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Messrs. Arbuthnot and Co. I say it was are discussed in Parliament, as shown
necessary that the greatest caution by its taking place in the last week of
should be exercised before that lease the Session, and by the small attendance
was given to this firm, and I must say of Members during this debate. There
that a great deal of prejudice has been have seldoin been more than 10 Mem-
attached to the lease granted by the bors present, though there are now 12–
Government of India to Messrs. Streeter made up of eight on the Ministerial side
owing to the fact, as I am informed, and four on this side - Ministerial and
of the correspondent of The Times in Opposition Front Benches having been
Burmah being the legal adviser of the seldom occupied. (Here an hon. Mem-
firm of Messrs. Gillander, Arbuthnotand ber on the Opposition side called the
Co. If that is the caso, as I am in- Chairman's attention to the fact that
formed it is, a good deal of theinformation there were not more than forty Members
which has reached us on this subject is present, but the quorum was soon made
of course prejudiced evidence. I have up, before even the Chairman counted,
been induced to bring this matter be- and the hon. Member continued his
fore the consideration of the Committee, remarks.] I am anxious now to offer
simply and solely because I do not wish my acknowledgments to the Indian
to see public faith broken in a matter of Office and the hon. Gentleman the Under
this kind. The Secretary of State is Secretary of State for India (Sir John
perfectly entitled no doubt to reconsider Gorst) for the desire shown to furnish
the whole matter; but I do contend that the House of Commons with Returns
after a lease has been put out to open and Statements giving information re-
competition and a firm has offered twice garding the finances of India. I par.
the price which was originally tendered, ticularly thank the hon. Gentleman the
when negotiations had been carried so far, Under Secretary for the explanatory
and when the Viceroy in Council up to statement he has laid before the House.
this day maintains that it would be the I am glad that I got the promise from
best policy to grant the lease to Messrs. the right hon. Gentleman the First Lord
Streeter, Her Majesty's Government are of the Treasury (Mr. W. H. Smith) that
bound in honour to grant it to that firm following the good example of the Army
if it is to be granted at all. We ought and Navy, the India Office would also
not to be frightened by questions asked follow suit. I do not wish to detract
in this House, or frightened by the idea from the credit of the hon. Gentleman
that a job is contemplated, when, in the Under Secretary, but I hope he will
point of fact by the arrangement in excuse me for suggesting that, should
question a job was really prevented. he be in Office next year, he will endea-
I feel every confidence that when the vour to bring on the debate in the month
Secretary of State takes the whole of June instead of in the month of Sep-
matter into his careful consideration, hetember, and that he will try and im-
will feel that something like a breach of prove upon his explanatory statement
faith will be perpetrated if Messrs. by omitting details of the principal
Streeter do not get the contract. I figures in the Indian accounts by fur.
trust that the Government will not nishing that information in the form of
roughly and unnecessarily override the Return which, for the two last years,
decision of the Viceroy of India, whose has been separately laid before the
despatch shows clearly what is the view House. I may also add that I fully
he takes of this matter. I trust that if hoped that the information which he
he thinks that the lease which has been has given us in his speech this evening
granted is a fair one and that the price regarding the increase and decrease of
is a fair price, he will not allow anything Income and Expenditure since the Re-
like a breach of faith, but will, after the vised and Budget Estimates were pre-
firm have honestly tendered a fair pared should be all given in the explana-
price, see that that fair price is accepted tory statement. I found it impossible to
and that the bargain is adhered to. take down the figures which have been

GENERAL SIR GEORGE BALFOUR so varied in their character, and so im-
(Kincardine) : Before I commence my portant in their amount, I can only make
remarke the Indian Budget, Il out the the balances against Income
desire to call public attention to the are larger than the Estimates show, and
manner in which the affairs of India that in this year 1887-8 — what with

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excesses

the falling off of the Revenue in India | I have compiled, I make out that the and the cost of converting the Four per Expenditure for these three Services Cent Debt to Three and a half per Cent amounted to, in 1875-6, £30,711,506; -the deficit will be exceedingly large. and in 1887-8 the total, according to In the 12 years past, from 1876 to the Budget, will be £37,929,900, being 1887-8, I find that in the differences an

