Order read, for resuming Adjourned Debate on Amendment proposed to Question [31st July], "That Mr. Speaker
do now leave the Chair;" and which Amendment was,
To leave out from the word "That" to the end of the Question, in order to add the words "in the opinion of this House, the present constitution of the. Government of India fails to secure an efficient or economical management of its finances, and that this House views with apprehension the state of local taxation in that Country, and is of opinion that its financial condition must be regarded as unsatisfactory so long as the income Tax forms its only financial reserve,"—(Mr. Fawcett,)
Question again proposed, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Question."
said, that taking the statement that had been made by the hon. Gentleman the Under Secretary of State for India for granted, the financial prospect was not re-assuring:—in an Empire so vast we were subject to many unforesoen contingencies, and no margin had been left for emergencies that might any day arise. Our Indian Empire was just able to carry on without getting into debt, and without any provision or resource in case of trouble or calamity except the obvious plan of borrowing or the re-imposition of the Income Tax, which was ill suited to India, and had caused the greatest dissatisfaction, and he must express his satisfaction that the now Governor General had seen his way to relieving the Natives from this tax. He had more than once called attention to the grievances which existed between the Native Princes and the Supreme Government; it was therefore satisfactory to observe that these relations appeared to be improving, and he felt convinced that a more generous, considerate, and conciliatory treatment of the Native Rulers would pay in the end. He wished to acknowledge the improvement that had been made in the financial accounts with the Native States, which were much more clear than heretofore; and he was glad to find an admission that £52,000 was to be credited as a balance to the Nawab Nazim of Bengal, and that last year there was a similar balance of £55,000. There remained a balance of £50,000 or £55,000 to be carried to the fund for the use and benefit of the Principality. Sir John Kaye put these accumulations at £150,000; but it was desi- rable that whatever was really due as accumulations should be carried to the benefit of the Principality. He passed now to general and more important considerations. The hon. Member for Brighton (Mr. Fawcett), in his able statement yesterday, approached this subject from an Indian point of view, pleading eloquently and earnestly on behalf of those who were not represented in this House. He (Mr. Torrens) wished to deal with it from the Home point of view, and consider it in the interest of the British taxpayer, whose interests were deeply involved in the financial prosperity of our Indian Empire. In taking over from the Company this magnificent estate, to hold with the rest of the Empire, we were bound to watch the growth of expenditure; because we could not but feel that, if ever there came a time when India could not pay her way, England could never shelter herself under a plea of limited liability, but would have to make up the deficiency. We could not fall back upon over-taxed India. It was said that the value of Indian securities was greater now than had been the case under the Company. The reason was clear—India remained the same, but there was added the additional security afforded by the Queen's Government. If, however, during a period of political fine weather, the Secretary of State for India could only show a bare financial equilibrium, with nothing to spare, what would happen at a time of disturbance in India or troubles in Europe which might affect the peace of the East? There was good reason for falling back under such circumstances upon the warnings of the late Governor General and Commander-in-Chief, which hitherto had not had the effect of producing any material reduction of expenditure. No material retrenchment was made or promised in military expenditure, and we were dependent upon poppyheads for one main branch of revenue. It was the duty of the House to provide, as far as possible, for a better state of things. Enormous sums had been spent upon military and commercial railways; but the military railways were not completed and the commercial did not pay. The interest upon these unprofitable works went into the pockets of British stockholders, and the House of Commons was bound to see that the construction of railways in India did not become a burden upon the Indian people. In the same way the Indian debt was held mainly by Europeans. These questions were generally discussed at a time when Parliament was out of town. The Members now present were a poor remnant of the House, and he hoped no hon. Gentleman would be unkind enough to take steps to ascertain how many were present. The fact was that England was adding to its wealth by a percentage upon expenditure in India which the work executed did not return. Turning now to the question of local taxation, he understood the Under Secretary of State to say last night that the incidence of local taxation in our Indian Empire was a question of insignificant item, because it was levied on such an enormous population. But Parliament was bound to see that taxes were not levied oppressively upon the poorer part of the people of India; and he could not help reminding the Under Secretary that the number of the people and the average of the tax per head had no more to do in showing the incidence of taxation than the average length of the spinal column or the average length of the noses of the people. Remembering the value of property in India compared with the value of property in this country, and bearing in mind also that the whole earnings of India only amounted to from £250,000,000 to £300,000,000, while those of England amounted to £900,000,000, it was absurd to compare the amount of taxation paid per head by the people of the two countries. If the true measure of taxation were the capacity of the thing taxed then the people of India, in their poverty, paid twice as much as