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'Report of Khan Bahadur Maula Bakhsh, Attaché to the Agent to the Governor General of India and Her Britannic Majesty's Consul-General for Khurasan and Sistan, on His Journey from Meshed to Quetta via Turbat-i-Haidari, Kain, Sistan, Kuh-i-Malik Siah and Nushki (7th April to 28th July 1898)' [‎29r] (62/156)

The record is made up of 1 volume (74 folios). It was created in 1898. It was written in English. The original is part of the British Library: India Office The department of the British Government to which the Government of India reported between 1858 and 1947. The successor to the Court of Directors. Records and Private Papers Documents collected in a private capacity. .

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ON HIS JOURNEY FROM MESHED TO QUETTA, 1898.
35
promised to replace the Persian Agents by Russian subjects. This led to a
proposal being submitted to the Russian Government by the Russian Consul-
General at Meshed, which was supported by the Russian Minister at Teherdn,
for the appointment of Russian-speaking Muhammadan subjects of Russia as
recognised Consular Agents inKainand Sistan with full Consular powers, but
the proposal was vetoed by the Russian Government. Therefore the Russian
Minister was unable to fulfil his promise to the Persian Government. The latter,
however, forgot all about the matter in course of time, and the question was
dropped. Consequently Rahim Khan and Haji Agha continued in their offices.
The local Chiefs finding that their efforts to get the Russian Agencies abo
lished, or at least to get the mischievous Persian Agents replaced by Russian
subjects who, they were of opinion, would not be capable of intriguing
against them on account of their being foreigners gave up their attempts and
became reconciled to the situation. They, however, continued to ignore the
the Agents and sometimes they went so far as to persecute them (the Russian
News-Agents) by taking up claims of Persian subjects against them and forc
ing them to settle the same without any reference to the Russian Consulate-
General.
In short, the positions of the Russian Agents were made very difficult and
unpleasant for them and they lived in mortal terror of the Chiefs and never
felt their positions secure or even their lives safe. This state of affairs greatly
hampered them in their work, and being unable to obtain intelligence or to
collect statistics, they failed to perform their duties properly. They reported
all sorts of gossip which reached their ears without testing its accuracy. The
Sistan Agent often sent alarming reports based either on hearsay or the
imagination of designing parties in Sistan, which caused some anxiety to the
Russian representatives at Meshed and Teheran. For instance, he reported in
1895 that the British Government were engaged in building large towns, forts,
and cantonments at Taraku, Kundar, and Hauzdar. The Russian Consul-
General so strongly suspected that there was some foundation for this report
that through the Russian Legation at Teheran he caused orders to be issued by
the Persian Government to the Governor-General of Khurasan, directing him
to depute the Chief Engineer of Khurasan (the late Mir Panj Mirza Muham
mad Ali Khan) to visit those places personally, and submit a report as soon as
possible. Accordingly the Chief Engineer was sent off in mid-winter. The
trip knocked him up completely; he contracted diseases of the lungs and chest
through the effects of which he succumbed a few months after his return to
Meshed, after a protracted illness. Thus the fool’s errand on which the poor old
man, was sent cost him his life, while the Persian’Government were by his mission
put to unnecessary trouble and expense, and the Russian Legation to some
humiliation, on being told that there was not the slightest foundation for the
report to which they had attached so much importance. Other news reported
as gospel truth by the Russian Agents in Kain and Sistan were similarly found
to be untrue.
The consequence was that the Russian Consul-General lost all confidence
in them; and Lector Miladcbewsky, the Russian Doctor who visited Kain and
Sistan in 1897 in connection with plague, was instructed to report on both the
Kain and Sistan Agencies. His reports were very unfavourable to the Agents.
He pointed out to the Russian Consul-General at Meshed that both Haji Agha
and Rahim Khan were incompetent, useless men with no real local influence
whatever, and that, therefore, they were not fit for the posts they held.
Mirza Rahim Khan Marvi, the Russian News-Agent in Sistan, having
latterly contracted intimate friendship with Allahyar Khan, Pishkar of Sistan,
and other minor officials, such as Tax-collectors, Tahsildars, etc., had acquire
some influence which helped him to intrigue against British interests, persecu e
caravans proceeding towards Quetta and obstruct British officers (Lieutenan
Webb-Ware and Surgeon Brazier-Creagh) visiting. Sistan, but Doctor Mu a -
chewsky (having got into trouble over a woman visiting his quarters nl j
during his stay in Sistan and having, in consequence, been compelled by t ie
leading priest to clear out of the country as soon as possible in which ma er
the Russian Agent could not help him) gave him no credit for these sen ices.

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Content

Report by Khan Bahadur Maula Bakhsh on his journey from Meshed to Quetta in 1898. The report starts with a description of the circumstances that gave rise to the journey and the preparations before departure (folios 12-17). The main body of the report consists of his account of the journey, written in diary form (folios 17-66). The last part of the report is formed of tables of data gathered during the journey (folios 67-72). The report contains information on distances, water, supplies, trade, human and physical geography, road conditions, and revenues.

Extent and format
1 volume (74 folios)
Arrangement

At the beginning of the volume is a table of contents arranged by subject with reference to the paragraph number.

Physical characteristics

Foliation: the foliation sequence (used for referencing) commences at the front cover with 1, and terminates at the inside back cover with 76; these numbers are written in pencil, are circled, and are located in the top right corner of the recto The front of a sheet of paper or leaf, often abbreviated to 'r'. side of each folio.

Pagination: the file also contains an original printed pagination sequence.

Written in
English in Latin script
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'Report of Khan Bahadur Maula Bakhsh, Attaché to the Agent to the Governor General of India and Her Britannic Majesty's Consul-General for Khurasan and Sistan, on His Journey from Meshed to Quetta via Turbat-i-Haidari, Kain, Sistan, Kuh-i-Malik Siah and Nushki (7th April to 28th July 1898)' [‎29r] (62/156), British Library: India Office Records and Private Papers, Mss Eur F111/363, in Qatar Digital Library <https://www.qdl.qa/archive/81055/vdc_100060432561.0x00003f> [accessed 23 April 2024]

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