Skip to main content

British Council

Volume 974: debated on Monday 26 November 1979

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

asked the Lord Privy Seal if he will make a statement on the burning of the British Council library in Rawalpindi.

On 21 November the British Council library in Rawalpindi was attacked and burnt by demonstrators at about the same time as the attack on the American Embassy in Islamabad. There was extensive damage and 12,000 books were destroyed.

The Pakistan authorities failed to ensure that the library was adequately protected. We have protested and are seeking compensation.

asked the Lord Privy Seal if he will make a statement about the attack on the British Council library in Islamabad.

The British Council library in Islamabad was not attacked on 21 November. However, the British Council library in Rawalpindi was extensively damaged by rioters and on this I refer my hon. Friend to the reply I gave today to the hon. Member for Durham (Mr. Hughes).

asked the Lord Privy Seal if he will publish in the Official Report the Departmental composition of the working party which has been established to review the work of the British Council.

Six departments are represented on the interdepartmental review of the work of the British Council; representatives of the British Council and the British Council's staff side have also attended meetings of the review.

asked the Lord Privy Seal if he will add to the working party he has established on the work of the British Council representative of those universities who have students on British Council awards.

asked the Lord Privy Seal what expansion of British libraries in India is envisaged in 1980–81.

asked the Lord Privy Seal what is the quota of members of the British Council in Hydrabad, India; and how many people are waiting to join.

The total number of members of the British Council library in Hydrabad, India is 3,500. There are 4,000 in the waiting list, which closed on 31 October 1979.