Text enclosed between tilde characters was in bold face in the original book (this text is bold).
THE PANJAB, NORTH-WEST FRONTIER PROVINCE AND KASHMIR
SIR JAMES DOUIE, M.A., K.C.S.I.
Seema Publications Seema Publications C-3/19, R. P. Bagh, Delhi-110007. First Indian Edition 1974
Printed in India at Deluxe Offset Press, Daya Basti, Delhi-110035 and Published by Seema Publications, Delhi-110007.
In his opening chapter Sir James Douie refers to the fact that the area treated in this volume—just one quarter of a million square miles—is comparable to that of Austria-Hungary. The comparison might be extended; for on ethnographical, linguistic and physical grounds, the geographical unit now treated is just as homogeneous in composition as the Dual Monarchy. It is only in the political sense and by force of the ruling classes, temporarily united in one monarch, that the term Osterreichisch could be used to include the Poles of Galicia, the Czechs of Bohemia and Moravia, the Szeklers, Saxons and more numerous Rumanians of Transylvania, the Croats, Slovenes and Italians of "Illyria," with the Magyars of the Hungarian plain.
The term Punjabi much more nearly, but still imperfectly, covers the people of the Panjab, the North-West Frontier Province, Kashmir and the associated smaller Native States. The Sikh, Muhammadan and Hindu Jats, the Kashmiris and the Rajputs all belong to the tall, fair, leptorrhine Indo-Aryan main stock of the area, merging on the west and south-west into the Biluch and Pathan Turko-Iranian, and fringed in the hill districts on the north with what have been described as products of the "contact metamorphism" with the Mongoloid tribes of Central Asia. Thus, in spite of the inevitable blurring of boundary lines, the political divisions treated together in this volume, form a fairly clean-cut geographical unit.
Sir James Douie, in this work, is obviously living over again the happy thirty-five years which he devoted to the service of North-West India: his accounts of the physiography, the flora and fauna, the people and the administration are essentially the personal recollections of one who has first studied the details as a District Officer and has afterwards corrected his perspective, stage by stage, from the successively higher view-point of a Commissioner, the Chief Secretary, Financial Commissioner, and finally as Officiating Lieut.-Governor. No one could more appropriately undertake the task of an accurate and well-proportioned thumb-nail sketch of North-West India and, what is equally important to the earnest reader, no author could more obviously delight in his subject.
T. H. H.
March 9th, 1916.
NOTE BY AUTHOR
My thanks are due to the Government of India for permission to use illustrations contained in official publications. Except where otherwise stated the numerous maps included in the volume are derived from this source. My obligations to provincial and district gazetteers have been endless. Sir Thomas Holdich kindly allowed me to reproduce some of the charts in his excellent book on India. The accuracy of the sections on geology and coins may be relied on, as they were written by masters of these subjects, Sir Thomas Holland and Mr R. B. Whitehead, I.C.S. Chapter XVII could not have been written at all without the help afforded by Mr Vincent Smith's Early History of India. I have acknowledged my debts to other friends in the "List of Illustrations."
J. M. D.
8 May 1916.
I. Areas and Boundaries 1
II. Mountains, Hills, and Plains 8
III. Rivers 32
IV. Geology and Mineral Resources 50
V. Climate 64
VI. Herbs, Shrubs, and Trees 71
VII. Forests 86
VIII. Beasts, Birds, Fishes, and Insects 90
IX. The People: Numbers, Races, and Languages 96
X. The People: Religions 114
XI. The People: Education 122
XII. Roads and Railways 127
XIII. Canals 132
XIV. Agriculture and Crops 142
XV. Handicrafts and Manufactures 152
XVI. Exports and Imports 159
XVII. History: Pre-Muhammadan Period, 500 B.C.-1000 A.D. 160
XVIII. History: Muhammadan Period, 1000 A.D.-1764 A.D. 168
XIX. History: Sikh Period, 1764 A.D.-1849 A.D. 181
XX. History: British Period, 1849 A.D.-1913 A.D. 188
XXI. Archaeology and Coins 200
XXII. Administration: General 212
XXIII. Administration: Local 217
XXIV. Revenue and Expenditure 219
XXV. Panjab Districts and Delhi 224
XXVI. The Panjab Native States 271
XXVII. The North-west Frontier Province 291
XXVIII. Kashmir and Jammu 314
XXIX. Cities 325
XXX. Other Places of Note 347
I. Tribes of Panjab including Native States and of N.W.F. Province 359
II. Rainfall, Cultivation, Population, and Land Revenue 360
III. Agricultural Diagrams 362
IV. Crops 364
V. Revenue and Expenditure of Panjab 366
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
1. Arms of Panjab 1
2. Orographical Map (Holdich's India) 9
3. Nanga Parvat (Watson's Gazetteer of Hazara) 11
4. Burzil Pass (Sir Aurel Stein) 13
5. Rotang Pass (J. Coldstream) 15
6. Mt Haramukh (Sir Aurel Stein) 16
7. R. Jhelam in Kashmir—View towards Mohand Marg (Sir Aurel Stein) 18
8. Near Naran in Kagan Glen, Hazara (Watson's Gazetteer of Hazara) 19
9. Muztagh-Karakoram and Himalayan Ranges in Kashmir (Holdich's India) 21
10. The Khaibar Road (Holdich's India) 23
11. Panjab Rivers (Holdich's India) 33
12. The Indus at Attock (Sir Aurel Stein) 37
13. Indus at Kafirkot, D.I. Khan dt. (Sir Aurel Stein) 38
14. Fording the River at Lahore (E. B. Francis) 42
15. Bias at Manali (J. Coldstream) 44
16. Rainfall of different Seasons (Blanford) 62, 63
17. Average Barometric and Wind Chart for January (Blanford) 65
18. Average Barometric and Wind Chart for July (Blanford) 66
19. Banian or Bor trees (Sir Aurel Stein) 75
20. Deodars and Hill Temple (J. Coldstream) 80
21. Firs in Himalaya (J. Coldstream) 82
22. Chinars (Sir Aurel Stein) 83
23. Rhododendron campanulatum (J. Coldstream) 84
24. Big Game in Ladakh 92
25. Yaks (J. Coldstream) 93
26. Black Buck 95
27. Map showing density of population (Panjab Census Report, 1911) 97
28. Map showing increase and decrease of population (Panjab Census Report, 1911) 98
29. Map showing density of population in N.W.F. Province (N.W. Provinces Census Report, 1911) 99
30. Map showing density of population in Kashmir (Kashmir Census Report, 1911) 100
31. Jat Sikh Officers (Nand Ram) 103
32. Blind Beggar (E. B. Francis) 107
33. Dards (Sir Aurel Stein) 108
34. Map showing races (from The People of India, by Sir Herbert Risley. With permission of W. Thacker and Co., London) 109
35. Map showing distribution of languages (Panjab Census Report, 1911) 111
36. Map showing distribution of religions (Panjab Census Report, 1911) 115
37. Raghunath Temple, Jammu 116
38. Golden Temple, Amritsar (Mrs B. Roe) 117
39. Mosque in Lahore City (E. B. Francis) 118
40. God and Goddess, Chamba (H.H. the Raja of Chamba) 120
41. A Kulu godling and his attendants (J. Coldstream) 121
42. A School in the time preceding annexation 124
43. Poplar lined road to Srinagar (Miss M. B. Douie) 128
44. Map showing railways 129
45. Map—Older Canals 134
46. Map—Canals 137
47. Map of Canals of Peshawar district 141
48. Persian Wheel Well and Ekka (Sir Aurel Stein) 143
49. A drove of goats—Lahore (E. B. Francis) 144
50. A steep bit of hill cultivation, Hazara (Watson's Gazetteer of Hazara) 146
51. Preparing rice field in the Hills (J. Coldstream) 147
52. Carved doorway (Sir Aurel Stein) 151
53. Shoemaker's craft (Baden Powell Panjab Manufactures) 153
54. Carved windows (Sir Aurel Stein) 155
55. Papier mache work of Kashmir (Baden Powell Panjab Manufactures) 156
56. The Potter 157
57. Coin—obverse and reverse of Menander 163
58. Martand Temple (Miss Griffiths) 166
59. Baba Nanak and the Musician Mardana 174
60. Guru Govind Singh 176
61. Maharaja Ranjit Singh 182
62. Maharaja Kharak Singh 185
63. Nao Nihal Singh 185
64. Maharaja Sher Singh 185
65. Zamzama Gun (E. B. Francis) 187
66. Sir John Lawrence (from picture in National Portrait Gallery) 189
67. John Nicholson's Monument at Delhi (Lady Douie) 190
68. Sir Robert Montgomery 191
69. Panjab Camels at Lahore (E. B. Francis) 193
70. Sir Charles Aitchison (Bourne and Shepherd) 194
71. Sir Denzil Ibbetson (Albert Jenkins) 198
72. Sir Michael O'Dwyer (R. Ramlal Bhairulal and Son) 199
73. Group of Chamba Temples (H.H. the Raja of Chamba) 201
74. Payer Temple—Kashmir (Sir Aurel Stein) 202
75. Reliquary (Government of India) 203
76. Colonnade in Kuwwat ul Islam Mosque 204
77. Kutb Minar (Miss M. B. Douie) 205
78. Tomb of Emperor Tughlak Shah (Miss M. B. Douie) 206
79. Jama Masjid, Delhi 207
80. Tomb of Humayun (Miss M. B. Douie) 207
81. Badshahi Mosque, Lahore (E. B. Francis) 208
82. Coins 210
83. Skeleton District Map of Panjab 223
84. Delhi Enclave 225
85. Hissar district with portions of the Phulkian States etc. 226
86. Rohtak district 228
87. Gurgaon district 230
88. Karnal district 231
89. Ambala district with Kalsia 233
90. Kangra district 235
91. Bias at Manali (J. Coldstream) 237
92. Religious Fair in Kulu (J. Coldstream) 238
93. Kulu Women (J. Coldstream) 239
94. Hoshyarpur district 240
95. Jalandhar district and Kapurthala 242
96. Ludhiana district and adjoining Native States 243
97. Ferozepore district and Faridkot 244
98. Gurdaspur district 246
99. Sialkot district 247
100. Gujranwala district 248
101. Amritsar district 250
102. Lahore district 251
103. Gujrat district 252
104. Jhelam district 254
105. Rawalpindi district 255
106. Shop in Murree Bazar (Lady Douie) 256
107. Attock district 257
108. Mianwali district 259
109. Shahpur district 261
110, Montgomery district 263
111. Lyallpur district 264
112. Jhang district 265
113. Multan district 266
114. Muzaffargarh district 268
115. Dera Ghazi Khan district 269
116. Maharaja of Patiala (C. Vandyk) 272
117. Maharaja of Jind 277
118. Maharaja Sir Hira Singh of Nabha (Bourne and Shepherd) 278
119. Maharaja of Kapurthala 279
120. Raja of Faridkot (Julian Rust) 280
121. Nawab of Bahawalpur 281
122. Native States of Chamba, Mandi, Suket, Bilaspur 284
123. Raja Surindar Bikram Parkash of Sirmur 285
124. Raja of Chamba (F. Bremner) 287
125. Bashahr (Sketch Map by H. W. Emerson) 289
126. Sir Harold Deane (F. Bremner) 292
127. North-west Frontier Province 293
128. Dera Ismail Khan district 294
129. Bannu district 295
130. Kohat district 297
131. Peshawar district 298
132. Hazara district 300
133. Sir George Roos Keppel (Maull and Fox) 303
134. Tribal Territory north of Peshawar 304
135. Tribal Territory to west of N.W.F. Province 308
136. Khaibar Rifles 310
137. North Waziristan Militia and Border Post 313
138. Maharaja of Kashmir 315
139. Jammu and Kashmir 316
140. Takht i Suliman in Winter (Sir Aurel Stein) 318
141. Ladakh Hills (Mrs Wynyard Brown) 320
142. Zojila Pass (Mrs Wynyard Brown) 322
143. Delhi Mutiny Monument 327
144. Kashmir Gate, Delhi 328
145. Map of Delhi City 329
146. Darbar Medal 334
147. Street in Lahore (E. B. Francis) 336
148. Shahdara 338
149. Trans-border traders in Peshawar 343
150. Mosque of Shah Hamadan (F. Bremner) 345
Map of territories of Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir at end of volume Map of Panjab at end of volume
AREAS AND BOUNDARIES
Introductory.—Of the provinces of India the Panjab must always have a peculiar interest for Englishmen. Invasions by land from the west have perforce been launched across its great plains. The English were the first invaders who, possessing sea power, were able to outflank the mountain ranges which guard the north and west of India. Hence the Panjab was the last, and not the first, of their Indian conquests, and the courage and efficiency of the Sikh soldiery, even after the guiding hand of the old Maharaja Ranjit Singh was withdrawn, made it also one of the hardest. The success of the early administration of the province, which a few years after annexation made it possible to use its resources in fighting men to help in the task of putting down the mutiny, has always been a matter of just pride, while the less familiar story of the conquests of peace in the first sixty years of British rule may well arouse similar feelings.
