HC Deb 12 June 1882 vol 270 cc830-1

asked the Secretary of State for India, Whether it is a fact that the hon. Ashley Eden, on his promotion from the post of Lieutenant Governor of Bengal to be Member of the India Council, appointed his private secretary, Mr. Henry, to be one of the first grade joint magistrates over the heads of some twenty or more on the assistant list, and also over the heads of ten of the second grade, thus raising his salary from £500 to £900, and gave him also charge of a district, to which in ordinary circumstances he had no claim, thus further securing him another £250 a-year; and, whether Sir Richard Temple appointed his private secretary, Mr. Buckland, then being of the standing in the service of an assistant magistrate, to be superintendent of stamps and stationery, with a salary increased from £500 to £1,500?


Sir, I have investigated the cases of the promotion of Mr. Henry and Mr. Buck-land, and I have no reason to think that there was anything unusual or exceptional in them. The details of these promotions and the rules of the Service regulating them are extremely technical, and I do not think it is necessary to enter into them, though I shall be prepared to defend them if they are challenged. I may, however, state that the officers immediately above and below Mr. Henry were appointed to the officiating first grade of joint magistrates and deputy collectors at the same time as himself. On the recent retirement of the Lieutenant Governor, Mr. Henry was confirmed in that grade before some of his seniors, in accordance with the well-recognized practice of the Service, that officers who have held the position of private secretary shall be transferred to a position of equal value where that is possible. For this practice there is very good reason, inasmuch as an officer holding the appointment of private secretary gives up all claim to the right to other acting appointments of whatever value. He was entitled, by his position in the Service, to the charge of the district to which ho was appointed, and his actual predecessor in that district for many months before his appointment to it was a man who entered the Service on the same day as himself. Mr. Buckland was not appointed by Sir Richard Temple to be Superintendent of Stamps and Stationery. Whoa Sir Richard Temple was Lieutenant Governor of Bengal Mr. Buckland was his private secretary. When Sir Richard Temple became Governor of Bombay, Mr. Buck-land went with him as private secretary. Some time after that he was appointed Press Commissioner by the Government of India on a salary of Rs. 1,500 a-month, and subsequently, on the abolition of that appointment, Superintendent of Stamps and Stationery by the Government of Bengal. He did not take up the duties of that office, but was appointed to officiate as a magistrate of the third grade.