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ally transmitted to the presidency, and by the presidency to Europe ; and the purpose of it was to keep a controul upon the reduced expenses of the sixteen lacks, which were ordered in the manner I mentioned. Your lordships will naturally imagine, that that controul was kept safe ; no, here is the order of the directors, and you will see how Mr. Hastings obeyed it.
" As the disbursements of the sums allotted to the nabob for the maintenance of his household, and family, and the support of his dignity, will pass through the hands of the minister, who shall be selected by you, conformable to our preceding orders, we expect, that you will require such minister to deliver annually to your board a regular and exact account of the application of the several sums paid by the company to the nabob. This you will strictly examine ; and we trust, that you will not suffer any part of the nabob's stipend to be appropriated to the minister's own use, or wasted among the unnecessary dependants of the court; but, that the whole amount be applied to the purposes, for which it was assigned by us."
One would have imagined, that after Mr. Hastings had made so suspicious an arrangement (I will not call it by any worse name) he would have removed all suspicion with regard to money; that he would have obeyed the company by constituting the controul, which they had ordered to be placed over a man, even a fit man, and a man worthy of the trust committed to him. But what is his answer, when three years after he is desired to produce this account? his answer is—" I can save the board the trouble of this reference by acquainting them, that no such accounts have ever been transmitted, nor, as I can affirm with most certain knowledge, any orders given for that purpose, either to Goordass, to whose office it did not properly belong, nor to the begum, who had the actual charge and responsibility of those disbursements."
He has given to this woman the charge of all the disbursements of the company.
The officer, whom you would imagine would be responsible, was not responsible ; but, to this prostitute and dancing girl the whole of the revenue was
given. When he was ordered to transmit that account, he not only did not produce that account, but had given no order, that it should be kept ; so that no doubt can be left upon your lordships' minds, that the sixteen lacks, which were reserved for the support of the dignity of the government of that country, were employed for the purpose of Mr. Hastings's having a constant bank, from which he could draw every corrupt emolument he should think fit for bimself and his associates. Thus your lordships see, that he appointed an improper person to the trust without any controul; and that the very accounts, which were to be the guardians of his purity, and which were to remove suspicion from him, he never so much as directed or ordered. If any one can doubt, that that transaction was in itself corrupt, I can only say, that his mind must be constituted in a manner totally different from that, which prevails in any of the higher or lower branches of judicature in any country in the world. The suppression of an account is a proof of corruption.
When Mr. Hastings committed these acts of violence against Mahomed Reza Khân, when he proceeded to make arrangements in the company's affairs of the same kind with those, in which corruption had been before exercised, he was bound by a particular responsibility, that there should be nothing mysterious in his own conduct ; and that at least all the accounts should be well kept. He appointed a person nominally for that situation, namely, the rajah Goordass. Who was he? A person acting, he says, under the influence of rajah Nundcomar, whom he had declared was not fit to be employed or trusted; all the offices were filled by him. But had rajah Goordass, whose character is that of an excellent man, against whom there could lie no reasonable objection on account of his personal character ; and whose want of talents was to be supplied by those of Nundcomar; (and of his parts Mr. Hastings spoke as highly as possible) had he, I say, the management ? No; but Muony Begum. Did she keep any accounts ? No; Mr. Hastings was ordered, and a very disagreeable and harsh order it was, to take away one half of the nabob's allowance, which he had by treaty. I do not charge Mr. Hastings with this reduction ; he had
nothing to do with that. Sixteen lacks were cut off, and sixteen left; these two sums had been distributed, one for the support of the seraglio, and the dignity of the state ; the other for the court establishment, and the household. The sixteen lacks, which was left, therefore, required to be well economized, and well administered. There was a rigour in the company's order relative to it, which was, that it should take place from an antedated time, that is, a whole year prior to the communication of their order to the nabob. der was, that the nabob's stipend should be reduced to sixteen lacks a year from the month of January. Mr. Hastings makes this reflection upon it, in order to leave no doubt upon your mind of his integrity in administering that great trust; he says:
“ Your order for the reduction of the nabob's stipend was communicated to him in the month of December 1771. He remonstrated against it, and desired it might be again referred to the company.