did the people of England. A very suggestive piece of evidence was given before the Committee upstairs by Lord Lawrence, who was so justly regarded, not only by the Under Secretary, but by hon. Gentlemen on both sides of the House, as the very highest authority on the subject. He was asked by a member of the Committee—"In case the revenue should fall short, is there any existing tax you know of which can be increased with safety to the State?" His reply was—"I know of none." Then he was asked—"Is there any new tax that could, in your opinion, be levied?" and he replied—"I am not aware of any." We were therefore in this position—that the richest country in the world, having taken over a great Empire from an independent Company which had managed its affairs satisfactorily, saw it now burdened as heavily as it was possible to bear. Was that, he asked, a creditable state of things? In this state of things it was most desirable and expedient—it had become the bounden and indispensable duty of the Government of India—to cut down the gigantic expenditure which now existed, and to free the taxpayers from the oppressive burdens which were now laid on them. No great political question now agitated the Indian Empire; but how long might that state of things continue? It would be mere affectation to pretend that there existed no smothered griefs and grievances capable at any moment of becoming pestilent sources of embarrassment. It was the duty of the House of Commons not to wait until serious difficulties arose, but to warn the Government in time, so that they might take preventive and remedial measures. The present discussion was therefore likely to be beneficial. The Treasury did not like to be overhauled, but investigation had led to good results. The Colonial Office had been brought to book with a like effect. It could not but be attended with satisfactory results that the authorities at the India Office should hear the opinions of the House of Commons freely expressed. This Session that House had been surprised by receiving a Bill from the House of Lords, by which the Lords declared themselves weary of their jurisdiction in the matter of appeals, and they accordingly divested themselves of their ancient powers which were to be committed henceforth to a new Court of Appeal. Coerced by that expression of opinion on the part of the other House, he had voted for the second reading of the Bill; but he was very sorry the other House should have thought it necessary to deprive themselves of their ancient powers; but that being so, they were, in his opinion, more bound than ever to do all they could in other ways to exercise their combined efforts for the benefit of the people of India. In the House of Lords there sat ex-Governor Generals of India, ex-Commanders-in-Chief, and others long intimately connected with that country. Here, then, were the materials of a tribunal of which they should avail them- selves for the benefit of India. Why should they not act together, as by a Joint Committee between the two Houses coming together from time to time, in the consideration of difficult questions affecting the welfare of India? He merely threw this out as a suggestion. Parliament was responsible to the Sovereign, to the people of India, and to the people of this country for knowing how India was governed, and no mere neglect or evasion of that duty would exonerate them from it; and they should provide some means by which their best men could be brought together to consider questions of great and perhaps perilous importance which might arise in India. He thanked the House for the attention with which they had listened to the few observations he had felt it his duty to make, and he would conclude by repeating that in discussing Indian matters they should keep steadily in view their primary duty—while sustaining the executive Government to take care that they were not left uninformed of the financial conditions and prospects of that country.
said, that he should not have addressed the House but for some observations that fell from the hon. Member for Brighton (Mr. Fawcett) in his speech last night; he hoped, therefore, the House would extend its indulgence to him in his endeavour to answer them. Although he dissented in great measure from many of the hon. Member's opinions, still he could not but think that in his vigorous denunciations of extravagance in the Government of India, he was doing good service to the State; and every one connected with the Government of India should hail him as a most valuable ally. He believed that the Government of India must look upon these denunciations as most valuable to them; because the Government of India was such a vast machine that it was impossible that the Executive could know everything that was going on in different parts of the Empire; and the more extravagance and abuse were brought to light, the more chance the Government of India would have of governing in a manner that would be satisfactory to themselves and to the country. He also thought, however, that when the hon. Gentleman took such interest in the Government of India, and made such long speeches upon the matter, he should be very careful to sift what was sound from what was unsound. He did not wish in any way to detract from the merit of the hon. Member; but still he must say that he thought he was a little hard last night on the Government of India to represent the remission of taxation which had taken place to the extent of £6,000,000 as entirely owing to the agitation which he had inaugurated three or four years ago. No doubt it was a great advantage to have public opinion directed to Indian matters; but he could not help thinking that those who were engaged in the Government of India were influenced by much higher motives. They felt it to be their duty to leave no stone unturned and no effort unexerted to bring the expenditure of India within the revenue. He would leave many of the observations of the hon. Member upon the general policy pursued in India to be replied to by some Member of the Government. He believed that most of those observations could be satisfactorily answered, certainly those with regard to cash