duty is facilitated. Subject to the adoption of the measures advocated in
paragraph 654, the Commission recommend that wholesale licenses should be
more freely granted without charge as in other parts of India, the selection
being carefully made by local officers according to requirement.

Assimilation of the Bengal and
Central Provinces systems.

656. If the suggestions made in paragraphs 643, 649, 650, 654, and 655 of this
chapter are accepted, the systems of Bengal and
the Central Provinces will be practically assimilated.
And apart from the fact that the system advocated appears to possess the
greatest advantages, this result is in itself most desirable.

North-Western Provinces.

657. The statistics for the North-Western Provinces are regarded by the
Excise Commissioner as very defective so far as
regards the amount of imports and exports. In the
absence of any fixed duty, and with a revenue determined solely by the license
fees, no provincial record of the traffic has been kept up. Mr. Stoker is not con-
fident that allowance has been made for transfers from district to district, and he
thinks there is much risk that the same drugs may have been counted twice, and
the provincial total thus exaggerated. Moreover, licenses for the sale of the
different kinds of drugs have not been sold separately. All that can be gathered
from the statements furnished is that the total amount of the license fees has in-
creased by about 75 per cent. in the last 20 years and the number of retail
licenses by 50 per cent., and that the imports and consumption of ganja seem to
be on the increase. The excise ganja of Bengal is being displaced by the drug
from the Central Provinces and Native States, which is almost wholly untaxed,
and this is one of the weak points in the North-Western Provinces administration
as pointed out in Chapter XV, paragraph 609. The total revenue from license fees
is in 1892-93 Rs. 7,04,788, but from this would have to be deducted the amount
due to licenses for the sale of charas and bhang which cannot be ascertained.
At a rough guess, it may be put at one-third, leaving Rs. 4,70,000 due to ganja.
To this must be added the duty on Bengal ganja levied in Bengal (about Rs.
1,12,600) and the registration fees at Re. 1 per maund levied on Central Provin-
ces ganja at Khandwa, making a total of about Rs. 6,00,000, or Rs. 3-2-3 per
sér on all imported ganja reckoned on an average of 4,774 maunds. On the whole
this does not appear to be a very inadequate incidence of taxation, but it must be
remembered that there is no control of production in the province, and that the
taxation on the different kinds of ganja imported is very unequal. The number
of shops is very large, nearly double in proportion to population of that which
is found in Bengal. There can be no doubt that in this province more control
is necessary, and some measures are urgently required for reducing the taxation
of the different kinds of ganja which are brought into the province to some kind
of uniformity. The need of remodelling the system has been fully recognised by
the officers in charge of the excise, and the proposals of the Excise Commissioner,
which have the support of the Member of the Board of Revenue in charge of
Excise, include the following measures:—

(1)  Prohibition of cultivation except under license.
(2)  Prohibition of manufacture of ganja.
(3)  Establishment of bonded warehouses, with control of storage and issue
of ganja.