(C) Statement showing the value of service postage stamps supplied annually free to States
S.no. Name of state Value (Rs.)
1 Alwar 30,000
2 Baroda 1,25,000
3 Bharatpur 12,000
4 Bhopal 8,380
5 Bikaner 37,000
6 Bushabr 600
7 Cooch Behar 9,000
8 Datia 5,000
9 Dhar 3,000
10 Faridkot 1,000
11 Gwalior 480
12 Idar 550
13 Indore 35,000
14 Jhalawar 2,400
15 Jubbal 250
16 Kalsia 450
17 Kashmir 20,000
18 Kotah 15,000
19 Loharu 300
20 Malerkotla 900
21 Mandi 700
22 Marwar 39,000
24 Sikkim 1,500
25 Sirmoor 1,275
26 Suket 700
(D) Statement showing the values of immunities granted annually to Indian States in the shape of free conveyance of their official correspondence within the State limits
Nmae of the state Value of the immunity Remarks
1) Mysore 21,38,182
2) Hyderabad 5,440 Combined figures for the portions of the State in the Madras and Bombay Circles
3) Banganapalle 365
4) Pudukottai 37,960
5) Baroda 14,705
6) Bhor 68
7) Jawahar 3,627
8) Bhopal 49,177
9) Rewah 1,72,380
(E) Statement showing the amounts of telephone revenue accruing in India on behalf of Indian States and vice versa
Amount of revenue accruing in India on behalf of States
1944-45 1945-46 1946-47 Rs. Rs. Rs.
1. Kashmir . . 1,912 3 0 2,731 3 0 1,646 13 0
2. Jammu Tawi . . 3,880 0 0 4,475 5 0 4,005 4 0
Amount of revenue accruing in India on behalf of States
1944-45 1945-46 1946-47
Rs. Rs. Rs.
1. Kashmir . . 1,702 5 0 2,375 1 0 1,187 7 0
2. Jammu Tawi . . 3,608 1 0 4,133 12 0 1,501 3 0
STATEMENT SHOWING REVENUE AND THE PERCENTAGE OF LAND CUSTOMS INCLUDED N THE REVENUE OF CERTAIN STATES
(In lakhs of Rupees)
Name of State Total Revenue (Ordinary) Land Customs Percentage Remarks
Hyderabad 943 124 13.2
Travancore 611 89 14.6
Kashmir 557 117 21.0
Gwalior 303 41 13.5
Jaipur 197 23 11.6
Baroda 434 20 4.6 Includes Sea Custmos, figures of which are not seperately available.
224 40 17.8
Udaipur (Mewar) 81 1 1.3
Indore 305 27 8.9
Bikaner 252 29 11.5
Alwar 90 44 48.9
Bhopal 124 20 16.1
Kotah 48 6 12.5
Tehri-Garhwal 23 4 17.4 Includes Excise also.
Bharatpur 65 23 35.4
Cutch 89 1 1.1
Patna 30 6 20.0
Sarjuga 17 5 29.4
Nawanagar 110 19 17.3 Includes Sea Customs, figures of which are not seperately available.
Tonk 34 11 32.3
Bundi 29 8 27.6
Sirohi 21 4 19.0
Dungarpur 22 8 36.4
Banswara 13 3 23.1
Partabgarh 8 3 37.5
Jhalawar 7 1 14.3
Jaisalmer 6 3
Shahpura 4 1 25.0
Danta 3 1 33.3
Paladpur 28 5 17.9
Idar 45 17 37.8
Balasinor 5 1 20.0
Lunawada 10 2 20.0
Sant 12 2 16.7
Chhota Udaipur 24 2 8.3
Radhanpur 23 4 17.4
Baria 18 1 5.6
Dewas (Junior) 23 4 17.4
Panna 10 1 10.0
Rattam 17 6 35.3
Alirajpur 6 1 16.7
Bijawar 7 1 14.3
Chhatarpur 4 2 40.0
Jaora 22 3 13.6
Rajgarh 12 1 8.3
Sailana 6 1 16.6
Jhabua 13 4 30.8
AMENDMENTS RECOMMENDED IN THE DRAFT CONSTITUTION
Provisions relating to procedure in financial matters
Clause 75. - To clause 75 add the following, namely:-
"(4) There shall be endorsed on every Money Bill when it is transmitted to the Council of States under Section 74, and when it is presented to the President for assent under section 76, the certificate of the Speaker of the House of the People signed by him that it is a Money Bill."
Clause 79. - In sub-clause (3) of clause 79, for thewords "succeeding section" substitute the words "twosucceeding sections".
New clause 80-A. - After clause 80, insert thefollowing new clause namely -
"80-A. Excess grants. - If in any financial yearexpenditure from the revenues of the Federation has beenincurred on any service for which the vote of the House of the People is necessary in excess of the amount granted forthat service and for that year, a demand for the excessshall be presented to the House of the People and theprovisions of sections 78 and 79 shall have effect inrelation to such demand as they have effect in relation to ademand for a grant."
Clause 145. - For sub-clause (1) of clause 145,substitute the following namely: -
"(1) Subject to the special provisions of this Part of this Constitution with respect to Money Bills, a Bill may originate in either House of the Legislature of a Province which has a Legislative Council.
(1a) Subject to the provisions of sections 146 and 146- A, a Bill shall not be deemed to have been passed by the Houses of the Legislature of a Province having a Legislative Council unless it has been agreed to by both Houses either without amendments or with such amendments only as are agreed to by both Houses."
Clause 146. - For clause 146, substitute the following,namely: -
"146. Passing of Bills other than Money Bills InProvinces having Legislative Councils. - (1) If a Bill whichhas been passed by the Legislative Assembly of a Provincehaving a Legislative Council and transmitted to theLegislative Council is not, before the expiration of twelvemonths from its reception by the Council, presented to theGovernor for his assent, the Governor may summon the Housesto meet in a joint sitting for the purpose of deliberatingand voting on the Bill:
Provided that nothing in this section shall apply to aMoney Bill.
