THUS far the Persian manuscript extends; to which I beg leave to add, that the Sicks are the only one of the many powers who have enriched themselves out of the spoils of the Mogul Empire, which fairly and openly avows its independence.—They will not suffer the name of his Majesty Shah Alum to appear upon their coin; but have substituted that of their Gooroo; and instead of the year of the King’s reign, and of the Hegira, which is the established date on all the coin throughout the empire, they use the era of Bickermaject, called the Sumbut.

After Ahmed Shah Durranny returned to Kandahar in 1764, as has been related, though the Sicks possessed themselves of the town and province of Lahore, and of all the open country of Mul­tan, yet the Duranny garrison of Multan still remained in that fortress till the death of Ahmed Shah Duranny: soon after which, the Sicks compelled them to retire, and placed a garrison of their


own there;—But in the year 1779, Timur Shah (the successor to Ahmed Shah Duranny) came from Cabul, with a large army, and laying siege to Multan, took it, after defeating the army sent by the Sicks to raise the siege: when he returned to Cabul, leaving a garrison in Multan, which has remained there ever since.

Since the complete settlement of the Sicks in their present possessions, which was not entirely effected till near the year 1770, the chiefs to the westward of the Sutledge, who are the most powerful, have not been engaged in any important expedition, till


the year 1785, when they invaded the Rajah of Jumboo, and compelled him to pay them tribute.

The incursions which are made annually into the territories lately belonging to Zabita Khan, are merely effected by a tem­porary confederacy of the chiefs between the Sutledge and the Jumna.

These incursions are sometimes carried across the Ganges,* into the Vizier’s territories, as happened in March 1785; when a large body of Sicks passed over, and remained in that country several days, plundering to an immense amount, and burning and destroying the villages without opposition; though repeated advice had been received beforehand of their designs. But these insults may always be prevented, by common attention in the Vizier’s administration; and by sending proper detachments to the several fords of the Ganges during the dry season.

In 1785, Mahajee Scindea (having before seized on the Shah’s person, and the entire administration of his affairs) entered into an alliance with the leaders of the Sicks, between the Sutledge and the Jumna, both offensive and defensive: one of the articles of which treaty expressly says as follows;—“Besides the royal lands, whatever shall be acquired by either party (Scindea or the Sicks) with mutual consent, on either side the Jumna, from Hindoos or Mussulmans, one third thereof shall belong to the Khalsah Gee—” (the Sick State.) This clearly points at the Vizier’s country.

As soon as this treaty was framed, I obtained a copy of it, which I transmitted to Mr. Macpherson, than acting as Governor General, April the 9th.—What use he made of the information, I cannot tell: but surely a confederacy of two such formidable powers as the Sicks and Marhattas, close to the Vizier’s frontier, must afford matter for very serious apprehension, to every person who is anxious for the safety of the Company’s possessions in India; which are so intimately connected with those of the Vizier, that prosperity or calamity must be in common to them both.

In this point of view, I beg leave to conclude this sketch, with my earnest recommendation of that circumstance to the attention of the Company’s administration:—for even admitting all that the advocates for Scindea can say of his sincerity, he is but mortal; and with him will expire all that security which has been sup­pose d to a rise from his personal character.