(Last Updated on : 10/12/2010)
Concerning the Awards of Punishments, as mentioned in Chapter I of Book V in Arthashastra
, tries to highlight the measures to be taken by the state to suppress any kind of treason or conspiracy against the king or the kingdom. For such purpose it begins with an assessment of the conduct of the chiefs, ministers as well as the spies who are close to the king in his courtroom. After removing the thorns of public peace both in the fortified city as well as in the country part, it now concentrates on the chiefs who though living by the services under the king, are inimically disposed to the king or had joined hands with the enemy which can be verified with the strong spy system established within the state structure; the king then can secretively set punishment to such chiefs as well as confederacy of chiefs whom he finds dangerous for the security of the kingdom.
Concerning the Awards of Punishments, then suggests the king to check such seditious ministers who pose a danger to the king and his kingdom but are scot free due to lack of evidences. In such cases the king shall be free to take the help of the spies who with various methods of flattering shall be able to trace out such ministers. In order to get the seditious minister out of the court the king shall post the spies to instigate the minister against the king and create treasury against his own brother for property, which shall reveal his nature of lust and his cunningness against his own fellow mates. If the king fails to do this he may send the seditious minister to some parts of the country to suppress rebellion with an inefficient army. The spies, under the instructions of the king, can instigate the villagers to create such situations which shall condemn the seditious minister for mal administration which shall call for severe punishment for him. The king in this process shall be able to get rid of the seditious minister by blaming him inefficient and incapable for strong administration.
Concerning the Awards of Punishments then makes assessments regarding the role of the prince as well as the commander of the army. The state remains quite insecure if the commander of the army turns to be seditious. The prince m ay confer some benefits to the inimical persons who have been who has been deposed by the seditious army. In such cases the prince or the commander of army may pose some danger to the king and his kingdom that needs to be careful in removing such chiefs.
Thus, Concerning the Awards of Punishment mainly alerts the king towards growing discontentment which can engulf the country without the knowledge of the king. As the first chapter of the book, Conduct of the Courtiers, this chapter mainly diverts the attention towards the behaviours and intrigues played by the courtiers in deposing a ruler.