HC Deb 03 March 1864 vol 173 cc1364-5

I beg, Sir, to ask the Secretary of State for India, Whether, considering the rapidly increasing difficulties of adjusting the large annual balance of trade in favour of India by means of silver, it is his intention to facilitate commercial operations by the introduction into India of pure or alloyed Gold Tokens of the value of five or ten Rupees?


Sir, I would also beg to ask, whether, in lieu of the Gold Tokens of the value of five or ten Rupees, as suggested by the Member for Aberdeen, it would not be desirable to re-introduce that portable and popular Gold Piece among the natives known as the Gold Mohur, which is worth thirty-two shillings, and which resembles the Prussian Double Fredericksdor?


Sir, I do not think it would be convenient to coin either the Gold Mohurs or the Tokens, as suggested by my hon. Friend the Member for Aberdeen (Colonel Sykes). What I should be very glad to see would be the introduction of the English sovereign, which would then form a common currency for this country, Australia, and India. That would be a very great advantage, but the adoption of either of the other proposals would be a great impediment to the ultimate circulation of the sovereign. On that account I am not prepared to adopt either the one or the other of them. At the same time, I may be permitted to state that the temporary inconvenience felt in India with respect to the currency seems very much to have passed away; and the fact that the coinage of silver during the last two years has amounted to £12,000,000 sterling shows that the mints have made the greatest exertions to meet the demand for coin, which has been increased to such an extraordinary extent by the rise in price of all articles of produce.


The answer of my right hon. Friend not being satisfactory, I beg to give notice that after Easter I shall call attention to the subject, and move a Resolution.