HC Deb 16 November 1852 vol 123 cc210-1

moved that the Select Committee on Indian Territories do consist of thirty-one Members.


begged to suggest that the name of Sir Thomas Herbert Maddock be added to the Com-mittee, as the hon. Member was thoroughly conversant with the subject, having resided for several years in India.


said, he had intended to move the addition of two or three names to the Committee, in order that the groat commercial ports might be represented; but when he saw the names of the eminent persons nominated, he thought it unnecessary to persist in that intention.


said, he thought that all the new Members of the Committee should be put into possession of the whole evidence which had come before the former Committee on this subject. He wished to know whether any steps had been taken by the Government towards effecting this object?


said, he would also beg to suggest that natives of India capable of affording valuable information to the Select Committee should be summoned to give evidence before it. He was aware that among the educated inhabitants there was a large proportion of Hindoos who were precluded by the prejudices of caste from undertaking a sea voyage. But there were many who would not be so precluded could give evidence before the Committee; and he imagined with respect to the others that there could be no serions difficulty in obtaining the testimony of those Hindoo gentlemen of attainments and qualifications on the spot in India. That was the more important, because the evidence that had already been given, and the evidence which would in all probability be taken by the present Committee, had been and would be derived from persons who had been officially engaged in the administration of the affairs of India, whether in this country or in that. It might be very useful that the evidence of all experienced persons should be made available for laying down the plan so far as concerned the machinery of Government; but in reference to all those matters which had regard to the welfare and happiness of the people of India, on which it was really the great primary duty of the Government in this country to legislate, their legislation could not be either complete or satisfactory unless the class of natives of India to whom he had referred were furnished with an opportunity of giving evidence before the Committee.


said, with reference to the suggestion of the hon. Member for Montrose (Mr. Hume), the best mode of proceeding would be to leave the matter to the Committee themselves, who would know what was necessary for the requirements of the House; and with regard to the observations which had fallen from the hon. Member for Rochester (Sir T. Mad-dock), it would be the duty of the Committee to determine what witnesses they should bring before them, and what evidence bearing upon the inquiry it would be desirable to have.

Motion for nominating the Committee was then agreed to.