'I never saw a man so cool and collected as he was.'
EARLY IN 1802 the Governor-General authorized an expedition, to be led by his brother, against a troublesome rajah in Bullum, north-west of Seringapatam. The short campaign, which ended with the hanging of the rajah, gave General Wellesley further experience of forest warfare which was to stand him in good stead in the days to come. For the operations had not long been over when he was called upon to take to the field again. This time he was to operate in the territories of the Marāthās north of Mysore. Here the Peshwah, the titular chief of the Marāthā confederacy who had accepted the position of a prince under British protection, had been driven from Poona by Jaswant Rāo Holkar, an illegitimate son of Tukojī Holkar, Maharajah of Indore. General Wellesley's prescribed task was to restore the Peshwah to his throne in Poona and to defeat or scatter Holkar's army.
As the author of a recent 'Memorandum upon Operations in the Mahratta Territory' and as an officer with experience of that country in the pursuit of Dhoondiah Waugh, he felt himself as well qualified as any officer in India to do so; and he set about preparing for the campaign with his accustomed thoroughness and energy, paying particular and necessary attention to the problem of supplying an army which would be operating so far from its bases. He arranged for the acquisition of beef and sheep, rice and forage and bullocks to be stocked in depots in northern Mysore close to the Marāthā border. He dealt in detail with packing cases and containers, with kegs for salt, gunny bags for rice, with four-gallon, iron-hooped casks for arrack. Nothing was left to chance, no detail was overlooked.
His army of nine thousand men marched into Marāthā territory in March 1803; and the next month he was approaching Poona when he learned that the place was to be set on fire as soon as he drew near it. Making a forced night march of forty miles with 400 cavalry, he