HC Deb 03 June 1862 vol 167 cc289-90

said, he would beg to ask the Secretary of State for India, Whether any proposition has been made to the India Council to aid the establishment of a line of Telegraph between Singapore and India; and if so, what is the general nature of that proposition?


said, he wished to ask the Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Whether an agreement was entered into in 1858 between the Government of Turkey and the Government of this country (or of India), for the construction of a line of Telegraph from Scutari to Bagdad by the Turkish Government; whether it was not also agreed between the contracting parties that, on the completion of the telegraphic communication between Scutari and Bagdad, a line of Telegraph should be laid down from Bagdad to Kurrachee by the Government of this Country or of India; whether it is not the fact that the line from Scutari to Bagdad was completed, surveyed, and reported on as fit for use by a British officer, in December 1860; and whether it is not also the fact that no steps have since been taken by the Government of this Country (or India) to continue the line of Telegraph from Bagdad to Kurrachee in accordance with the agreement of 1858?


in reply said, a proposal had been made to the India Council to aid the establishment of a line of Telegraph between Singapore and Rangoon, but in his opinion it must be considered as part of some further line, and not as an independent line, simply for Indian purposes. With regard to telegraphic communication from Scutari to Kurrachee, an arrangement was made in 1858 by which a line was to be carried from Scutari to Bagdad, and, upon its completion to Bagdad, thence to Kurrachee. A little more than a year ago it was thought that it might be advantageous to substitute for the submarine portion of the line a land line through Persia. Negotiations were accordingly set on foot with the Persian Government, and it was only within the last two or three weeks that he had heard that those negotiations were not likely to have any result. He was, therefore, not in a condition now to say what the Government would ultimately determine to do, but in some shape or other they would be bound to complete a line through the Turkish dominions to Kurrachee.

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