|Sen Thakuri Kings of this principality trace their origin to a place called Bansi. They had rulers of Paiyun with the support of Khan Shahi. This indicates that the Sens were relatives of the Khan Shahi kings.
This tiny principality was thrice defeated by Gorkha. In the first battle, which took place on Jestha 31, 1828 Vikrama, the Gorkhali troops occupied Bhirkot, Garhaunkot and Paiyun. The second battle was fought in 1840 Vikrama. in this battle, troops commanded by Naru Shah occupied Syangja, Nuwakot and then defeated Paiyun as well in the Dhuwakot battle. The defeated Paiyun troops joined the Parbat army when it took up a position at Tanahu on the Dahare mountain. Gorkhali troops then quit Paiyun and advanced toward Nuwakot. They left Nuwakot as well when the battle of Makaidanda was about to start and headed toward Lamjung in six columns. Paiyun then became independent again. The third battle was fought on Ashadh 2, 1842 Vikrama. in that battle, Dalajit Shah fought against the troops of Nuwakot and came out victorious. Gorkhali troops did not have to fight any more battles against the Chaubise principalities situated to the west of the Kali-Gandaki river. But on Ashadh 16, 1842 Vikrama, Gorkhali troops entered Garhaunkot and two days later moved into Paiyun. The last ruler of Paiyun went to his gunpowder store at night along with a servant and committed suicide by setting fire to it.
In 1842 Vikrama, the Gorkhali forces assembled in Pokhara leaving behind the troops to look after the newly-conquered territories. Kaski and Nuwakot had not yet got tired of fighting the Gorkhalis. Moreover, there was the possibility of Siddhi Narayana Shahi instigating
Parbat and invading Kaski. Bahadur Shah, therefore, made military preparations in Pokhara, where he had deployed troops under the command of Dalajit Shah and Naru Shah. He kept Balabhadra Shah in Gorkha. He had learnt a good lesson from the mistake he had committed in the battles of Sataun, Shirbari, Tanhaun and Jymruk.
13. Palpa was the leading principality of the sen Kings. It has had mush wellknown Kings as Rudra Sen and Muni Mukunda. Had Lohanga Sen concentrated his might on Nepal Valley, instead of the eastern Kirat region, he could well have become King of the whole of Nepal. Muni Kukunda thus wasted a considerable part of his strength.
Palpa from the time of Rundra Sen, and Parbat from the time of Dilipa or Dirupa Shahi, had become the most powerful among the Baise and Chaubise principalities. Palpa comprised extensive areas in the Tarai region, hence it was prosperous. Parbat too was prosperous because of its mines and its trade with Tibet. Palpa had a warm climate, while Parbat was a cold region. The troops of Parbat were, therefore, sturdy. Soldiers were tehn required to be of strong physique, shift and bold, since the principal weapons used in war were swords and shields.
King Narabhupala Shah had married Kaushalyavati, daughter of Kamaraja Sen, who was Crown Prince of Palpa at that time. Prithvi Narayan Shah was her son. King Pratapa Simha and Bahadur Shah had married the daughters of Mukunda Sen II.
Prithvi Pala, the last Sen King, placed the crown on the head of Girvanayuddha Vikrama Shah on Falgun 27, 1855 Vikrama. On Chaitra 23, 1861 Vikrama, however, Prithvipala was imprisoned at the Patan palace. Two days later, Amara Simha Thapa and Dalabhanjan Pande were sent to occupy Palpa. King Prithvipala was executed during the massacre of Baisakh 20, 1863 Vikrama after the assassination of King Rana Bahadur Shah.
14. Gulmi was a rich principality comprising areas both to the east and the west of Badigaun. Thakuris belonging to the Simha dynasty who ruled Gulmi aso ruled Isma and Musikot. The Thakuri rulers found it hard to find suitable matches to keep their dynasyt pur, hence they used to visit India to look for brides. For this reason too, the Thakuris seized the principalities under Magar rulers and set up their own nephews and sons-in-law as rulers.
Queen Rajendra Laxmi died on Shrawan 2, 1842 Vikrama. Bahadur Shah was thereafter free to conduct the war as he liked. He gradually developed into a mature leader. On Magh 10, 1842 Vikrama, when he was 28 years of age, he married the youngest sister of King Mahadatta Sen of Palpa in a simple ceremony. A secret agreement was then singed between Gorkha and Palpa, under which the letter promised not to intervene if Gorkha invaded areas west of the Kali river in teturn for a share of the conquered territories.
