asked the Postmaster-General how long the mails take to reach India from this country; if he is aware of the great importance to merchants in Great Britain and India of a quick mail service; what steps are being taken to expedite the Indian mail service; and whether the possibilities of quick overland or aerial transport have been considered, and with what result?
The Indian mail is due at Bombay in 14½ days after leaving London. Occasionally it arrives rather later, as the Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company have not yet been able to replace fully their war losses and to provide a fleet of uniform speed for the service. I am aware of the great importance to commercial interests of a quick mail service to India, and advantage is taken of every opportunity of improving the service. I do not see any prospect of any material acceleration in overland transit. The possibilities of air transport in connection with the Imperial mail services generally are being explored by the Civil Aviation Advisory Board.
Is the right hon. Gentleman's Department in constant consultation with the Middle East Department with a view to utilising aircraft, which now fly continuously in that area, with a view to quickening up the mails?
This question is being considered by the Civil Aviation Advisory Board at present.
Is the Post Office represented on that?