Scope of work.—A geography of the Panjab will fitly embrace an account also of the North-West Frontier Province, which in 1901 was severed from it and formed into a separate administration, of the small area recently placed directly under the government of India on the transfer of the capital from Calcutta to Delhi, and of the native states in political dependence on the Panjab Government. It will also be convenient to include Kashmir and the tribal territory beyond the frontier of British India which is politically controlled from Peshawar. The whole tract covers ten degrees of latitude and eleven of longitude. The furthest point of the Kashmir frontier is in 37 deg. 2' N., which is much the same as the latitude of Syracuse. In the south-east the Panjab ends at 27 deg. 4' N., corresponding roughly to the position of the southernmost of the Canary Islands. Lines drawn west from Peshawar and Lahore would pass to the north of Beirut and Jerusalem respectively. Multan and Cairo are in the same latitude, and so are Delhi and Teneriffe. Kashmir stretches eastwards to longitude 80 deg. 3' and the westernmost part of Waziristan is in 69 deg. 2' E.
Distribution of Area.—The area dealt with is roughly 253,000 square miles. This is but two-thirteenths of the area of the Indian Empire, and yet it is less by only 10,000 square miles than that of Austria-Hungary including Bosnia and Herzegovina. The area consists of:
(1) The Panjab 97,000 (2) Native States dependent on Panjab Government 36,500 (3) Kashmir 81,000 (4) North West Frontier Province 13,000 (5) Tribal territory under the political control of the Chief Commissioner of North West Frontier Province, roughly 25,500
Approximately 136,000 square miles may be classed as highlands and 117,000 as plains, and these may be distributed as follows over the above divisions:
Highlands Plains sq. miles sq. miles
(1) Panjab, British 11,000 86,000 (2) Panjab, Native States 12,000 24,500 (3) Kashmir 81,000 — (4) North West Frontier Province 6,500 6,500 (5) Tribal Territory 25,500 —
On the north the highlands include the Himalayan and sub-Himalayan (Siwalik) tracts to the south and east of the Indus, and north of that river the Muztagh-Karakoram range and the bleak salt plateau beyond that range reaching almost up to the Kuenlun mountains. To the west of the Indus they include those spurs of the Hindu Kush which run into Chitral and Dir, the Buner and Swat hills, the Safed Koh, the Waziristan hills, the Suliman range, and the low hills in the trans-Indus districts of the North West Frontier Province.
Boundary with China.—There is a point to the north of Hunza in Kashmir where three great mountain chains, the Muztagh from the south-east, the Hindu Kush from the south-west, and the Sarikol (an offshoot of the Kuenlun) from the north-east, meet. It is also the meeting-place of the Indian, Chinese, and Russian empires and of Afghanistan. Westwards from this the boundary of Kashmir and Chinese Turkestan runs for 350 miles (omitting curves) through a desolate upland lying well to the north of the Muztagh-Karakoram range. Finally in the north-east corner of Kashmir the frontier impinges on the great Central Asian axis of the Kuenlun. From this point it turns southwards and separates Chinese Tibet from the salt Lingzi Thang plains and the Indus valley in Kashmir, and the eastern part of the native state of Bashahr, which physically form a portion of Tibet.
Boundary with United Provinces.—The south-east corner of Bashahr is a little to the north of the great Kedarnath peak in the Central Himalaya and of the source of the Jamna. Here the frontier strikes to the west dividing Bashahr from Teri Garhwal, a native state under the control of the government of the United Provinces. Turning again to the south it runs to the junction of the Tons and Jamna, separating Teri Garhwal from Sirmur and some of the smaller Simla Hill States. Henceforth the Jamna is with small exceptions the boundary between the Panjab and the United Provinces.
Boundary with Afghanistan.—We must now return to our starting-point at the eastern extremity of the Hindu Kush, and trace the boundary with Afghanistan. The frontier runs west and south-west along the Hindu Kush to the Dorah pass dividing Chitral from the Afghan province of Wakhan, and streams which drain into the Indus from the head waters of the Oxus. At the Dorah pass it turns sharply to the south, following a great spur which parts the valley of the Chitral river (British) from that of its Afghan affluent, the Bashgol. Below the junction of the two streams at Arnawai the Chitral changes its name and becomes the Kunar. Near this point the "Durand" line begins. In 1893 an agreement was made between the Amir Abdurrahman and Sir Mortimer Durand as representative of the British Government determining the frontier line from Chandak in the valley of the Kunar, twelve miles north of Asmar, to the Persian border. Asmar is an Afghan village on the left bank of the Kunar to the south of Arnawai. In 1894 the line was demarcated along the eastern watershed of the Kunar valley to Nawakotal on the confines of Bajaur and the country of the Mohmands.
Thence the frontier, which has not been demarcated, passes through the heart of the Mohmand country to the Kabul river and beyond it to our frontier post in the Khaibar at Landikhana.
From this point the line, still undemarcated, runs on in a south-westerly direction to the Safed Koh, and then strikes west along it to the Sikaram mountain near the Paiwar Kotal at the head of the Kurram valley. From Sikaram the frontier runs south and south-east crossing the upper waters of the Kurram, and dividing our possessions from the Afghan province of Khost. This line was demarcated in 1894.
At the south of the Kurram valley the frontier sweeps round to the west leaving in the British sphere the valley of the Tochi. Turning again to the south it crosses the upper waters of the Tochi and passes round the back of Waziristan by the Shawal valley and the plains about Wana to Domandi on the Gomal river, where Afghanistan, Biluchistan, and the North West Frontier Province meet. The Waziristan boundary was demarcated in 1895.
Political and Administrative Boundaries.—The boundary described above defines spheres of influence, and only in the Kurram valley does it coincide with that of the districts for whose orderly administration we hold ourselves responsible. All we ask of Wazirs, Afridis, or Mohmands is to leave our people at peace; we have no concern with their quarrels or blood feuds, so long as they abide in their mountains or only leave them for the sake of lawful gain. Our administrative boundary, which speaking broadly we took over from the Sikhs, usually runs at the foot of the hills. A glance at the map will show that between Peshawar and Kohat the territory of the independent tribes comes down almost to the Indus. At this point the hills occupied by the Jowaki section of the Afridi tribe push out a great tongue eastwards. Our military frontier road runs through these hills, and we actually pay the tribesmen of the Kohat pass for our right of way. Another tongue of tribal territory reaches right down to the Indus, and almost severs the Peshawar and Hazara districts. Further north the frontier of Hazara lies well to the east of the Indus.
Frontier with Biluchistan.—At Domandi the frontier turns to the east, and following the Gomal river to its junction with the Zhob at Kajuri Kach forms the boundary of the two British administrations. Henceforth the general direction of the line is determined by the trend of the Suliman range. It runs south to the Vehoa pass, where the country of the Pathans of the North West Frontier Province ends and that of the Hill and Plain Biluches subject to the Panjab Government begins. From the Vehoa pass to the Kaha torrent the line is drawn so as to leave Biluch tribes with the Panjab and Pathan tribes with the Biluchistan Agency. South of the Kaha the division is between Biluch tribes, the Marris and Bugtis to the west being managed from Quetta, and the Gurchanis and Mazaris, who are largely settled in the plains, being included in Dera Ghazi Khan, the trans-Indus district of the Panjab. At the south-west corner of the Dera Ghazi Khan district the Panjab, Sind, and Biluchistan meet. From this point the short common boundary of the Panjab and Sind runs east to the Indus.