The board entirely acquiesced in his remonstrance, and the subsequent payments of his stipend were paid as before. I might easily have availed myself of this plea. I might have treated it as an act of the past goyernment, with which I had no cause to interfere, and joined in asserting the impossibility of his defraying the vast expense of his court and household without it, which I could have proved by plausible arguments, drawn from the actual amount of the nizamut and behla establishments; and both the nabob and begum would have liberally purchased my forbearance. Instead of pursuing this plan, I carried your orders rigidly and literally into execution.
I undertook myself the laborious and reproachsul task of limiting his charges, from an excess of his former stipend, to the sum of his reduced allowance."
He says, in another place, “ The stoppage of the king's tribute was an act of mine.
for the remainder." My lords, I believe it is a singular thing, and what your lordships have been very little used to, to see a man in the
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situation of Mr. Hastings, or in any situation like it, so ready in knowing all the resources, by which sinister emolument may be made, and concealed, and which, under pretences of publick good, may be transferred into the pocket of him, who uses those pretences. He is resolved, if he is innocent, that his innocence shall not proceed from ignorance. He well knows the ways of falsifying the company's accounts; he well knows the necessities of the natives, and he knows, that, by paying a part of their dues, they will be ready to give an acquittance of the whole. These are parts of Mr. Hastings's knowledge, of which your lordships will see he also well knows how to avail himself.
But, you would expect, when he reduced the allowance to sixteen lacks, and took credit to himself as if he had done the thing, which he professed, and had argued from his rigour and cruelty his strict and literal obedience to the company, that he had in reality done it. The very reverse ; for it will be in proof, that, after he bad pretended to reduce the company's allowance, he continued it a twelve-month from the day, in which he said he had entirely executed it, to the amount of 90,0001. and entered a false account of the suppression in the company's accounts; and when he has taken a credit, as under pretence of reducing that allowance, he paid 90,0001. more than he ought. Can you then have a doubt, after all these false pretences, after all this fraud, fabrication and suppression, which he made use of, that that 90,000l. of which he kept no account, and transmitted no account, was money given to himself for his own private use and advantage ?
This is all, that I think necessary to state to your lordships upon this monstrous part of the arrangement; and therefore, from his rigorous obedience in cases of cruelty, and where controul was directed, from his total disobedience, and from his choice of persons, from his suppression of the accounts, that ought to have been produced ; and falsifying the accounts, that were kept, there arises a strong inference of corruption.
When your lordships see all this in proof, your lordships will justify me in saying, that there never was taking every part of the arrangement) such a di
rect open violation of any trust. I shall say no more with regard to the appointment of Munny Begum.
My lords, here ended the first scene, and here ends that body of presumption arising from the transaction, and inherent in it. My lords, the next scene, that I am to bring before you, is the positive proof of corruption in this transaction, in which I am sure, you already see, that corruption must exist. The charge was brought by a person in the highest trust and confidence with Mr. Hastings, a person employed in the management of the whole transaction ; a person, to whom the management, subordinate to Munny Begum, of all the pecuniary transactions, and all the arrangements made upon that occasion, was intrusted.
On the 11th day of March 1775, Nundcomnar gives to Mr. Francis, a member of the council, a charge against Mr. Hastings, consisting of two parts. The first of these charges was a vast number of corrupt dealings, with respect to which he was the informer, not the witness, but to which he indicated the modes of inquiry; and they are corrupt dealings, as Mr. Hastings himself states them, amounting to millions of rupees; and in transactions, every one of which implies in it the strongest degree of corruption.
The next part was of those, to which he was not only an informer but a witness, in having been the person, who himself transmitted the money to Mr. Hastings, and the agents of Mr. Hastings ; and accordingly upon this part, which is the only part we charge, his evidence is clear and full, that he gave the money to Mr. Hastings ; he and the begum (for I put them together). He states, that Mr. Hastings received for the appointment of Munny Begum to the rajahship two lacks of rupees, or about 22,000l. : and that he received in another gross sum one lack and an half of rupees, in all making three lacks and an half, or about 36,0001. This charge was signed by the man, and accompanied with the account.
Mr. Hastings, on that day, made no reflection or observation whatever upon this charge, except that he attempted to excite some suspicion, that Mr. Francis, who had produced