balances and public lands. He agreed with him that India was a very poor country, and that it was almost impossible to institute any analogy between the incidence of taxation there and in this country. He thought that the Under Secretary of State for India had put the matter much higher than he might have done when he said that the taxation in India amounted to 3s. 7½d. per head; because in making that estimate, he took into consideration the whole of the taxation of the country, whilst £30,000,000 of it was really not taxation at all, but was derived from land revenue, opium, and two or three other items. [Mr. GRANT DUFF observed that he had included the land revenue, but not the opium revenue.] He thought that the hon. Gentleman had understated the case. On the other hand, he could not agree with the hon. Member for Brighton when he said that the income tax was the only reserve which India possessed. He would be sorry to imagine a change of circumstances in India which would make the income tax its only reserve. Many taxes had been mentioned as likely to suit the wants of the people of India, and to fall upon them with less severity than the income tax; but he believed it would be unnecessary, unless some great disaster should happen, that any increase should be made in the taxation of the country. The real reform we must look for was in a reduction of expenditure, and he had himself on two or three occasions that Session brought the subject before the House. The hon. Member for the City of London (Mr. Crawford) was directly interested in the railways of India; the railway over which he presided had reduced its rates to the very lowest point; others were in the same position; and he looked forward with considerable hopefulness to a large reduction in the enormous amount the taxpayers were obliged to pay on account of railways, which was nearly £2,000,000 altogether. It was said that we had made them too expensively; but, having made them, we must do the best we could with them. Although the passenger traffic was increasing, the goods traffic was not increasing appreciably, and that was a point well worth consideration. He came now to what was the real cause of his addressing the House, and that was the attack which had been made on what the hon. Member called the "scheme of decentralization," though its proper name would have been the "provincial service scheme." He thanked the hon. Member sincerely for the way in which he had spoken of the late Viceroy, whose public acts were of course open to the severest criticism; but he complained of the hon. Member saying that the decentralization scheme of Lord Mayo was answerable for the prominence of late years of the question of local taxation, because that scheme involved an expenditure so large that they had to resort to expedients to meet it. Now, what was the system which had been so denounced? Though there were under it large powers given to local bodies over local taxation, it was not the fact, as the hon Member seemed to suppose, that local taxation had its foundation and origin in 1870; and, indeed, nothing could be farther from the real state of the case. Money had been levied for years by local bodies, and there was hardly anything over which local governments could not exercise powers of taxation; whilst at the same time they could not control the expenditure in any way whatever. That was the evil aimed at by the policy of 1870, and it was a policy that was by no means new. The hon. Member for Orkney (Mr. Laing) was almost the first to speak in high terms of operations of the kind; and the right hon. Member for Tiverton (Mr. Massey) bore similar testimony. Until 1870, however, such a scheme was never put into practice, though it had been advised. Now how was that scheme put into practice? In 1870, the income tax was very high, and it was thought very desirable by the Governor General to take steps to remedy a financial policy which was so unsatisfactory. The plan he proposed was that, in order to remove a large amount of income tax he should carry the matter out through local governments, by adopting such methods of taxation as would be most suitable for each province and least embarrassing to the people. Then certain sources of taxation were delivered over to local bodies to provide for certain services, and local taxation was to be raised to supply the deficiency. When this was called "decentralization" it should be borne in mind that no control was given up, and there were the greatest safeguards that local bodies should not exceed their powers. What the Government said was—
The difficulties were not ignored, for it was said—"In sharing with the local Governments a portion of the control which it now exercises, the Supreme Government gives nothing that can be retained with advantage to Imperial interests. On the contrary, it will associate with itself an authority by whose assistance the administration can be made more efficient."
That was the principle upon which the scheme of provincial service was established, and, so far from its operation having increased the burden of taxation, it had effected economy by giving the local Governments inducement to pro- mote it. Notwithstanding the denunciations of the hon. Member for Brighton, he should be able to show that the scheme had been eminently successful, Sir Richard Temple, in his financial statement for this year, said—The Governor General in Council is aware of the difficulties which surround the practical adoption of these principles in India. But they are not insurmountable. Serious obstacles will have to he overcome, and much prejudice, ignorance, and suspicion encountered. Disappointments and partial failures are certain to occur; but when the object in view is the instruction of many peoples and races in a good system of administration, his Excellency in Council is fully convinced that the local Governors and all their subordinates will not be slow to take every opportunity of enlisting in the great work of general improvement the active assistance, and, at all events, the sympathy, of many classes who have hitherto taken little or no part in the work of social and material advancement."
