially tested by the Deputy Superintendent, Mr. Howard, who 
brought them to my notice. 

t It may be pointed out incidentally that the result of this arrangement was to make this population 
seem slightly younger that it really is. People dying during the six weeks were struck oat and replaced 
by newly born infants. 

J This is not th<i oase. Births are most numerous in the latter part of the year, while the mortality is 
probably greatest in the first few months after birth. The two irregularities, however, have oppusite 
effects and may be taken as cancelling each other. 



312 CHAPTER V — AGE. 



391. The other ages may be dealt with more briefly. Amongst men, and 

especially amongst -widowers, there is a general desire 
Othee Agbs. ^^ ^g considered young, and it is not uncommon for 

men of 40 to describe themselves as 25 years of age, and a comparison of the age- 
return for the present census with that of 1891 shows that the number of persons 
now entered under the age-period 25 — 30 exceeds by nearly 15 per cent, the 
number returned under the age-period 15 — 20, ten years ago. With females the 
tendency to misdescription comes earlier. It is considered a disgrace for a girl 
to attain puberty while still unmarried, and when this happens, her father will 
either not mention her existence to the Census Enumerator or, if he does so, he 
will understate her age. It is for this reason that while females aged — 5 
invariably outnumber the males, at the age-period 10 — 15 they are in great 
defect. Once a woman is married, her age is often exaggerated while she is 
still very young, but the estimate then remains unchanged so long as she is 
capable of child-bearing, and until this period of life has passed, she is often 
shown as much younger then she really is. Amongst old people of both sexes, 
but especially in the case of females, exaggeration in the matter of age is very 
common. These are the main causes of error, so far as I can trace them, 
but the mistakes which are made are by no means confined to them and they 
are often due to purei ignorance. 

392. The age statistics of the censuses of 1881 and 1891 for the larger 

provinces of India, including Bengal, were subjected 

iFE ABLB. ^^ ^ close analysis by Mr. Hardy, f.i a., p.s.s,, whose 

ater pronouncement on the subject will be found in the Imperial Census Report 

of 1891, Vol. II, pages 143 to 185. The general results, so far as this province 

is concerned, are noted briefly below. 

Mr. Hardy noticed three main sources of error in the figures, viz: — 

(1,) a fondness for certain special numbers ; 

(2) a heaping up of the figures about the age 25 — 30 " at the expense of 

the preceding and following ages," and 

(3) a tendency to exaggerate the ages after about age 65. 

These errors were eliminated by an elaborate process of smoothing, and the 
ages during the early years of life were further adjusted according to the rates 
of mortality, shown by the statistics maintained under the special law for prevent- 
ing infanticide; amongst certain proclaimed clans in the United Provinces, which 
are believed to be specially accurate.* The corrected age distribution in 1881 
was then compared with that in 1891 and the observed rate of increase in 
the population,t and it was calculated how many persons living at each 
age a; in 1881 were surviving at the age a;-l-10 in 1891. From these results 
the mortality tables for the province were worked out. The general conclusion 
to which Mr. Hardy came was that the birth-rate in Bengal, during the decade ■ 
1881 — 1891, was 51-8 per 1,000 (males 52*9 and females 50-8), and the death-rate 
44"8 (males 45*9 and females 43-8). The estimated annual rate of increase was 
taken at 7 per 1,000, which corresponded with the actual rate disclosed by the 
census of 1891. We have seen, however, that, of the increase brought out by 
the census of 1891, about half a million was due to better enumeration. No 
allowance was made for this in Mr. Hardy's calculation, and it would seem, there- 
fore, that his birth rate, at least, must have been pitched somewhat too high. 
Moreover, when adjusting the ages, except for the two extremes of life, it was 
apparently assumed that the excess population returned at certain favourite num- 
bers should be assigned half to ages below, and half to ages above, the number 
in question, whereas, in some cases at least, the under-statement of age is very 
much more frequent than the error in the other direction. It seems probable 
that the mean age of the population as a whole is greater, and the death-rate 
smaller, than would appear even from the corrected age return. However that 
may be, the subject is much too complicated for it to be possible for any one 
who is not a trained actuary to deal with it, and as Mr. Hardy himself is, I 
understand, again to undertake the examination of the age statistics, any 

..'* It was assumed that the mortality amongst these clans is a fair index to the mortalitjr amonsst 
children throughout India ; but if the general rate of mortality varies, as it undoubtedly does, it seems very 
uncertain how far the mortality under the age of 10 years, which forms a very large proportion of the 
total, is really uniform. 

t In some Provinces migration was allowed for, but in Bengal it was thought that the net result of the 
movements of the people, to and from the Province, was so small that it might safely be left out of 
account. "^ 



MEAN AGE. 



