HC Deb 29 May 1883 vol 279 cc1099-100

asked the Under Secretary of State for India, Whether his attention has been drawn to a statement which appeared in the "Pioneer" newspaper of April 13th, 1883; and, if it be correct, whether he can say why a different rule has been applied to Officers of the Indian Staff Corps with regard to the command of Native Regiments, all these Officers having joined the late East India Company's service, and being as much protected by the Clause known as Henley's Clause as the Officers of the late Indian Artillery; whether he intends to remove the anomaly of Officers of the Staff Corps placed on general duty by the late order limiting tenure of command, drawing only R. 827 a month, whereas local Officers, similarly situated, draw R. 1032, and whether he proposes putting both on a similar footing; whether Henley's Clause did not guarantee to all Officers joining the Staff Corps "the advantages as to pay, pensions, allowances, privileges, promotions, and otherwise" enjoyed by them when in the late East India Company's service; and, whether, in that service, an Officer could not retain command of his regiment until he was promoted or attained his Colonel's allowances as long as he was efficient?


Sir, the statement made in The Pioneer is inaccurate. The Secretary of State for India has expressly stated to the War Office that he can offer no objection to the removal of Lieutenant Colonels and Regimental Colonels of the Royal Artillery from their commands after they have held them for a term of five years. It is not proposed to raise the pay of the officers of the Staff Corps. The clause called Henley's Clause—namely, Clause 56 of the Act for the better government of India—secures the Forces of the East India Company— The like pay, pensions, allowances, and privileges, and the like advantages, as regards promotion and otherwise, as if they had continued in the Service of the said Company. It is unquestionable that the Company possessed the power of prescribing and altering the limit of tenure of appointments and commands; and there is no reason to doubt that had the Court of Directors continued in authority they would have exercised this power in respect of regimental commands.