HC Deb 16 March 1830 vol 23 c390
Mr. F. Buxton

, in presenting Petitions from the Protestant Dissenters assembling in Eagle-street, Red-lion-square, and two other places, against Suttees, wished to know from the noble Lord opposite if there were any foundation for the report that the British Government in India had prohibited the practice of burning widows? It had been asked of him how it happened that the subject had been allowed so long to sleep in Parliament? He replied, that from the time he heard that Lord William Bentinck was appointed to the government of India, he entertained no doubt that whatever could be safely done towards the abolition of the practice the noble Lord would endeavour to effect. This confidence had not been misplaced. It would not become him to pronounce a panegyric on that noble person, but he was sure, if any man possessed the moral courage to achieve so great a victory over prejudices, in the cause of humanity, it was Lord W. Bentinck. What he now wished to know was, whether the report alluded to was well founded?

Lord Ashley

, in the absence of official documents, could say nothing definitely, but he thought the report might be well founded.