213 



Mean Age. 




attempt on my part to forestall his conclusions would be not only supererogatory 
but presumptuous. 

393. At the same time there are certain comparative results which can be 

deduced without any elaborate calculations, and 1 
propose briefly to draw attention to these. And first 

comes the question of the relative longevity of the people of different religions 

and localities, and at 

Diagram shnoing the distribution of corrected age periods of different times The mcatl 
100,000 persons of each six. „ , , ' , . , 

age 01 the people in each 
Natural Division, and at 
each of the last three cen- 
suses, has been shown in 
Subsidiary Table II and 
corresponding figures for 
the main religions have 
been given in Subsidiary 
Table III. The method 
by which these figures 
have been arrived at is as 
follows. In the first place 
the irregularities in the 
numbers returned at each 
age period (0 — 5, 5 — 10, 
etc.), have been eliminated 
by an arithmetical process 
of smoothing known as " Bloxam's method," and the mean age has then been 
calculated from the number shown as living at each age period in the manner 
described in the report on the census of France in 1891,* i.e., the totals showing 
the number of persons living at the end of each quinquennial period have been 
multiplied by 5 and raised by 2| times the' total number of persons dealt with, 
and the sum thus obtained has then been divided by the number of persons. 
The method employed in adjusting the irregularities in the age return is a very 
rough one, and it is based on the assumption, which I have already shown to be 
erroneous, that the heaping up of ages at certain favourite numbers is due in 
equal proportions to over and under statements of the true ages. The diagram 
in the margin shows the distribution of the total population by age according to 
the method of smoothing adopted, but it will be seen from the figures for the 
higher ages, especially those for females, that although the irregularities in the 
original return have been got rid of, the result cannot be accepted as showing the 
actual age distribution. The number of females living at the age " 60 to 65" 
must necessarily be much smaller than the number at the age " 50— 55 " but in 
the diagram the figures for the two age periods are very nearly identical. It 
should, therefore, be clearly understood that I make no pretence to absolute 
accuracy in my estimates of the mean age. But the errors involved in the cal- 
culation, and in the figures on which it is based, may be assumed to be constant, 
and if so, the results can be relied on for comparison between different censuses, 
localities, and religions. 

But before dealing with the results from this point of view, it should be 
explained that the expression ' mean age' refers to the mean age of the living, 
i.e. of the persons enumerated, and does not correspond to the mean expectatioii 
of life at birth, save in the exceptional case where the population has been 
stationary for at least a generation.! Where the population is growing, i.e., 
where the births exceed the deaths, there will be an excess of young persons and 
the mean age of the living will be reduced accordingly.ij: Variations in the mean 
age as calculated in Subsidiary Tables II and III may, therefore, be due to a 
change either in the proportion of births or in the rate of mortality. 

394. In discussing variations in the mean age it seems desirable to consider 

only the figures for males, as it is believed that 
Vaeiations m mbak age. ^^^^^ .^ j^^^ inaccuracy in the return of their ages 

than is the case with females. In the Province as a whole the mean age of males 

* Eesultats Statistiques du Denombrement de J891, Paris 1894 pages 223, 224 and 414. 

+ For a discussion of this subject see Bertillon's Cours BUmentaire de Statisque, page 503 and 
Newsholme's Vital Statistics, ^age 92. .„ t, .t, , v • .,, ,, 

+ Thus in France during the period 1840—49, when the population was growing rapidly, the mean 
expectation of life was 40'05 years, whereas the mean age of the living was only 30-92. 

D D 2 



2U 



CHAPTER V — AGE. 





Mean age of males in years. 


Natural Division. 








1901. 


1891. 


1881. 


mOTINCE 


HAS 


S^-0 


S4,-S 


WestBenRal 


24-8 


24-7 


24-8 


Centrall „ 


23 •! 


249 


26-1 


North 


23-8 


24-1 


24-3 


East 


23-3 


22-5 


23-8 


North Bihar 


a4,'4 


24-4 


24'4i 


South 


25-0 


24-7 


24-9 


OrissB 


2f4 


24-1 


23-7 


Chota Kagpur Plateau ... 


