The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

published - extracts from 'Account of the valley of Munnipore and of the Hill Tribes' by Major W. McCulloch

caption: Munnipore State as a buffer between India and Burma; troops
medium: articles
person: McCulloch/ Major W.
date: 1858
refnum: from: Selections from the Records of the Government of India, No. 27 (Calcutta) 1859
text: (16) The Munnipore State was re-established by the British Government professedly in order that between their frontier and that of Burma, they might have a neutral and independent territory. In case of war it is clearly impossible that a State so small could preserve neutrality. By our having enabled it to become independent, it would naturally be expected at any time to lean to the British side, and a British Resident having been placed in the country, it appears to me that he should have encouraged the partiality to the British, and in case of a necessity for the State's taking the British side arising, that he should have endeavoured that it should do so in an efficient state. It is, therefore, I think to be regretted that, when the British superintendence was withdrawn from the troops, they were maintained at a strength they had attained under extraneous support, and I consider it would have been much more for the interest of the State itself, and for that of the British Government, had the troops been reduced to a thousand men, instead of having been retained at the strength they had attained, and afterwards encouraged to increase to the amount they have. To keep up a thousand men in a tolerably efficient state would tax to the utmost the means of this country. It cannot maintain the present amount ( including Officers) 3,600 in an efficient state, and as I have before said it is not attempted. The services of the troops of Munnipore, therefore, on an emergency would be of no use. The inefficiency of the force has not escaped the attention of the British Government. Schemes for its (17) improvement have been entertained, but as the pressure of circumstances causing their entertainment have ceased,so the schemes have been discarded.