HC Deb 18 March 1875 vol 223 cc18-9

asked the Under Secretary of State for India, Whether his attention has been called to the case of Captain J. B. Chatterton, late of the Bengal Staff Corps; and, whether it is true that that officer, while a patient in the hospital at Calcutta in 1869, suffering from contraction of the left leg, certified by seven medical officers, was turned out of the hospital, and thus left without the means of defraying his passage to England or of obtaining further medical assistance; further, if it true that he was at the same time placed upon half-pay, which half-pay he was then informed was not payable to him in India, and that, in consequence of this treatment, this officer, as he alleges, was left without the means of defraying his passage to England (contrary to the covenant existing between the late East India Company and their officers) or of obtaining medical assistance; and, further, is it true, as this officer alleges, that he has thus been made a cripple for life, that he has ever since been under medical treatment, and has undergone several surgical operations?


Sir, my attention has been directed to the case of Captain Chatterton, though I have no information as to the circumstances under which he left the hospital at Calcutta in April, 1869. The Government of India, in 1869, reported that Captain Chatterton persisted in representing himself as unfit for duty from illness, although medical opinion was against him. They suggested that his representation should be adopted, and that, being unfit for effective service, he should be placed upou the retired list. The Secretary of State concurred in this recommendation, and Captain Chatterton was placed upon half-pay on the 13th of April, 1869, and he quitted India in July following. Captain Chatterton is mistaken in supposing that any covenant existed between him and the East India Company, by which the Indian Government were bound to pay his passage home. A passage was obtained for him by the Government of Madras, the cost of which has been deducted in small instalments from his half-pay. I can give no information in reply to the last Question, except that letters have been written by Captain Chatterton to the Secretary of State, stating that he is a cripple and has undergone surgical operations.