22 6 


22-4 


22-6 



fell slightly during the decade 1881 — 1891, and rose again during that 
preceding the present Census. The earlier decade was uniformly prosperous, 
and there were no serious epidemics. The population had been growing more 
rapidly than usual, and the mean age accordingly fell. Since 1891 the growth 
of the population has been less rapid, and the proportion of children is 
smaller. There has, consequently, been a rise in the mean age of the living.* 
The figures for Natural Divisions show that the mean agd is highest in 

Central Bengal, where the proportion of 
immigrants, who are usually adults, is 
greatest. The mean age in this tract is 
now the same as it was in 1881. It 
was slightly lower in 1891 owing to 
the fact that the decade preceding that 
Census was one of more rapid growth 
than usual, owing to the disappearance 
of the Burdwan fever which had 
previously caused a serious loss of 
population. In spile of the large 
number of emigrants the mean age in South Bihar is very nearly as great as in 
Central Bengal. This is only what is to be expected in a declining population 
where births are comparatively few in number, and having regard to the 
decrease in the population which has taken place, the wonder is that the 
average age has not risen to a higher figure. It would doubtless have 
done so but for the great emigration of adults from this tract to other 
parts of the Province. In West Bengal, which stands next, the mean 
age is very slightly less than in South Bihar, but its position is due, not so much 
to a small birth-rate, as to immigration. The mean age in North Bihar is 
exactly the same as in 1881. The population has been stationary since 
1891, and the absence of any variation as compared with the Census in that 
year is, therefore, easily explicable, but it is not so clear why there should 
have been no change during the previous ten years when the population grew by 
nearly 6 per cent. The average age of the population is the same in Orissa as 
in North Bihar. It has been steadily increasing since 1881, when there had been 
an exceptionally rapid growth of population after the famine of 1866 and the 
proportion of young people was much above the normal. The mean age is 
comparatively low in North and East Bengal. In the former tract it is due 
in part to the unliealthiness near the foot of the hills which reduces the 
average longevity of the people, while in the latter it is attributable to the 
rapid rate at which the population is growing, i,e., to the high birth-rate 
which raises the proportion of children. Compared with the previous 
decade, when several districts were recovering from the disastrous effects of a 
cyclone and storm-wave, the rate of growth in East Bengal has fallen 
slightly, and this has resulted in a small advance in the mean age. The 
fecundity of the inhabitants of the Chota Nagpur Plateau is even greater than 
that of those of East Bengal, while the number who attain old age is smaller. 
The mean age, therefore, is lower there than in any other part of the Province. 
There is no need to linger long over the average age of the population 

according to religion. The Animists are, on the 
whole, the youngest community, then follow 
the Muhammadans, and then the Hindus. In 
the case of Animists the low average age is 
due to greater' fecundity and a shorter span of 



Keligion. 



Hindu 

Jlusalman 

Animist 




life. The Muhammadans have a lower mean age than the Hindus because they 



* If the calculation of mean age were correct, an average age of 24-3 in a stationary population would 
indicate a death-rate per 1,000 of "Ijtj- or about 41. As the population is not stationary but growing 
the death-rate^calculated on this basis would be somewhat less than 41. The average yearly increase in 
the population is 49 per 1,000, and a death-rate of 41 per 1,000 vtould, therefore, give a birth-rate of 
about 46 per 1,000. The death-rate estimated by Mr Hardy for Bengal, as a whole, in 1891, was, as already 
stated, 44 8, and the birth-rate 518. M. Bertillon divides the countries of Europe into three classes with 
reference to the fecundity of these people. Calculating the number of births per 1,(!C0 women of child- 
bearing'age (which he jilaces at from 15 to 60) the first class consists of those with a high birth-rate, i.e., 
exceeding 150 per 1,000; then come those with a moderate one, i.e., exceeding 130 per 1,000; then those' with 
a low birth-rate, i.e., 120 per 1,000 or less. Class I includes the Slav and Teutonic races ; Class II England 
Scotland, Belgium, Sp^dn, Portugal, Eoumania, Ireland, Norway and Denmark ; and Class III Sweden 
Greece, Switzerland ; then, a long way behind, Ireland and, last of all, France. In Bengal the extreme child- 
bearing age is ptobably 40 ; but even if we take it at 45, a birth-rate of 45 per 1,000 of the total population 
■would give 195 births per 1,000 married women of child-bearing age. 



