Legal Document No 11
I have also to present my greatful thanks to your Excellency for the most welcome message conveyed to me on the 15th instant by Colonel Sir Oliver St. John, the Officer on special Duty in Kashmir7 that your Excellency has been pleased to recognise my succession to the gadi of this State, and I hose by the blessing of God to let Your Excellency have the satisfaction of learning before long that I am as fully alive to the undoubted and immense importance of conscientiously discharging my duties towards my subjects by doing all in my power to secure their best happiness, as 1 am awake to the supremely important duty of giving renewed proofs of loyalty to the British Government by following in the footsteps of my father and grandfather.
I do not hesitate to admit that the existing state of affairs in Kashmir and Jammu urgently requires immediate introduction of substantial reforms into the administration of the country, and now that I have power commensurate with my responsibilities, 1 beg to assure your Excellency that nothing shall be spared on my part, and no time will be lost to prove beyond any possibility of doubt that it is my ambition to succeed in making nay country a model of a well-governed State in alliance with the Government of India.
It has, however, pained me extremely to learn that exactly at the time when I have made up my mind to deserve and win your Excellency’s approbation and encouragement by proving myself equal to the onerous and responsible duties of a good ruler, your Excellency has been thinking of changing the status of the British officer on special Duty in Kashmir to that of a political Resident, and thus lowering me in the eyes of my subjects and in the estimation of the public. It is fully known to your Excellency that I have only just now acquired the power of showing to the world that, without any interference from any quarter or any, the smallest, diminution of long enjoyed rights and dignity of this State, I am able and willing of my own accord to introduce and maintain such reforms as are calculated to entitle a rulers to the lasting gratitude of his subjects, and encouraging approbation of the paramount power as well as the public at large.