excess, in

13 years, of nearly between the ordinary Expenditure and £7,250,000. The increases in the Re. Revenue there have been six years of venue do not, in my opinion, show any deficits; whilst between Revenue and great augmentation during the last few ordinary Expenditure there have been six years. The land revenue may be said years of surpluses. But the information to have been slightly increased; but given us this evening will now change the opium revenue has fallen off. I two of these surpluses into deficits, and am sorry to see that the salt revenue that the total deficits for 12 years exceed still remains depressed. During the considerably the amount of the bur- last 13 years the net revenue from salt pluses. One remarkable feature in the shows but little change; and, taking last two years is the omission of the into account the additional area with Famine Insurance Fund of £1,500,000. its population now supplied, and the If this had been spent as promised, a natural increase of population in these further deficit of £3,000,000 in these two 13 years, the consumption of salt must years would have added largely to the have fallen of; and, in accordance excesses of ordinary Expenditure over with my annual practice, I heartily Inoome. These

would be wish that the Governmont saw their largely swelled if the capital outlay on way to give up the whole Salt Duty. Public Works were added on. Tho No doubt, the sacrifice of £6,000,000 of exact amount of Debt created during the annual income would be a remarkable last 13 years cannot be clearly ascer- measure; but believing as I do that the tained owing to the manner in which the freedom of salt from taxation would obligations of various kinds are entered, bind the people of India to our Rule, but the Interest paid during that period and that they would prove faithful to will give some idea of the large increase their salt, I cannot but use my efforts in the amount of Debt. In 1875-6 the towards obtaining that end. I may the Interest is entered at £5,415,371, here call attention to the double Income and in 1887-8 the amount is entered at Tax levied in this country on the 28,368,409, thus showing a difference of holders of the Indian Debt Bonds. I nearly £3,000,000. This, however, is trust that the right hon. Gentleman not a true indication, because in these the Chancellor of the Exchequer (Mr. 13 years the rate of Interest, on all Goschen) will see his way to the cessaDebts, has been greatly reduced. More- tion of this charge. India could easily over, the capital of the Civil and Mili- enforce its withdrawal-a mere threat to tary Funds-in all between £6,000,000 retaliate by re-imposing the taxes on -and £8,000,000 has been taken over the cotton manufactures of England by Government and used in diminution would at once force the English Governof the Debt. I must, however; add that ment to cease the Income Tax on the this interest now includes the loss by ex. interest of the Indian Debt. I thank change, and covers the amount of interest the hon. Gentleman the Under Secrefor the capital invested in Railway and tary for the information he has given Irrigation Works. All these excesses regarding the military expenditure for may be easily accounted for by the large the occupation of Burmah; but I wish increase which has taken place under the accounts were 80 prepared as to three separate heads of Expenditure. enable us to take out the figures of that Under Salaries and Expenses of Civil expenditure. The India Office has the Departments the charge has increased information, and could, therefore, set it between 1875-6 and 1887-8 by forth in the accounts. Indeed, I doubt £2,000,000. The charge for Civil and whether the expenditure, Military Buildings and Roads, the ex- stated, is correct. It looks to me as penditure in 1887-8 is nearly £1,000,000 if the expenditure in excess of the more than in 1875-6, and between the peace outlay was alone given, and that samo period the Army Services are nearly the pay and allowances of the troops £4,000,000 in excess. From the table are still chargeable on the revenues

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mainly from Madras; and here I would accepting the position of civil engineers call attention to the great injustice done in Her Majesty's Department of Public to Madras— to the favouring of Bur. Works in India, and in it there are mah-in making the formor bear the several notices of rates of payment whole military charges of Burmah, both which are to be made to these gentleordinary and war, and thus making men, and which are expressed as folBurmah appear to have a large surplus lows:-R31,300, £130; R$2,000, £200; of revenue. I would also point out a Rs3,000, £300; and Rs4,000, £400. defect in the accounts, in not showing, Of course, this means that they were

clear manner, the exceptional given to understand that their pay would charges on account of the North-West consist of monthly payments which Frontier of India. Here and there a the Government valued at R$10 to few items, such as special defence works, the £1. The contract also stated that may be seen, but the large outlay on they would be entitled, after 30 years' account of the occupation of Quetta service or upwards, to pensions not ex: and the approaches thereto is not, if ceeding Rs5,000. When they entered at all, set forth. I close my remarks the Service there is no doubt that they with the hope that the Government of had the prospect of enjoying pensions India may continue to improve its of £:00 a-year on their return to Eng. administration for the well being of the land after their life-long service in India. people, and to add my conviction that if I beliove this will not be considered a very the improvements continue to as great extravagant pension for men who have an extent which have taken place spent so long a time in work, which, in during the 60 years since I landed in many instances, is certainly not healthy ; India, the people of that country will and I do not think anyone can contend be as well governed as any in the world. that there was any intention on the part