Further, he showed that the burdens of the people had been lessened and not increased, because the whole amount levied under the new system was £212,000, and the allotments of the Supreme Government to the local governments were £320,000 less than in the preceding year. While Sir Richard Temple said the answers of the local governments to the inquiries addressed to them were satisfactory, Sir George Campbell, Lieutenant Governor of Bengal, in one of the most interesting documents connected with the administration of India ever produced, after discussing the two courses that were open—the increase of taxation, or the reduction of expenditure—said—"During the current year a circular was addressed to the local Governments, asking opinions as to the working of the system of provincial services; and the replies are unanimously and strongly in favour of the system. Improvements, both in efficiency and economy, and abridgment of labour, are attributed to it by all the authorities consulted."
The result was that, instead of producing greater taxation, economy resulted from their being able to make both ends meet. It would be a great misfortune, therefore, for the people of India if, in consequence of the remarks of the hon. Member for Brighton, anything should occur to prevent that experiment from being carried out still further. The first step was not intended to be a final one, and many improvements were necessary in order to carry out the scheme to its ultimate end. No doubt the present Viceroy of India was impressed with that feeling, and that he would introduce modifications such as the late Lord Mayo had intended to introduce; and in that case, he might look to that House to uphold him in that policy. In conclusion, he expressed a hope that the House would not concur in the views of the hon. Member for Brighton."Before leaving this subject the Lieutenant Governor would ask to be allowed to submit his humble testimony to the wisdom and the practical efficiency of the system of provincial finance inaugurated by the Government of the late Earl of Mayo. It seems to him that for a beginning it went quite far enough and not too far; that it has most successfully supplied a motive to economy and method which has taken full effect; that it has immensely diminished the friction between the Supreme and subordinate Governments to which the finance of the civil departments continually gave rise; and that has enabled the local Governments to mould and shape the departmental establishments and expenses with a view to their efficiency and their adaptation to local requirements in a way which was impossible under the old system. The experiment has been, the Lieutenant Governor ventures to say, a complete and unalloyed success."
said, he had had the good fortune to be present at the annual duel which took place between the Under Secretary of State for India and the hon. Member for Brighton; but he could hardly make up his mind to decide between the gloomy statement of the hon. Member for Brighton and the bright description of the Under Secretary for India, who would wish them to believe that India was an earthly paradise. The latter hon. Gentleman appeared to attribute that glowing state of affairs to economy, opium, and Providence. [Mr. GRANT DUFF said, he only mentioned economy, and opium.] As the hon. Gentleman excluded Providence, it was satisfactory to hear that the other agencies were at work for good, and that they were approaching the happy state that had been described. It should not be forgotten, however, that there were other great nations in the world besides England and India, and that we ought to have some regard for the happiness and welfare of neighbouring countries. Instead of that, we poisoned them with opium. He complained that it was disgraceful to this country to force opium upon China—a traffic which in its effects had been described as worse than the Slave Trade. How, he asked, should we like it, if the Chinese were able, by maintaining larger armies, to insist on carrying on a trade with us in some injurious drug, which our Government strongly objected to being introduced into the country. Our influence abroad was damaged in consequence of the extraordinary course which we had pursued with reference to this in matter, and. yet when we had succeeded in pauperizing large numbers of the Chinese the Under Secretary of State rose in his place, and thanked Providence because the people of that country were becoming oven more demoralized than hitherto. His right hon. Friend the Member for Oxfordshire (Mr. Henley) might, perhaps, say the opium revenue in India was not worse than the spirit revenue in England. Well, for his part, he did not think it was so bad; for, as the late Sir Benjamin Brodie remarked, an opium eater was useless but not mischievous, whereas a spirit-drinker was both useless and mischievous. He very often admired the masterly statements made by his hon. Friend the Member for Brighton with respect to the affairs and Government of India, and he thought the hon. Member ought to speak out boldly, and say whether he thought it was right to raise a revenue from opium. Not many Sessions ago he (Sir Wilfrid Lawson) moved a Resolution condemnatory of the system of raising a great part of the Revenue of India by a tax on opium. The Government thereupon moved the Previous Question, which was always a slippery way of getting out of a question. The Prime Minister on that occasion said, that the Government would inquire into the subject. He would shortly give the House another opportunity of deciding whether it was right to raise our Indian Revenue by that means, when he trusted the House would agree with him in condemning that cruel and inhuman method of raising revenue, which was unworthy of being supported by the Parliament of a great, humane, and generous people.