The Southern Boundary.—East of the Indus the frontier runs south-east for about fifty miles parting Sind from the Bahawalpur State, till a point is reached where Sind, Rajputana, and Bahawalpur join. A little further to the east is the southern extremity of Bahawalpur at 70 deg. 8' E. and 27 deg. 5' N. From this point a line drawn due east would at a distance of 370 miles pass a few miles to the north of the south end of Gurgaon and a few miles to the south of the border of the Narnaul tract of Patiala. Between Narnaul and the south-east corner of the Bahawalpur State the great Rajputana desert, mainly occupied in this quarter by Bikaner, thrusts northwards a huge wedge reaching almost up to the Sutlej. To the west of the wedge is Bahawalpur and to the east the British district of Hissar. The apex is less than 100 miles from Lahore, while a line drawn due south from that city to latitude 27'5 deg. north would exceed 270 miles in length. The Jaipur State lies to the south and west of Narnaul, while Gurgaon has across its southern frontiers Alwar and Bharatpur, and near the Jamna the Muttra district of the United Provinces.
MOUNTAINS, HILLS, AND PLAINS
The Great Northern Rampart.—The huge mountain rampart which guards the northern frontier of India thrusts out in the north-west a great bastion whose outer walls are the Hindu Kush and the Muztagh-Karakoram ranges. Behind the latter with a general trend from south-east to north-west are the great valley of the Indus to the point near Gilgit where it turns sharply to the south, and a succession of mountain chains and glens making up the Himalayan tract, through which the five rivers of the Panjab and the Jamna find their way to the plains. To meet trans-Indus extensions of the Himalaya the Hindu Kush pushes out from its main axis great spurs to the south, flanking the valleys which drain into the Indus either directly or through the Kabul river.
The Himalaya.—Tibet, which from the point of view of physical geography includes a large and little known area in the Kashmir State to the north of the Karakoram range, is a lofty, desolate, wind swept plateau with a mean elevation of about 15,000 feet. In the part of it situated to the north of the north-west corner of Nipal lies the Manasarowar lake, in the neighbourhood of which three great Indian rivers, the Tsanpo or Brahmaputra, the Sutlej, and the Indus, take their rise. The Indus flows to the north-west for 500 miles and then turns abruptly to the south to seek its distant home in the Indian Ocean. The Tsanpo has a still longer course of 800 miles eastwards before it too bends southwards to flow through Assam into the Bay of Bengal. Between the points where these two giant rivers change their direction there extends for a distance of 1500 miles the vast congeries of mountain ranges known collectively as the "Himalaya" or "Abode of Snow." As a matter of convenience the name is sometimes confined to the mountains east of the Indus, but geologically the hills of Buner and Swat to the north of Peshawar probably belong to the same system. In Sanskrit literature the Himalaya is also known as "Himavata," whence the classical Emodus.
The Kumaon Himalaya.—The Himalaya may be divided longitudinally into three sections, the eastern or Sikkim, the mid or Kumaon, and the north-western or Ladakh. With the first we are not concerned. The Kumaon section lies mainly in the United Provinces, but it includes the sources of the Jamna, and contains the chain in the Panjab which is at once the southern watershed of the Sutlej and the great divide between the two river systems of Northern India, the Gangetic draining into the Bay of Bengal, and the Indus carrying the enormous discharge of the north-west Himalaya, the Muztagh-Karakoram, and the Hindu Kush ranges into the Indian Ocean. Simla stands on the south-western end of this watershed, and below it the Himalaya drops rapidly to the Siwalik foot-hills and to the plains. Jakko, the deodar-clad hill round which so much of the life of the summer capital of India revolves, attains a height of 8000 feet. The highest peak within a radius of 25 miles of Simla is the Chor, which is over 12,000 feet high, and does not lose its snow cap till May. Hattu, the well-known hill above Narkanda, which is 40 miles from Simla by road, is 1000 feet lower. But further west in Bashahr the higher peaks range from 16,000 to 22,000 feet.
The Inner Himalaya or Zanskar Range.—The division of the Himalaya into the three sections named above is convenient for descriptive purposes. But its chief axis runs through all the sections. East of Nipal it strikes into Tibet not very far from the source of the Tsanpo, is soon pierced by the gorge of the Sutlej, and beyond it forms the southern watershed of the huge Indus valley. In the west this great rampart is known as the Zanskar range. For a short distance it is the boundary between the Panjab and Kashmir, separating two outlying portions of the Kangra district, Lahul and Spiti, from Ladakh. In this section the peaks are from 19,000 to 21,000 feet high, and the Baralacha pass on the road from the Kulu valley in Kangra to Leh, the capital of Ladakh, is at an elevation of about 16,500 feet. In Kashmir the Zanskar or Inner Himalaya divides the valley of the Indus from those of the Chenab and Jhelam. It has no mountain to dispute supremacy with Everest (29,000 feet), or Kinchinjunga in the Eastern Himalaya, but the inferiority is only relative. The twin peaks called Nun and Kun to the east of Srinagar exceed 23,000 feet, and in the extreme north-west the grand mountain mass of Nanga Parvat towers above the Indus to a height of 26,182 feet. The lowest point in the chain is the Zojila (11,300 feet) on the route from Srinagar, the capital of Kashmir, to Leh on the Indus
The road from Srinagar to Gilgit passes over the Burzil pass at an elevation of 13,500 feet.
The Zojila is at the top of the beautiful valley of the Sind river, a tributary of the Jhelam. The lofty Zanskar range blocks the inward flow of the monsoon, and once the Zojila is crossed the aspect of the country entirely changes. The land of forest glades and green pastures is left behind, and a region of naked and desolate grandeur begins.
"The waste of snow ... is the frontier of barren Tibet, where sandy wastes replace verdant meadows, and where the wild ridges, jutting up against the sky, are kept bare of vegetation, their strata crumbling under the destructive action of frost and water, leaving bare ribs of gaunt and often fantastic outline.... The colouring of the mountains is remarkable throughout Ladakh and nowhere more so than near the Fotula (a pass on the road to Leh to the south of the Indus gorge).... As we ascend the peaks suggest organ pipes, so vertical are the ridges, so jagged the ascending outlines. And each pipe is painted a different colour ... pale slate green, purple, yellow, grey, orange, and chocolate, each colour corresponding with a layer of the slate, shale, limestone, or trap strata" (Neve's Picturesque Kashmir, pp. 108 and 117).
In all this desolation there are tiny oases where level soil and a supply of river water permit of cultivation and of some tree growth.
Water divide near Baralacha and Rotang Passes in Kulu.—We have seen that the Indus and its greatest tributary, the Sutlej, rise beyond the Himalaya in the Tibetan plateau. The next great water divide is in the neighbourhood of the Baralacha pass and the Rotang pass, 30 miles to the south of it. The route from Simla to Leh runs at a general level of 7000 to 9000 feet along or near the Sutlej-Jamna watershed to Narkanda (8800 feet). Here it leaves the Hindustan-Tibet road and drops rapidly into the Sutlej gorge, where the Luri bridge is only 2650 feet above sea level. Rising steeply on the other side the Jalauri pass on the watershed between the Sutlej and the Bias is crossed at an elevation of 10,800 feet. A more gradual descent brings the traveller to the Bias at Larji, 3080 feet above sea level. The route then follows the course of the Bias through the beautiful Kulu valley to the Rotang pass (13,326 feet), near which the river rises. The upper part of the valley is flanked on the west by the short, but very lofty Bara Bangahal range, dividing Kulu from Kangra and the source of the Bias from that of the Ravi. Beyond the Rotang is Lahul, which is divided by a watershed from Spiti and the torrents which drain into the Sutlej. On the western side of this watershed are the sources of the Chandra and Bhaga, which unite to form the river known in the plains as the Chenab.
Mid Himalaya or Pangi Range.—The Mid Himalayan or Pangi range, striking west from the Rotang pass and the northern end of the Bara Bangahal chain, passes through the heart of Chamba dividing the valley of the Chenab (Pangi) from that of the Ravi. After entering Kashmir it crosses the Chenab near the Kolahoi cone (17,900 feet) and the head waters of the Jhelam. Thence it continues west over Haramukh (16,900 feet), which casts its shadow southwards on the Wular lake, to the valley of the Kishnganga, and probably across it to the mountains which flank the magnificent Kagan glen in Hazara.
Outer Himalaya or Dhauladhar-Pir Panjal Range.—The Outer Himalaya also starts from a point near the Rotang pass, but some way to the south of the offset of the Mid Himalayan chain. Its main axis runs parallel to the latter, and under the name of the Dhauladhar (white ridge) forms the boundary of the Chamba State and Kangra, behind whose headquarters, at Dharmsala it stands up like a huge wall. It has a mean elevation of 15,000 feet, but rises as high as 16,000. It passes from Chamba into Bhadarwah in Kashmir, and crossing the Chenab is carried on as the Pir Panjal range through the south of that State. With an elevation of only 14,000 or 15,000 feet it is a dwarf as compared with the giants of the Inner Himalayan and Muztagh-Karakoram chains. But it hides them from the dwellers in the Panjab, and its snowy crest is a very striking picture as seen in the cold weather from the plains of Rawalpindi, Jhelam, and Gujrat. The Outer Himalaya is continued beyond the gorges of the Jhelam and Kishnganga rivers in Kajnag and the hills of the Hazara district. Near the eastern extremity of the Dhauladhar section of the Outer Himalaya it sends out southwards between Kulu and Mandi a lower offshoot. This is crossed by the Babbu (9480 feet) and Dulchi passes, connecting Kulu with Kangra through Mandi. Geologically the Kulu-Mandi range appears to be continued to the east of the Bias and across the Sutlej over Hattu and the Chor to the hills near Masuri (Mussoorie), a well-known hill station in the United Provinces. Another offshoot at the western end of the Dhauladhar passes through the beautiful hill station of Dalhousie, and sinks into the low hills to the east of the Ravi, where it leaves Chamba and enters the British district of Gurdaspur.
River Valleys and Passes in the Himalaya.—While these principal chains can be traced from south-east to north-west over hundreds of miles it must be remembered that the Himalaya is a mountain mass from 150 to 200 miles broad, that the main axes are linked together by subsidiary cross chains dividing the head waters of great rivers, and flanked by long and lofty ridges running down at various angles to the gorges of these streams and their tributaries. The typical Himalayan river runs in a gorge with mountains dipping down pretty steeply to its sides. The lower slopes are cultivated, but the land is usually stony and uneven, and as a whole the crops are not of a high class. The open valleys of the Jhelam in Kashmir and of the Bias in Kulu are exceptions. Passes in the Himalaya are not defiles between high cliffs, but cross the crest of a ridge at a point where the chain is locally depressed, and snow melts soonest. In the Outer and Mid Himalaya the line of perpetual snow is at about 16,000 feet, but for six months of the year the snow-line comes down 5000 feet lower. In the Inner Himalaya and the Muztagh-Karakoram, to which the monsoon does not penetrate, the air is so dry that less snow falls and the line is a good deal higher.