COLONEL HILL (Bristol, s.): I rise of the Government to convey any other to call attention to what I consider to impression than I have stated to their be a very great hardship and griovance minds. The Government, of course, had experienced by the civil engineers in the no knowledge whatever that there Department of Public Works in India. would be this enormous decrease in the On the 17th of June last I put a Ques- value of the rupee; but the fact remains tion to my hon. Friend the Under that their pensions, at the present GoSecretary of State for India (Sir John vernment rate of payment, would be reGorst) respecting the mode of payment duoed to £375. There is even a prosof the pensions of these gentlemen, and pect, as I am informed, of a continued I gave Notice at the time that in conso- depreciation, and some think that the quence of the answer which I received value will be reduced to 1s., in which I should take this opportunity of bring- case, instead of receiving a pension of ing the matter before the House. The $500 a-year, these gentlemen would question of the grievances of certain only receive £250 a year. I ask the civil servants in India has been brought Committeo to reflect that the reduction of before the House on more than ona 50 per cent on so small a sum as £500 occasion, and I do not propose to go is a very great hardship. To show what into the general question now; I only was the Government idea of the value desire to bring one specific Question of a rupee, I may mention that, in 1870, under the consideration of the Com- there was a certain resolution passed, mittee; and I base my contention that which, in 1873, was published, which the engineers in the Department of contained a note stating that the sterWorks are undergoing a hard measure ling equivalent of a rupeo was 28., of injustice on two points. First, the which would be the rate of exchange. mode of paying their pensions is not | That note appeared in the publicethat which they were led to expect / tion until as late as 1886, and then under the contract which I hold in my it was discovered that it ought not to hand; and, in the second place, they have been there-that it did not form were promised that their position should any part of the resolution. That is one be assimilated to that of Her Majesty's part of my case on which I baso tho engineers engaged in similar work in allegation of hardship and injustice to India. The document I have here is a these officers. My next point is that form of contract signed by gentlemen they have been, on more than one occa

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sion, distinctly told that they would be the hon. Gentleman has laid before us placed on the same footing as the Royal this statement with regard to the Engineers selected for continuous service finances of India and also of Burmah, in India, and I can give various extracts I am bound to say that he has told us from letters of Governors General and nothing with regard to the policy of Ministers of State to this effect. I will Her Majesty Government in Burmah, not go into those now, but I say that and on the North - West Frontier these officers ought to receive their pen- of Afghanistan. I take a great insions, which they were entitled to at the terest in the boundary arrangements end of 30 years, in sterling, in the same which have been going on; but I am way as, under the same circumstances, not able to place much faith in them, the Royal Engineers receive their pon because when such arrangements are sions. The answer which my hon. Friend | made between civilized and semithe Under Secretary for India gave me civilized governments there is very little was that no increase had been made in chance of their being observed. In my the pay of the Royal Engineers in India; opinion this question of frontier is one but I think he has overlooked the Royal which will involve this country in very Warrant of 1886, which made those serious responsibilities, inasmuch as officers eligible for the Indian staff pen- these frontier delimitations must always sion, which, after 32 years' service, leave the continuance of peace between amounts to £700. That was in answer Afghan and Russia a matter of doubt, to paragraph 6 of my Question ; and, and any breach of the peace between in answer to another paragraph, hó those countries would endanger the asserted that the Government did not peace of India, and therefore that begive any assurance that these officers tween England and Russia. During would receive their pay in sterling ; but the last 10 years we have had two I again say that I think the Circular polices in Afghanistan. We have had most distinctly led them to believe that the forward policy of the Conservative they were to receive their pensions in Government of 1874-80 with regard to sterling, and that they ought in justice the North-West Frontier, the result of 80 to receivo them. In my own view a which was, as the country kuows, to inponsion is simply deferred pay, and crease the charge upon the Revenues of where you give an officer so much pay India by £20,000,000, and if that policy and so much pension, you are actually had been continued we should have rekeeping back from him part of his pay. quired for the purpose of maintaining it It is, in my opinion, manifestly unfair an army of 60,000 men. The right hon. to take advantage of the lowest point of Gentleman the Member for Mid Lothian value reached by the rupeo to pay the (Mr. W. E. Gladstone) reversed that pensions in question, and I venture to policy. But it was a case of “Out of hope that Her Majesty's Government the frying-pan into the fire,” because will be able to conceive some mode of the policy of the right hon. Gentleman giving redress to this valuable class of involved this country in responsibilities officers, who are considered to do their in connection with the North-West work in an excellent manner, and whose Frontier of Afghanistan over which we services have been, on more than one have no control whatever. It is true we occasion, thoroughly acknowledged. have a Representative at Cabul; but he