(2) If at a joint sitting of the two Houses summoned inaccordance with the provisions of this section the Bill,with such amendments, if any, as are agreed to in jointsitting is passed by a majority of the total number ofmembers of both Houses present and voting, it shall bedeemed for the purposes of this Constitution to have beenpassed by both Houses:
Provided that at a joint sitting: -
(a) unless the Bill has been passed by the Legislative Council with amendments and returned to the Legislative Assembly, no amendments shall be proposed to the Bill other than such amendments, if any, as are made necessary by the delay in the passage of the Bill;
(b) if the Bill has been so passed and returned by the Legislative Council, only such amendments as aforesaid shall be proposed in the Bill and such other amendments as are relevant to the matters with respect to which the Houses have not agreed, and the decision of the person presiding as to the amendments which are admissible under this sub- section shall be final."
ew clauses 146-A and 146-B. - After clause 146, insertthe following clauses, namely: -
"146-A. Special provisions in respect of Money Bills. - (1) A Money Bill shall not be introduced in a LegislativeCouncil.
(2) After a Money Bill has been passed by theLegislative Assembly of a Province having a LegislativeCouncil it shall be transmitted to the legislative Councilfor its recommendations, and the Legislative Council shallwithin a period of thirty days from the date of its receiptof the Bill return the Bill to the Legislative Assembly withits
recommendations, and the Legislative Assembly maythereupon either accept or reject all or any of therecommendations of Legislative Council.
(3) If the Legislative Assembly accepts any of therecommendations of the Legislative Council, the Money Billshall be deemed to have been passed by both Houses with theamendments recommended by the Legislative Council andaccepted by the Legislative Assembly, and if the LegislativeAssembly does not accept any of the recommendations of theLegislative Council, it shall be deemed to have been passedby both Houses in the form in which it was passed by theLegislative Assembly without any of the Amendmentsrecommended by the Legislative Council.
(4) If a Money Bill passed by the Legislative Assembly and transmitted to the Legislative Council for its recommendations is not returned to the Legislative Assemblywithin the said period of thirty days, it shall be deemed tohave been passed by both Houses at the expiration of thesaid period of thirty days in the form in which it waspassed by the Legislative Assembly.
146-B. Definition of "Money Bill", - (1) For thepurposes of this Chapter, a Bill shall be deemed to be amoney Bill if it makes provision -
(a) for imposing or increasing any tax; or
(b) for regulating the borrowing of money or the giving of an guarantee by the province or for amending the law with respect to any financial obligations undertaken or to be undertaken by the province; or
(c) for declaring any expenditure to be expenditure charged on the revenues of the Province, or for increasing the amount of any such expenditure.
(2) A Bill shall not be deemed to be a Money by reasononly that it provides for the imposition of fines or otherpecuniary penalties or for the demand or payment of fees forlicences or fees for services rendered or by reason that itprovides for the imposition or increase of any tax by anylocal authority of body for local urposes.
(3) If any question arises whether a Bill is a MoneyBill or not, the decision of the Speaker of the LegislativeAssembly thereon shall be final.
(4) There shall be endorsed on every Money Bill when itis transmitted to the Legislative Council under section 146-A after it has been passed by the Legislative Assembly, andwhen it is presented to the Governor for assent undersection 147, the certificate of the Speaker of theLegislative Assembly signed by him that it is a Money Bill".
Clause 148. - In the proviso to clause 148, after thewords "Provided that insert the words "if the Bill is not aMoney Bill".
Clause 151. - In the sub-clause (3) of clause 151, forthe words "succeeding section" substitute the words "twosucceeding sections."
New Clause 152-A. - After clause 152, insert thefollowing clause namely: -
"152-A. Excess grants. - If in any financial yearexpenditure from the revenues of the Province has beenincurred on any service for which the vote of thelegislative Assembly is necessary in excess of the amountgranted for that service and for that year, a demand for theexcess shall be presented to the Assembly and the provisionsof sections 150 and 151 shall have effect in relation tosuch demand as they have effect in relation to a demand fora grant."
Clause 153. - For clause 153, substitute the followingclause, namely: -
"153. Special provisions as to financial Bills. - (1) AMoney Bill or an amendment thereto shall not be introducedor moved except on the recommendation of the Governor.
(2) A Bill which, if enacted and brought intooperation, would involve expenditure from the revenues of aProvince shall not be passed by a House of the ProvincialLegislature unless the Governor has recommended to thathouse the consideration of the Bill."
Provisions relating to the Auditor-General of the Province
Clause 174. - For sub-clause 93) of clause 174substitute the following namely. -
"(3) The Auditor-General of a Province shall beeligible for appointment as Auditor-General of thefederation or as Auditor-General of any other Province butnot for any other appointment either under the Federation orunder
the Government of a unit after he has ceased to holdhis office."
Provisions relating to distribution of revenues between the Federation and units and miscellaneous Financial provisions
Clause 194-A. - For, clause 194-A substitute thefollowing, namely: -
"194-. Interpretation. - In this Part -
(a) 'Finance Commission' means the Finance Commission constituted under Section 202-A of this Constitution;
(b) 'unit' does not include a Chief Commissioner's Province."
Clauses 196 to 199. - For clause 196 clause 196 to 199,substitute the following, namely: -
"196. Certain succession duties. - (1) Duties in respectof succession to property other than agricultural land andestate duty in respect of property other than agriculturalland shall be levied and collected by the Federation, butsixty per cent or such higher percentage as may beprescribed of the net proceeds in any financial year of anysuch duty, except in so far as those proceeds representproceeds attributable to Chief Commissioners' Provinces,shall not form part of the revenues of the Federation, butshall be assigned to the units within which that duty isleviable in that year, and shall be distributed among theunits in accordance with such principles of distribution asmay be prescribed.
(2) If any dispute arises as to the distribution of thenet proceeds of any such duty among the units, it shall bereferred for decision to such authority as may be appointedin this behalf by the President and the decision of suchauthority shall be final.
196-A. Certain terminal taxes. - Terminal taxes on goodsor passenger carried by railway or air shall be levied andcollected by the Federation, but the net proceeds in anyfinancial year of any such tax, except in so far as thoseproceeds represent proceeds attributable to ChiefCommissioners' Provinces, shall not form part of therevenues of the Federation, but shall be assigned to theunits within which that tax is leviable in that year, andshall be distributed among the units in accordance with suchprinciples of distribution as may be prescribed.
196-B. Certain stamp duties. - Such stamp duties as arementioned in the Federal Legislative List shall be levied bythe Federation and collected, in the case where such dutiesare leviable within any Chief Commissioner's province, bythe Federation and in other cases, by the units within whichsuch duties are respectively leviable, but the proceeds inany financial year of any such duty leviable in that yearwithin any unit shall not form part of the revenues of theFederation, but shall be assigned to that unit.