Himalayan Scenery.—Certain things strike any observant traveller in the Himalaya. One is the comparative absence of running or still water, except in the height of the rainy season, away from the large rivers. The slope is so rapid that ordinary falls of rain run off with great rapidity. The mountain scenery is often magnificent and the forests are beautiful, but the absence of water robs the landscape of a charm which would make it really perfect. Where this too is present, as in the valley of the Bias in Kulu and those of the Jhelam and its tributaries in Kashmir and Hazara, the eye has its full fruition of content. Another is the silence of the forests. Bird and beast are there, but they are little in evidence. A third feature which can hardly be missed is the contrast between the northern and the southern slopes. The former will often be clothed with forest while the latter is a bare stony slope covered according to season with brown or green grass interspersed with bushes of indigo, barberry, or the hog plum (Prinsepia utilis). The reason is that the northern side enjoys much more shade, snow lies longer, and the supply of moisture is therefore greater. The grazier for the same reason is less tempted to fire the hill side in order to promote the growth of grass, a practice which is fatal to all forest growth. The rich and varied flora of the Himalaya will be referred to later.
Muztagh-Karakoram Ranges.—The Muztagh-Karakoram mountains form the northern watershed of the Indus. The range consists of more than one main axis. The name Karakoram is appropriated to the eastern part of the system which originates at E. longitude 79 deg. near the Pangong lake in the Tibetan plateau a little beyond the boundary of Kashmir. Beyond the Karakoram pass (18,550 ft.) is a lofty bleak upland with salt lakes dotted over its surface. Through this inhospitable region and over the Karakoram pass and the Sasser-la (17,500 ft.) the trade route from Yarkand to Leh runs. The road is only open for three months in the year, and the dangers and hardships are great. In 1898 Dr Bullock Workman and his wife marched along it across the Shyok river, up the valley of the Nubra, and over the Sasser-la to the Karakoram pass. The scenery is an exaggeration of that described by Dr Neve as seen on the road from the Zoji-la to Leh. There is a powerful picture of its weird repellent grandeur in the Workmans' book entitled In the Ice World of Himalaya (pp. 28-29, 30-32). The poet who had found ideas for a new Paradiso in the Vale of Kashmir might here get suggestions for a new Inferno.
The Karakoram range culminates in the north-west near the Muztagh pass in a group of majestic peaks including K 2 or Mount Godwin Austen (28,265 feet), Gasherbrum, and Masherbrum, which tower over and feed the vast Boltoro glacier. The first of these giants is the second largest mountain in the world. The Duke of the Abruzzi ascended it to the height of 24,600 feet, and so established a climbing record. The Muztagh chain carries on the northern bastion to the valley of the Hunza river and the western extremity of the Hindu Kush. It has several peaks exceeding 25,000 feet. The most famous is Rakiposhi which looks down on Hunza from a height of 25,550 feet.
The Hindu Kush.—The Muztagh chain from the south-east, the Sarikol from the north-east, and the Hindu Kush from the south-west, meet at a point to the north of Hunza. The last runs westward and south-westward for about 200 miles to the Dorah pass (14,800 feet), separating the valleys which drain into the Indus from the head waters of the Oxus, and Hunza and Gilgit in Kashmir and Chitral in British India from the Afghan province of Wakhan. The highest point in the main axis, Sad Istragh (24,171 feet), is in this section. But the finest mountain scenery in the Hindu Kush is in the great spurs it thrusts out southwards to flank the glens which feed the Gilgit and Chitral rivers. Tirach Mir towers above Chitral to a height of 25,426 feet. From Tibet to the Dorah pass the northern frontier of India is impregnable. It is pierced by one or two difficult trade routes strewn with the bones of pack animals, but no large army has ever marched across it for the invasion of India. West of the Dorah pass the general level of the Hindu Kush is a good deal lower than that of its eastern section. The vital point in the defences of India in this quarter lies near Charikar to the north of Kabul, where the chain thins out, and three practicable passes debouch on the valley of the Kabul river. It is this fact that gives the town of Kabul its great strategic importance. The highest of the three passes, the Kaoshan or Hindu Kush (dead Hindu), crosses the chain at an elevation of 14,340 feet. It took its own name from the fate that befel a Hindu army when attempting to cross it, and has handed it on to the whole range. It is the pass which the armies of Alexander and Babar used. The historical road for the invasion of India on this side has been by Charikar and the valley of the Kabul river to its junction with the Kunar below Jalalabad, thence up the Kunar valley and over one of the practicable passes which connect its eastern watershed with the Panjkora and Swat river valleys, whence the descent on Peshawar is easy. This is the route by which Alexander led the wing of the Grecian army which he commanded in person, and the one followed by Babar in 1518-19. Like Alexander, Babar fought his way through Bajaur, and crossed the Indus above Attock.
The Khaibar.—A British force advancing on Kabul from Peshawar has never marched by the Kunar and Kabul valley route. It has always taken the Khaibar road, which only follows the Kabul river for less than one-third of the 170 miles which separate Peshawar from the Amir's capital. The military road from Peshawar to Landikhana lies far to the south of the river, from which it is shut off by difficult and rugged country held by the Mohmands.
Safed Koh.—From Landikhana the political boundary runs south-west to the Safed Koh (white mountain) and is continued westwards along that range to the Paiwar Kotal or pass (8450 feet). The Safed Koh forms the watershed of the Kabul and Kurram rivers. It is a fine pine clad chain with a general level of 12,000 feet, and its skyline is rarely free from snow. It culminates in the west near Paiwar Kotal in Sikaram (15,620 feet). To the west of the Peshawar and Kohat districts is a tangle of hills and valleys formed by outlying spurs of the Safed Koh. This difficult country is in the occupation of Afridis and Orakzais, who are under our political control.
The Kurram Valley.—The line of advance into Afghanistan through the Kurram valley is easy, and Lord Roberts used it when he marched towards Kabul in 1898. After the war we annexed the valley, leaving however the head waters of the Kurram in Afghan territory. The road to Kabul leaves the river far to the south before it crosses our frontier at Paiwar Kotal.
Waziristan Hills.—Between the Kurram valley and the Gomal river is a large block of very rough mountainous country known as Waziristan from the turbulent clan which occupies it. In the north it is drained by the Tochi. Westwards of the Tochi valley the country rises into lofty mountains. The upper waters of the Tochi and its affluents drain two fine glens known as Birmal and Shawal to the west of the country of the Mahsud Wazirs. The Tochi valley is the direct route from India to Ghazni, and nine centuries ago, when that decayed town was the capital of a powerful kingdom, it must often have heard the tramp of armed men. The loftiest peaks in Waziristan, Shuidar (11,000 feet) and Pirghal (11,600 feet), overhang Birmal. Further south, Wana, our post in south-west Waziristan, overlooks from its plateau the Gomal valley.
The Gomal Pass as a trade route.—East of Kajuri Kach the Gomal flows through tribal territory to the Gomal pass from which it debouches into the plains of the Dera Ismail Khan district. "The Gomal route is the oldest of all trade routes. Down it there yearly pours a succession of kafilas (caravans) led and followed up by thousands of well-armed Pathan traders, called Powindahs, from the plains of Afghanistan to India. The Powindahs mostly belong to the Ghilzai tribes, and are not therefore true Afghans. Leaving their women and children encamped within British territory on our border, and their arms in the keeping of our frontier political officials, the Powindah makes his way southwards with his camel loads of fruit and silk, bales of camel and goat hair or sheepskin goods, carpets and other merchandise from Kabul and Bokhara, and conveys himself through the length and breadth of the Indian peninsula.... He returns yearly to the cool summits of the Afghan hills and the open grassy plains, where his countless flocks of sheep and camels are scattered for the summer grazing" (Holdich's India, pp. 80-81).
Physical features of hilly country between Peshawar and the Gomal river.—The physical features of the hill country between Peshawar and the Gomal pass may best be described in the words of Sir Thomas Holdich:
"Natural landscape beauty, indeed, may here be measured to a certain extent by altitude. The low ranges of sun-scorched, blackened ridge and furrow formation which form the approaches to the higher altitudes of the Afghan upland, and which are almost as regularly laid out by the hand of nature in some parts of the frontier as are the parallels ... of the engineer who is besieging a fortress—these are by no means 'things of beauty,' and it is this class of formation and this form of barren desolation that is most familiar to the frontier officer.... Shades of delicate purple and grey will not make up for the absence of the living green of vegetation.... But with higher altitudes a cooler climate and snow-fed soil is found, and as soon as vegetation grasps a root-hold there is the beginning of fine scenery. The upper pine-covered slopes of the Safed Koh are as picturesque as those of the Swiss Alps; they are crowned by peaks whose wonderful altitudes are frozen beyond the possibility of vegetation, and are usually covered with snow wherever snow can lie. In Waziristan, hidden away in the higher recesses of its great mountains, are many valleys of great natural beauty, where we find the spreading poplar and the ilex in all the robust growth of an indigenous flora.... Among the minor valleys Birmal perhaps takes precedence by right of its natural beauty. Here are stretches of park-like scenery where grass-covered slopes are dotted with clumps of deodar and pine and intersected with rivulets hidden in banks of fern; soft green glades open out to view from every turn in the folds of the hills, and above them the silent watch towers of Pirghal and Shuidar ... look down from their snow-clad heights across the Afghan uplands to the hills beyond Ghazni." (Holdich's India, pp. 81-82.)
The Suliman Range.—A well-marked mountain chain runs from the Gomal to the extreme south-west corner of the Dera Ghazi Khan district where the borders of Biluchistan, Sind, and the Panjab meet. It culminates forty miles south of the Gomal in the fine Kaisargarh mountain (11,295 feet), which is a very conspicuous object from the plains of the Derajat. On the side of Kaisargarh there is a shrine called Takht i Suliman or Throne of Solomon, and this is the name by which Englishmen usually know the mountain, and which has been passed on to the whole range. Proceeding southwards the general elevation of the chain drops steadily. But Fort Munro, the hill station of the Dera Ghazi Khan district, 200 miles south of the Takht, still stands 6300 feet above sea level, and it looks across at the fine peak of Ekbhai, which is more than 1000 feet higher. In the south of the Dera Ghazi Khan district the general level of the chain is low, arid the Giandari hill, though only 4160 feet above the sea, stands out conspicuously. Finally near where the three jurisdictions meet the hills melt into the Kachh Gandava plain. Sir Thomas Holdich's description of the rugged Pathan hills applies also to the Suliman range. Kaisargarh is a fine limestone mountain crowned by a forest of the edible chilgoza pine. But the ordinary tree growth, where found at all, is of a much humbler kind, consisting of gnarled olives and dwarf palms.
