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Brigadier Wild, commanding the ing corps to force their way to Ali four regiments of native infantry, Musjid with a convoy, the means in regard to the circumstances of subsistence at that post no under which he was to venture longer remained. into the Khyber Pass, previously 21. Our instructions for the to the arrival of Major-General guidance of Major-General PolPollock, with the strong reinforce- lock and Sir Robert Sale have ment accompanying him, appear been adapted by us from time to to us to have been in all respects time to the exigencies of circumsuitable and judicious. These in- stances, as these have gradually structions were forwarded to your been disclosed. We entirely aphonourable Committee, with our prove the answer of Sir Robert dispatches of the 22nd ultimo. Sale and Captain Macgregor to
18. Major-General Pollock, with the injunction sent to them from a fresh brigade, will have reached Cabul, for a retirement from JelPeshawur in the first week of this lalabad, which answer was to the month, and we expect daily to effect, that they must first learn hear from him respecting his first what security could be given to views and intentions.
them for the safety of that move19. Meanwhile we have to la- ment, for we felt that the chiefs ment that the post of Ali Musjid with whom the engagements were has been for the present necessarily formed at Cabul were in no conabandoned to the Khyberees, and dition to stipulate for a state of that the difficulties of the gar. things, or for the protection of our rison of Jellalabad have been inuch troops in other parts of the coun. increased by the retirement of the try. We have regarded the profriendly Mamund Chief Turabaz ceedings generally of Major-Ge. Khan, from Lalpoora, the other neral Elphinstone, as far as we line of communication between are aware of them, with the keenJellalabad and Peshawur, in conse est disappointment and displeasure, quence of apprehensions arising and we have requested the Comfrom the approach of Mohamed mander-in-Chief to institute, when Akhbar Khan.
circumstances may admit of it, a 20. There are circumstances re full military inquiry into the Mapresented in a letter from Captain jor-General's conduct, and desired Mackeson, of the 27th January, that the authority of the Majorregarding the absence of proper General over the troops serving precautions for taking on with the in or near Affghanistan should two regiments, which penetrated wholly cease. to Ali Musjid, the supplies of 22. The successive instructions grain prepared for their support which we have issued for the there, which will be made a sub- guidance of Major-General Pol
separate and full inquiry lock will be found in our letters in the military department. Most of December 15, January 31, and injurious consequences may arise February 10th and 16th. from the retreat, which was un 23. The original direction to avoidable, when from their sup- Major-General Pollock was, that plies not having arrived with the the safety of the force under Sir detachment, and from the subse. Robert Sale should be the promiquent failure of the two remain- nent object of his care, and that,
otherwise, the situation of the 25. We have attentively conforce under his command was sidered the question of remaining mainly that of a strong demon- in force at or near Peshawur dur. stration on the Peshawur frontier; ing the present year, and upon it resting in his military discretion strengthening the division under to determine whether he could Major-General Pollock, by the with safety hold the advanced post other complete brigade, which your of Jellalabad, in dependence on a honourable Committee has before secure command of the Khyber, learned had been warned to march and other passes, between Jellala- from Ferozepore, and we have bad and Peshawur. We should given the full instructions, which have been glad, had it appeared will be found in our letters to likely to be in Major-General Pol the Commander-in-Chief and Mr. lock's power to maintain the post Clerk, of the 10th instant, upon of Jellalabad for some period, as these subjects. giving advantages in any commu. 26. While there may be a hope nication with the adverse chiefs in of contributing to the safety of the Affghanistan, or in any ulterior Jellalabad garrison, the advance of movement, or course of policy that the fresh brigade will, of course, might be thought proper by the be most desirable and necessary, Government here or in England. for the purpose also of supporting But on the 31st January, we ex the division under Major-General pressly informed Major-General Pollock, whether it remain for the Pollock, that Jellalabad was not a year at Peshawur, or other place, place which we desired to retain in the Lahore territory, or be at all hazards, and that after se drawn back gradually to the Bricuring Sir Robert Sale's brigade tish frontier." The advance of the there, and giving every practicable brigade is likely to be of much adrelief to parties from Cabul, we vantage ; but there are questions would wish bim, rather than run of much delicacy and difficulty con. extreme risks at Jellalabad, to ar nected with the position of the range for withdrawal from it, and Sikh government, and with the the assemblage of all his force at temper and feeling of the most or near Peshawur.