DECLINE IN THE BIBTH-KATE. 



215 



is no reason to suppose that there is 



marked 



AGB D18TEIBUTI0N OP DIFFBEBNT 

Castes. 



noticed. 





Number of 




male children 


Caste or Tribe. 


under 5 per 




1,000 ol popula- 




tion. 


Br&hmiui 


119 


KHvasth 


126 


B4put 

B&>Iian 


III 


Ho 


141 


Or&on 


146 


Santftl 


146 


Pin 


158 


Bhuiyi 


147 


Bhumij 


128 


Munda ,., 


163 



are more prolific: there lo nu leaBon lo suppose mat tnere is any 
difference in their relative longevity, 

395. The proportional age-distribution of some of the main castes will be 

found in Subsidiary Table IV. It would be 
tedious to discuss the figures at length, but, taking 

, _ males only, a few interesting results may be briefly 

Excluding Baishnabs, where the proportion is disturbed by new 
accretions of adults from outside, the castes which have the largest number 

of persons over 40 per 1,000 are those which 
rank highest in the Hindu social system,* viz., 
Brdhmans (225 >, Kayasths (224), E^jputs (220) 
and B^bhans (217). Conversely the communities 
with the smallest proportion of persons of this age 
are the aboriginal tribes of Chota Nagpur, such as 
Ho (156), Oraon (159), Santal (171), Pan (174) 
Bhuiya (175,) Bhumij (180) and Munda (183). 
These proportions are determined, as already 
explained, not only by the relative longevity of 
the various groups but also by their fecundity.f 
Where the proportion of children is large that of 
adults must necessarily be smaller, and the average age of the community will 
be less even if the actual duration of life be the same. Amongst the high castes 
the proportion of children is much smaller than it is amongst the aboriginal 
tribes. 

It is interesting to notice the very close resemblance which the age 

distribution of the Chand^l of East Bengal bears 
to that of the Edjbansi, and it would seem that the 
likeness must be due to something more than mere 
accident.^ It is possible that a more extended 
study of the age statistics of the various castes 
would throw a good deal of light on their racial 
affinities. The low proportion of old men amongst 
the Gauras of the Orissa States, for example, points 
clearly to the non-Aryan sources from which the 
caste is there mainly recruited, while the corre- 
sponding figure for the Babhans of Hazaribagli suggests either that they have 
there intermixed with lower races, or else that, in compiling the figures, there 
has been some confusion between Bhuinhar used as a synonym for Babhan and 
the same word employed as a title of Mundas and Oraons, or as referring to the 
tribe commonly known as Bhuiyd. The Telis and Lobars of the Chota Nagpur 
Plateau present in their age distribution the characteristics of the aborigines 
around them, while the same castes in Bengal Proper resemble in this respect 
the higher rather than the lower classes of the community. 

396. Another point to be noticed is that there appears to have been a 

general and progressive decline in the birth-rate since 
Gbhebal DECLINE IN THE BiBTH- jgSl. Tho actual numbcr of male childrcn undcr 
*^''^' 5 (excluding Sikkim and Hill Tippera and the 

Chittagong Hill Tracts) shows a small increase, as compared with 1891, 
while that of females has declined by nearly 6 per cent. With the exception of 
Darbhanga, where the number of children under 5 has increased by about 4 
per cent., and of MuzafParpur, where there has been practically no change, all 
the districts in the Patna Division contain a smaller number of such children 
than they did ten years ago. Five years, however, is too short a period from 
which to draw any general conclusions. In the Province, as a whole, the number 
of children under 10 years of age shows an increase since 1891 of nearly 2 per 
cent, for males, and of rather less than 3 per cent, for females, i.e., the children 
of this age have increased less than half as rapidly as the general population. In 
the Patna Division, however, the decrease amongst children aged 5 to 10 is 
even greater than that at the earlier age-period, being about 8 per cent, 
compared with about 4 per cent. 

* There are exceptions, e.g., the Sunri (224) and the Go41a of Bengal Proper (224). 
t The difPerence in the degree of education must also be remembered. The age-return of Brahmans 
and Kayasths must be much more accurate than that of Santals and Oraons. 

J The affinities of the Eajbansis will be farther discussed in the Chapter on Caste (paragraph 617). 



Age. 


Pbopoetiok peb 
1,000. 




Bijbansi. 


Cband&l. 


0—6 

6— la 

12—20 

20—40 

40 and 

over. 