MR. GOURLEY (Sunderland): It is, is a Native of India, and being a MaI think, a subject for regret that, as far hommedan, is amenable to influences as my memory serves me, it is impos- from which a European is exempt. sible, no matter at what period of the Instead, therefore, of hampering this Session, to get anything like an audionce country and India with the responin this House when the question under sibility which I have referred to, we discussion relates to India. I must con. ought to have embraced the opportunity gratulate the hon. Gentleman the Under we had of freeing ourselves from all Secretary for India (Sir John Gorst) both responsibility whatever with regard to on the lucid document relating to Indian Afghanistan. I am anxious to obtain finance which he placed in the hands of from Her Majesty's Government a clear hon. Members a short time ago, and also declaration of their policy with regard upon the able and clear statement which to the future government of Afghanistan. he has made this evening. But although Lord Salisbury at the Mansion House

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made a statement, in the course of which | order to bring about a reform in the having congratulated the country on the system of pensions and furlouglis. In conclusion of the delimitation of the my judgment there is ample room for frontiers of Afghanistan and Russia, saving money in connection with these said there was room enough in Central charges. The hon. Gentleman the Under Asia for both countries. That is a policy Secretary of State for India has attended which may mean anything or nothing to the saving which is to be effected by the It may mean that Lord Salisbury conversion of Four per Cent. Stock into intends to reverse the policy of the Con- Three and a-half per Cent Stock. I am servative Government, or it may mean of opinion that the principle which is inthat he intends to reverse the policy of volved in this might be carried somethe Government of the right hon. Gen- what further—that is to say, that instead tleman the Member for Mid Lothian, of the Indian Government guaranteeing and withdraw from the responsibility the loans made in India for railway. under which the country now labours and other purposes of the Indian Gowith regard to Afghanistan. If that is vernment, the Imperial Government the policy of Her Majesty's Government should be the guarantors. The effect I need not say that it will receive the of this would be that the Indian Governsupport of a very large number of ment would be able to save something Liberals and Conservatives. Hitherto like £1,000,000 per annum by the we have found that, having accepted Imperial Government being able responsibilities over which we have no to borrow money cheaper than the control, we have always had to make Indian Government. When we compare some concession, in order to get out of the amount of money spent on military them. This irresistible tendency on the exploits with that which is spent on the part of successive Governments to do moral, material, and intellectual welfare something on the Frontiers of India has of the people, we shall see that the led to enormous expenditure already, former is enormous and the latter comand the probable expenditure next year paratively small. It is quite true that will be £17,000,000. We were told by large sums have been spent on railways the noble Lord the Member for South and irrigation, but I am referring to Paddington (Lord Randolph Churchill), other matters. What are we spending when the present Government entered on education this year amongst a popuon the conquest of Burmah, that the lation of 250,000,000.

The sum protrade of the country would largely re- posed to be spent is only £199,000, and duce the cost; but the result has been we are actually going to spend £4,000 a deficit of something like £3,000,000, less than in previous years. When I and to-night we have been told nothing was in India some years ago, a gentleabout any prospective increase of income. man perfectly competent to speak on Then I should like to be informed what the subject said to me, " The one blot is the policy of Her Majesty's Govern- on your Government of India is neglect ment in Burmah? Have they any policy of education.” As we neglected educaby which they intend to recoup the Gotion in England at one time, so we are vernment of India the deficit which they now neglecting it in India, where for a have created by the class of responsibili. long time all the education given has been ties under which we now labour with by British missionaries and the missionregard to that country? I shall be glad aries of foreign countries. I consider also to hear what their proposals are for that our policy in this great matter is developing the commerce of Burmah. unworthy of a country like Great Britain. With regard to the large charge for I should like to say a few words as to pensions and furloughs, I point out that the mode in which some of the India this is all being spent for the benefit of Revenue are spent, and I point as an Anglo-Europeans in England who re- instance to the Forest Revenues. These turn to this country after enjoying large amount to £1,100,000 per annum, and salaries in India-return to this country the cost of collecting that sum is at a comparatively early age and take £650,000, while reckoning the money their ease on handsome allowances. To paid for pensions and allowances to my mind this is a matter which requires those formerly engaged in the Servioe, revision. I hope the Under Secretary the total cost is not far short of for India will turn his attention to it in £750,000. This is clearly a matter

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