HC Deb 18 February 1830 vol 22 c644
Mr. Protheroe

in presenting a Petition from the ladies and female inhabitants of Worcester, praying that effectual stop should be put to the burning of Hindoo Widows. He begged leave to ask, for the satisfaction of those who had intrusted him with this Petition, and of other persons who took an interest in the subject, whether the report which had gone abroad, that the Indian Government intended to abolish the practice of burning Hindoo widows, was correct?

Mr. G. Bankes

said, he would be happy to give the hon. Gentleman and his friends every satisfaction in his power. He had, a few nights ago, laid a paper on the Table relative to this subject; and a Report relative to it would also be speedily laid before the House. The statement in the newspapers respecting an order of the Governor-general forbidding the practice was not confirmed by any official document that had come home. But there was great reason to believe, from the information of individuals, to whom the sentiments of the people of India were known, that a considerable change had taken place in their feelings; and that, at no great distance of time, the practice would be abolished. But no step should be taken that would offend the religious prejudices of the natives. Nothing would be done by the Government in haste; but they most seriously wished that the object of the Petitioners might be carried into effect.

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