197. Taxes on Income. - (1) Taxes on income other thanagricultural income shall be levied and collected by thefederation, but sixty per cent or such higher percentage asmay be prescribed, of the net proceeds in any financial yearof any such tax, except in so far as those proceedsrepresent proceeds attributable to Chief Commissioners'Provinces shall not form part of the revenues of theFederation, but shall be assigned to the units within whichthat tax is leviable in that year, and shall be distributedamong the units in such manner as may be prescribed:
Provided that the Federal Parliament may, at any time,increase the said taxes by a surcharge for Federal purposesand the whole proceeds of any such surcharge shall form partof the revenues of the Federation.
(2) In this section, "taxes on income" includes any sumlevied by the Federation in lieu of any tax on income butdoes not include any contributions levied by the Federationin respect of its own undertakings.
198. Salt duties and excise duties. - (1) No duties onsalt shall be levied by the Federation.
(2) Federal duties of excise shall be levied andcollected by the Federation, but , if an Act of the FederalParliament so provides, there shall be paid out of therevenues of the Federation to the units to which the Actimposing the duty extends, sums equivalent to the whole orany part of the net proceeds of that duty, and those sumsshall be distributed among the units in
accordance with suchprinciples of distribution as may be prescribed:
Provided that fifty per cent or such higher percentageas may be prescribed, of the net proceeds in any financialyear of the excise duty on tobacco, except in so far asthose proceeds represent proceeds attributable to ChiefCommissioners' Provinces, shall not form part of therevenues of the Federation but shall be assigned to theunits within which that duty is leviable in that year, andshall be distributed among the units in such manner as maybe prescribed.
198-A. Taxes not enumerated in any of the lists in theNinth Schedule. - If any tax not mentioned in any of thelists in the Ninth Schedule to this Constitution is imposedby Act of the Federal Parliament by virtue of entry 90 of the Federal Legislative List, such tax shall be levied andcollected by the Federation but a prescribed percentage of the net proceeds in any financial year of any such tax,except in so far as those proceeds represent proceedsattributable to Chief Commissioners' Provinces, shall notform part of the revenues of the Federation, but shall beassigned to the units within which that tax is leviable inthat year, and shall be distributed among the units inaccordance with such principles of distribution as may beprescribed.
198-B. Grants in lieu of jute export duty. - Until theabolition of the export duty levied by the Federation onjute products or the expiration of ten years from thecommencement of this Constitution, whichever is earlier,there shall be charged on the revenues of the Federation ineach year as grants-in-aid of the revenues of the Provincesmentioned below the sums respectively specified againstthose Provinces:
West Bengal 100 lakhs of rupees.
Bihar 17 lakhs of rupees.
Assam 15 lakhs of rupees.
Orissa 3 lakhs of rupees.
199. Grants from Federation to certain units. - Such sums as the President may, on the recommendation of theFinance Commission, by order fix shall be charged on therevenues of the Federation in each year as grants-in-aid of the revenues of such nits as the President may on suchrecommendation determine to be in need of assistance, anddifferent sums may be fixed for different units:
Provided that there shall be charged on the revenues of the Federation in each year as grants-in-aid of the revenuesof the provinces of Assam and Orissa the sums of thirty andforty lakhs of rupees respectively or such higher sums asthe president may on the recommendation of the Financecommission fix in respect of either of these Provinces:
Provided further that there shall be paid out of therevenues of the Federation as grants-in-aid of the revenuesof a Province such capital and recurring sums as may benecessary to enable that Province to meet the costs of suchschemes of development as may be undertaken by the Provincewith the approval of the Federal Government for the purposeof promoting the welfare of the scheduled tribes in theprovince or raising the level of administration of thescheduled areas in the Province to that of theadministration of the rest of the Province:
Provided also that there shall be paid out of therevenues of the Federation as grants-in-aid of the revenuesof the province of Assam sums, capital and recurring,equivalent to -
(a) the average excess of expenditure over the revenues during the three years immediately preceding the date of commencement of this Constitution in respect of the administration of the areas specified in Part I of the table appended to paragraph 19 of the Eighth Schedule to this Constitution; and
(b) the costs of such schemes of development as may be undertaken by that province with the approval of the Federal Government for the purpose of raising the level of administration of the said areas to that of the administration of the rest of the province.
Clause 200. - In sub-clause (2) of clause 200, for theword "fifty", wherever it occurs, substitute the words "twohundred and fifty".
New Clause 201-A. - After clause 201, insert thefollowing clause,
"201-A. Application of the provisions relating todistribution of revenues during the period a proclamation ofEmergency is in operation. - Where a proclamation ofEmergency is in operation whereby the President has declaredthat the security of India is threatened, then,notwithstanding anything contained in the foregoingprovisions of this Chapter, the President may, by order,direct that all or any of those provisions shall, until theexpiration of the financial year in which such Proclamationceases to operate, have effect subject to such exceptions ormodifications as may be specified in such order."
Clause 202. - For Clause 202, substitute the following,namely: -
"202. Definition of 'prescribed' and calculation of'net proceeds' etc. - (1) In the foregoing provisions of thisChapter -
(a) 'prescribed' means -
(i) until the Finance commission has been constituted, prescribed by order of the President; and
(ii) after the Finance Commission has been constituted, prescribed by order of the President on the recommendation of the Finance Commission;
(b) 'net proceeds' means in relation to any tax or duty the proceeds thereof reduced by the cost of collection, and for the purposes of those provisions the net proceeds of any tax or duty, or of any part of any tax or duty, in or attributable to any area shall be ascertained and certified by the Auditor-General of the Federation, whose certificate shall be final.
(2) subject as aforesaid, and to any other expressprovision in this Chapter, an order of the President may, inany case where under this Part of this Constitution theproceeds of any duty or tax are, or may be, assigned to anyunit, provide for the manner in which the proceeds are to becalculated, for the time from or at which and the manner inwhich any payments are to be made, for the making of adjustments between one financial year and another, and forany other incidental or ancillary matters."
New Clause 202-A and 202-B. - After clause 202, insertthe following clauses, namely: -
"202-A. Finance Commission. - (1) There shall be aFinance Commission which shall consist of a Chairman andfour other members to be appointed by the President in hisdiscretion.
(2) The Chairman shall be a person who holds or hasheld judicial office not inferior in rank to that of a Judgeof a High Court.