powerful of the Sikh chiefs, and 24. Since we have heard of the of the body of the Sikh soldiery, misfortunes in the Khyber Pass, which may make the retention of and have become convinced that a British force for a long period at with the difficulties at present op- any advanced point of the Sikh posed to us, and in the actual state dominions, far from politic and of our preparations, we could not safe. We have in our instructions expect, at least in this year, to to Mr. Clerk dwelt upon these conmaintain a position in the Jellala. siderations, and given to him a bad districts for any effective pur- large discretion in respect to the pose, we have made our directions position and movement of our in regard to withdrawal from Jel- forces in the Punjab. We trust lalabad clear and positive, and we that your honourable Committee shall rejoice to learn that Major- will be satisfied, that upon a matter Gen. Pollock will have anticipated of this nature, the proper determi. these more express orders by cone nation of which depends so entirely fining his efforts to the same object. upon local circumstances, we have
adopted the best course in giving sequence of the more intimate inextensive powers to Mr. Clerk, tercourse, which has now been eswho is an officer deserving of our tablished between the Durbar and high confidence.
We have, it will Mr. Clerk, as the agent and reprebe observed, given a general discre. sentative of the British Governtion to Mr. Clerk to act in un. foreseen emergencies, as he may 29. On the 31st of January, think best for the national interest upon receiving the intelligence of and honor, on the general princi- the disasters which had happened ples which have uniformly been to our troops in the retreat from prescribed to him in regard to our Cabul, we thought it proper to relations with the Sikh govern- issue a brief notification, which we ment, and we have intimated to caused also to be officially commuhim that his Excellency the Com- nicated to the several political mander-in-Chief, and the com residents and agents, expressed in manders of the British forces very general terms with regard to within the Punjab, will be pre- the intentions of the Government; pared to give attention to his but also, in a tone of confidence wishes, as far as they may feel and firmness, such as is suitable themselves able to do so, consist- to the power and resources of the ently with military considerations, British empire in India, and was and with the arrangements judged calculated to allay any impressions necessary by his Excellency for the of apprehension or mistrust, which protection of our own provinces, might possibly be created by so
27. We have been careful in great a calamity as that which has our letters to the Commander-in now been sustained by a portion of Chief, to advert to all those points, the British army. We are happy which have appeared indispensable to state that we have no informa. for the due support and equipment, tion, which could lead us to sup, in all respects, of a British force, pose that impressions of this kind while employed within the Punjab. have been any where diffused.
28. The dispatch from Mr.Clerk, 30. In our dispatch of the of the 15th ultimo, conveyed some 22nd ultimo, we communicated general observations on the con the grounds upon which it apdition of the Sikh government and peared that Sir Willia lactroops, with reference to the al- naghten had been murdered by tered and unsettled aspect of affairs Mahomed Akbar Khan. With a in Affghanistan, and we stated to letter from Mr. Clerk, of 20th Mr. Clerk in reply, our continued January, your honourable Com. desire to give strength to the ex mittee will find the translation of isting administration in the Pun a letter, purporting to be from jab. We have been happy to per- Mahomed Akbar to a chief near ceive, from the tenor of different Jellalabad, named Meer Alfyed communications from Mr. Clerk, Khan, which, if it can be assumed which have extended to the 8th as genuine, as there appeared at instant, that he appears to rest first to be no reason to doubt that with some confidence upon the sta- it was, would show that Mahomed bility of that government, and the Akbar openly avowed and gloried prevention of any general disorder in the horrible outrage. In the in the country or army, as a con- letter, however, from Mr. Clerk,
of the 6th instant, and that of supreme Government. We have Captain Lawrence to his brother, stated that such payment must be which has been before referred to deferred until a distinct and satis. in this dispatch,, there seem to be factory explanation shall be regrounds for at least suspending an ceived from Major Pottinger of the opinion upon this point. The circumstances under which they entire uncertainty which at pre were drawn; and Mr. Clerk has sent attends the most important been instructed to endeavour to circumstances connected with the obtain such explanation without conduct and purposes of the princi- delay. pal actors in the scenes which have 32. We need not assure your passed, and are passing at Cabul, honourable Committee that the precludes for the present from painful situation of the officers, forming any clear view, or giving families, and European and native any defined instrcutions in regard soldiers, who are prisoners in Affto communications with any of ghanistan, engages our most anx. those parties. We can, for the ious thought, and that any meamoment, do little else than await sures which we can adopt with and watch the development of fair and honourable prospect of adevents and factions; we hope to vantage for their comfort or release, receive shortly the two letters will be eagerly adopted by us. from Major Pottinger, of which 33. With respect to the other the arrival at Jellalabad has been posts in Affghanistan, it will be announced to us. may,
that in the letter from Lieu. ever, state, that it is not our in- tenant Conolly of the 17th of tention on such information as we January, it is stated that the garri. yet have, to authorise any advances son of Ghuznee still maintained of money to Shah Shooja, for we possession of the citadel, though could have no confidence that such the town was in the occupation of advances would not be employed the enemy. by individuals who, in his name,
34. From Kelat-i-Ghilzye we exercise real authority at Cabul, in have no direct tidings, but it is behostility against ourselves.