The sacred-thread-investiture ceremony of King Rana Bahadur Shah was solemnized in the month of Magh 1842 Vikrama after Bahadur Shah returned to Gorkha from Palpa. The Pajani of that year was completed in Gorkha. All persons who had previously gone into exile voluntarily or otherwise, or had been dismissed from service, were reinstated in some post or other. On Shrawan 11, the day when Bahadur Shah wa proclaimed as Regent (Nayab), he won popularity by abolishing the tax of one rupee traditionally levied on on each loom. After pleasing all Jagirdars in the course of the Pajani, Bahadur Shah started his campaign of territorial conquest in the west.
On the auspicious day of Chaite Dashain, Gorkhali troops were sent to conquer the Chaubise principalities across the Kali river under the command of Jiva Shahi, Kaji Shiva Narayan Khatri, Sardar Amar Simha Rana, Sardar Parath Bhandari and Subba Yoga Narayan Malla. The Gorkhali troops led by Kaji Jiva Shah assembled at Karkikot in Garhaun. On Jestha 10, 1843 Vikrama, the Gorkhali troops crossed the Kali-Gandaki river at Ridighat and entered into the territory of Gulmi. The same night, the King of Gulmi fled. On Jestha 11, Gulmi was taken over by Gorkha. The troops of Gulmi stationed in Resunga and Ajunga, were repulsed by Gorkha.
15. Malla Shahi Thakuris ruled in Argha. The same dynasty ruled over Khanchi and Dhurkot also. There was a sacrificial post in Argha, where the King had to offer blood in an argha (vessel) on the auspicious day of Bada Dashain and Chaite Dashain. People believe that this was the reason why the kingdom was called Argha.
After spending nearly 3 months in Gulmi, the Gorkhali troops moved towards Argha on Bhadra 25. Argha was conquered the next day. Troops from Parbat had been stationed at Tosh in Argha. The King of Argha fled to that place. The Parbat troops moved toward Argha to fight the Gorkhalis. A fierce battle took place between the two sides, and Gorkha became victorious. Argha then become a part of Gorkha.
16. Khanchi also was ruled by the Malla Shahis. There was a Magar principality called Balhayang to the south of Khanchi and west of Palpa. During the rule of King Ambara Sen of Palpa, the three Kingdoms, Palpa, Gulmi and Khanchi, had unitedly conquered Balhdyang and divided it among themselves. A small part was given to a Karki Brahman who had helped them during that campaign. That part was later known as Udayapur. On Bhadra 27, the King of Khanchi fled following the conquest of Argha by the Gorkhalis. The Gorkhalis occupied Khanchi the next day. Subba Yoga Narayana Malla was stationed there and the Gorkhali troops led by Jiva Shah moved ahead. In the meantime, Ambara Simha Rana occupied Chandrakot. Thus in the month of Bhadra, Argha, Khanchi and Gulmi were taken over by Gorkha.
(To be continued)
Kumarichok Employees, 1832
On Bhadra Badi 1, 1889 Vikrama (September 1832) Sardar Ganja Singh was appointed chief of the Kumarichok with 2 bicharis, 2 khardar, and 1tahaluwa (attendant) under him. Their salaries and perquisites were as follows:-
Bichari Khardar Tahaluwa
(Khangi) Rs 45 Rs 200 Rs 40
festival Rs 30 Rs 9 Rs 8
festival Rs 30 Rs 8 Rs 7
Winter Rs 30 Rs 8 Rs 7
Total Rs 540 Rs 225 Rs 62
The employees were expected to raise their salaries from the fines and other payments they collected in the course of the discharge of their official functions. No separate allocation was made from the central treasury for that purpose.
In addition, these employees were entitiled to a 10 percent share in the fines and other payments collected while disposing of caste filed at the Kumarichok. Similarly, income from the beri and karpan fees was divided into three parts and appropriated by the Sardar and the two bicharis.
Regmi Research Collection, vol. 27, pp. 158-59.
According to Brian H. Hodgson, the beri fee was collected at the rate of one rupee each from both the plaintiff and the defendant. The karpan fee was similarly paid at the rate of five rupees each by either party.
