24 APRIL 1880, Page 3

The Indian Government has introduced a Bill, called briefly the

Jhansi Relief Bill, which excites much discussion, and in- volves a very important experiment. The landlords of that district, annexed, we believe, just after the Mutiny, have been unaccustomed to British fiscal regularity ; while their tenants have been accustomed to oppression in the levy of rent, which British rule has stopped. They have, therefore, failed to pay rents; while the landlords have involved themselves up to the oyes in debt to the money-lenders, at preposterous interest. As the end of this state of affairs will be insurrection, as it was on Koer Sing's estates in 1857, the Government has interfered with an Encumbered Estates'Act; but instead of selling up the land- lords, it has authorised the Commissioner to appoint a manager to each insolvent estate, cut down unjust claims, pay up just claims, and in fact treat each insolvent landlord as if he were a lunatic or a child. The experiment looks like paternal govern- ment gone mad, but as the landlords are popular, and their -difficulty has been produced by the clash of two civilisations, the experiment is just and exceedingly interesting. Will the landlords, once released from their debts, have learned a lesson, or will they only think that no amount of extravagance will ultimately ruin their families ? We are not sure, but ex- periments of the kind have in India this advantage. Time matters very little. If a family is saved by, say, twenty years' enforced economy and seclusion, neither its members nor its tenants will think the interval perceptible. It is a long minority, that is all.