§ 72. The Jaziya to be inexorably levied.

The Emperor learnt from the letter of Firuz Jang Khan, who was appointed to take care of the Base Camp (bungah) at Islampuri and to guard the road from Burhanpur to the place of the Emperor's stay,—“The tomb of the old slave-girl, the mother of [this] hereditary servant, is on the other side of the river Bhima. It is necessary to increase the population of the grain-market of the place, and thereby ensure the copious arrival of provision at the imperial camp. But this [peopling of the place] cannot be effected without abolishing the poll-tox (jaziya) on the Hindu residents of the place. Please order that Inayetullah Khan may send a letter patent (sanad) of exemption [from the jaziya].”

The Emperor wrote, “I do not accept helpers from among the infidels. Your wish for the colonising of the grain-market at the tomb, and your upsetting the command contained in the text of the holy Quran concern­ing jaziya,—which is ‘[Chastise them till they pay jaziya from the hand because] they are humbled’, by substituting for it the words ‘they deserve to be excused’,—are a thousand stages remote from the perfect wisdom and obedience to the august Religious Law which are possessed by this trusted servant aware of my sentiments. Evidently, a group of your companions, —the habit of which party, more despicable than sweepers, is to create suspicion in the hearts of men, —have made you blind and go astray, and have, through immature greed, given to this worthless idea a place in your heart which is receptive of allurements. How can this old man, stricken in years and experienced in affairs [i.e., Aurangzib], be deceived? (Verse)

Go away! and set this trap for some other bird,
As the nest of the Phœnix is built too high.”

Text.—MS. N. 5b 10—6b 6.

Notes.—Firuz Jang was sent in October 1701 to guard the imperial Base Camp at Islampuri, on the Bhima river. (M.A. 445). For Aurangzib's strictness in collecting the jaziya, see Khafi Khan, ii. 279, 378; Akhbarat, year 38, sheet 232.