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which supported and defended the enemy's right, with eleven guns. The British force amounted to about 5000 men, of all arms; and, after a desperate engagement — the particulars of which are given in the General's despatch the enemy was completely defeated, with great loss, and their leader, Shir Mahomed, fled to the desert.
The forts of
Omarkót and Mirpúr were afterwards taken possession of by our troops without resistance; and thus, in two decisive and fiercely-contested actions, wherein the Amirs of Sindh were supported by their greatest military strength, a complete victory crowned the British arms, though with considerable loss in men and officers. The behaviour of the General and his gallant bands on these occasions has excited the admiration of all; and a sterling proof has been elicited of the unflinching constancy
and gallantry of the native troops of India, if ably led and stimulated by example. Whilst paying this passing tribute to the bravery of our own forces, let us not omit the notice due to the devotion and gallantry of the "brave Bilúchis," as Sir Charles Napier generously and honourably calls them. The proofs can no longer be wanting that they fought as men fighting for interests dearer to them than life; those who fell sealing their devotion to their chiefs with their blood, and, what is to be feared as a consequence, the survivors losing all that, in the East as elsewhere, renders life worth having-station in society, their long-cherished prescriptive rights, and the means of supporting themselves and families.
General Napier being appointed governor as well as military commander in Sindh, nominated various officers to the duty of collecting the revenue on and after the date of the battle of Miani, up to which arrears were not to be demanded; and Sindh, after the last engagement, was declared a "conquered country," and annexed to the British India possessions as such.
The fallen Amirs of Sindh, consisting of Mirs Nasir Khan, and his nephews, Mirs Shadad Khan and Hussein Allí Khan, Mir Mahomed, and Sobhdar, of Hyderabad, and Mirs Rústum Khan, and his nephews, Nasir Khan, and Wulli Mahomed Khan of Khyrpúr, with others, arrived at Bombay in her Majesty's sloop of war Nimrod, on the 19th
of April, and every consideration was shown to their altered fortunes, by the honourable governor and other authorities, one of the governor's residences being appropriated to their reception. A local journal describes their condition thus:-"The Amirs, being prisoners of state, are retained in strict seclusion; they are described as broken-hearted and miserable men, maintaining much of the dignity of fallen greatness, and without any querulous or angry complainings at this unalleviable source of sorrow, refusing to be comforted." It would be superfluous to add to this description. The Amirs of Sindh merit deep sympathy; and those even who were opposed to them in the stern shock of arms will yet acknowledge that their fate has been indeed a melancholy one.
Mir Allí Múrad may now profit by the attachment he has professed to British interests; but whether his own will long remain flourishing, or his adherence prove sincere, remains to be seen.
Remarks on the newly created Interest in Sindh. - Character of Government.-Reason of our First Connection with Sindh.
The Difficulties that attended our early Negotiation with the Amirs. Settlement of a British Agent in Sindh.— Settlement of a British Minister, and Abolishment of Imposts.— Proposed Cession of Shikarpúr. Desired Advance of Commercial Interest. The real Position of the Population under the Government of the Amirs.-Probable Feelings excited among the Bilúchis. - Results likely to follow late Events.Physical Difficulties connected with the Military Occupation of Sindh. Position of Mir Allí Múrad. - General Observations.
THE late events which have occurred, to change altogether the aspect of affairs in Sindh, possess for the public generally a degree of interest which induces a retrospect of the past government of the country and its effects, as a means of being able to form something like a correct judgment of what will in all probability follow in due course upon the acts that have now taken place, and the position in which we as conquerors are placed.
Among the exciting interests which until a late period occupied public attention as connected with our position in, and withdrawal from, Affghanistan, Sindh was remembered only as a sort of depôt for the materiel of war, a base, as it were, for our military operations in advance. Since this time,
however, its aspect has widely altered: our grasp has been laid upon its rulers, and its warriors and its people have nominally become subjugated to British power; it will therefore be interesting to inquire what is likely to be the feelings now created.
The government of Sindh was of course a perfectly despotic one, no subject, of whatever rank or calling, daring to assume a right, in opposition to the supreme will of their rulers, the Amirs; and the result of this condition was, of course, impoverishment to the territory, misery to the poor, favouritism towards the unworthy, with ignorance, fear, and oppression to all. If an artisan worked cunningly and well, his labour was seized, by order of an admiring prince; if a banker amassed wealth, it was speedily found that the royal coffers were becoming low, and the man of wealth was commanded to replenish them. If the farmer's lands were fruitful, he was compelled to support the military retainers of the court; and thus was every species of energy crushed by the selfish and shortsighted character of the government. But Sindh differed little in this from all others, governed, as all semi-barbarous countries are, by despotism; and many of the evils under which the people laboured were as much the effects of their geographical position, and vicinity to the desert, as to the oppressions of the Amirs. From this remark it must be clearly understood that the idea intended to be