Passes and torrents in Suliman Hills.—The drainage of the western slopes of the Suliman range finding no exit on that side has had to wear out ways for itself towards the plains which lie between the foot of the hills and the Indus. This is the explanation of the large number of passes, about one hundred, which lead from the plains into the Suliman hills. The chief from north to south are the Vehoa, the Sangarh, the Khair, the Kaha, the Chachar, and the Siri, called from the torrents which flow through them to the plains. There is an easy route through the Chachar to Biluchistan. But unfortunately the water of the torrent is brackish.
Sub Himalaya or Siwaliks.—In its lowest ridges the Himalaya drops to a height of about 5000 feet. But the traveller to any of the summer resorts in the mountains passes through a zone of lower hills interspersed sometimes with valleys or "duns." These consist of Tertiary sandstones, clays, and boulder conglomerates, the debris in fact which the Himalaya has dropped in the course of ages. To this group of hills and valleys the general name of Siwaliks is given. East of the Jhelam it includes the Nahan hills to the north of Ambala, the low hills of Kangra, Hoshyarpur, Gurdaspur, and Jammu, and the Pabbi hills in Gujrat. But it is to the west of the Jhelam that the system has its greatest extension. Practically the whole of the soil of the plains of the Attock, Rawalpindi, and Jhelam districts consists of disintegrated Siwalik sandstone, and differs widely in appearance and agricultural quality from the alluvium of the true Panjab plains. The low hills of these districts belong to the same system, but the Salt Range is only in part Siwalik. Altogether Siwalik deposits in the Panjab cover an area of 13,000 square miles. Beyond the Indus the hills of the Kohat district and a part of the Suliman range are of Tertiary age.
The Great Panjab Plain.—The passage from the highlands to the plains is as a rule abrupt, and the contrast between the two is extraordinary. This is true without qualification of the tract between the Jamna and the Jhelam. It is equally true of British districts west of the Jhelam and south of the Salt Range and of lines drawn from Kalabagh on the west bank of the Indus southwards to Paniala and thence north-west through the Pezu pass to the Waziristan hills. In all that vast plain, if we except the insignificant hills in the extreme south-west of the province ending to the north in the historic ridge at Delhi, some hillocks of gneiss near Tosham in Hissar, and the curious little isolated rocks at Kirana, Chiniot, and Sangla near the Chenab and Jhelam, the only eminences are petty ridges of windblown sand and the "thehs" or mounds which represent the accumulated debris of ancient village sites. At the end of the Jurassic period and later this great plain was part of a sea bed. Far removed as the Indian ocean now is the height above sea level of the Panjab plain east of the Jhelam is nowhere above 1000 feet. Delhi and Lahore are both just above the 700 feet line. The hills mentioned above are humble time-worn outliers of the very ancient Aravalli system, to which the hills of Rajputana belong. Kirana and Sangla were already of enormous age, when they were islands washed by the waves of the Tertiary sea. A description of the different parts of the vast Panjab plain, its great stretches of firm loam, and its tracts of sand and sand hills, which the casual observer might regard as pure desert, will be given in the paragraphs devoted to the different districts.
The Salt Range.—The tract west of the Jhelam, and bounded on the south by the Salt Range cis-Indus, and trans-Indus by the lines mentioned above, is of a more varied character. Time worn though the Salt Range has become by the waste of ages, it still rises at Sakesar, near its western extremity, to a height of 5000 feet. The eastern part of the range is mostly in the Jhelam district, and there the highest point is Chail (3700 feet). The hill of Tilla (3242 feet), which is a marked feature of the landscape looking westwards from Jhelam cantonment, is on a spur running north-east from the main chain. The Salt Range is poorly wooded, the dwarf acacia or phulahi (Acacia modesta), the olive, and the sanattha shrub (Dodonea viscosa) are the commonest species. But these jagged and arid hills include some not infertile valleys, every inch of which is put under crop by the crowded population. To geologists the range is of special interest, including as it does at one end of the scale Cambrian beds of enormous antiquity and at the other rocks of Tertiary age. Embedded in the Cambrian strata there are great deposits of rock salt at Kheora, where the Mayo mine is situated. At Kalabagh the Salt Range reappears on the far side of the Indus. Here the salt comes to the surface, and its jagged pinnacles present a remarkable appearance.
Country north of the Salt Range.—The country to the north of the Salt Range included in the districts of Jhelam, Rawalpindi, and Attock is often ravine-bitten and seamed with the white sandy beds of torrents. Generally speaking it is an arid precarious tract, but there are fertile stretches which will be mentioned in the descriptions of the districts. The general height of the plains north of the Salt Range is from 1000 feet to 2000 feet above sea level. The rise between Lahore and Rawalpindi is just over a thousand feet. Low hills usually form a feature of the landscape, pleasing at a distance or when softened by the evening light, but bare and jagged on a nearer view. The chief hills are the Margalla range between Hazara and Rawalpindi, the Kalachitta and the Khairimurat hills running east and west through Attock and the very dry and broken Narrara hills on the right bank of the Indus in the same district. Between the Margalla and Kalachitta hills is the Margalla pass on the main road from Rawalpindi to the passage of the Indus at Attock, and therefore a position of considerable strategical importance. The Kalachitta (black and white) chain is so called because the north side is formed of nummulitic limestone and the south mainly of a dark purple sandstone. The best tree-growth is therefore on the north side.
Peshawar, Kohat, and Bannu.—Across the Indus the Peshawar and Bannu districts are basins ringed with hills and drained respectively by the Kabul and Kurram rivers with their affluents. Between these two basins lies the maze of bare broken hills and valleys which make up the Kohat district. The cantonment of Kohat is 1700 feet above sea level and no hill in the district reaches 5000 feet. Near the Kohat border in the south-west of the Peshawar district are the Khattak hills, the culmination of which at Ghaibana Sir has a height of 5136 feet, and the military sanitarium of Cherat in the same chain is 600 feet lower. On the east the Maidani hills part Bannu from Isakhel, the trans-Indus tahsil of Mianwali, and on the south the Marwat hills divide it from Dera Ismail Khan. Both are humble ranges. The highest point in the Marwat hills is Shekhbudin, a bare and dry limestone rock rising to an elevation of over 4500 feet.
[Footnote 1: They are held to be of Turkish origin.]
The Panjab Rivers.—"Panjab" is a Persian compound word, meaning "five waters," and strictly speaking the word denotes the country between the valley of the Jhelam and that of the Sutlej. The intermediate rivers from west to east are the Chenab, the Ravi, and the Bias. Their combined waters at last flow into the Panjnad or "five rivers" at the south-west corner of the Multan district, and the volume of water which 44 miles lower down the Panjnad carries into the Indus is equal to the discharge of the latter. The first Aryan settlers knew this part of India as the land of the seven rivers (sapla sindhavas), adding to the five mentioned above the Indus and the Sarasvati. The old Vedic name is more appropriate than Panjab if we substitute the Jamna for the Sarasvati or Sarusti, which is now a petty stream.
River Valleys.—The cold weather traveller who is carried from Delhi to Rawalpindi over the great railway bridges at points chosen because there the waters of the rivers are confined by nature, or can be confined by art, within moderate limits, has little idea of what one of these rivers is like in flood time. He sees that, even at such favoured spots, between the low banks there is a stretch of sand far exceeding in width the main channel, where a considerable volume of water is running, and the minor depressions, in which a sluggish and shallow flow may still be found. If, leaving the railway, he crosses a river by some bridge of boats or local ferry, he will find still wider expanses of sand sometimes bare and dry and white, at others moist and dark and covered with dwarf tamarisk. He may notice that, before he reaches the sand and the tamarisk scrub, he leaves by a gentle or abrupt descent the dry uplands, and passes into a lower, greener, and perhaps to his inexperienced eye more fertile seeming tract. This is the valley, often miles broad, through which the stream has moved in ever-shifting channels in the course of centuries. He finds it hard to realize that, when the summer heats melt the Himalayan snows, and the monsoon currents, striking against the northern mountain walls, are precipitated in torrents of rain, the rush of water to the plains swells the river 20, 30, 40, or even 50 fold. The sandy bed then becomes full from bank to bank, and the silt laden waters spill over into the cultivated lowlands beyond. Accustomed to the stable streams of his own land, he cannot conceive the risks the riverside farmer in the Panjab runs of having fruitful fields smothered in a night with barren sand, or lands and well and house sucked into the river-bed. So great and sudden are the changes, bad and good, wrought by river action that the loss and gain have to be measured up year by year for revenue purposes. Nor is the visitor likely to imagine that the main channel may in a few seasons become a quite subsidiary or wholly deserted bed. Like all streams, e.g. the Po, which flow from the mountains into a flat terrain, the Panjab rivers are perpetually silting up their beds, and thus, by their own action, becoming diverted into new channels or into existing minor ones, which are scoured out afresh. If our traveller, leaving the railway at Rawalpindi, proceeds by tonga to the capital of Kashmir, he will find between Kohala and Baramula another surprise awaiting him. The noble but sluggish river of the lowlands, which he crossed at the town of Jhelam, is here a swift and deep torrent, flowing over a boulder bed, and swirling round waterworn rocks in a gorge hemmed in by mountains. That is the typical state of the Himalayan rivers, though the same Jhelam above Baramula is an exception, flowing there sluggishly through a very flat valley into a shallow lake.
The Indus Basin.—The river Sindh (Sanskrit, Sindhu), more familiar to us under its classical name of the Indus, must have filled with astonishment every invader from the west, and it is not wonderful that they called after it the country that lay beyond. Its basin covers an area of 373,000 square miles. Confining attention to Asia these figures, large though they seem, are far exceeded by those of the Yangtsze-Kiang. The area of which a description is attempted in this book is, with the exception of a strip along the Jamna and the part of Kashmir lying beyond the Muztagh-Karakoram range, all included in the Indus basin. But it does not embrace the whole of it. Part is in Tibet, part in Afghanistan and Biluchistan, and part in Sindh, through which province the Indus flows for 450 miles, or one-quarter of its whole course of 1800 miles. It seems likely that the Jamna valley was not always an exception, or at least that that river once flowed westwards through Rajputana to the Indian ocean. The five great rivers of the Panjab all drain into the Indus, and the Ghagar with its tributary, the Sarusti, which now, even when in flood, loses itself in the sands of Bikaner, probably once flowed down the old Hakra bed in Bahawalpur either into the Indus or by an independent bed now represented by an old flood channel of the Indus in Sindh, the Hakro or Nara, which passes through the Rann of Kachh.