(Brain H. Hodgson: ''Some Account of the Systems of Law and Police as recognized in the State of Nepal.'' Journal of the Royal Asiaticd Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Vol. 9, 1839, p. 266).
Ban on Birta Grants
Royal order ot the Bhardars of the Sadar Dafdarkhana: ''For a ten-year period from Sunday, Falgun Badi 5, 1895 Vikrama (March 1839), lands shall not be actually allotted to anybody who may receive a Birta grant. Instead, payment shall be made in cash in consideration of ritual Birta grants at the rate of Mohar Rs 500 in the case of the [no]. Priest, and Paisa Rs 500 in the case of other recipients, for each 100 muris (i.e. 1 khet).
Falgun Badi 4. 1895.
(Continued from the July 1979 issue)
32. If any man of above the age of twelve years belonging to any of the five castes, and thirty-six sub-castes in guilty of sexual intercourse with a woman belonging to a caste contamination from whose toch must be purified through the sprinkling of water, or to a caste water touched by whom cannot be taken by persons belonging to high castes, or of incest with a hadnata relatives, or has taken forbidden food, or is guilty of homesexuality, and if the guilt remains secret, and the man subsequently marries as girl belonging to an appropriate caste, and the guilt is thereafter revealed, the woman whom he has married shall be granted a writ patiya in respect to cooked rice and water if she stipulates that she will not live with the man and not take cooked rice and water from his hands, and if she has not been made pregnant by him. if she is pregnant, she shall be granted a writ of patiya in respect to water only. If the mother has been granted a writ of patiya in this manner water may be taken from the hands of her children as well. If the woman is later guilty of sexual intercourse with another man, the husband shall not be entitled to kill the lower. If he does do, life shall be taken for life.
33. If any person belonging to a sacred-thread-wearing caste willfully takes cooked rice and pulse from the hands of a person belonging to a low caste cooked rice and touched by whom cannot be taken, or from a kitchen which has been polluted by contact with such a persons, he shall not be entitled to patiya, which shall not, therefore, be granted to him. however, this provision shall not be applicable in the case of rice cooked in milk (khir). If he takes cooked rice and pulse from the hands of a person belonging to low caste cooked rice touched by whom cannot be taken, or from a kitchen which has been polluted by contact with a such a person, and if he willfully lets his caste members take cooked rice from his hands, his share of the ancestral property shall be confiscated according to the law, and he shall be degraded to the cate of the person from whose hands he has taken cooked rice. He shall not be granted patiya in respect to cooked rice.
34. If any person belonging to a sacred-thread-wearing caste other than Upadhyaya Brahman, or to a liquor-drinking caste, has taken a his wife a girl of equivalent caste from whose hands he can take cooked rice, then, after the girl is initiated into the diksha in the case of those families where such initiation has been customary, the man who has taken her as his wife, and his relatives, shall be under obligation to take cooked rice from her hands. If they do not so, and a complaint is therefore filed with any government office, court, or local body, it shall impose a fine of Rs 10 each on such persons, and force them to take cooked rice from the hands of the girld. However, relatives shall not be under any obligation to take cooked
rice from the hands of a widow or married woman, who has been taken as a wife, even if she is of equivalent caste from whose hands cooked rice can be taken, if they do not want to do so. while subdividing property, if a properly married wife gets a three-fifth share, such a wife shall get only a two-fifth share.
35. Sacred-thread-wearing caste, including Brahman, or to any liquor-drinking caste which is customarily invested with the diksha, shall be initiated with the mantra by their preceptors and recite such mantra ritually, according to the procedure followed from the time of their ancestors. If they do not do so, and, instead, follow the Buddhist path, or atheism, or the Jhanna-Panna doctrine, they shall be punished with a fine of Rs 500. if they have been cooked rice from the hands of a member of the Jhanna-Panna sect, and have allowed others to take cooked rice from their own hands without any knowledge of their guilt, their share of the ancestral property shall be confiscated according to the law. They shall also be deprived of their sacred thread and degraded to a lower caste.
