RYOTWARI, a revenue term applied to a system under which the land taxes are collected, in all those parts of India in which the village communities have been broken up by the dis tracted state of the country for generations, or in which the exclusive title of the representatives of t he old proprietors has been superseded by the pre scriptive rights acquired by the actual cultivators.
In Madras and Bombay, generally, the normal state of the ryot is to hold under the Government.
In Coorg, the janam or hereditary ryot pays direct to Government at a light rate, but on con dition that he shall not alienate or sublet the land or even cultivate it otherwise than by his own household or by his slaves.
In Coimbatore and south of Madras generally, the Nutamkar or Gour ryot is recognised as the absolute proprietor of the soil.
In Tanjore, the mirasdars have a transferable right of property in their holdings and they have sub-t,enants, called parakudi, wh'o cultivate on their own stock, but are liable to be ousted.
In Malabar, the janarn tenure is a fee-simple or hereditary right of possession, which can be leased or mortgaged. The janaua kar assigns a portion of land to be fenced and stocked, in consideration of which the bolding is enjoyed free of charge for twelve years. If resumed, which is seldom done, compensation for improvements is given, other wise the tenure is maintained on easy terms. Kai kanum patutn, or a usufructuary tenure by labour, also prevails.
In Canara, the rnulgueni or proprietory tenants are of the tvvo classes,—Nair Mulgueni, whose tenure is by ancient prescription ; and Shud Mulgueni, by purchase. The Chailgueni is the tenant-at-will, from whom the landlords may get additional rent whenever there is a higher offer.
In Peddapur and Cuttamur a right is vested in the ryot, which partakes more of what is termed in the southern provinces the Pashangary tenure, in which no sale of the right of occupancy is customary, than of the Adhkari tenure, under which the right of occupancy is considered trans ferable, subject to the obligations annexed to the possession of it.
In the Tamil country, under thp mirasdar, there are non-proprietary tenants, wholare divided into ooleoody or permanent, and paracoody or temporary, cultivators. The oolcoody faNaer has rented the same farm at a given rent (in iilrey or grain) for several generations, and enjoys a right by prescription ; he cannot be ousted so long as he pays the rent, which cannot be raised. The tenure is hereditary, and can be mortgaged, but not sold.
The paracoody farmer has no privileges beyond the terms of his contract.
Where there are no mirasdars, the ryots are considered as ool-paracoody, holding`frorn Govern ment.
The Pycary tenure is of two kinds,—resident where there is a continuing interest, and non resident where there is no such interest, and where the stranger is tempted by low rents. The tenure of the first of these is like that of the copyholder of England. It is hereditary by pre scription, but they cannot alienate, for the right extends to the use of the soil only, and not to the substance.
The Pariah, Puller, and Pulli of the Tamil country, who are predial slaves and serfs under the Hindu landowners, claim hereditary private landed property as the incident of their villeinage, and it is generally allowed to them and their de scendants onproving former residence in the village.
In Bombay, there are three classes of ryots— (1) Mirasdars or landed proprietors, possessed of watans, which are privileged holdings that com mand a price iu proportion to the lightness of the assessment. Half the produce is the full Government rent of an ordinary cultivator.
(2) Oopree or permanent tenants ; and (3) Warwunda-kurri or temporary tenants. The first of these can be traced to the remotest antiquity. It may be conferred by the heads of villages, and implies a hereditary right so long as the rent by village usage is paid. The second, bating some privileges, is almost as valuable.