The Indus outside British India.—To the north of the Manasarowar lake in Tibet is Kailas, the Hindu Olympus. On the side of this mountain the Indus is said to rise at a height of 17,000 feet. After a course of 200 miles or more it crosses the south-east boundary of the Kashmir State at an elevation of 13,800 feet. From the Kashmir frontier to Mt Haramosh west of Gilgit it flows steadily to the north-west for 350 miles. After 125 miles Leh, the capital of Ladakh, is reached at a height of 10,500 feet, and here the river is crossed by the trade route to Yarkand. A little below Leh the Indus receives the Zanskar, which drains the south-east of Kashmir. After another 150 miles it flows through the basin, in which Skardo, the principal town in Baltistan, is situated. Above Skardo a large tributary, the Shyok, flows in from the east at an elevation of 8000 feet. The Shyok and its affluent, the Nubra, rise in the giant glaciers to the south-west of the Karakoram pass. After the Skardo basin is left behind the descent is rapid. The river rushes down a tremendous gorge, where it appears to break through the western Himalaya, skirts Haramosh, and at a point twenty-five miles east of Gilgit bends abruptly to the south. Shortly after it is joined from the west by the Gilgit river, and here the bed is about 4000 feet above sea level. Continuing to flow south for another twenty miles it resumes its westernly course to the north of Nanga Parvat and persists in it for 100 miles. Our political post of Chilas lies in this section on the south bank. Fifty or sixty miles west of Chilas the Indus turns finally to the south. From Jalkot, where the Kashmir frontier is left, to Palosi below the Mahaban mountain it flows for a hundred miles through territory over which we only exercise political control. Near Palosi, 812 miles from the source, the river enters British India. In Kashmir the Indus and the Shyok in some places flow placidly over alluvial flats, and at others with a rapid and broken current through narrow gorges. At Skardo their united stream is said, even in winter, to be 500 feet wide and nine or ten feet deep. If one of the deep gorges, as sometimes happens, is choked by a landslip, the flood that follows when the barrier finally bursts may spread devastation hundreds of miles away. To the north of the fertile Chach plain in Attock there is a wide stretch of land along the Indus, which still shows in its stony impoverished soil the effects of the great flood of 1841.
The Indus in British India.—After reaching British India the Indus soon becomes the boundary dividing Hazara and Peshawar, two districts of the North West Frontier Province. Lower down it parts Peshawar from the Panjab district of Attock. In this section after a time the hills recede on both sides, and the stream is wide and so shallow that it is fordable in places in the cold weather. There are islands, ferry boats and rafts can ply, and the only danger is from sudden freshets. Ohind, where Alexander crossed, is in this section. A more famous passage is at Attock just below the junction of the Kabul river. Here the heights again approach the Indus on either bank. The volume of water is vastly increased by the union of the Kabul river, which brings down the whole drainage of the southern face of the Hindu Kush. From the north it receives near Jalalabad the Kunar river, and near Charsadda in Peshawar the Swat, which with its affluent the Panjkora drains Dir, Bajaur, and Swat. In the cold weather looking northwards from the Attock fort one sees the Kabul or Landai as a blue river quietly mingling with the Indus, and in the angle between them a stretch of white sand. But during floods the junction is the scene of a wild turmoil of waters. At Attock there are a railway bridge, a bridge of boats, and a ferry. The bed of the stream is 2000 feet over sea level. For ninety miles below Attock the river is confined between bare and broken hills, till it finally emerges into the plains from the gorge above Kalabagh, where the Salt Range impinges on the left bank. Between Attock and Kalabagh the right bank is occupied by Peshawar and Kohat and the left by Attock and Mianwali. In this section the Indus is joined by the Haro and Soan torrents, and spanned at Khushalgarh by a railway bridge. This is the only other masonry bridge crossing it in the Panjab. Elsewhere the passage has to be made by ferry boats or by boat bridges, which are taken down in the rainy season. At Kalabagh the height above sea level is less than 1000 feet. When it passes the western extremity of the Salt Range the river spreads out into a wide lake-like expanse of waters. It has now performed quite half of its long journey. Henceforth it receives no addition from the east till the Panjnad in the south-west corner of the Muzaffargarh district brings to it the whole tribute of the five rivers of the Panjab. Here, though the Indian ocean is still 500 miles distant, the channel is less than 300 feet above the sea. From the west it receives an important tributary in the Kurram, which, with its affluent the Tochi, rises in Afghanistan. The torrents from the Suliman Range are mostly used up for irrigation before they reach the Indus, but some of them mingle their waters with it in high floods. Below Kalabagh the Indus is a typical lowland river of great size, with many sandy islands in the bed and a wide valley subject to its inundations. Opposite Dera Ismail Khan the valley is seventeen miles across. As a plains river the Indus runs at first through the Mianwali district of the Panjab, then divides Mianwali from Dera Ismail Khan, and lastly parts Muzaffargarh and the Bahawalpur State from the Panjab frontier district of Dera Ghazi Khan.
The Jhelam.—The Jhelam, the most westernly of the five rivers of the Panjab, is called the Veth in Kashmir and locally in the Panjab plains the Vehat. These names correspond to the Bihat of the Muhammadan historians and the Hydaspes of the Greeks, and all go back to the Sanskrit Vitasta. Issuing from a deep pool at Vernag to the east of Islamabad in Kashmir it becomes navigable just below that town, and flows north-west in a lazy stream for 102 miles through Srinagar, the summer capital, into the Wular lake, and beyond it to Baramula. The banks are quite low and often cultivated to the river's edge. But across the flat valley there is on either side a splendid panorama of mountains. From Baramula the character of the Jhelam suddenly changes, and for the next 70 miles to Kohala, where the traveller crosses by a fine bridge into the Panjab, it rushes down a deep gorge, whose sides are formed by the Kajnag mountains on the right, and the Pir Panjal on the left, bank. Between Baramula and Kohala there is a drop from 5000 to 2000 feet. At Domel, the stage before Kohala the Jhelam receives from the north the waters of the Kishnganga, and lower down it is joined by the Kunhar, which drains the Kagan glen in Hazara. A little above Kohala it turns sharply to the south, continuing its character as a mountain stream hemmed in by the hills of Rawalpindi on the right bank and of the Punch State on the left. The hills gradually sink lower and lower, but on the left side only disappear a little above the cantonment of Jhelam, where there is a noble railway bridge. From Jhelam onwards the river is of the usual plains' type. After dividing the districts of Jhelam (right bank) and Gujrat (left), it flows through the Shahpur and Jhang districts, falling finally into the Chenab at Trimmu, 450 miles from its source. There is a second railway bridge at Haranpur on the Sind Sagar line, and a bridge of boats at Khushab, in the Shahpur district. The noblest and most-varied scenery in the north-west Himalaya is in the catchment area of the Jhelam. The Kashmir valley and the valleys which drain into the Jhelam from the north, the Liddar, the Lolab, the Sind, and the Kagan glen, display a wealth of beauty unequalled elsewhere. Nor does this river wholly lose its association with beauty in the plains. Its very rich silt gives the lands on its banks the green charm of rich crops and pleasant trees.
The Chenab.—The Chenab (more properly Chinab or river of China) is the Asikni of the Vedas and the Akesines of the Greek historians. It is formed by the union of the Chandra and Bhaga, both of which rise in Lahul near the Baralacha pass. Having become the Chandrabhaga the river flows through Pangi in Chamba and the south-east of Kashmir. Near Kishtwar it breaks through the Pir Panjal range, and thenceforwards receives the drainage of its southern slopes. At Akhnur it becomes navigable and soon after it enters the Panjab district of Sialkot. A little later it is joined from the west by the Tawi, the stream above which stands Jammu, the winter capital of Kashmir. The Chenab parts Sialkot and Gujranwala on the left bank from Gujrat and Shahpur on the right. At Wazirabad, near the point where Sialkot, Gujrat, and Gujranwala meet, it is crossed by the Alexandra railway bridge. Leaving Shahpur and Gujranwala behind, the Chenab flows through Jhang to its junction with the Jhelam at Trimmu. In this section there is a second railway bridge at Chund Bharwana. The united stream runs on under the name of Chenab to be joined on the north border of the Multan district by the Ravi and on its southern border by the Sutlej. Below its junction with the latter the stream is known as the Panjnad. In the plains the Chenab cannot be called an attractive river, and its silt is far inferior to that of the Jhelam.
The Ravi.—The Ravi was known to the writers of the Vedic hymns as the Parushni, but is called in classical Sanskrit Iravati, whence the Hydraotes of the Greek historians. It rises near the Rotang pass in Kangra, and flows north-west through the southern part of Chamba. Below the town of Chamba, it runs as a swift slaty-blue mountain stream, and here it is spanned by a fine bridge. Passing on to the north of the hill station of Dalhousie it reaches the Kashmir border, and turning to the south-west flows along it to Basoli where Kashmir, Chamba, and the British district of Gurdaspur meet. At this point it is 2000 feet above the sea level. It now forms the boundary of Kashmir and Gurdaspur, and finally near Madhopur, where the head-works of the Bari Doab canal are situated, it passes into the Gurdaspur district. Shortly after it is joined from the north by a large torrent called the Ujh, which rises in the Jammu hills. After reaching the Sialkot border the Ravi parts that district first from Gurdaspur and then from Amritsar, and, passing through the west of Lahore, divides Montgomery and Lyallpur, and flowing through the north of Multan joins the Chenab near the Jhang border. In Multan there is a remarkable straight reach in the channel known as the Sidhnai, which has been utilized for the site of the head-works of a small canal. The Degh, a torrent which rises in the Jammu hills and has a long course through the Sialkot and Gujranwala districts, joins the Ravi when in flood in the north of the Lyallpur district. But its waters will now be diverted into the river higher up in order to safeguard the Upper Chenab canal. Lahore is on the left bank of the Ravi. It is a mile from the cold weather channel, but in high floods the waters have often come almost up to the Fort. At Lahore the North Western Railway and the Grand Trunk Road are carried over the Ravi by masonry bridges. There is a second railway bridge over the Sidhnai reach in Multan. Though the Ravi, like the Jhelam, has a course of 450 miles, it has a far smaller catchment area, and is really a somewhat insignificant stream. In the cold weather, the canal takes such a heavy toll from it that below Madhopur the supply of water is mainly drawn from the Ujh, and in Montgomery one may cross the bed dryshod for months together. The valley of the Ravi is far narrower than those of the rivers described in the preceding paragraphs, and the floods are most uncertain, but when they occur are of very great value.