36. A householder (grihastha) belonging to the Brahman or Rajput caste, or to any sacred-thread-wearing Chhetri caste, shall not be invesed with the diksha mantra by a preceptor belonging to the Sanyasi, Bairagi, Nanak, Kanphatta-Jogi, Jangam, Sewada or any ascetic sect who has renounced the life of a householder. If he does so, he shall be punished with a fine of Rs 50. If he has taken cooked rice from the hands of such a preceptor, and has allowed others to taken cooked rice from his own hands without any knowledge of his guilt, he shall be punished according to the law relating to the taking of cooked rice from the hands of an unauthorized person. If any person, man or woman, who is not living the life of a householder, receives the diksha mantra from a preceptor who belongs to any ascetic sect, no offense shall be deemed to have been committed.
37. If a person who is not entitled to wear the sacred thread falsely claims ot belong to a high caste and wears the sacred thread while living in his own country or while staying abroad, and allows other persons to take cooked rice from his hands without any knowledge of his guilt, then, if he belongs to a caste which cannot be enslaved, his share of the ancestral property and wedding expenses shall be confiscated. His sacred thread shall be taken away from him, and he shall be imprisoned for a term of one year. If he belongs to a caste which can to enslaved, the sacred thread shall be taken away from him and he shall be enslaved. Any person (who takes cooked rice from his hands without any knowledge of his guilt) shall be grnated a writ of patiya. If he has remained inside the country, and has only worn the sacred thread and not let others
take cooked rice from his hands without any knowledge of his guilt, he shall be punished with a fine of Rs 60. If he wears the sacred thread while staying abroad, and subsequently comes back to the country, but has not let others take cooked rice from his hands without any knowledge of his guilt, he shall be punished with a fine of Rs 20. If he does not pay the fine, he shall be imprisoned at the rate of one month for every Rs 5 of the fine.
38. If any person has committed sexual intercourse with a woman belonging to any caste from whose hands high-caste people cannot take water, and contamination from whose touch nned not be purified through the sprinkling of water, such a Nussalman, Mleccha, Kushle, Kasai, Kalwar, Dhobi and Kulu, but has not taken water from her hands, and if the same person subsequently commits sexual intercourse with wife, children born of such wife, if any, shall be purified through a writ of patiya granted to the father.
39. If any person belonging to a sacred-thread-wearing caste is guilty of sexual intercourse with a hadnata or other relative, and is, therefore, degreded to a Shudra caste which cannot be enslaved, children born to him thereafter shall not be entitled to wear the sacred thread. They shall belong to a Shudra caste which cannot be enslaved. However, high caste people may take water from their hands.
40. A person belonging to any sacred-thread-wearing caste other than Brahman may wash the feet of a daughter born to him of a girl or widow of equivalent caste status whom he has taken as a wife, and drink the water used for that purpose. such a person shall not be deemed to have committed any offense if he washes the hands of a daughter born to him of a wife from whose hands he cannot take cooked rice or other food, and drinks the water used for that purpose. however, if he has washed the feet of such a daughter and taken the water used for that purpose, he shall be punished with a fine of Rs 2½, and made to undergo expiation on payment of a fee if eight annas. If any such persons washes the feet of a daughter born to him of a prostitute belonging to a sacred-thread-wearing caste or a liquor-drinking caste, or of a woman from whose hands he can take water, irrespective of whether she belongs to a caste which can be enslaved or not, and drinks the water used for that purpose, he shall be punished with a fine of Rs 5 and granted a writ of patiya on payment of a godan fee amounting to one rupee.
41. Friends and relatives any only wash the hands of the bride and the bridegroom during the wedding of a girl born to a man of Upadhyaya Brahman caste of a widow of the same caste, or a girl or widow of any other sacred-thread-wearing caste, who has been taken as a wife or without the rites of marriage. If such friends and relatives only wash the hands of the bride and bridegroom, and drink the water used for
that purpose, they shall not be deemed to have committed any offense. If, however, they wash the feet, and drink the water used for that purpose, they shall be punished with a fine of Rs 2½ each and made to undergo expiation on payment of a godan fee of eight annas. If they have washed the feet of the bride and the bridegroom, and taken the water used for that purpose, during the wedding of a girl born (to an Upadhyaya Brahman) of a prostitute belonging to a sacred-thread-wearing or liquor-drinking caste, or of a woman from whose hands he can take water, irrespective of whether she belongs to a caste which can be enslaved or not, they shall be punished with a fine of Rs 5 each and made to undergo expiation on payment of a godan fee of one rupee.
