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100 Years Ago | 17 May 2019

It is announced that the Belgian Minister at The Hague will shortly open preliminary negotiations with Holland regarding the Meuse and Scheldt questions. Doubtless he will wait until peace has been definitively concluded with the Huns, and then will come Holland’s turn to exercise voluntarily a little of that altruism which is about to be enforced on Germany by treaty. The attitude of Holland is now, apparently as childlike and bland as the Chinese cardplayer in Bret Harte’s verses. “The Government of the Netherlands,” writes J.R. von Stuwe, in the Fortnightly Review, “does not refuse to entertain the question of an adjustment of claims with regard to the full freedom of the Scheldt.” That is very good of the Government of the Netherlands, but it is still more interesting to learn that the attitude of that Government during the war has been misunderstood. “The existing treaties bound Holland irrevocably to an uncompromising attitude during the war,” says von Stuwe; “had she broken them, had she dismissed them as mere scraps of paper, she would, by her own fault and lack of insight, have committed a breach of neutrality and would have been dragged into the war without good cause and without honour.” And rather than be dragged anywhere, whether into war or into peace, Holland is now evidently prepared to take the wise step of going willingly.


Before the Third Presidency Magistrate yesterday, Burkat Hossein, Jani Ali, who was described as a scion of the Mysore family, and Murali Dhar Ghatak, formerly a ledger clerk at Cox’s Bank, were placed on trial on charges of forgery, an attempt at cheating, and conspiracy for the commission of an offence. According to the prosecution, Burkat Hossein, the first accused, presented at Messrs. Cox’s Bank a forged letter and a requisition, purporting to have been signed by Mahomed Siddiq Abdul Ghani of Colootallah Street, asking to be supplied with a cheque book. This was supplied, and the same day, accused came and presented a cheque for Rs 5,745 which, apparently, was signed and issued by the Mahomedan gentleman named, but, as a matter of fact, was forged. The money was about to be handed over, when the cashier put some questions to accused. The cashier’s suspicious were thereupon aroused, and accused was handed over to the police. His statement to the police implicated the second accused, Jani Ali. On Jani Ali’s information, the third accused was arrested. The hearing was adjourned.


It is announced by the Agent of the Eastern Bengal Railway that with effect from the 1st June, 1919, an extra train each way will be provided between Calcutta and Khulna. The Up train will leave Calcutta at 8-56 hours and arrive at Khulna at 15-0 hours. The Down train will leave Khulna at 12-0 hours connecting with Khulna Bagerhat Railway 90 Down and arrive at Calcutta 18- 7 hours. On and from the same date Nos. 31 Up and 30 Down will be made fast trains. No. 31 Up will leave Calcutta at 14- 26 and arrive at Khulna at 19-15 and No. 30 Down will leave Khulna at 5-10 and arrive at Calcutta at 10-0 hours. Below Bongong, these trains will stop only at important stations, viz:- Dum Dum Junction, Dum Dum Cantonment, Baraset, Duttapukur and Gobordanga, and above Bongong at all stations except Godhkhali, Jhikargacha and Dhopakhola.



Enemy stragglers in the Khyber concentrated at Ali Musjid on Wednesday for the purpose of attempting to delay convoys and reinforcements. Our advancing troops killed one sniper and wounded the others. Our casualties were slight. Snipers also fired on our convoy on Thursday morning without effect. I marched into Loe Dakka with our force in time to see a few stragglers attacking a patrol. The enemy was driven off by rifle and Lewis gun fire. We have now advanced eleven miles into Afghan territory. While I was motoring back to Peshawar snipers fired at my car near Ali Musjid but only succeeded in hitting the bonnet. Our aerial reconnaissances have not located the enemy main force.


The Board of Health record the opinion that public health is not good and that smallpox and plague are epidemic. During the week ending the 10th inst. smallpox registered 60 attacks and 41 deaths and plague 78 attacks and 59 deaths, being 12 attacks and 15 deaths less than in the previous week. Cholera, which was sporadic, claimed only 3 victims, but influenza accounted for 72 deaths. The total mortality for the week was 1,644.


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