Page images
[ocr errors]
[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]
[ocr errors]

If we compare the passages marked (a) of Dhauli and Jaugadh above, we find 'going out' or ' being turned out' (causative) is treated as equivalent of anu-sam-yana. Exit cannot denote coming together' or'assembling'. Anu-sam-yāna therefore has not been used in the sense of ' assembly'. Literally it means 'going together”, - departure' (sam-yāna),ʻin sequence

' er regularly' (anu). Now the passage marked (6) contemplates the departure of the whole body (varga). This collective body was the body of High Ministers or mahā-mātras according to passage (c). Would the whole body of the High Ministers, who as at Taxila and at Ujjain were charged with the government of the Presidency or Viceroyalty,' go out' or 'be turned out together' for the purposes of going on an official tour ? The result would be that the capital would be without a single minister during the alleged ' tour'. The object of the 'going out ', as stated in the Kalinga records, conclusively negatives the 'tour ' interpretation. The High Ministers owing to the method of 'going out' were expected to remember their business and not to neglect it (passage C), and according to the passage preceding (2) 'the going out' was necessary to stop oppression to the citizens' of Tosalî:

नगल-जनस अकस्मा पलिबोधे व अकस्मा पलिकिजे से व न सिया ति TATO FOTO E' (etc., then follows passage (a)

Why should the Ministers go out on tour from the capital (उजनिते, तखखिलाते while the idea is to stop oppression on the men in (Tosalî) the capital ? Why should the whole body of Ministers go out’ or be turned out on a tour to stop oppression to the

' 'city-body' or city-men (capital-men, Nagara-jana)? Why should the provision of going out on tour make the ministers mindful of their business?

Hindu Politics and the Divyāvadāna explain the riddle. The "going out” is going out of office or an official transfer.

The Sukra-niti provides for the transfer of cabinet ministers with their two under-secretaries every three, five, seven, or ten years, for "authority in the hand of any one should not be long!


हायनेखन्निवत्त येत्।
चिभिर्वा पञ्चभिर्वापि कप्तभिर्दशभिपूचवा।

I. 110.
पाधिकार चिरं दद्याद्यस्मै कसै सदा नृपः।

II. 111:
Asoka provides for a five-yearly transfer in Orissa. But he
shortens the period with regard to the Ministries at Ujjain and
Taxila to three years:

नोच अतिकामयिसति तिनि वसानि

हेमेव तखसिलातेपि (following passage b) The Divyāvadāna relates the revolt of the Patra-jana or the Capital-body* of Takshasila in Asoka's reign. When the Kumāra or Prince-Viceroy is sent there the Paura comes forward to welcome him and says that they were “neither against the Prince nor the King » but against the wicked-minded Ministers who had come and who had insulted them.

श्रुत्वा तक्षशिला पौरा रत्नपूर्ण घटादिकान् ।

गृह्य प्रत्य नगामाशु बहुमान्यान्नृपात्मजम् ॥ प्रत्य गम्य कृताञ्जलिरुवाच। न वयं कुमारस्य विरुद्धा न राज्ञोऽशोकस्यापि तु दुष्टात्मानोऽमात्या आगत्यास्माकमपमा कुवन्ति । (p. 407).

Here there is a clear reference to newly-come ministers. Asoka in his inscription enjoins on the Kumāra at Taxila not to overstep the period of three years in "turning out” the Ministers at his provincial capital. He, it should be noted, assures the people of Kalinga and the Capital-body at Tosalî that Ministers have to go out every five years in accordance with dharma, that is, raja-dharma or principles of government. Thereby he would lessen the chances of oppression to the City-body. Asoka declares that to see that the Capital-body is not put to sudden trouble अकस्सापलिकिलेसे and sudden excitement (पलिबोधे), he will • For jana in the collective sense, compare janam dhamma-yutam,

'the Ecclesiastical servics,' P. E., VII.

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

according to dharma make the Ministers go out ', and “those will become Ministers who are not rough and violent.”

र अखखमे अचंड सखिनालभे होसति, Dh.

=महामातं अचंड अफवाहतं.....Jan. As the capital-body or citizens of Taxila were more sensitive to "insults” from ministers the tenure of office was made shorter. A defined period of office was regarded as a salutary provision as reminding the Ministers of their limited sojourn and making them mindful of their responsibility.

(2) Transfers and Direction to Accounts

Department. In view of the above interpretation' Rock Edict' III should be translated now as follows :

दुवाउस-वसाभिमितेन मे इयं बानपयिते सवता विजितसि मम युता लनुके पादेसिक [=युता च राजूके च प्रादेसिक च, Girnar] पंचम पंचसु वसेस, अनुसयानं निखमंतु एताये अथाये इमाय धमनुसथिया यथा बनाये पि कमाये

पलिसा पि युतानि सननसि अनपयिसति ।....... "After the twelfth year of my coronation, I issued this order :

All over my country my officers, both the Rājûkas and the Prādesikas, every five years must go out of office regularly and together in a body).