(3) The members of the Commission shall receive suchremuneration as the President may by order determine andshall hold office for a term of five years and may on theexpiry of such term be re-appointed for another term of fiveyears.
(4) It shall be the duty of the Commission to performthe functions conferred on the Commission by this Chapter orby any other law for the time being in force and to giveadvice to the Federal Government upon such financial mattersor to perform such other duties of a financial character asmay from time to time e referred or assigned to it by thePresident.
(5) The Commission shall determine its procedure andshall ave such powers in the performance of its function asthe President may by order confer on it.
202-B. Recommendations of the Finance Commission. - ThePresident shall cause every recommendation made by theFinance Commission under the foregoing provisions of thisChapter together with an explanatory memorandum, as to theaction taken thereon by the President to be laid before theFederal Parliament."
Clause 207. - To clause 207, add the followingExplanation, namely: -
"Explanation. - For the purposes of this section, anyundertaking by the Government of any unit, such as the saleof the forest produce of any forest under the control ofsuch unit or of any article produced in any jail within suchunit, shall not be deemed to be a trade or business, carriedon by or on behalf of such Government."
Provisions relating to borrowing
Clause 210. - In sub-clause (3) of clause 210, for theword "Province", in the two places where it occurs,substitute the word "unit".
Provincial Legislative Lists
Provincial Legislative List in the NinthSchedule -
(1) in entry 43, omit the words "hearths and windows";
(2) for entry 50, substitute the following, namely: -
"50. Taxes on the sale, turnover or purchase of goods including taxes in lieu thereof on the use or consumption within the Province of goods liable to taxes within the Province on sale, turnover or purchase; taxes on advertisement;"
(3) in entry 53, for the word "Cesses" substitute the word"Taxes"; and
(4) in entry 56, for the word "Does" substitute the word"Taxes".
CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY OF INDIA
New Delhi, the 4th March 1948.
The HONOURABLE SARDAR VALLABHBHAI J. PATEL,
ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON MINORITIES FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS, ETC.,
CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY OF INDIA.
On behalf of the members of the Advisory Committee Ihave the honour to forward herewith the reports of the NorthEast Frontier (Assam) Tribal and Excluded Areas and Excludedand Partially Excluded Areas (Other than Assam) Sub-Committees, adopted by the Committee at the meeting held onthe 24th February 1948. The two sub-Committees had been setup by the Advisory Committee in their meeting held on the27th February 1947 in pursuance of paragraphs 19(iv) and 20of the Cabinet Mission's Statement dated the 16th May 1946and the two reports had been drawn up after they hadundertaken extensive tours of the provinces, examinedwitnesses and representatives of the people and theprovincial governments and taken the views of the differentpolitical organizations.
2. Acting on an earlier suggestion of the AdvisoryCommittee made on the 7th December 1947, the Drafting Committee had already incorporated in the Draft Constitutionprovisions on the basis of the recommendations contained inthe reports of the two sub-Committees. This coupled with thefact that the recommendations were practically unanimousmade our task easy, and except for the two amendmentsmentioned in the Appendix to this report, the AdvisoryCommittee have accepted all the recommendations of the twosub-committees. In regard to these amendments, it was agreedthat these should be noted for the present and necessaryamendments made later.
3. Summaries of the recommendations of the two sub-committees are given on pages 208 to 218 of the report(Volume I) of Excluded and Partially Excluded Areas (Otherthan Assam) Sub-Committee. Provisions embodying theserecommendations are contained in the Fifth, Sixth and EightSchedules attached to the Draft Constitution.
V. J. PATEL, CHAIRMAN
North East Frontier (Assam) Tribal and Excluded Areas
1. The following proviso is to be added to paragraphD(1) of appendix`A' to Part I on page 20 of the report:-
"Provided that the Assam High Court shall have power of revision in cases where there is failure of justice or where the authority exercised by the District Court is without jurisdiction."
2. In Schedule `B' on page 23 of the report the words"excluding the plains portion" be added after each of theitems in the schedule so as to read as follows:-
The Sadiya and Balipara Frontier Tracts (excluding the plains portion).
The Tirap Frontier Tract (excluding the Lakhimpur Frontier Tract and the plains portion).
The Naga Tribal Area (excluding the plains portion).
The 28th July 1947,
NORTH-EAST FRONTIER (ASSAM) TRIBAL & EXCLUDED AREAS
ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS, MINORITIES, TRIBAL SUB-COMMITTEE
CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY OF INDIA,
COUNCIL HOUSE, NEW DELHI.
I have the honour to forward herewith my Sub-Committee's report on the Tribal and Excluded Areas of assam. The report has been drawn up by us after a tour of the Province which included visits to the Lushai HillsDistrict, the North Cachar Hills
Sub-Division, the MikirHills and the Naga Hills District. The Committee could notvisit the Garo Hills District on account of bad weather and difficult communications and the Jowai Sub-division of theKhasi Hills District could not also be visited for the same reason. We however examined witnesses and representatives of the Garo Hills District at Gauhati and paid a visit also tocertain Garo villages on and near the Goalpara road. At mostof the places we visited, we had to be satisfied with avisit to the headquarters of the district or tract and witha visit to one or two villages in the neighbourhood. To visit places in the interior would have taken us a greatdeal more of time and delayed our report considerably.Representatives of the tribes however visited theheadquarters, even from long distances, and on the whole we feel that we have been able to get into contact with all the important representatives of the hill people and to taketheir views on the future administration of the areas. We have also taken the views of the different political organisations in the province and recorded the evidence of officials.
2. Except for the Frontier Tracts and Tribal Areas, we co-opted two members from the tribes of each of thedistricts visited. The co-opted members, with the exceptionof Mr. Kezehol (representative of the Kohima section of theNaga National Council and himself an Angami) who submittedhis resignation during the final meeting at Shillong,discussed the proposals and signed (subject to dissent inthe case of Mr. Kheloushe & Mr. Aliba Imti) the minutes of the meeting.
3. In connection with the co-option of members we wouldlike to mention the "District Conference" convened by theSuperintendent of the Lushai Hills as an elected bodypurporting to be representative of the whole of the LushaiHills. The election to this body which consisted of twentychiefs and twenty commoners with the Superintendent himselfas President was boycotted by the Mizo Union which was theonly representative body of the Lushais at that time andclearly could not be regarded by us as representing morethan asection of opinion, largely that of certain officials andchiefs controlled by them. Consequently the criticism thatwe co-opted members without consulting the Superintendent orhis conference carries, in our opinion, no weight.
