MY DEAR FATHER,—You will see, by my date, that our share of the campaign is ended; in fact, we are only waiting here for shipping, which is on its way from Bombay, to take us from this place to Mandavie, in Cutch, where we land, and then march immediately to Deesa, in Guzerat; so that, after all our toilsome marches, &c., we have yet another, still more toilsome, before us of 240 miles. The climate of Cutch and Guzerat during the period of year that we shall be occupied in marching is so hot that no changes of station are ever made even by native corps, and Europeans are never allowed to march in Guzerat except during the cold months. It is sharp work on our poor men; many of whom appear very unfit for it; but they are now so accustomed to hard work, that they will get well through it I have little doubt.
We left Tuggur Bandur, from which place I wrote to Eliza and Kate, on the 13th of January, and drifted quietly down the river in boats, pulling up and coming to an anchor every evening at sunset. We reached Tatta Bundur, about five miles from the town, on the 21st, and after staying there a few days, started again for this place, which we reached in five marches, on the 31st. We were immediately most hospitably entertained by the officers of H.M. 40th, which is an excellent regiment. Here we have been ever since, living on the fat of the land, and enjoying ourselves very much, after all our toils. This is now a rather considerable station: one Queen’s and one Company’s regiment, and detail of foot artillery, and plenty of European supplies brought by the Bombay merchants. It is a very decent climate; and would make a very good station. I wish they would leave us here in place of sending us to Deesa, at this time of the year. Sir John Keane, General Willshire, and the Bombay staff are expected here in a day or two. Sir John is bringing down with him Hyder Khan, Dost Mahomed’s son, who commanded at Ghuzni when it was taken. He is to be brought to Bombay, and as he is of a very quiet, amiable disposition, will, so report says, be eventually allowed to join his father. Poor Dost, they say, is in a very bad way, deserted by nearly all his followers; but there still seems to be mischief brewing in the north-west. All accounts say that Bokhara is very much inclined to the Russian interest, and Shah Kamran’s vizier at Herat has been carrying on a correspondence with the Persians, the object of which is said to be the delivery of Herat into their hands. The Punjab is also in a very unsettled state; so there are plenty of materials for getting up another row in these countries before long. War is most positively said to be decided on with China, and seven regiments, to be followed by a reserve of equal number, together with a considerable naval force, are to be sent there as soon as possible. Lord Auckland, we are told, has had carte blanche from the Home government to act as he thinks fit with regard to China, and that he has determined upon a hostile movement as soon as this campaign is regularly finished, which it may be said to be; so there will be glorious fun there. It is not yet known here what regiments will go. I am afraid there is little chance for the Queen’s.