133 
199 
160 
301 
207 


ISl 
200 
168 
303 
208 



216 



CHAPTER V — AGE. 





NUMBEB 


OB CHILDBEN CNDBE 


10 






PEE 1,000 OF. THE POPCLATIOH 




Natural Division. 


















Male. 




Female 






1901. 


1891. 


18S1. 


1901. 


1891. 


1881. 


PBOriNCE ... 


143 


147 


149 


146 


149 


148 


West Benpfal 


ISO 


132 


130 


181 


132 


126 


Central Bengal ... 


133 


136 


140 


130 


139 


136 


North Bengal ... 


164 


164 


163 


166 


156 


161 


East Bene;al 


166 


161 


166 


169 


IBS 


167 


North Bihar 


W2 


142 


145 


187 


1« 


147 


South Bihar 


130 


137 


143 


128 


141 


146 


Oriesa 


128 


131 


148 


131 


134 


14S 


Chota Nagpur 














Plateau 


162 


162 


167 


159 


166 


169 



It will be easier to consider the question if we take the proportional 

figures. These are given in the 
margin, by Natural Divisions, for the 
last three Censuses. A more detailed 
comparison of the figures for the last 
two enumerations will be found in 
Subsidiary Table V at the end of the 
chapter. It must be borne in mind 
that the proportions are affected by 
migration, and that the constantly 
increasing number of emigrants 
(mostly adults) from Bihar and the 
United Provinces to Bengal Proper 
has caused an artificial reduction 
in the proportion borne by children 
to the total population in the latter 
tract, and a corresponding increase in Bihar. It must also be remembered that 
variations in the proportion borne by children to the total population depend 
not only on the changes m the birth-rate, but also on the deaths which occur. 
If, owing to the prevalence of epidemics or general unhealthiness, the mortality 
amongst adults is high, the proportion of children will be greater even though 
the number of births remains the same as before. On the other hand a general 
increase in the longevity of the people due to an improvement in their material 
condition would tend to reduce the proportion which children bear to the 
total population. Similarly, if there are any causes of mortality speciallv 
afEectmg the life of children, the proportion of the latter will be reduced 
accordingly. 

«. ^^7-. I* ^ ^ery difficult to ascertain how far the proportions have been 
affected in dilterent parts of the Province by considerations such as these • 
but taking the figures as they stand it may be observed that, as compared with 
1881 there has been a shght increase in the proportion of children in East, 
West and North Bengal, but that the gain in these directions has been more 
than counterbalanced by a decline in all other parts of the Province esoeciallv 
in Orissa, South Bihar and the Chota Nagpur Plateau. The increase in West 
Bengal would have been more marked but for the growth of the immigrant popu 
lation. The greater number of immigrants is also mainly responsible fo? the 
smaller proportion of children now recorded in Central Bengal. The derlinp ?n 
Orissa may be ascribed to the fact that, in 1881, this tract was recovering hZ 
the great famine of 1 866 «..., its population was growing at a specially rapid raS 
and the proportion of children was, therefore, exceptionally hi^h * The nonnU 
tion has now regained Its normal condition, and the proportion of children has 
fallen accordingly. The decrease in Bihar admits of no such sa iSfl^ 
explanation and the actual falling oft is greater than would ap^LrwS 
Srs%oXl'alSi-.'° ""'' ^"-^-*b^ growing volume o^emigrarontf 

Of all the Bihar districts Darbhanga alone shows a slight increase whil. 
the decline IS most marked m the districts south of the GaLes and In'p^ 

either alow.; birth-rate between 1891 and l^l\Ct,^^'l?^,^^^^ ^ 
or the mortality amongst children of this age must have been greater in th« 
present decade than in the previous one. The possible causes of moJ?ni?^ 
amongst children which were present in the decade 1891 -iQni ^Ta ™^^*^'i*y 
the previous one are plague an^d famine. It doL not aL^^^ 
any special tendency to attack children • whila if fl,/* • P'ague has 

it VoSd follow tha[ the 31^^07 Utd' be K^lt6T'irS*!-"rf. 



