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with the rules regarding division of property between sons of twice-born fathers by wives of different castes, the general trend of which is to give the largest percentage to the son of a Brahmin woman, a little less to the son of a Kshatriya woman, still less to the son of a Vaisya woman and the least to the son of a Sudra woman. In cases of only sons, those born of wives belonging to the twice-born classes inherit the whole property, while the son by a Sudra wife gets only half the property. From the above, it will appear that the marriage of a higher caste woman with a man of a lower caste is discouraged in all possible ways if not actually prohibited. The Hon. Mr. Patel's Bill, so far as it relates to marriages between men of lower castes with women of higher castes, is in conflict with the ordinances laid down in the Smrithis. But Anuloma marriages (marriages of women of inferior caste with men of superior caste) is not against the ordinances, though owing to various causes they have fallen into disuse during several centuries. If Mr. Patel's Bill is to be confined to Anuloma marriages, it is a question for consideration whether the non-Brahmanas may not think it inconsistent with their self-respect to consent to legalisation of Anuloma marriages alone. Are the non-Brahmanas likely to be satisfied with the provisions in the Smrithis regarding the distributions of property?
If the Bill is passed into Law, the legitimacy of intercaste marriages may be assured. But the question of shares to properties will have to be regulated by the rules laid down in the Smrithis. If the rules in the Smrithis are not abrogated, no Pratiloma marriage may take place and the issue of such marriages as may take place may be as helpless as the issues of intercaste marriages are supposed to be at present. Thus without introducing a provision of equal status as regards property, the bill is not likely to prove an effectual measure in practice.
The question arises, whether the legislature will not be making inroads into the personal Law of the Hindus by attempting to over-ride the provisions in the Smrithis about division and devolution of property. No doubt, there is the precedent of the Convert's Disabilities Act. It may be said by the opponents of the bill that the Convert's Act stops merely with removing the bar which conversion placed in the way of inheriting property and did not pretend to place the convert within the society of Hindus, whereas the present bill aims at giving a status in society to persons born of unions which have fallen into disuse for a very long time. To justify a legislation which aims at not merely reviving ancient usuages but also to validate unions which are reprobated in the Smrithis, and which requires to make it effective that alterations should be made in the law of inheritance as laid down in the very Smrithis that allowed such marriages, the promoters of the bill ought to satisfy the public that the Hindu ideal of marriage will be kept up by the proposed Legislation.
MR. C. C. CHATTERJEE, M.A., B.SC. The child thro' time doth grow to man, God lends him grace; he lives a span; The smiles of childhood's years to scan The sighs of old age only can,
He finds his wishes far and near,
In sorrow's season he would smile;
He found the creeds were faithless faith,
THE HON. MR. G. F. KEATINGE, C.I.E.
N farming there are two fundamental units, the farm and the farmer, For agricultural progress it is necessary that the farm should be a fixed and permanent unit, so that it may admit of permanent improvement and adequate development, and that the farmer should be fluid and moveable unit, so that the right men may get to the right places. Speaking generally, we find, to our misfortune, that in India the exact reverse is the case, that the farm, on the one hand, is subject to a continuous series of economic earthquakes, and that the farmer, on the other hand, is fixed and rooted.
To turn first to the farm. So much has been said during the last few years on the subject of the sub-division and fragmentation of holdings, and the evil has been so generally recognised that I do not propose to go into the matter in any detail. No orderly development, no effective improvement can take place in a holding which is the wrong size and shape and which has no stability. The fact that this is true not only in theory but also in practice can be verified by Not anyone who will take the trouble to do so. only is the land totally undeveloped, as development is known in other countries, but the idea of progressive development is hardly understood by the landowners. To develop and improve a permanent 10 or 20 acre farm is an intelligible proposition; but to develop and improve a 10 or 20 acre farm which must in the near future. be split up and fragmented is not an intelligible proposition to anyone; and since this is the proposition which confronts farmer, it is not surprising that he does not consider it seriously. In this way, a low standard is set of agricultural methods and of agricultural
results, a serious obstruction to progress is sented, and there arises a generally uneconomic situation which tends to become worse rather than better.