lieved that no disaster can have 31. 'We have to mention that have happened to that stronglybills upon our treasuries, drawn by fortified post. Major Pottinger from Cabul, on 35. The latest date of a private the 28th of December, the day on letter from Candahar is of the 9th which he appears to have made his of January, when Major Rawlin. final arrangement with the hostile son reported that the Prince Suf. chiefs, have been presented, some ter-Jung, a
ter-Jung, a son of Shah Sooja, with, and others without letters of who had at one time beon goveradvice, to an amount of about nor of that province, and who had fifteen lacs of rupees. The autho- been dispossessed in favour of the rities in the north-western pro. Shahsada Timor, had fled from the vinces, after giving assurances to city, and joined the camp of the the shroffs who hold the bills, that insurgents at a place some thirty their claims connected with them or forty miles distant. shall receive a full and just consi 36. Collision appeared then, to deration, have referred the ques. Major Rawlinson, to be unavoidtion of paying the bills to the able; and from letters received from
Lieutenant Hammersley, the po- of these orders, and we requested his litical Assistant at Quetta, it Excellency to instruct the Majorwould appear probable that some General to act for himself, indeengagement had actually occurred, pendently of such orders, upon in which the insurgents had been his own distinct military responsidefeated ; but the communication bility. between Candahar and Quetta has, 39. We desired, also, that his for some time, been effectually Excellency would communicate to closed, and we are without any Major-General Nott, that it was authentic information of events, of the highest importance that he of which, however, we trust that should maintain his position at you may be apprised to a later Candahar, in concentrated strength, period, through Bombay.
until he should receive the further 37. Major-General Nott had instructions of the Government. under his orders, and concentrated This last intimation was made in in strength at Candahar, a force of the same view as that with which about 8,700 men, with at least we have before said that we looked eighteen pieces of artillery. This to the retention, if possible, of the force is believed to be well sup- post of Jellalabad, and it was displied, and defective only in having patched to the Commander-inbut a small body of trustworthy Chief on the 28th of January cavalry, and very scanty means But having on the 31st of Jaof carriage for any distant move nuary received information in rement.
gard to the actual state of affairs 38. Your honourable Committee at Candahar, we addressed Major is already aware, that upon first Outram, instructing him to comhearing of the serious difficulties municate with Major-GeneralNott, that threatened our troops at Ca- and to arrange in concert with bul, we sent instructions to Major Brigadier England; and if the Rawlinson and General Nott at condition of the tracts under his Candahar, preparing them, in the immediate charge should admit of event of extreme disaster at Cabul, it, for having the disposable part of for the ultimate result of a with the troops under the orders of that drawal from Affghanistan, with officer moved above the Bolan Pass the least possible amount of dis. as early as possible, in order that credit: but so also as to make the if Major-General Nott should deunion and safety of our troops a para- cide upon withdrawing from Canmount object of attention. These dahar, the troops in question might instructions, we know, reached be marched forwards to the foot of Candahar towards the end of De- the Kojuck Pass on the Quetta cember. Upon learning the order side, so as to facilitate and support given by Major Pottinger and such withdrawal. We have since, Major-General Elphinstone, for on the 10th instant, issued the inthe evacuation of Jellalabad, and structions to Major-General Nott, assuming that similar orders would which your honourable Committee also have been issued in regard to will find in our secretary's letter Candabar, we stated to the Come to him of that date. He has there mander-in-Chief that we did not been distinctly informed that it is doubt that Major-General Nott our desire that he should act solely would have rejected the authority so as may best, in his judgment, Vol. LXXXIV.