said, he had supported the hon. Baronet's Motion for three years, and if he had the opportunity, he should do so when it was again brought under the notice of the House. One of the reasons why India had been transferred from the old Company to the Government was, because of the scandal of the opium trade, and yet nothing had been done in that respect, and whatever had been the sins of the old Company in encouraging the opium trade, the sins of the House of Commons had been three times greater. The subject was one that greatly interested the English people; for if they decided on stopping it, they must consider how far they would be prepared to assist the Revenues of India. He could not agree with the hon. Member for Brighton, and deal with opium revenue as a financial question on account of its doubtful source. If China were to cultivate opium, there would be the risk of losing it, in which case India would have a deficit instead of a surplus. They should bear in mind how precarious that source of revenue was, and consider how unwise it was to build all our financial arrangements in India upon such a basis. The salt tax of India was one also that pressed very heavily upon the poor of that country, and it was an unsound principle to tax the ordinary and common necessaries of life. The income tax was not suited to India, and he rejoiced that Lord Northbrook appeared disposed to put an end to it. It was not advisable to persevere in the imposition of a tax against public feeling, but when they yielded to the feelings of the higher classes of India with reference to a particular tax, it would be unfortunate to be compelled to retain one like that on salt, which materially affected the poor. As the sources of taxation were very limited in that country, he thought that the only thing they could do was to see whether they could not make some reduction in the expenditure, and he was of opinion that it would be well for them to consider whether they might not with safety diminish the Native Army. The Native Army consisted of 120,000 men; and the question which he wished to submit to the Government was, whether such a large force was necessary. He thought a considerable reduction might be made with perfect safety, especially in the case of Madras, where there were 27,000 men. He thanked the hon. Member for Brighton for having so forcibly brought his views under the notice of the House, and he believed that the devotion which he had shown to their interests would prove to be most advantageous to the vast population of India.
said, that although agreeing with much of the powerful speech of the hon. Member for Brighton, he yet regretted that that hon. Gentleman had placed his Amendment on the Paper. After the House had appointed a Committee to consider the whole subject of Indian Finance the hon. Member could hardly expect that before the Report of the Committee was complete, the House would pronounce an opinion on controverted questions, and affirm the Resolutions which he had put on the Paper. Nobody who had any hand in framing the scheme of local taxation to which reference had been made, had yet been examined before the Committee in its defence; and it would therefore be more judicious not to pronounce a judgment upon it until the other side of the case had been heard. He thought the hon. Member for Brighton had drawn too dark a picture of the state of India and the conduct of the Government. If our government of that country had been so bad as the hon. Member had described, it was doubtful whether even so patient a people as the inhabitants of India would have sat quiet so long under such a rule. He could not be accused of flattering the Government of India, various of whose measures of late years he had condemned; but it was impossible for any one who had long been concerned in the civil administration of India, and who had studied its history and condition in times before it came under British sway, not to be convinced of the great benefits which our rule had conferred on that country and its people. The native Press of India was not slow to recognize the advantages of English rule; for while frankly owning that foreign rule was not in itself a desirable thing, and while charging our Government with many shortcomings, yet it admitted the great benefits it conferred, and declared that if a struggle should arise between England and Russia, it would be the duty of the Natives heartily to support England. He did not regard with unalloyed satisfaction the discontinuance of the income tax. That tax, if it applied to very low incomes was objectionable, but it afforded a means of bringing under contribution the moneyed and trading classes, who would not otherwise bear their fair share of the burdens of the State, and he thought that if it had been restricted to incomes of £150 a-year and upwards, the tax would have been paid cheerfully. If they should require in any emergency to increase the revenue of India to any considerable extent, it could only be done by taxing the rich, and the rich could only be reached by an income tax. In his opinion, however, the question of the income tax shrunk into insignificance when compared with the greater question of local taxation. The hon. Member for Brighton had correctly represented his (Sir Charles Wingfield's) evidence before the Committee. In his instructions for the settlement of the land revenue of Oude 12 years ago, under the authority of Lord Canning, he distinctly said that the cesses in addition to the land revenue proper should be 2½ per cent, and he gave the people an assurance that those cesses should not be increased during the period of the settlement. Notwithstanding that fact, an Act was, two or three years ago, passed by the Legislative Council doubling those cesses. In that manner faith had been broken with the