Zamindari System

Zamindari System

  • Zamindari System was introduced by Lord Cornwallis in 1793 through Permanent Settlement Act.
    • It was introduced in provinces of Bengal, Bihar, Orissa and Varanasi.
    • Also known as Permanent Settlement System.
    • Zamindars were recognized as owner of the lands.
    • Zamindars were given the rights to collect the rent from the peasants.
    • The realized amount would be divided into 11 parts. 1/11 of the share belongs to Zamindars and 10/11 of the share belongs to East India Company.
    • The ryots became tenants since they were considered the tillers of the soil.
    • This settlement took away the administrative and judicial functions of the zamindars.
  • Under the Scheme of 1793, the function of deciding revenue disputes including demands of revenue had been entrusted to the diwani adalats.
  • Out of this arose two difficulties.
    • It led to the increase of work before the adalats and thus led to the accumulation of undecided cases there.
    • Further, disposal of revenue demands by zamindars against their tenants was very much delayed by the adalats because of load of work on them.
    • This put the zamindars in a quandary. While the Government had summary powers to realise its revenue arrears from the zamindars by selling away the defaulters’ lands, the zamindars had no such summary method available to them to realise their dues from the tenants: they had to move against their tenants through the extremely dilatory process of the adalats.
  • From the point of view of the zamindars, the situation was very inequitable; there was little prospect of their revenue demands against their tenants being decided through the adalats before their own lands were liable to be sold in execution of the Government’s demands against them.
  • The delays in judicial process resulted in many zamindaries being sold. Many representations were made to the Government urging the need to mend matters. The wheels of justice were clogged and this affected the Government as well as the private individuals. The collection of revenue was being adversely affected, it became indispensable to take steps to set matters right.


Ryotwari System

Mahalwari System


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