The Bias.—The Bias (Sanskrit, Vipasa; Greek, Hyphasis) rises near the Rotang pass at a height of about 13,000 feet. Its head-waters are divided from those of the Ravi by the Bara Bangahal range. It flows for about sixty miles through the beautiful Kulu valley to Larji (3000 feet). It has at first a rapid course, but before it reaches Sultanpur (4000 feet), the chief village in Kulu, some thirty miles from the source, it has become, at least in the cold weather, a comparatively peaceful stream fringed with alder thickets. Heavy floods, however, sometimes cover fields and orchards with sand and boulders. There is a bridge at Manali (6100 feet), a very lovely spot, another below Nagar, and a third at Larji. Near Larji the river turns to the west down a bold ravine and becomes for a time the boundary between Kulu and the Mandi State. Near the town of Mandi, where it is bridged, it bends again, and winds in a north-west and westerly direction through low hills in the south of Kangra till it meets the Siwaliks on the Hoshyarpur border. In this reach there is a bridge of boats at Dera Gopipur on the main road from Jalandhar and Hoshyarpur to Dharmsala. Elsewhere in the south of Kangra the traveller can cross without difficulty on a small bed supported on inflated skins. Sweeping round the northern end of the Siwaliks the Bias, having after long parting again approached within about fifteen miles of the Ravi, turns definitely to the south, forming henceforth the dividing line between Hoshyarpur and Kapurthala (left bank) and Gurdaspur and Amritsar (right). Finally above the Harike ferry at a point where Lahore, Amritsar, Ferozepur, and Kapurthala nearly meet, it falls into the Sutlej. The North Western Railway crosses it by a bridge near the Bias station and at the same place there is a bridge of boats for the traffic on the Grand Trunk Road. The chief affluents are the Chakki, the torrent which travellers to Dharmsala cross by a fine bridge twelve miles from the railhead at Pathankot, and the Black Bein in Hoshyarpur and Kapurthala. The latter is a winding drainage channel, which starts in a swamp in the north of the Hoshyarpur district. The Bias has a total course of 390 miles. Only for about eighty miles or so is it a true river of the plains, and its floods do not spread far.
The Sutlej.—The Sutlej is the Shatadru of Vedic hymns and the Zaradros of Greek writers. The peasant of the Panjab plains knows it as the Nili or Ghara. After the Indus it is the greatest of Panjab rivers, and for its source we have to go back to the Manasarowar lakes in Tibet. From thence it flows for 200 miles in a north-westerly direction to the British frontier near Shipki. A little beyond the Spiti river brings it the drainage of the large tract of that name in Kangra and of part of Western Tibet. From Shipki it runs for forty miles in deep gorges through Kunawar in the Bashahr State to Chini, a beautiful spot near the Wangtu bridge, where the Hindustan-Tibet road crosses to the left bank. A little below Chini the Baspa flows in from the southeast. The fall between the source and Chini is from 15,000 to 7500 feet. There is magnificent cliff scenery at Rogi in this reach. Forty miles below Chini the capital of Bashahr, Rampur, on the south bank, is only 3300 feet above sea level. There is a second bridge at Rampur, and from about this point the river becomes the boundary of Bashahr and Kulu, the route to which from Simla passes over the Luri bridge (2650 feet) below Narkanda. Beyond Luri the Sutlej runs among low hills through several of the Simla Hill States. It pierces the Siwaliks at the Hoshyarpur border and then turns to the south, maintaining that trend till Rupar and the head-works of the Sirhind canal are reached. For the next hundred miles to the Bias junction the general direction is west. Above the Harike ferry the Sutlej again turns, and flows steadily, though with many windings, to the south-west till it joins the Chenab at the south corner of the Multan district. There are railway bridges at Phillaur, Ferozepur, and Adamwahan. In the plains the Sutlej districts are—on the right bank Hoshyarpur, Jalandhar, Lahore, and Montgomery, and on the left Ambala, Ludhiana and Ferozepur. Below Ferozepur the river divides Montgomery and Multan from Bahawalpur (left bank). The Sutle; has a course of 900 miles, and a large catchment area in the hills. Notwithstanding the heavy toll taken by the Sirhind canal, its floods spread pretty far in Jalandhar and Ludhiana and below the Bias junction many monsoon canals have been dug which inundate a large area in the lowlands of the districts on either bank and of Bahawalpur. The dry bed of the Hakra, which can be traced through Bahawalpur, Bikaner, and Sindh, formerly carried the waters of the Sutlej to the sea.
The Ghagar and the Sarusti.—The Ghagar, once a tributary of the Hakra, rises within the Sirmur State in the hills to the east of Kalka. A few miles south of Kalka it crosses a narrow neck of the Ambala district, and the bridge on the Ambala-Kalka railway is in this section. The rest of its course, till it loses itself in the sands of Bikaner, is chiefly in Patiala and the Karnal and Hissar districts. It is joined by the Umla torrent in Karnal and lower down the Sarusti unites with it in Patiala just beyond the Karnal border. It is hard to believe that the Sarusti of to-day is the famous Sarasvati of the Vedas, though the little ditch-like channel that bears the name certainly passes beside the sacred sites of Thanesar and Pehowa. A small sandy torrent bearing the same name rises in the low hills in the north-east of the Ambala district, but it is doubtful if its waters, which finally disappear into the ground, ever reach the Thanesar channel. That seems rather to originate in the overflow of a rice swamp in the plains, and in the cold weather the bed is usually dry. In fact, till the Sarusti receives above Pehowa the floods of the Markanda torrent, it is a most insignificant stream. The Markanda, when in flood, carries a large volume of water, and below the junction the small channel of the Sarusti cannot carry the tribute received, which spreads out into a shallow lake called the Sainsa jhil. This has been utilized for the supply of the little Sarusti canal, which is intended to do the work formerly effected in a rude way by throwing bands or embankments across the bed of the stream, and forcing the water over the surrounding lands. The same wasteful form of irrigation was used on a large scale on the Ghagar and is still practised on its upper reaches. Lower down earthen bands have been superceded by a masonry weir at Otu in the Hissar district. The northern and southern Ghagar canals, which irrigate lands in Hissar and Bikaner, take off from this weir.
Action of Torrents.—The Ghagar is large enough to exhibit all the three stages which a cho or torrent of intermittent flow passes through. Such a stream begins in the hills with a well-defined boulder-strewn bed, which is never dry. Reaching the plains the bed of a cho becomes a wide expanse of white sand, hardly below the level of the adjoining country, with a thread of water passing down it in the cold weather. But from time to time in the rainy season the channel is full from bank to bank and the waters spill far and wide over the fields. Sudden spates sometimes sweep away men and cattle before they can get across. If, as in Hoshyarpur, the chos flow into a rich plain from hills composed of friable sandstone and largely denuded of tree-growth, they are in their second stage most destructive. After long delay an Act was passed in 1900, which gives the government large powers for the protection of trees in the Siwaliks and the reclamation of torrent beds in the plains. The process of recovery cannot be rapid, but a measure of success has already been attained. It must not be supposed that the action of chos in this second stage is uniformly bad. Some carry silt as well as sand, and the very light loam which the great Markanda cho has spread over the country on its banks is worth much more to the farmer than the stiff clay it has overlaid. Many chos do not pass into the third stage, when all the sand has been dropped, and the bed shrinks into a narrow ditch-like channel with steep clay banks. The inundations of torrents like the Degh and the Ghagar after this stage is reached convert the soil into a stiff impervious clay, where flood-water will lie for weeks without being absorbed into the soil. In Karnal the wretched and fever-stricken tract between the Ghagar and the Sarusti known as the Naili is of this character.
The Jamna.—The Jamna is the Yamuna of Sanskrit writers. Ptolemy's and Pliny's versions, Diamouna and Jomanes, do not deviate much from the original. It rises in the Kumaon Himalaya, and, where it first meets the frontier of the Simla Hill States, receives from the north a large tributary called the Tons. Henceforth, speaking broadly, the Jamna is the boundary of the Panjab and the United Provinces. On the Panjab bank are from north to south the Sirmur State, Ambala, Karnal, Rohtak, Delhi, and Gurgaon. The river leaves the Panjab where Gurgaon and the district of Mathra, which belongs to the United Provinces, meet, and finally falls into the Ganges at Allahabad. North of Mathra Delhi is the only important town on its banks. The Jamna is crossed by railway bridges between Delhi and Meerut and between Ambala and Saharanpur.
Changes in Rivers.—Allusion has already been made to the changes which the courses of Panjab rivers are subject to in the plains. The Indus below Kalabagh once ran through the heart of what is now the Thal desert. We know that in 1245 A.D. Multan was in the Sind Sagar Doab between the Indus and the united streams of the Jhelam, Chenab, and Ravi. The Bias had then no connection with the Sutlej, but ran in a bed of its own easily to be traced to-day in the Montgomery and Multan districts, and joined the Indus between Multan and Uch. The Sutlej was still flowing in the Hakra bed. Indeed its junction with the Bias near Harike, which probably led to a complete change in the course of the Bias, seems only to have taken place within the last 150 years.
[Footnote 2: Raverty's "The Mehran of Sind and its Tributaries," in Journal of Asiatic Society of Bengal, 1897.]
GEOLOGY AND MINERAL RESOURCES
Extent of Geological Record.—Although the main part of the Panjab plain is covered by a mantle of comparatively recent alluvium, the provinces described in this book display a more complete record of Indian geological history than any other similar area in the country. The variety is so great that no systematic or sufficient description could be attempted in a short chapter, and it is not possible, therefore, to do more in these few pages than give brief sketches of the patches of unusual interest.
Aravalli System.—In the southern and south-eastern districts of the Panjab there are exposures of highly folded and metamorphosed rocks which belong to the most ancient formations in India. These occupy the northern end of the Aravalli hills, which form but a relic of what must have been at one time a great mountain range, stretching roughly south-south-west through Rajputana into the Bombay Presidency. The northern ribs of the Aravalli series disappear beneath alluvial cover in the Delhi district, but the rocks still underlie the plains to the west and north-west, their presence being revealed by the small promontories that peep through the alluvium near the Chenab river, standing up as small hills near Chiniot in the Shahpur, Jhang, and Lyallpur districts.
