Kharita from the Viceroy
to the Maharaja of Jammu & Kashmir
September 14, 1885
Legal Document No 9
I have received with deep regret the news of the death of your father,
Maharaja Ranbir Singh and I wish to assure you without delay of my most
Maharaja Ranbir Singh rendered valuable service to the British Government.
I feel that his loss is the loss of a friend and I wish that it had not
fallen to me during the period of my Viceroyalty, to consider the measures
rendered necessary by this unfortunate event.
It is now my duty to inform you, on behalf of the Queen Empress of India,
that I recognise and confirm your succession to the Chiefship of Jammu
and Kashmir. I trust that your Highness's life may be long and prosperous;
and that, in all difficulties, of whatsoever kind, you will rely with confidence
upon the good-will of the British Government, which will never fail you
so long as you are loyal to the Crown and earnest in the desire to rule
your State with justice and moderation.
Your Highness has before you a difficult task. During the illness of
your father the administration of the State became seriously disorganised
and it will be necessary for you to introduce many reforms. But my agent,
Sir Oliver St. John, will remain with you and help you to the utmost of
his ability; and I feel confident that with his aid all your difficulties
will be successfully met and overcome. I request your Highness to refer
to him for a more detailed explanation of my views regarding the future
administration of the Kashmir State; and I hope that your Highness will
not fail to consult him freely at all times, and to be guided by his advice
in carrying those views into execution.