Version with DOI and citation guidelines Editorial Principles

A letter from the king instructing a Guṭhī Bandobasta office in Pyuthana to check documents relating to money spent for the emancipation of slaves so that the officiating government agent can be provided with clearance (VS 1982)

ID: K_0188_0061

Edited and translated by Manik Bajracharya in collaboration with Raju Rimal
Created: 2017-02-23; Last modified: 2018-05-14
For the metadata of the document, click here

Published by Heidelberg Academy of Sciences and Humanities: Documents on the History of Religion and Law of Pre-modern Nepal, Heidelberg, Germany, 2018. Published by the courtesy of the National Archives, Kathmandu. The copyright of the facsimile remains with the Nepal Rashtriya Abhilekhalaya (National Archives, Government of Nepal). All use of the digital facsimiles requires prior written permission by the copyright holder. See Terms of Use.
The accompanying edition, translation/synopsis and/or commentary are available under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License CCby-SA.


This royal directive instructs a local Guṭhī Bandobasta office in Pyuthana to check a ledger and other documents prepared by an official sent by the king to pay out money for the emancipation of slaves in that district so that he can eventually be provided clearance through the Slavery Emancipation Office.

Diplomatic edition



[seal reading 'śrī 5 guṭhi bandovasta aḍā 1977']

[unknown seal]

[seal reading 'śrī 5 guṭhi bandovasta aḍā 1977']

4काम्को­ व़ासलात­वुझी­फरफारष­गरीदीने­कामलाई­तपसील्का­जील्ला­गौडा­गोस्वारा­ईलाका
22 पछी­यस­ वीसये़को[?]वुझी­कागजपत्र­दासत्व­अडामा­वुझाईदीने­कां­गर­ईती­सम्वत­१९८२­साल­पौष­२६­गते­रोज­७­सुभ्म्­¯¯¯¯¯¯ ¯¯¯¯¯¯ ¯¯¯¯¯¯ ¯¯¯¯¯¯



[Copied] by ...1

[seal reading 'śrī 5 guṭhi vandovasta aḍā 1977']2

[unknown seal]3

[seal reading 'śrī 5 guṭhi vandovasta aḍā 1977']4

[To] the administrative head (hākima) and officials (kārindā) of the Guṭhī Bandobasta Aḍḍā, [who are requested to] read [the following] letter (pūrjī), a petition made by the administrative head and officials of the Dāsatvamocana Aḍḍā, [which] has come to our notice: "In the royal order (khaḍganiśānā sanada) of Thursday, the 11th solar day of Mārga in the [Vikrama] year [19]82 sent to this office, it is written: '[His Majesty] has arranged to manumit [slaves] by paying sums [as reimbursement] for the registered kariyā slaves of Nepāla (i.e., the Kathmandu Valley) and (indeed) the entire Gorkhā kingdom. Therefore, for the task of auditing balance sheets (vāsalāta) and providing clearance (pharaphārakha) to officials who have been despatched to the Madhesa [and] hills—[whethere] districts, gosvārās, gauḍā)s [or] īākās—to manumit kariyās, [His Majesty] has arranged to have the task performed on the basis of the listed (tapasila)5 offices of the listed districts, gauḍās, gosvārās [and] īlākās. Accordingly, give orders (sanada) regarding the required matters to the concerned offices in order to (for them) examine the balance sheets and to provide clearance.' It is written in the (quoted) sanada that (in the case) of Pyuthana district, the examination should be carried out by the īlāka's Guṭhī Bandobasta Aḍḍā. [His Majesty] dispatched Me. Ka.6 Vīrajaṅga Sāha of Pālpā Gauḍā for the task of paying the owners the [reimbursement] amount for [their] registered kariyā slaves within Pyuthana īlākā and manumitting the slaves. He went to this district and is (now), in accordance with the written [instructions], engaged in paying owners the [reimbursement] amount for their kariyā slaves and manumitting the latter. Therefore, in order to provide him with clearance once he finishes his task and after the ledger (vāsila bākī) and [other] documents concerning the work he has done in accordance with the [prior] savāla(s) and sanada(s) issued (to him) in his name are received, we think it advisable that [His Majesty] should issue a sanada to the Guṭhī Bandobasta Aḍḍā in its name."

For this reason, once the payments of the [reimbursement] amounts to the owners of the registered slaves within Pyuthana district are made, you (i.e., the Guṭhī Bandobasta Aḍḍā) should obtain the ledger relating to the task of paying owners the [reimbursement] amount for their kariyā slaves and manumitting the latter, along with other available [records] including legal files (misila kāgajapatra), savāla(s), sanada(s), the ka forms containing the original list of owners and slaves, and the kha and ga forms [recording] payments made, and in order for the examination to be carried out, should, in accordance with the savāla(s) [and] sanada(s), obtain from the aforementioned Me. Ka. Vīrajaṅga Sāha the savālas, sanadas and other documents so that they can be submitted to the Dāsatvamocana Aḍḍā. In order to determine whether the task has been carried out in accordance with the Ain and savāla(s) and to provide clearance [to him], [I] should be informed through the Dāsatvamocana Aḍḍā. Upon approval provide [Vīrajaṅga Sāha] with clearance. After the matter of clearance is taken care of, submit the concerned documents to the Dāsatvamocana Aḍḍā.

Saturday, the 26th [solar] day of Pauṣa in the [Vikrama] era year 1982 (1926 CE). Auspiciousness.


This document is a copy of a royal directive issued to a local Guṭhī Bandobasta office in Pyuthana area regarding manumission. It was written in response to an earlier petition made by the Dāsatvamocana Aḍḍā recommending the palace to issue separate orders to the Guṭhī Bandobasta Aḍḍā regarding the manumission process. As the document reveals, the Dāsatvamocana Aḍḍā had been granted royal permission to issue orders of its own to offices under it, but apparently in this case it felt for some reason that it needed the extra force provided by a royal order. This document provides the following further information:

- A royal order was issued on the 11th solar day of Mārga in VS 1982 which included a list of offices responsible for carrying out the task of manumission throughout Nepal. This list is, however, not included as part of the present document.

- Vīrajaṅga Sāha of the Pālpā Gauḍā frontier was appointed as the in-charge for manumission work in the Pyuthana area.

- The local Guṭhī Bandobasta Aḍḍā, having been made responsible for checking the ledger submitted by Vīrajaṅga, is told by the king to send the documents to the Dāsatvamocana Aḍḍā for a backup check.

- The document further directs that the checked ledger and other documents should in the end be forwarded to the Dāsatvamocana Aḍḍā.

- There were apparently three kinds of forms, namely ka, kha and ga forms, used to administer the manumission. The first form contained information regarding the owners and their slaves, while the latter two recorded payments made to the owners.

This document thus provides some insight into administrative steps taken to carry out manumission after Candra Śamśera's speech of 28 November 1924 (cf. Rana 1925).


1. Illegible text in the original. []

2. In the left margin. []

3. In the left margin. []

4. In the bottom-left margin. []

5. The tapasila lists are generally contained within the document. However, the mentioned list is not included. []

6. Perhaps an abbreviation of mejara kaptāna (i.e., major captain). []