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Imperial Gazetteer of India, v. 11, p. 213.


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IIT.S.TOR Y 213
domain attracted the attention of Najih-ud-daula, governor of Saharan-
pur, who crossed the Siwaliks Nvith a Rohilla army in 1757, and occupied
the Dun without serious opposition. Under Najib-ud-daula's benevo-
lent and enlightened administration, the District rose to an unexampled
degree of prosperity. Canals and wells irrigated the mountain-sides ;
Muhammadan colonists brought capital to develop the latent resources
of the soil; and mango groves, still standing among primaeval forest,
bear witness even now to the flourishing agriculture of this happy
period. But Najib-ud-daula's death in 1770 put an end to the sudden
prosperity of the Dun. Henceforth a perpetual inundation of Rajputs,
Gujars, Sikhs, and Gurkhas swept over the valley, till the once fertile
garden degenerated again into a barren waste. Four Rajas followed
one another on the throne ; but the real masters were the turbulent
tribes on every side, who levied constant blackmail from the unfortunate
cultivators.
Meanwhile, the Gurkhas, a race of mixed Nepalese origin, were
advancing westward, and reached at last the territories of Garhwal.
In 1803 Raja Parduman Sah fled before them from Srinagar into
the Dim, and thence to Saharanpur, while the savage Gurkha host
overran the whole valley unopposed. Their occupation of Dehra
Dun coincided in time with the British entry into Saharanpur, and
the great earthquake of 1803 proved the miraculous harbinger of either
event. The Gurkhas ruled their new acquisition with a rod of iron,
so that the District threatened to become an absolute desert. Under
the severe fiscal arrangements of the Gurkha governors, slavery in-
creased with frightful rapidity, every defaulter being condemned to
lifelong bondage, so that slaves became far cheaper in the market than
horses or camels. From this unhappy condition the advent of the
British rule rescued the feeble and degraded people.
The constant aggressions of the Gurkhas against the frontier com-
pelled the British Government to declare war in 1814. Dehra was
immediately occupied, while siege was laid to the hill fortress of
Nalapani or KALANGA, which fell after a gallant defence, with great
loss to the besieging force. The remnant of its brave garrison entered
the service of Ranjit Singh, and afterwards died to a man in battle with
the Afghans. A resolution of Government, dated November 1"f, 1815,
ordered the annexation of the new possession to Saharanpur; while
the Gurkhas, by a treaty drawn up in the succeeding month, formally
ceded the country. The organization of the District on the British
model proceeded rapidly ; and in spite of an ineffectual rising of the
disaffected G ajars and other predatory classes led by a bandit named
Kalwa, in 1824, peace was never again seriously disturbed. Under
the energy and perseverance of its first British officials, the Dun rapidly
recovered its prosperity. Roads and canals were constructed ; cultiva-
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