4. In the Naga Hills, the Committee had to face asimilar situation in the sense that certain officials wereinfluencing the extreme elements of the Naga NationalCouncil. Discussion of a number of points could not becarried on to the full extent on account of lack of agreement within the Naga National Council but we understandthat on the occasion of the Governor's visit to Kohima, themore reasonable elements put forward their views. We findthat our proposals not only contain the substance of thesebut go further in some respects. The resignation of Mr.Kezehol was due to the fact that his section of the NagaNational Council was dissident. Our proposals correspondfully to the spirit of the resolution of the Naga NationalCouncil passed at Wokha in June 1946, and we feel confidentthat the majority of people in the Naga Hills District willfind that our proposals go a long way towards meeting eventheir present point of view.
5. Our report (Volume I) is divided into two parts andthe evidence forms a separate volume (Volume II). In thefirst part of our report we have given a bird's eye view of the areas as a whole, noting in particular their commonfeatures and giving the frame work of the scheme of administration recommended by us. In Part II a largelydescriptive account of the different areas is givenseparately and we have mentioned their special features orneeds.
6. We regret that our colleague Mr. Aliba Imti has notbeen able to attend the meeting to sign the report and hopethat he will be able to attend the meeting of the AdvisoryCommittee.
I have the honour to be,
Your most obedient servant,
G. N. BARDOLOI,
North-East Frontier (Assam) Tribal & Excluded Areas Sub-Committee
REPORT OF THE SUB-COMMITTEE ON NORTH-EAST FRONTIER (ASSAM) TRIBAL AND EXCLUDED AREAS
1. INTRODUCTORY -
The Excluded and Partially Excluded Areas of Assam asscheduled by the Order-in-Council under the Government ofIndia Act, 1935, are as follows: -
The North-East Frontier (Sadiya, Balipara andLakhimpur).
The Naga Hills Districts.
The Lushai Hills District.
The North Cachar Hills Sub-Division of the CacharDistrict.
Partially Excluded Areas
The Garo Hills District.
The Mikir Hills (in the Nowgong and SibsagarDistricts).
The British portion of the Khasi and Jaintia Hills District, other than Shillong Municipality and Cantt.
There is also an area to the east of the Naga HillsDistrict known as the Naga Tribal Area the position of whichis covered by the provisions of Section 311 (1) of theGovernment of India Act: The Tirap Frontier Tract whichadjoins the Lakhimpur Frontier Tract has no defined boundarywith Burma.
The Assam Tribal and Excluded Areas Sub-Committee isrequired to report on a scheme of administration for allthese areas.
2. GENERAL DESCRIPTION -
(a) The Frontier Tracts. - The Schedule quoted aboveshows the North-East Frontier Tracts as excluded areas. Inconsidering the list of areas to be excluded or partiallyexcluded and making recommendations to H. M. G. in 1935 theGovernment of India wrote as follows: -
"Balipara, Sadiya and Lakhimpur are essentiallyfrontier areas inhabited by tribes in an early stage ofdevelopment. Balipara has no defined outer boundaries andextends to the confines of Bhutan and Tibet." It will beseen that it was mentioned that Balipara has no definiteouter boundaries but the position of Sadiya and Lakhimpur orthe Tirap Frontier Tract was apparently the same. On theTirap Frontier Tract in fact, the boundary with Burma hasyet to be settled and all three regions include considerableareas of as yet virtually unadministered and only partiallyexplored territory. The position of Balipara and Sadiyahowever differs from that of the Tirap Frontier in thatthere exists a boundary between Tibet and India. The factsare that in 1914 there was a tripartite convention withTibet and China regarding the relations of the threeGovernments and in particular regarding the frontier betweenIndia and Tibet. The convention which contained an agreementabout the frontier line between India and Tibet was ratifiedby the Tibetan authorities at Lhasa, and the line known asthe MacMahon Line was indicated on a map of which a copy wasgiven to the Lhasa Government which acknowledged it. Theexistence of this line was for a long time not known to theAssam Government, and on the other hand it was found thatthere was no notification under Section 60 of the Governmentof India Act, 1919, specifying the northern frontier of assam, with the result that the MacMahon Line which is thefrontier between Tibet and India is the legal boundary of assam as well. In practice the position is peculiar. Thoughthe Governor of Assam is vested with authority over theFrontier Tracts, it is taken to be exercised, not by virtueof the provisions applicable to Excluded Areas of theGovernment of India Act, 1935, but as the Agent of theGovernor-General under Section 123 of the Act, videNotification No. I-X, dated the 1st April 1937 of theGovernment of India in the External Affairs Department(Appendix B. page 130). All the costs of administration of the tracts are also borne by the Central Government and theCentral Government are inclined to treat them as tribalareas within the meaning of Section 311 of the Government ofIndia Act. On the other hand, the local officials treat thearea as consisting of two parts. One which they call theExcluded Area and stretches up to the "Inner Line" boundary,and the Tribal Area, which by them is understood to mean thearea beyond the "Inner Line" boundary. The "Inner Line"boundary is roughly along the foot of the hills and the areabounded by its occupied by a some-what mixed
population,while the hill portions beyond it are purely inhabited bythe tribes. This treatment again does not appear to bestrictly justifiable in law though it may be convenient tothink of the administered plains portion of the areaseparately from the not fully administered hills. Since thefrontier tracts are administered in practice by the CentralGovernment as tribal areas, the absence of a notificationunder Section 60 of the Government of India Act, 1919, wasregarded as an oversight. The position of these areas willbe discussed further at a later stage, but it is clear fromthe foregoing that the Naga Tribal Area on the EasternFrontier and the Balipara, Sadiya and Lakhimpur or TirapFrontier Tracts on the North-Eastern Frontier fall under onecategory. The Balipara Frontier Tract which includes theSubansiri area is the tract over which there is as yet thesmallest measure of control and administration. This tractand the Sadiya Frontier Tract are inhabited by tribes suchas the Senjithonji, Dafla, Apa Tani, Momba (Balipara) theAbor, Mishmi, Hkampti (Sadiya). The Tirap Frontier containsSingphaws (who were originally Kachins) and a number oftribes classed as Naga, while the Naga Tribal Area islargely inhabited by Nagas of the Konyak group. The policyon these Frontiers is to establish administration andcontrol over the whole area right up to the frontier, and afive-year plan has been sanctioned by the Government ofIndia. This plan mostly covers the Sadiya and BaliparaTracts but a few schemes of the Naga Tribal Area are alsoincluded in it. A separate plan for the development of thelatter is under consideration.