The Council (of Ministers) shall also direct the officers, in the Gañanā Department in this, as in any other matter, as well as in the matter of the following dharma-recommendation.”

[I have thankfully adopted the interpretation of gañanasi as proposed by my friend Mr. Bhandarkar. It is in accordance with the data in the Artha-Šāstra.]

The general order for a five-yearly transfer was passed in the 13th year. It was applicable to the whole empire. The exceptions with regard to Taxila and Ujjain would, therefore, come later. The Kalinga proclamations were thus of a date subsequent to the 12th regnal year elapsed.

[ocr errors]



The Department of State Accounts (the Gañanā) was required to take note of the order of the five-yearly transfers, 'going out.' They were expected to insist, in their own way, on its compliance. They, according to the Artha-Śāstra, received from the Mahā-mātras collectively despatches and statements relating to their collective responsibilities (page 64).

The second order of the Emperor in ‘Edict' III is that a particular dharmānusasti * should be also brought to the notice of the Gañanā service. The Emperor expects the Council to instruct in the matter of the dharma-anušasti as they instruct the Department in ordinary matters of business. Why this semireligious order along with the administrative order of the transferrule? The anusasti is apparently some quotation or injunction of the Dharma or Buddhism. Obedience to parents, liberality, and sacredness of life are coupled there with 'economy' (apavyayută and apa Whāndata). Bhāndāgāra in Pali means "Treasury' (Jātaka, I. 504), whānda would thus be money. In the language of the Mauryan Secretariat, it meant revenue or surplus-revenue sent by Provinces under seal and with yearly statements (ArthaŠāstra, page 61). Apa-bhándala, therefore, means 'keeping away from balance and apa vyayatá, ' keeping away from expenditure', both denoting'economy’in State-expenditure. The old interpretation, avoidance of bad language', cannot stand as the word is Thánda, not bhanda (see Gimar where long forms are preserved). The dharma passage would have meant ordinary, home economy. But the quotation could yield the technical connotation and suited the emperor and his state finance. He pointed out, to practise economy was as sacred according to the Dharma as Reverence to parents. The Emperor was thus telling the Gaṇanā Department that to keep a watchful eye on items of State-expenditure was a sacred duty. It is probably implied that no allowance to the Ministers after the fifth year is to be sanctioned by the Department, as that would be unlawful expenditure.

[ocr errors]

* साध मारि पितरिः च सुस सा, मितासस्तुत-जातीनं

बाम्हण-समयानं साधुदान, प्राणान साधु अनार भो, अपययता अपभांडता साधु


Rajūkas. The Prādesikas correspond to the Mahá-matras at Ujjain, Taxila, etc. In other words, they were the “ Provincials” or the Provincial Ministers.* If the Prādesikas were the Provincial Ministers, the Rājûkas who are more important than, and who are contrasted with, the Prādesikas must be the Ministers at the seat of the Central Government. This view is confirmed by Pillar Proclamation IV wbich says that the Rājûkas ruled over lacs and lacs of people, that the Emperor in the 27th year gave them complete independence in the matter of danda and abh ihāra, and that the Emperor having made over his subjects (prajā).to them felt sure as a mother does having assigned her child (prajā) to the care of a known nurse. The points to be noticed are that the people (Jana) and subjects (Prājā) (who were lacs and lacs) were in the charge of the Rājûkas as a child is in that of a nurse--with full control, The People and Prajā ' denotes that the whole of the People were under their role. Asoka had become free from the anxieties of administration. The Rājûkas thus could not have been 'commissioners,' or superior officers of a few districts (as supposed by Mr. V. Smith), or mere Revenue officers (Bühler), or Judicial officers as recently proposed. Their' going out of office every five years also suggests that they were of the class of High Ministers. Now take the terms danda and abhihāra, in respact of which their authority was declared supreme in the 27th year by the Emperor. European scholars have rendered them as “punishment and honour”. But abhihāra means attack,''taking up arms,' as well. The technical meaning of danda, ' government,' is now known from the study of Hindu Politics. Daņda and abbihāra will thus mean ment ' and ' military operations,' Peace and War. The Rājûkas were given complete independence in matters of Government and Military undertakings—both in matters of Peace and War, home government and foreign relations. Such powers can only be held and exercised by the Imperial High Ministers.

* See Childers, sub' rājā' where Padesa is the largest administrative area in a kingdom.


« PreviousContinue »