Import and export duties (also called octroi), haysiyyat tax, road tax, motor vehicle and tanga fee, income from the contracts of the forests, salt and ghee, duty on bonds and fines for different crimes were also sources of the State income. Besides, there were the stamp papers, arms licences fees, telephone fees, manshiyat tax (the supply of alcohol, poppy and charas were given on contract), rent and income of the confiscated property, cattle’s fare tax; mines (among which the emerald mines were the major and prominent one), income from the State owned Swat Hotel, and grant from the Government of Pakistan were the other sources of the State revenue.
Taxation was heavy, which is aptly analysed by Barth by stating that revenue of the State depended on the taxing of the fruits of private activities; tithe on agricultural production, fees on the extraction of timber, tolls on imports and exports, and license fees on various activities. A thorough analysis of other sources of the State revenue not mentioned by Barth also confirms the statement of taxing of the fruits of private activities.
The State’s income received from the different means and sources in the Tahsils were transmitted to the Central Exchequer after the disbursement of the payments and expenditures to be made at the Tahsil along with a return of income and expenditure.The State revenue had been disbursed and spent on administration (later on along with the Privy Purse), armed forces, police magazine factory, education, health department, roads and bridges, irrigation, muwajibs, press and publication, donations in Pakistani funds, malakana and relief, telephone department, jail, transport for public welfare, royalty of forests, expenditures of the Advisory Council, Government’s buildings, royalty of mines and committee of the retired servants. There was no audit of the State’s income and expenditures by any department or autonomous body.
Like other administrative spheres, Swat State had its unique status in respect of its judicial system.
Qazis were appointed, claims Maingul Abdul Wadud, all over the State on the village, Tahsil and Hakimi levels to decide the cases and the litigants may not suffer travelling long distances to the courts. The Tahsil Qazi had not only to deal with the Tahsil level cases but also acted as a court of appeal for the decisions of the village Qazi. The Qazi attached with every Hakim acted as higher court of appeal. On the top was a court at the capital of the State, comprising of Chief Qazi and other learned scholars of Islamic jurisprudence, which adjudged serious cases and worked as a Supreme Court of Islamic Jurisprudence and the highest court of appeal.
However, the judicial hierarchy comprised the Ruler on the top and Tahsildar at the bottom. The Qazi could not take cognizance of the disputes unless referred to them by Tahsildar, Hakim, Mashir, Wazir, Heir Apparent, and the Ruler or other officials. Even the Commander-in Chief held judicial powers and duties. A new department known as Mehkama-e-Munsifan was established later on. The munsifs were also entrusted with judicial power. Their panel usually had to visit the spot and had either to give their own judgement or had to report the position to the Ruler or heir apparent.
It should not be taken, as is commonly believed, that Shariat was the Supreme Law and that all the people were bound to follow and decide their cases accordingly in the Qazi courts. There was no separation of power in respect of the State officials. Administrative, executive, fiscal and judicial powers and functions were vested at a time in the hands of the State officials and Ruler, but the Qazis did not possess any sort of administrative, executive, fiscal and real judicial powers and functions. The Qazi courts were subservient to the Administrative cum Judicial officers and Islamic Laws to the regional ‘Codes of Conduct,’ and both were subordinate to the orders of the Rulers.
There were fines for all kinds of offences, I.e. murders, thefts, adultery, and so forth. Strict Islamic rules and laws were seldom followed. All the fines were fixed by the local jargas in the Codes of Conduct or by the Rulers.
It us noteworthy that procedural uniformity did not exist in filling petitions and their dispensation. Petition has been filed to a variety of the State officials, e.g. Tahsildar, Hakim, Hakim Ala, Naib Mashir, Mashir, Wali, Sipah Salar, Wali Ahmad and the Wali. Petitions and applications on the ordinary paper and letters from abroad have also been entertained. All the related officials instructions, correspondence, orders, and so forth has been done on the back of the papers on which petitions has been filed. However, the final decisions and verdicts have been given on stamp papers to those in whose favour the cases have been decided. The verdicts of the decisions have been usually brief, stating names of the petitioner(s) and the respondent(s), contentions of the parties and the reason for the decision in favour of the one party, written in Pukhtu which was the official language of the State. These have also been recorded in the in the State registers as official copies. Besides, some of the shortcomings of the Western judicial system-technicality, delay, and high cost were not known ever.
In Swat State not only procedures of litigation were simple but also the cases were decided quickly in one or two hearings and the decisions were properly implemented as well. Moreover, there was no court fee.
The people were safe from the pull and drag of lengthy litigation and the verdicts had been brief and properly implemented, but germs of favoritism and corruption were present from the outset. Not only the State officials having judicial powers but the Qazis were also not free from bribes, personal motives and interests. The practice continued throughout and more so in the later years. The Rulers did not take firm action elimination of bribery and corruption for their own reasons.
Although the Rulers themselves were from bribery, but they had to serve their own other interests. Fredrik Barth, a Norwegian anthropologist, points out that the Wali’s account emphasizes the settlement of cases as the most essential function of the Ruler. But, Barth observes that the settlement of cases was the most important way in which the State sought to regulate local level politics, and thereby secure its own survival in the context of deep and powerful political processes generated on the village level.