(b) The Excluded Areas. - The Excluded Areas of the NagaHills District, the Lushai Hills District and the NorthCachar Hills Sub-division fall within the second category of areas over which the Provincial Ministry has no jurisdictionwhatever and the revenues expended in this area are notsubject to the vote of the provincial legislature. The NagaHills District is the home of a good number of tribesclassed as Naga, such as Angami, Ao, Sema, Lhota. Adjoiningit is the Naga Tribal Area in the eastern portion of which agood deal of head hunting still goes on. Though the tribesare all called Naga, they speak different languages and havediffering customs and practices also. The Lushai on theother hand, though consisting of a number of clans, arepractically one people and speak a common language. The Kukiin the North Cachar Hills and elsewhere are people of thesame stock as Lushai or Mizo and speak the same language ora dialect. The Lushai Hills District except for aninappreciable number of Lakhers in the extreme southcontains a uniform population. The North Cachar Hills, onthe other hand, provide sanctuary for the Kachari, Naga,Kuki, Mikir and Khasi. The largest of the tribes here arethe Kachari and the villages of the different tribes, aremore or less interspersed.
(c) Partially Excluded Areas. - The third category isthe Partially Excluded Areas consisting of the Khasi HillsDistrict (British portion), the Garo Hills District and theMikir Hills which fall in two districts, viz. Nowgong andSibsagar, are administered by the Provincial Governmentsubject to the powers of the Governor to withhold or applythe laws of the Provincial Legislature with or withoutmodifications, or to make special rules. The Khasia,incidentally, are the only line of the tribes in this areawho speak a Monkhmer language; all the other tribes speakTibeto-Burmese languages. Generally speaking, they inhabitthe areas which bear their names but there are villagesoutside these districts which also contain some of thetribes. Thus, the Garo inhabit a number of villages in theMymensingh district of Bengal in addition to many villagesin the districts of Kamrup and Goalpara in Assam. The Khasipopulation is not only to be found in the British portion of the Khasi and Jaintia Hills, but the States (which comprisea fairly large area) round about Shillong are inhabited bythe Khasis. These States, twentyfive in number, have thespecial feature that their chiefs are
actually elected in afew cases by free election, though in the majority of casesthe election is confined to a particular clan, theelectorate consisting of Myntries of the clan only in somestates, by a joint electorate of Myntries and electorselected by the people in general in others. The States havecomparatively little revenue or authority and seem to dependfor a good deal of support on the Political Officer in theirrelations with their peoples. There is a strong desire amongthe people of the States to "federate" with their brothersin the British portion, a feeling which the people on theBritish side reciprocate. Some of the Siems also appear tof avour amalgamation but their idea of the Federation differsfrom that of the people in that the Chiefs seek a greaterpower for themselves than the people are prepared to concedeto them.
Of the people in the Partially Excluded Areas, theKhasi are the most advanced and the Mikir the least. Unlikethe Naga and the Lushai Hills these areas have had muchmore contact with people in the plains, situated as they arebetween the valleys of the Brahmaputra and the Surma. Theyhave representatives in the provincial legislature who, inthe case of the Garo and the Mikir Hills, are elected byfranchise of the Nokmas and the village headmenrespectively.
3. DEVELOPMENT -
As regards the degree of development and education inthe excluded and Partially Excluded Areas, the most backwardareas, comparatively appear to be the Mikir and the GaroHills, both of which are Partially Excluded Areas. TheFrontier Tracts, parts of which must be inhabited by peoplewith on contact with civilisation or education, are ofcourse on a different footing. The Khasi Hills have probablybenefitted by the fact that the capital of the province issituated in them. In the Garo Hills, Christian Missions havespread some education along with Christianity but the MikirHills have suffered from the fact that they are dividedbetween two districts, Nowgong and Sibsagar, and thusnobody's child. Partial exclusion has in a way beenresponsible for their backwardness also, since both theGovernor of the province and the Ministry can disclaim thesole responsibility for the area. The Sub-divisionalOfficers and Deputy Commissioners of these Hills moreoverseem to have taken little interest in them and hardly anytouring has been performed by officers in the Mikir areas.On the whole, however, the Hill Districts show considerableprogress. The Khasi Hills have provided Ministers in theProvincial Government. The people of the Lushai Hills whohave benefitted by the activities of the Missionaries amongthem cannot be said to be behind the people of the plains inculture, education and literacy. In literacy particularlythey are in a better position than a good number of theplains areas and the general percentage of literacy amongthem is about 13 per cent, while the literacy among men onlyis about 30 per cent. Among the Naga also may be found anumber of persons of college education, though the districtas a whole appears to be less advanced than the LushaiHills. In the Naga Hills, the demand for education iskeener in the Mokokchung Sub-division than in the KohimaSub-division. In the North Cachar Hills, the development of the people has not been impressive and the Sub-division as awhole should be classed as more backward than other areasand comparable with the Mikir rather than the Lushai Hills.While education has made some progress in all these areas,the conditions of life and pursuit of non-agriculturaloccupations cannot be said to have reached the levelattained in the plains, although the degree of intelligencenecessary is undoubtedly available in most of these areas,even in the tribal areas. We were in fact impressed by theintelligence of the Abor and Mishmi, the Sherdukpen, theHkampti and even the Konyak of the tribal area. The skill ofmany of the tribes in weaving and tapestry contains theelements of a very attractive cottage industry-at presentarticles are made largely for personal use-but agricultureis practically the only occupation, and
with the exceptionof considerable areas occupied by the Angami in the NagaHill under terraced and irrigated cultivation and theadvanced cultivation in the Khasi Hills, the mode of agriculture is still the primitive one of jhuming. Portionsof the forest are burnt down and in the ashes of the burntpatch the seeds are sown: the following year a new patch offorest is felled and cultivated and so on, the first patchperhaps being ready again for cultivation after three orfour years. The jhuming patches develop a thick growth ofbamboo or weeds and trees do not grow on them. Thus themethod is destructive of good jungle. In certain parts, ofcourse, conditions may be said to be unfavourable to theterracing of the hillsides and there is no source of watersupply other than rainfall. In the Lushai Hills for instancecomparatively few areas have the gradual slope which rendersterracing easy; in the North Cachar Hills Sub-division,irrigation is difficult to arrange and the small hamletsoccupied by the tribes cannot provide enough labour forterracing work. Attempts have however been made to introduceterracing and improved methods of cultivation as well as thegrowing of fruits, and there is little doubt that goodprogress will soon be feasible in these directions. Acertain amount of political consciousness has also developedamong the tribes, and we were much impressed by the demandof the Abor in the Sadiya Frontier Tract for representationin the provincial legislature. The idea of Government by thepeople through their chosen representatives is not a totallynew conception to most of the hill people whose ways of lifecentre around the tribal and village councils, and what isrequired now is really an understanding of the mechanism andimplications as well as the responsibilities of the higherstages of administration and the impracticability as well asthe undesirable results of small groups of rural populationbeing entrusted with too much responsibility. Generallyspeaking, it can be stated that all the excluded areas of the province, not taking into account at this stage thefrontier and tribal areas, have reached the stage ofdevelopment when they can exercise their votes asintelligently as the people of the plains. On the ground ofinability to understand or exercise the franchise therefore,there is absolutely no justification for keeping theexcluded areas in that condition any longer.
