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HORSES FOR INDIA.

From what has transpired m connection with the enquiries made m the colonies as to the number of horses available for army purposes if 'wanted by the Indian army authorities it appears that the intention is to ascertain if m any c ontigency 2000 horses would be eb* tal Ably m the colonies if cabled for and required suddenly. AU the enquiries may go to show that the number could not be obtained except at a large advance on present rates if at all. The ammunition train is stored m tims of peace, but m the event of any trouble arising on the Afghanistan frontier, from domestic or Russian intrigues, the arrangements would be to take, a percentage of horses from the batteries of the First Army Corps, to horse the tsmmunition trains, leaving the gaps made m the horsing|of the batteries, to be filled up with importations of horses suitable for the artillery from the colonies. At least 2000 horses would be thus required. The horses sent from Victoria are numbered and pedicreed, and the number, and year of each horse's Birth branded. A duplicate of this register is sent with the shipment, so that aU the information is available at once for reference. In Victoria and New South Wales Colonel Carre, R.A., visited stations where horse-breeding was ; carried on,- and' at which six or seven hundred horses were passed before him, every one of which had its pedigree registered. As to officers' chargers, there is a good demand for really superior animals In such a case, with commandants, staff officers, or officers of the hoise artillery, money is, so to speak, no object, as high as from 1000 to 2000 rnpees being given. With regard to carriage horses, the Victorian Syndicate rarely allows them to come into the open market, their agents m country districts buying them up whenever procurable for the Indian market. Colonel Carre states that he has seen finer turn-outs, m that way of a summer evening on the Mnidan m Calcutta, by native rajahs, than he ever saw m Melbourne or Sydney. Colone Carre, subsequently expressed him* self m condemnation of tne present system of shipping horses to India. He stated that m his opinion they could be conveyed much more cheaply than at present j that there was no necessity to carry them between decks ; but that they could be safely carried on the upper deck with a small percentage of lo s. His vjews are that the horses should be accustomed to hard feed before being shipped j placed on deck where good substantial fittings should b,e erected, and the horsps kept with belly band;; and suitable clothing when necessary,. In these days of steam there should be no difficulty m taking the smooth water route— tl« only break being the part of the voyage from New Zea'and to the Australian coast. By adopting this system of conveyance the vessel would be able to earn some freight, say coal, which is always needed by the warships, m addition to carrying the forage, which would minimise th,e cost of the transport of the horses. Jn Calcutta the fittings, owing tp the demand for timber, would realise a fair price. Th.c vessels could have as return freight sacks, tea, silk, Indian notions,* etc. Colonel Carre says that once he was commissioned to purchase 400 mules for foreign seivice, and that he carried them safely to their destination on the under decks of the transports, 100 on each ship,— "N.Z. Herald."

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HORSES FOR INDIA. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2207, 23 August 1889

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