The Salt Range in the Jhelam and Shahpur districts, with a western continuation in the Mianwali district to and beyond the Indus, is the most interesting part of the Panjab to the geologist. It contains notable records of three distinct eras in geological history. In association with the well-known beds of rock-salt, which are being extensively mined at Kheora, occur the most ancient fossiliferous formations known in India, corresponding in age with the middle and lower part of the Cambrian system of Europe. These very ancient strata immediately overlie the red marls and associated rock-salt beds, and it is possible that they have been thrust over bodily to occupy this position, as we have no parallel elsewhere for the occurrence of great masses of salt in formation older than the Cambrian.
The second fragment of geological history preserved in the Salt Range is very much younger, beginning with rocks which were formed in the later part of the Carboniferous period. The most remarkable feature in this fragment is a boulder-bed, resting unconformably on the Cambrian strata and including boulders of various shapes and sizes, which are often faceted and striated in a way indicative of glacial action. Several of the boulders belong to rocks of a peculiar and unmistakable character, such as are found in situ on the western flanks of the Aravalli Range, some 750 miles to the south. The glacial conditions which gave rise to these boulder-beds were presumably contemporaneous with those that produced the somewhat similar formation lying at the base of the great coal-bearing system in the Indian peninsula. The glacial boulder-bed thus offers indirect evidence as to the age of the Indian coal-measures, for immediately above this bed in the Salt Range there occur sandstones containing fossils which have affinities with the Upper Carboniferous formations of Australia, and on these sandstones again there lie alternations of shales and limestones containing an abundance of fossils that are characteristic of the Permo-Carboniferous rocks of Russia. These are succeeded by an apparently conformable succession of beds of still younger age, culminating in a series of shales, sandstones, and limestones of unmistakably Triassic age.
There is then an interruption in the record, and the next younger series preserved occurs in the western part of the Salt Range as well as in the hills beyond the Indus. This formation is of Upper Jurassic age, corresponding to the well-known beds of marine origin preserved in Cutch. Then follows again a gap in the record, and the next most interesting series of formations found in the Salt Range become of great importance from the economic as well as from the purely scientific point of view; these are the formations of Tertiary age.
The oldest of the Tertiary strata include a prominent limestone containing Nummulitic fossils, which are characteristic of these Lower Tertiary beds throughout the world. Here, as in many parts of North-Western India, the Nummulitic limestones are associated with coal which has been largely worked. The country between the Salt Range plateau and the hilly region away to the north is covered by a great stretch of comparatively young Tertiary formations, which were laid down in fresh water after the sea had been driven back finally from this region. The incoming of fresh-water conditions was inaugurated by the formation of beds which are regarded as equivalent in age to those known as the Upper Nari in Sind and Eastern Baluchistan, but the still later deposits, belonging to the well-known Siwalik series, are famous on account of the great variety and large size of many of the vertebrate fossil remains which they have yielded. In these beds to the north of the Salt Range there have been found remains of Dinotherium, forms related to the ancestors of the giraffe and various other mammals, some of them, like the Sivatherium, Mastodon, and Stegodon, being animals of great size. On the northern side of the Salt Range three fairly well-defined divisions of the Siwalik series have been recognised, each being conspicuously fossiliferous—a feature that is comparatively rare in the Siwalik hills further to the south-east, where these rocks were first studied. The Siwalik series of the Salt Range are thus so well developed that this area might be conveniently regarded as the type succession for the purpose of correlating isolated fragmentary occurrences of the same general series in northern and western India. To give an idea as to the age of these rocks, it will be sufficient to mention that the middle division of the series corresponds roughly to the well-known deposits of Pikermi and Samos.
Kashmir deserves special mention, as it is a veritable paradise for the geologist. Of the variety of problems that it presents one might mention the petrological questions connected with the intrusion of the great masses of granite, and their relation to the slates and associated metamorphic rocks. Of fossiliferous systems there is a fine display of material ranging in age from Silurian to Upper Trias, and additional interest is added by the long-continued volcanic eruptions of the "Panjal trap." Students of recent phenomena have at their disposal interesting problems in physiography, including a grand display of glaciers, and the extensive deposits of so-called karewas, which appear to have been formed in drowned valleys, where the normal fluviatile conditions are modified by those characteristic of lakes. The occurrence of sapphires in Zanskar gives the State also an interest to the mineralogist and connoisseur of gem-stones.
Of this kaleidoscopic assemblage of questions the ones of most immediate interest are connected with the Silurian-Trias succession in the Kashmir valley, for here we have a connecting-link between the marine formations of the Salt Range area and those which are preserved in greater perfection in Spiti and other parts of the Tibetan highlands, stretching away to the south-east at the back of the great range of crystalline snow-covered peaks.
In this interesting part of Kashmir the most important feature to Indian geologists is the occurrence of plant remains belonging to genera identical with those that occur in the lower part of the great coal-bearing formation of Peninsular India, known as the Gondwana system. Until these discoveries were made in Kashmir about ten years ago the age of the base of the Gondwanas was estimated only on indirect evidence, partly due to the assumption that glacial conditions in the Salt Range and those at the base of the Gondwanas were contemporaneous, and partly due to analogy with the coal measures of Australia and South Africa. In Kashmir the characteristic plant remains of the Lower Gondwanas are found associated with marine fossils in great abundance, and these permit of a correlation of the strata with the upper part of the Carboniferous system of the European standard stratigraphical scale.
Kashmir seems to have been near the estuary of one of the great rivers that formerly flowed over the ancient continent of Gondwanaland (when India and South Africa formed parts of one continental mass) into the great Eurasian Ocean known as Tethys. As the deposits formed in this great ocean give us the principal part of our data for forming a standard stratigraphical scale, the plants which were carried out to sea become witnesses of the kind of flora that flourished during the main Indian coal period; they thus enable us with great precision to fix the position of the fresh-water Gondwanas in comparison with the marine succession.
Spiti.—With a brief reference to one more interesting patch among the geological records of this remarkable region, space will force us to pass on to consideration of minerals of economic value. The line of snow-covered peaks, composed mainly of crystalline rocks and forming a core to the Himalaya in a way analogous to the granitic core of the Alps, occupies what was once apparently the northern shore of Gondwanaland, and to the north of it there stretched the great ocean of Tethys, covering the central parts of Asia and Europe, one of its shrunken relics being the present Mediterranean Sea. The bed of this ocean throughout many geological ages underwent gradual depression and received the sediments brought down by the rivers from the continent which stretched away to the south. The sedimentary deposits thus formed near the shore-line or further out in deep water attained a thickness of well over 20,000 feet, and have been studied in the tahsil of Spiti, on the northern border of Kumaon, and again on the eastern Tibetan plateau to the north of Darjeeling. A reference to the formations preserved in Spiti may be regarded as typical of the geological history and the conditions under which these formations were produced.
Succession of Fossiliferous Beds.—In age the fossiliferous beds range from Cambrian right through to the Tertiary epoch; between these extremes no single period was passed without leaving its records in some part of the great east-to-west Tibetan basin. At the base of the whole succession there lies a series of schists which have been largely metamorphosed, and on these rest the oldest of the fossiliferous series, which, on account of their occurring in the region of snow, has been named the Haimanta system. The upper part of the Haimanta system has been found to contain the characteristic trilobites of the Cambrian period of Europe. Over this system lie beds which have yielded in succession Ordovician and Silurian fossils, forming altogether a compact division which has been distinguished locally as the Muth system. Then follows the so-called Kanawar system, which introduces Devonian conditions, followed by fossils characteristic of the well-known mountain limestone of Europe.
Then occurs a break in the succession which varies in magnitude in different localities, but appears to correspond to great changes in the physical geography which widely affect the Indian region. This break corresponds roughly to the upper part of the Carboniferous system of Europe, and has been suggested as a datum line for distinguishing in India an older group of fossiliferous systems below (formed in an area that has been distinguished by the name Dravidian), from the younger group above, which has been distinguished by the name Aryan.
During the periods that followed this interruption the bed of the great Eurasian Ocean seems to have subsided persistently though intermittently. As the various sediments accumulated the exact position of the shore-line must have changed to some extent to give rise to the conditions favourable for the formation at one time of limestone, at another of shale and at other times of sandy deposits. The whole column of beds, however, seems to have gone on accumulating without any folding movements, and they are consequently now found lying apparently in perfect conformity stage upon stage, from those that are Permian in age at the base, right through the Mesozoic group, till the time when Tertiary conditions were inaugurated and the earth movements began which ultimately drove back the ocean and raised the bed, with its accumulated load of sediments, into the great folds that now form the Himalayan Range. This great mass of Aryan strata includes an enormous number of fossil remains, giving probably a more complete record of the gradual changes that came over the marine fauna of Tethys than any other area of the kind known. One must pass over the great number of interesting features still left unmentioned, including the grand architecture of the Sub-Himalaya and the diversity of formations in different parts of the Frontier Province; for the rest of the available space must be devoted to a brief reference to the minerals of value.
Rock-salt, which occurs in abundance, is possibly the most important mineral in this area. The deposits most largely worked are those which occur in the well-known Salt Range, covering parts of the districts of Jhelam, Shahpur, and Mianwali. Near the village of Kheora the main seam, which is being worked in the Mayo mines, has an aggregate thickness of 550 feet, of which five seams, with a total thickness of 275 feet, consist of salt pure enough to be placed on the table with no more preparation than mere pulverising. The associated beds are impregnated with earth, and in places there occur thin layers of potash and magnesian salts. In this area salt quarrying was practised for an unknown period before the time of Akbar, and was continued in a primitive fashion until it came under the control of the British Government with the occupation of the Panjab in 1849. In 1872 systematic mining operations were planned, and the general line of work has been continued ever since, with an annual output of roughly 100,000 tons.
Open quarries for salt are developed a short distance to the east-north-east of Kalabagh on the Indus, and similar open work is practised near Kohat in the North West Frontier Province, where the quantity of salt may be regarded as practically inexhaustible. At Bahadur Khel the salt lies at the base of the Tertiary series, and can be traced for a distance of about eight miles with an exposed thickness of over 1000 feet, sometimes standing up as hills of solid salt above the general level of the plains. In this area the production is naturally limited by want of transport and the small local demand, the total output from the quarries being about 16,000 tons per annum. A small quantity of salt (generally about 4000 tons a year), is raised also from open quarries in the Mandi State, where the rock-salt beds, distinctly impure and earthy, lie near the junction between Tertiary formations and the older unfossiliferous groups.