As regards the Frontier Tracts, not only has there beenlittle education except in the fringes or plains portions,but administration has yet to be fully established overlarge tracts and the tribes freed from feuds or raids amongthemselves and from the encroachment and oppression ofTibetan tax collectors. The removal of the trade blocks setup by these Tibetans on the Indian side of the MacMahon Linesometimes creates delicate situations. Thus the country isin many ways unripe for regular administration. Only whenthe new fiveyear programme has made good headway will therebe an adequate improvement in the position. Even the villagecouncils in these tracts appear to be ill-organised andthere seems to be little material as yet for local self-governing institutions though it may be possible to find afew people who can speak for their tribe. The plainsportions are however on a different footing and the questionof including them in the provincial administration needscareful examination. For example, we are of the view thatprima facie there is little justification to keep theSaikhoaghat, the Sadiya plains portion and possibly portionsof the Balipara Frontier Tract under special administration.
4. THE HILL PEOPLE'S VIEWS -
Though the Constituent Assembly Secretariat and weourselves, issued a leaflet to provide information andcreate interest in the political future of India, theConstituent Assembly's functions and the objects of ourtour, the Hill people, even of the Excluded Areas, were notfound lacking in political consciousness. Perhaps notwithout instigation by certain elements, this consciousnesshas even instilled ideas of an independent status theexternal
relations under which would be governed by treatyor agreement only. In the Lushai Hills District the idea of the Superintendent who constituted himself the President of the "District Conference" which he himself had convened (seepara, 5 Part II) was that the District should manage allaffairs with the exception of defence in regard to which itshould enter into an agreement with the Government of India.A "Constitution" based on this principle was later draftedby the Conference. (The great majority of the Lushai howevercannot be regarded as holding these views and it is doubtfulif the District Conference represents the views of anybodyother than certain officials and chiefs). In the Naga Hills,although the original resolution as passed by the NagaNational Council at Wokha contemplated the administration of the area more or less like other parts of Assam, a demandwas subsequently put forward for "an interim Government of the Naga people" underthe protection of a benevolent "guardian power" who wouldprovide funds for development and defence for a period often years after which the Naga people would decide what theywould do with themselves. Here again it seems to us clearthat the views of a small group of people, following thevogue in the Naga Hills of decisions being taken by generalagreement and not by majority-gained the acceptance of theNational Council, for little more purpose than that ofpresenting a common front. In other areas more moderateviews prevail. In the Garo Hills the draft constitutionasked for all powers of government including taxation,administration of justice etc. to be vested in the legalcouncil and the only link proposed with the ProvincialGovernment was in respect of a few subjects like highereducation, medical aid etc., other than the subjects ofdefence, external affairs and communications which were notprovincial subjects. In the Mikir Hills and in the NorthCachar Hills, which are the least vocal and advanced of theareas under consideration, there would probably besatisfaction if control over land and local customs andadministration of justice are left to the local people. TheKhasi Hills proposals were for a federation of the Statesand British portions; otherwise the proposals were similarto those made for the Garo Hills. A feeling common to all of the Hill Districts is that people of the same tribe shouldbe brought together under a common administration. This hasled to a demand for rectification of boundaries. The Lushaiwant the Kuki of Manipur and other areas in theirboundaries, the Naga want the Zemi areas of the North CacharHills included in their district and so on.
5. POLITICAL EXPERIENCE -
Except for the Municipality of Shillong, there are nostatutory local self-governing bodies in any of the HillDistricts. The partially excluded areas have electedrepresentatives in the provincial legislature but in theGaro Hills the franchise is limited to the Nokmas and in theMikir Hills to the headmen. Generally, however, the tribesare all highly democratic in the sense that their villagecouncils are created by general assent or election.Chiefship among certain tribes like the Lushai is hereditary(although certain chiefs have been appointed by theSuperintendent) but among other tribes appointment ofheadmen is by common consent or by election or, in somecases, selection from particular families. Disputes areusually settled by the Chief or headman or council ofelders. In the Naga Hills what is aimed at is generalagreement in settling disputes. Allotment of land for jhumis generally the function of the Chiefs or headmen (exceptin the Khasi & Jaintia Hills) and there are doubtless manyother matters pertaining to the life of the village whichare dealt with by the chiefs or elders, but while this mayform a suitable background for local self-government thetribes altogether lack experience of modern self-governinginstitutions. The "District Conference" of the Lushai Hills,the tribal council of the North Cachar Hills and the NagaNational Council are very recent essays in organisingrepresentative bodies for
the district as a whole and haveno statutory sanction. While there is no doubt that theNaga, Lushai, Khasi and Garo will be able to manage a largemeasure of local autonomy, the North Cachar tribes and theMikir may yet want a period of supervision and guidance.
6. THE SPECIAL FEATURES -
Whatever the capacity of the different councils orconferences to manage the affairs of the areas may be, thegeneral proposals for the administration of these areas mustbe based upon the following considerations: -
(a) The distinct social customs and tribalorganisations of the different peoples as well as theirreligious beliefs. For instance, the Khasi and the Garo havea matriarchal system, the Lushai have hereditary chiefs, theAo Naga have got the council of elders called `tatar' whichis periodically renewedby election. The laws of succession of the Lushai permit theyoungest son of the family to succeed to the property of hisfather. Similarly, in the case of the Garo, the youngestdaughter gets her mother's property and so on. Christianityhas made considerable headway among the Lushai, Khasi andthe Garo, but large numbers of the hill people stillcontinue their own tribal forms of worship which some peopledescribe as `animism'.
