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our position in Sindh; and the remedy may possibly be looked for in the protection afforded by a large military force; but this also has evils in Sindh, and of a nature not to be overlooked.
The physical difficulties that Sindh presents to its becoming a station for the continued position of our troops are Excessive heat in the upper portions of the country, and in the lower, exhalations causing malaria as a productive source of fatal fever. For three months in the year communication between Sindh and Bombay is cut off, in consequence of the dangerous character of the surf and breakers along the coast during the south-west monsoon; therefore the immediate change which is required to save life, when threatened by violent attacks of fever, not being procurable, the sacrifice of existence would be consequently fearful. Without reference to the hitherto unsatisfactory climate of Karrachi, this last station is yet considered the only healthy one for European troops; beside this, there is none other which medical men allow to be at all calculated for their occupation; while the sepoys suffer equally, in all places except Sukkur, where the clearness of the atmosphere conduces much to health. Unfortunately, the points most likely to lie under the attacks of the Bilúchis are those most liable to unwholesome influences: these are Tattah, Hyderabad, Sehwun, and the intermediate points, where, in the hot season, troops could not be exposed
to service without certain sacrifice. The Bilúchis are quite aware of this, and would, no doubt, select this season for attack, knowing full well that neither could the troops, sepoy or European, be exposed to the powerful sun, nor dangerous malarias of Sindh; nor could reinforcements be sent to repair any ravages that sickness or death might make. Again, supposing it necessary to keep in Sindh a large military force in constant equipment for service, the camp followers would, of course, be limited, and the sepoys could never be induced to serve cheerfully for any length of time in a country to which they were unable to bring their wives and families. The sufferings and hardships of various kinds that the troops would undergo, in a country held only by the sword, against the perpetual inroads and harassing attacks of Bilúchi soldiery would dishearten them at length, and render the service unpopular; at the same time that the loss of life would draw heavily upon the service, and take from India more than could be well afforded. The great origin of the late excitement among the Bilúchi chiefs-for it is to them, and not to the Amirs, that we must look for the cause of the war-appears to have been the strong feeling created against us by the ceding certain privileges from Mir Rústum, the chief of Khyrpúr, to his brother, Mir Allí Múrad of Diji; an act which affected, in a greater or less degree, the rights and possessions of all the Bilúchi and Sindhian nobles. At present Mir Allí Múrad
is considered our grateful friend and warm ally; but as soon as he finds that our interests and his clash, which they must do, and his people and ours find cause for disagreement, or discovering that his expectations are not verified: becomes a doubtful ally or avowed enemy; Mir Allí Múrad will probably be reduced to the same position as that now occupied by the princes of Hyderabad.
The previous remarks lead, as will be seen, to the following conclusion, that in displacing the Talpúr government of Sindh we bring upon ourselves the necessity of a military occupation of the country for an indefinite period; and that instead of the result being an improvement of commerce and agriculture, with the general capabilities of the country, which are essentially the produce of peace, our expenses will be fearfully increased, our troops demoralised, and our position one of unmixed difficulty.
As all this will doubtless have been foreseen, from the long experience we have had of Sindh, with the countries on its borders, it may be anticipated, perhaps, that, having taught the Bilúchi chiefs, and their nominal head, the utter hopelessness of opposing our power, we may be able to afford the restoration of the princes of Sindh, constraining them to correct the abuses of their government, and to adopt all the means that we may dictate for the improvement of their country, and the civilisation of its people, controlling the chiefs,
who will then find their best interests consist in preserving peace and establishing marts on the Indus, which will foster and advance all the best interests of commerce, this having been from the beginning our ostensible motive for desiring power and influence in the country of Sindh.