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Corvée Transport Labour In 19th And Early 20th Century Ladakh: A Study In Continuity And Change

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Chapter Summary

Historically, obligatory or Corvée labour was an intrinsic part of the tax system in Ladakh, Tibet, Kashmir and throughout the Himalayan hill states. This chapter shows how begar evolved in line with changes in the regional power structure in the course of the 19th and early 20th centuries. It points to continuity in that it shows how obligatory labour was rooted in the institutions of the pre-1834 Ladakhi monarchy. The chapter discusses the change in that it shows how begar was modified in accordance with evolving Dogra and British interests in the course of the 19th century. It serves as a case study of the practical workings of British indirect rule in one part of the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir. The chapter presents many examples of oppression, but also of resistance, bargaining and appeals to higher authority.

Keywords: begar; Corvée labour; Dogra; Kashmir; Ladakh; Ladakhi monarchy; Tibet; tish indirect rule

10.1163/ej.9789004167131.i-313.20
/content/books/10.1163/ej.9789004167131.i-313.20
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