Marwar Under Ajit Singh & Abhay Singh (1764-1806 V.S.) :The present work aims at giving an opening to the earliest archival record pertaining to the economic and institutional study of Marwar. The title Patta Bahi’ (account book of the pattas) 1764-1770 v.s. (1707-1713 A.D.) specifies the assignments and grants of pattas for the period but the bahi actually carries it upto 1780v.s. (1723A.D.) although the entries beyond 1770 v.s. are quite few. It thus almost covers the entire reign of Ajit Singh.
The period is, unequivocally, crucial for it witnessed the disintegration of the Mughal empire and upon its ruin saw the rise of a number of states with different nature. Marwar – the largest in size in Rajputana – was one of assumed an autonomous role without declaring independence from Mughal yoke.
Patta stands for the assignment of a jagir to a pattayat, bureaucrat (muttsadi) against a patrimonial or prebendal tenure. Jagir was assessed in terms of rekh which was the assessed land revenue of a tract. The first two bahis for the reigns of Ajit Singh and Abhay Singh enumerate pattas clan-wise, against a chronological order along with genealogy too. The present bahi carries some 1078 pattas.
The language of the bahi is Rajasthani with Marwari orientation as was prevalent during the times, interspersed with words coming from Persian vocabulary then commonly used in this region in their corrupt form. There is a complete lack of punctuation marks like other manuscripts of the times. We have only grouped certain words to facilitate its reading.
To edit such a work appears to be a difficult undertaking. Changes in the then prevalent diction, almost readily, and confusion caused by misreading words on the score of a bad hand writing almost resembling shikastah of the Persian language makes the thing doubly difficult. An earnest effort has been made to put the records straight but still the sins of omission and commission cannot be ruled out.