ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
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Many Faces of Modern Management

 modern Nepal, had turned his attention to eastern Nepal after his conquest of Kathmandu valley. He was particularly interested in controlling eastern terat and is said to have written to his generals in the field that there was little value in securing control of the low revenue yielding hill region without also appropriating the far richer tcrai. lie was right. Revenue earned from eastern terai became a major source of income for government. Nepalese expansion along the Himalayas in the late 18th and early 19th centuries paralleled the expansion of British power on the Gangetic plains and inevitably there was conflict between the two powers in the terai where their administrators and soldiers came face to lace. The struggle for control of But- wal and Shivaraj in mid-western terai ultimately led to the Anglo-Nepal war of 1814-10. When, after a valiant struggle by the Nepalese, the British finally established their superiority, they confiscated the entire terai under the treaty of Sugauli in 1819. However, a year later a part of the terai from the Mechi to the western Rapti was returned to Nepal and in 1858, after the Nepalese aided the British during the first war of Indian independence, western terai was also restored. During the Rana period between 184fl and 1951, birta or tax free grants of terai land were given liberally to royal family members and loyal retainers. For the largest birta holders income from these lands accumulated into fortunes. The Rana government, in order to increase land revenue, encouraged Indian zamindars and tenant cultivators to clear land and settle in non-birta terai areas. Mid-western terai was settled largely in this manner during the 1920s and 30s. Till the last few decades, the pressure of population on available cultivatable land in the hills was not critical and government could not persuade hill people to accept land-holdings in the hot and dusty terai. Besides, malaria was endemic in the terai until recently, and onlv the landless plains people were willing to face this risk. Thus over the years the terai has been settled largely by plains people speaking Maithili, Bhojpuri, Hindi, Bengali and Urdu. By the 1960s the terai had become the economic backbone of the country.

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