Now let us turn to the farmer. The farmer owns his small and fluctuating area of land, it may be 15 acres of land in three plots of one generation, and 5 acres in 6 plots in the next generation. The point is that the farmer is fixed and permanent. His farm may fly into fragments and grow steadily smaller, but generally speaking he himself persists, whether he be a good, bad or indifferent farmer. In highly individualistic and competitive countries, efficiency is secured largely by the elimination of the unfit, who are squeezed out of the race by keen competition coupled by a high standard of living. This law is in constant operation in England, and there have been periods of agricultural depression there, when unprogressive farmers have been ruined and squeezed out wholesale, while on some kinds of soil it is recognised that a bad farmer cannot hope, even in prosperous times, to survive many seasons, In rural India, however, the competition is less keen, the standard of living lower and an easy-going tolerance, combined with an elastic joint family system, helps to tide the less effective members over their difficulties and to keep them in their places to the obstruction of the more effective members of the community. It is by no means contended that there are no good farmers, nor can it be expected anywhere that all farmers will reach a high degree of ex
cellence; all that is suggested is that, owing to the causes mentioned above, the proportion of bad and indifferent farmer is unduly large. And after all it is this proportion which counts; for
while we would term a country backward in agriculture in which only 10 per cent. of the farmers were good farmers, we would be able to class it as advanced in agriculture if 50 per cent. of the farmers were advanced and progressive,
We may then sum up the situation thus
The majority of the farms are of the wrong size and the wrong shape, they are not perma. nent units and are not susceptible of orderly and adequate improvement. The majority of the farmers are deficient in skill, industry and energy, and balance a low standard of endeavour by a low standard of living.
These are the fundamental obstructions to agricultural progress to which I have to refer. The question is how we are to overcome them. It is clear that what we have to do is to endeavour to create and maintain suitably sized and suitably situated holdings which will admit of adequate development, and to arrange that there shall be nothing to prevent these economic units from passing by natural laws into the hands of the most progressive farmers who will be in a position to make the best use of them. If we can do this, we can trust to the natural fertility of the soil and the natural industry of the farmers to secure the progress which we desire, aided by the scientific investigations which have been made and which will be made in future. But until we can do this, we shall not secure anything like the full results that we look for from our naturaf advantages or from our scientific labours.
Now what is it that prevents us from taking action of the nature indicated? Whenever any remedial action of this nature is suggested, it is always urged that the people have not asked for such action and do not want it, that such action would be opposed to their religion and to their sentiments, and that a shuffle of farms and of farmers would constitute a political danger, These aspects of the question must, of course, be
carefully considered. This is a country where religious and sentimental ideals count for much where political dangers must be given due weight. But there is also a persistent demand on the part of a section of the population for material progress. We have come to the parting of the ways, and India must decide which road wishes to take. You may set up a sentimental ideal, an aesthetic ideal, an ideal of voluntary poverty, or an ideal of political caution. Such ideals are quite intelligible. The trouble is that to a large extent they are not compatible with the ideal of material progress. All that I say is this, if the former ideals are chosen to the exclusion of the latter, let us stop all talk of rapid material progress, for we shall have deliberately refused to take the first steps that lead to it.From the Presidential address to the Agriculture and Applied Botany Section at the Indian Science Congress.
Indian Arts, Industries and Agriculture
Agricultural Industries in India. By Seedick Rr Sayani. With an introduction by Sir Vitaldas Damoda. Thackersey. Re. 1. To Subscribers of the Indian Review As. 12.
H. H. THE MAHARAJA OF MYSORE
SIR P. S. SIVASWAMI AIYAR
The first Convocation of the Benares Hindu University was held at the premises of the Central Hindu College on January