(b) The fear of exploitation by the people of theplains on account of their superior organisation andexperience of business, the hill people fear that ifsuitable provisions are not made to prevent the people of the plains from acquiring land in the hill areas, largenumbers of them will settle down and not only occupy landbelonging to the hill people but will also exploit them inthe non-agricultural professions. Thus, the hill people seemto attach special value to the present system of an `InnerLine' to cross which non-tribals entering the area require apass, and the provisions prohibiting non-tribals fromsettling down or carrying on business without the approvalof the district-officer. It is felt that even industriesshould not be started in the hill areas by non-tribalsbecause that might mean exploitation of the people and theland by the non-tribals. In addition to these main pointsthere is the question of preserving their ways of life andlanguage, and method of cultivation etc. Opinions areexpressed that there could be adequate protection in thesematters only by transferring the government of the areaentirely into the hands of the hill people themselves.
(c) In the making suitable financial provisions it isfeared that unless suitable provisions are made or powersare conferred upon the local councils themselves, theprovincial government may not, due to the pressure of theplains people, set apart adequate funds for the developmentof the tribal areas. In this connection we invite areference to the views expressed in the Assam Government'sFactual Memorandum on p. 67 of Constituent Assembly PamphletExcluded and Partially Excluded Areas - I.
7. PROVISIONS OF 1935 ACT -
The provisions of the Government of India Act are basedon the principle that legislation which is passed by theProvincial Legislature is often likely to be unsuitable forapplication to the Hill Districts. The mechanism providedfor "filtering" the legislation is therefore to empower theGovernor of the Province to apply or not to apply suchlegislation. The full implications of the provisions of theGovernment of India Act are discussed in the ConstituentAssembly pamphlets on "Excluded and Partially ExcludedAreas" Parts I and II, and it is perhaps not necessary todiscuss them exhaustively here. The main features of theprovisions are that certain areas have been scheduled asexcluded or partially excluded; it is possible for areas to be transferred from the category of excluded to the categoryof partially excluded by an Order-in-Council and, similarly,from the category of partially excluded to the category ofnon-excluded; legislation will not apply automatically toany such scheduled area even if it is a partially excludedarea, but will have to be notified by the Governor who, ifhe applies them at all, can make alterations. The
revenuesfor excluded areas are charged to the revenues of theProvince and special regulations, which do not apply to therest of the Province, may be made by the Governor in hisdiscretion for excluded and partially excluded areas.
8. FUTURE POLICY -
The continuance or otherwise of exclusion cannot beconsidered solely from the point of view of the generaladvancement of an area. If that were so, all that would benecessary in the case of areas like the Lushai Hills whichare considered sufficiently advanced would be to remove thefeature of exclusion or partial exclusion. such action maybe suitable in the case of certain partially excluded areasin other parts of India. But in the Hills of Assam the factthat the hill people have not yet been assimilated with thepeople of the plains of Assam has to be taken into accountthough a great proportion of hill people now classed asplains tribals have gone a long way towards suchassimilation. Assimilation has probably advanced least inthe Naga Hills and in the Lushai Hills, and the policy ofexclusion has of course tended to create a feeling ofseparateness.
On the other hand, it is the advice of anthropologists(see Dr. Guha's evidence) that assimilation cannot takeplace by the sudden breaking up of tribal institutions andwhat is required is evolution or growth on the oldfoundations. This means that the evolution should come asfar as possible from the tribe itself but it is equallyclear that contact with outside influences is necessarythough not in a compelling way. The distinct features of their way of life have at any rate to be taken into account.Some of the tribal systems such as the system of the tribalcouncil for the decision of disputes afford by far thesimplest and the best way of dispensation of justice for therural areas without the costly system of courts and codifiedlaws. Until there is a change in the way of life broughtabout by the hill people themselves, it would not bedesirable to permit any different system to be imposed fromoutside. The future of these hills now does not seem to liein absorption in the hill people will becomeindistinguishable from non-hill people but in political andsocial amalgamation.
9. THE HILL PEOPLE'S LAND -
The anxiety of the hill people about their land andtheir fear of exploitation are undoubtedly matters formaking special provisions; it has been the experience inother parts of India and in other countries, that unlessprotection is given, land is taken up by people from themore advanced and crowded areas. The question has alreadyacquired serious proportions in the plains portions of Assamand the pressure of population from outside has brought itup as a serious problem which in the next few years may beexpected to become very much more acute. There seems to beno doubt whatever therefore that the hill people should havethe largest possible measure of protection for their landand provisions for the control of immigration into theirareas for agricultural or non-agricultural purposes. Itseems also clear that the hill people will not havesufficient confidence if the control on such matters is keptin the hands of the provincial Government which may only betoo amenable to the pressure of its supporters. Even theHead of the State under the new Constitution will probablybe an elected head, and even though he may be elected alsoby the votes of the hill people, they may still have thefear that he will give way to the pressure of the plainspeople on whose votes he may be largely dependent. Theatmosphere of fear and suspicion which now prevails, even ifit is argued that it is unjustified, is nevertheless onewhich must be recognised and in order to allay thesesuspicions and fears, it would appear necessary to provideas far as possible such constitutional provisions andsafeguards as would give no room for them. Moreover, in theareas where no right of private property or proprietoryright of the chief is recognised the land is regarded as theproperty of the clan, including the forests. Boundariesbetween the area of one hill or tribe are
recognised andviolation may result in fighting. Large areas of land arerequired for jhum and this explains in part the fear of thetribesman that its availability will be reduced ifincursions by outsiders is permitted. In all the hill areasvisited by us, there was an emphatic unanimity of opinionamong the hill people that there should be control ofimmigration and allocation of land to outsiders, and thatsuch controls should be vested in the hands of the hillpeople themselves. Accepting this then as a fundamentalfeature of the administration of the hills, we recommendthat the Hill Districts should have powers of legislationover occupation or use of land other than land comprisingreserved forest under the Assam Forest Regulation of 1891 rother law applicable. The only limitation we would placeupon this is to provide that the local councils should notrequire payment for the occupation of vacant land by theProvisional Government for public purposes or prevent the acquisition of private land, also required forpublic purposes, on payment of compensation.