HC Deb 28 June 1881 vol 262 cc1488-9

asked the Secretary of State for India, Whether, considering that the charge of the establishment of a Governor and two members of Council in the Presidency of Madras amounts to £38,000 a-year, and in view of the large financial saving which would accrue to India by the substitution of a Lieutenant Governor, as in Bengal, he intends to abstain from appointing a successor to the late Mr. Adam until a final decision has been arrived at on the subject? He desired to explain that the Question was a repetition of a Question put by the Earl of Camperdown in the House of Lords prior to the appointment of Mr. Adam, in reply to which it was stated on the part of the Government, by the Earl of Northbrook, that though the appointment of Mr. Adam could not be delayed the matter was well worthy of consideration, and that it would be discussed and decided by Her Majesty's Government after taking the opinion of the Governor General in Council.


said, that the hon. Member was out of Order. He was quoting what had been said in the other House of Parliament during the present Session.


said, his object was merely to learn the decision of the Government, which he had no doubt would be satisfactory.


Sir, I have no doubt my hon. Friend is aware that the change he suggests could not be made without legislation. There is a great difference of opinion in India on the question, and, in my opinion, the policy of the suggested change is open to a very great deal of doubt. But in any case the necessary legislation to be obtained with the consent of Parliament would be a work of considerable time, and under the circumstances I think it would be quite impossible to contemplate the not filling up of this office until the decision of Parliament had been arrived at. I am quite aware that in "another place" it has been stated that the subject was well worthy of consideration, and that the attention of the Government of India was directed to it. The opinion of the Government of India has not been formally communicated to me; but I have been in communication with my noble Friend the Governor General on the subject, and the result of these communications is that legislation on the question cannot, within a reasonable time, be initiated.


Is the vacancy yet filled up?


No, it is not yet filled up.

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