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Political Situation

Volume 388: debated on Thursday 8 April 1943

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12.

asked the Secretary of State for India whether he is able to encourage the continuance of the efforts of Mr. Rajagopalachari and Sir Tej Bahadur Sapru to bring about a measure of agreement among Indian leaders?

It should not be necessary for me to repeat my previous assurance that the efforts of Indian political leaders to find a measure of agreement continue to be welcome to His Majesty's Government and the Viceroy.

Would the Minister use his influence to see that some opportunity at a suitable time is found for conversations, which at present are impossible?

No, Sir. I think I made it clear the other day that there would be great objections to consultations with the Congress leaders without definite assurances and guarantees of a different line of conduct on their part. As regards other leaders, they have been meeting frequently but, I am sorry to say, without agreement.

Can the Minister say whether that method was applied to Irish prisoners in the last war?