Government, superseded the desai or patel. Apart from the Madras and
Bombay (including Sind) Presidencies, the ryotwari system, with such
modifications as local conditions demanded, was also prevalent in Berar,
Assam, Bunna and Coorg.
Mahalwari Settlement
The question of introducing a settlement of land revenue in the ceded and
conquered provinces came to the fore in the opening years of the nineteenth
century. The provinces included territory ceded by the Nawab of Awadh and
his tributary, the Nawab of Faizabad, in 1801-2 and conquered by the British
in 1803 as a result of Lord Lake’s victories over the Marathas. Later they
were known as the North-Western Provinces.
    On the basis of a recommendation of the Board of ommissioners, Holt
Mackenzie had drafted his linutes of 1819, in which he recommended a
settle-ment with village communities after a systematic Jrvey and inquiry.
While undertaking operations, a :cord of the rights was to be prepared-village
)Q1munities being represented by headmen called rmba1’dqrs (viz. persons
having a ‘number’ in the ollector’s ‘register of persons liable to pay land
:venue to the state).
    With all ideas of the Bengal system finally abanoned in 1821, Mackenzi’s
minutes became the basis for a new settlement. In essence, his plea was that
revenue be fixed at a moderate rate and the settlement be made with the
landlords (viz. zamindars) or peasant proprietors where they existed and with
the village communities where they held land in common tenancy. Landlords
or talukdars who claimed rights of land were generally granted compensation
from the government treasury, the sum being later collected from the village
zamindars. As the revenue settlement was to be made village by village and
estate by estate and as an estate is called a ‘mahal’, it came to be known as
the Mahalwari Settlement. The basis of the settlement was the ‘net produce’
or that portion of the gross produce of land which remained after deducting
the expenses of cultivation including the profits of stock (invested capital)
and wages of labour.
    Regulation VII of 1822 and the settlement were a failure because
inquiries needed for a system of record of rights made no progress; detailed