LOCAL VAEIATIONS IN BIETH-EATE. 317 



398. A fall ia the birth-rate is a phenomenon with which European 

Statisticians are well acquainted. In France it 
^^Ci^sisop.ALL iNiHEBiETH- j^^g diminished to such an extent that in ,1899 

the deaths exceeded the births in half the 
departments, and the birth-rate, which in 1851 was only 26 per mille, has 
declined since then by 15 per cent. In England also the birth-rate has been 
steadily falling. The causes usually assigned for these results in Europe 
are — first, a postponement of marriage and a larger degree of celibacy and, 
secondly, the deliberate and voluntary avoidance of child-bearing on the part 
of a steadily increasing number of married ]people. To the above, it would be 
thought, might be added for India the gradual spread of the prejudice against 
the remarriage of widows, but as a matter of fact, in Bengal at least, widows 
remarry more freely now than they did even ten years ago. The prejudice 
against this practice is spreading amongst a few castes or sub-castes which are 
endeavouring to obtain a higher social position : but their number is small com- 
pared with that of the Muhammadan community, which is not only increasing 
more rapidly than the total population of the Province, but is also, in response 
to the preaching of the Maulavis, gradually divesting itself of the prejudices 
against widow marriage which it had imbibed from the Hindus. In the 
Province, as a whole, the proportion of widows to 1000 females aged 15 to 40 
has fallen from 165 in 1881 and 154 in 1891 to 149 at the present Census. 
On the other hand, although the proportion of married women is no smaller 
than it was ten years ago, there has been a slight tendency to postpone the 
age of marriage. The proportion of married females under 10 is the same as 
before, but there has been a slight decline in the proportion of females who 
are married between the ages of 10 and 20. Between the ages 20 and 40 the 
proportion has remained unaltered, while that at the higher ages ias risen. 
In Bihar the results are different from those in the rest of the Province. The 
general proportion of married women is the same as in 1891, but while infant 
marriage has become more common, there has been a diminution in the 
proportion of married women at the child-bearing ages. The falling-oS is 
very marked in Saran and Champaran, especially in the former district. 

399. The postponement of the age of marriage, however, can not 
wholly account for the diminished rate of reproduction. The deliberate 
avoidance of child-bearing must also be partly responsible. It has more 
than once been pointed out by Settlement Officers that the size of a landless 
labourer's family is smaller than that of a cultivator,* and there seems 
to be no reason why this should be the case unless preventive checks of 
some sort were employed. Mal-nutrition would account for the diminished 
fecundity of the labouring classes in years of famine or great scarcity, but 
this by itself would, as a rule, merely postpone conception. A low birth-rate 
immediately after a famine is usually followed by a period in which the number 
of births is exceptionally great, ajid there is no reason to suppose that in 
ordinary years the conditions under which the labouring classes live are un- 
favourable to child-bearing. Moreover, the phenomenon is not confined to the 
labourers. Mr, Stevenson-Moore finds that amongst cultivators also the 
size of the family varies with the size of the holding.f It is a matter of 
common belief that amongst the tea-garden coolies of Assam means are 
frequently taken to prevent conception, _or to procure abortion ; and if so, it is 
not by any means improbable that the poorer classes in Bihar should adopt 
similar measures to avoid the embarrassment of a large family. Regarding the 
actual means by which the number of children is kept down I have no informa- 
tion, but it may be noted that in the districts where there has been a falling off 
in the proportion of children, the decrease in the number of females is somewhat 
greater than that in the number of males. 

4C0. The proportion of children to the number of married females aged 

15 to 40 is highest in Chota Nagpur and next highest 
Eblative pbcttnditt in dif- j^ East and North Bengal ; then follows Central 

Orissa, and, last of all, South Bihar. In North Bengal the population is not 
growing very rapidly, and the large proportion of children seems, therefore, to 

* Muzaffarpur Settlement Beport, page 364, and Eeport on Material Condition of small Agrioui- 
■turists and Labourers in the Ga.ya District, page 17. 
f Op Cit>, page 23, 

E B 



218 



CHAPTER V — AGE. 



be due to a great extent to the comparatively short duration of life enjoyed 
by the people in that part of the Province. Many of the North Bengal 
districts are very unhealthy and the mortality is high. In one tract, as 
we have already seen, the average death-rate during the last decade wsls 59-8 
per mille, while in one year it reached the appalling figure of 71 per 1,000.* 
In Orissa, on the other hand, in spite of the low proportion of children, the 
population has grown by more than the provincial average, and it may, 
therefore, be concluded that the people in that Division enjoy a longer span of 
life than those in many other parts of the Province. 

401. Turning to the proportion of children amongst the different religions, 

we notice that it is highest amongst