landholders not only in Oude, but in the Punjaub also. He deprecated the attempt to push on public improvements too far. Rapid progress meant increased taxation, and increased taxation meant discontent. The Under Secretary, in alluding to the recent decrease in expenditure, forgot to state that it was accounted for to a great extent by a decreased expenditure on public works. He entirely concurred with the hon. Member (Mr. Fawcett) that Madras and Bombay should be administered by Lieutenant Governors instead of by Governors, and one advantage of the arrangement would be that you would then get rid of the expense of Councils and of Commands in Chief at these Presidencies. He opposed any legislation which was atvariance with the traditions and habits of the people. But it sometimes happened that upon the Council there were two or three doctrinaires who favoured such legislation, and that showed the necessity of a Secretary of State with a controlling power in England. No real disposition had been shown to admit the Natives of India to the Civil Service; and the Natives could not but contrast the hot haste of the Government in imposing taxes with the delay in carrying out an Act of Parliament. One of the most important questions in India, therefore, was how to give effect to the Act of Parliament, and Her Majesty's Proclamation, in which it was stated that the subjects of all races were to be admitted to all employments for which they were suited. No doubt, Natives were employed now, but in small and underpaid posts. They were, however, well qualified for the higher judicial offices, and their appointment to such offices would not only satisfy them, but conduce to economy; because it was not necessary to give as much money to Natives who were serving in their own country, as to Europeans who must be tempted by high salaries to leave theirs.
said, his hon. Friend the Member for Brighton had expressed an opinion that the proposals of the Government of India, in reference to military expenditure, were frequently overborne by the War Department at home, and that in that way the interests of India were in many cases disregarded. His hon. Friend, by his frequent allusions to the evidence taken by the Committee upstairs, rather conveyed the impression that the conclusion he arrived at was founded on that evidence. As a Member of the Committee, he (Mr. Campbell-Bannerman) was bound to say that no evidence was given on the subject, except of a very general character, and to a very slight extent, and no opportunity had been afforded to the War Department to refute it. When the Committee met next Session, however, that opportunity would be given, and he merely rose to ask the House to suspend its judgment on that subject until both sides had been heard. He was much mistaken if it would not be shown that if proposals had been set aside and a new system adopted, the result had not been beneficial to India in an economical point of view. The fact was that the Secretary of State for War had not the slightest desire to impose upon the Indian Government any charge which was not justly due from them.
thanked the Under Secretary of State for India for his able and interesting statement. He, for one, was not satisfied that there was any sufficient reason for adopting the Resolution which the hon. Member for Brighton had brought forward. In one expression of regret on the part of his hon. Friend they would all concur—namely, that the Indian Budget had been presented at so late a period of the Session. His hon. Friend and the Under Secretary for India were doubtless at one upon that subject; although the mere fact that the Budget was brought forward at a late period of the Session was no proof of indifference on the part of the Government. With respect to the subject of taxation, he could not help thinking that his hon. Friend had painted the condition of India in too dark colours when he said it would be impossible to raise an extra £5,000,000 of revenue on account of the poverty of the country. In one sense India was a poor, in another sense it was a rich, country. If Englishmen could wear little clothing, sleep in the open air, and be induced to give up the use of intoxicating drinks, it would be difficult to raise the revenue which the Chancellor of the Exchequer now received. And with respect to local taxation, it should be borne in mind that one beneficial result of local burdens was to educate the people in self-government. His hon. Friend complained that the management of the affairs of India was placed in the hands of officials who were not elected by those whom they governed. But representative government was a thing unknown in India. The former Governors of India governed the country for their own benefit. We endeavoured to govern India for the benefit of the people of India. Of course, we had made mistakes; but, on the whole, he maintained that we had no cause to be ashamed of our conduct as regarded. India. He could not, therefore, help regretting that his hon. Friend had used such phrases as "squandering the revenues of India" and "contemptuous indifference of the House of Commons," because they were unfair to the Government and unjust to the House and to the people of this country.
inquired the reason of the delay in furnishing a Return for which he had moved last year, as to the relative number of Hindoos and Mussulmans officially employed in India; also why it was that the system of Staff appointments which prevailed in England was not adopted in India?
moved the adjournment of the debate.
asked when the debate would be resumed?
said, it would be taken to-morrow, at 12 o'clock.
Motion agreed to.
Debate further adjourned till To-morrow.
And it being now five minutes to Seven of the clock, the House suspended its Sitting.
The House resumed its Sitting at Nine of the clock.