(To be continued)
Ban on Cow Slaughter, 1809
The following regulations, which are promulgated in December 1809 for enforcement from the Tamakosi river to the Tista river in the eastern hill region, illustrate the policy followed by the government of Nepal on cow slaughter during the early years of the nineteenth century1:
1. In the month of Falgun 1860 (February-March 1804), legislation had been enacted whch prescribed that any person who slaughtered cows in our kingdom should be punished with death, and his accomplices with fines. In case any person has contravened the ban and slaughtered cows, but not yaks and jhopas, after that death, a confession of his guilt shall be obtained from him. Such a person is a heinous criminal. He shall be dispatched to the royal court in fetters.
2. Confessions shall be obtained from persons who are accomplices in the crime of cow slaughter. They shall be punished with a fine fifty rupees if they are guilty of the second degreeof the crime as accomplices, of thirty-five rupees if they are guilty of the third degree of the crime and shared the meat, and of twenty rupees if they are guilty of the fourth degree of the crime and willfully suppressed information about it.
3. Any person who confesses that he has taken away cows or oxen from our country for sale at places where thy are slaughtered shall be punished with a fine of three rupees for each household.
4. In case any amali has collected fines from persons guilty of cow slaughter, and appropriated the proceeds, a confession shall be obtained from him regarding the period for which he has done so, and a fine of double the amount which he has thus appropriated shall be collected from him.
5. Among the Limbu community living in areas across the Arun river, a married woman is retained at the home of her parents, instead of being sent to her husband's house. Her maternal relatives then sell children born to her through another man claiming that they are slaves. However, such children are free persons, and their maternal relatives shall not be entitled to sell them as slaves and appropriated the proceeds. In case a complaint is received in such matters, obtain a confession in the presence of the complainant and impose fines on the sellers. Such children cannot be enslaved, but shall be restored to the status of free persons (Praja).
6. In case a complaint is received that any Limbu has suppressed information and recorded false particulars while officials were sent in the year 1862 Vikrama to comple records of lands and homesteads, obtain a confession in the presence of the complainant, and impose fines on the guilty person.
7. The salaries of the officials employed for this purpose shall be as follows:-
3 Tahasildars (collectors) - Rs 180.
1 Tahahildars (cashier) - Rs 50.
2 Bahidar (clerk) - Rs 50.
6 Peons (pyada) - Rs 120.
Many castes and communities in the hill regions, although not gulty of slaughtering cows, customarily ate the flesh of dead cattle, or sino. These castes and communities included Bhote, Rai, Majhi, Murmi2, Gurung3, Chepang, Sunuwar, Hayu, Paheri, Baramu, and Thansi4.
Initially, the practice of sino-eating was banned along with cow slaughter and fines were imposed on each households of sino-eating castes and communities. According to a petition from Pyuthan5:
In the Western parts of the Kingdom, people belonging to our caste are still taking the flesh of dead cattle. However, in Pyuthan Kaji Rewanta Kunwar banned this practice and imposed a fine of Rs. 1½ on each sino-eating household. (Subsequently), Subedar Ratan Singh Thapa collected eight annas from each such household. The total payment due from 3,000 sino-eating households in Pyuthan thus amounts to Rs 1,500.
The sino-eating people of Pyuthan, therefore, offered to pay two annas every year from each household in lieu of hides required by the government factory and a Salami fee on a one-time basis if they were allowed to continue following the customary practice of sino-eating.
The government appears to have realized the impracticability of attempts to abolish such a widespread practice. It also possibly realized that sino-eating could not be regarded as a crime of the same native was cow slaughter. A royal order was, therefore, issued in July 1810 lifting the ban on sino-eating in Pyuthan. At the same time, the order warned that cow slaughter would not be permitted under any circumstances, and that the inhabitants of villages where such a crime was committed might be collectively punished with a death or enslavement.6
1. ''Regulations in the Name of Sheoraj, Kashiram, and Rishi Padhya for the Tamakosi-Tista Region,'' Poush Badi 9, 1866 (December 1809). Regmi Research Collection, vol. 40, pp. 165-68.
2. ''Royal Order Regarding Supply of Hides and Skins from the Sanga/Sindhu-Dudhkosi/Bahadura Region,'' Ashadh Badi 4, 1874. (June 1817). RRC, vol. 43, pp. 6, 7.