Social Scientist. v 1, no. 7 (Feb 1973) p. 8.

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The utter isolation of the 'Muslim ruler9 from the vast masses of his 'Hindu subjects' was an important factor thalt enabled the rallying of various sections against the hated ruler.

Feudal Oppression

The basic feature that dominated the socio-economic life of the people of Hyderabad and especially in Telangana was the unbridled! feudal exploitation that persisted till the beginning of the Telangana armed peasant struggle.

Out of the 53 million acre^ in the whole of Hyderabad State, about 30 million, that is, about 60 per cent, were under the governmental land revenue system (the diwani or khalsa area) ; about 15 million acres, that is, about 30 per cent, were under the jagirdari system ; about 10 per cent constituted the Nizam's direct estate (the sarf khas system). It was only after the 'police action' that the sarf khas and jagirdari systems were abolished, and these lands brought under the diwani system.

The income—or loot from the peasantry—from the sarf khas area, amounting to Rs 20 million annually, was used entirely to meet the expenditure of the Nizam's family and its retinue. The whole area was treated as the Nizam's private estate. He was not bound to spend any amount for economic and social benefits and for the development of the people's livelihood in that area. Whatever was spent, was from the other general revenues of the State. In addition, the Nizam was given Rs 7 million per year from the State treasury.

After the 'police action', when the sarf khas area was merged in the diwani area, the Nizam and his offspring were to be paid Rs 5 million per year as compensation, apart from another Rs 5 million as privy purse.

The peasants in these areas were nothing but bond-slaves, or total serfs, under the Nizam. Whatever little rights existed in the diwani area, were denied to them.

In the jagir areas, constituting 30 per cent of the State, paigas, samsthanams, jagirdars, ijardars, banjardars, maktedars, inamdars or agraharams, were the various kinds of feudal oppressors. Some of them used to impose and collect taxes through their own revenue officers. Some of them paid a small portion to the State, while others were not required to pay anything at all. In these areas, various kinds of illegal exactions and forced labour were common. In the jagir areas, the land taxes on irrigation were 10 times more than those collected in the diwani areas, amounting to Rs 150 per acre, or 20-30 maunds of paddy per acre.

Some of these jagirs, paigas and samsthanams^ especially the bigger ones, had their own separate police, revenue, civil and criminal systems ;

they must be considered subfeudatory states under the Nizam's Hydera-\ ^ bad State, itself a stooge native State under the British autocracy i^ India. ^

The paigas were estates granted to Muslim feudals, especially the Nizam's relatives, for recruiting and maintaining armed personnel to help

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