§ MR. BRADLAUGH (Northampton)
I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for India whether the Government will lay upon the Table the Indian Foreign Office Memorandum, dated 6th May, 1888, referring to the occupation of Gilgit, and which Memorandum was referred to by the Viceroy of India in 872 his observations at the Council for making laws and regulations, held at Simla, in September last?
§ THE UNDER SECRETARY OF STATE FOR INDIA (Sir J. GORST, Chatham)
In the question of the hon. Member he asks for the production of a confidential Memorandum to the Government of India, on the ground that it was mentioned by the Viceroy of India in the Council held at Simla in September last. The speech of the Viceroy referred to in the question was made in support of a Bill to prevent the disclosure of official documents. The Memorandum asked for was referred to by the Viceroy as "a recent case in which a particularly scandalous disclosure of official information has taken place." Such a reference does not entitle the hon. Member, as he seems to think, to the production of the document, to which, on public grounds, the Secretary of State cannot consent.
§ MR. BRADLAUGH
I asked the right hon. Gentleman whether, as a matter of fact, the document has not been published and circulated throughout the whole of India?
§ SIR J. GORST
That is exactly what I said. A document purporting to be the Memorandum in question has been published, in consequence of some gross breach, of official secresy, in the newspapers in India. But that is quite another thing from the Government of India publishing the authentic text of the Memorandum as an official document.