HC Deb 09 April 1891 vol 352 cc121-2
MR. S. SMITH (Flintshire)

I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for India whether he can state what was the total consumption of opium in India in 1880, and also in Burma in the same year; and what are the figures for the latest year for which statistics have been obtained for India and for Burma?


The consumption of opium in Madras and Bombay for 1880 cannot be given. In 1889-90 it was 1,594 chests. Excluding Madras and Bombay, but including Lower Burma, the total consumption in British India was for 1880-81 5,606 chests, and for 1889-90 4,800. In Lower Burma the consumption was for 1880-81 812 chests, and for 1889-90 784 chests. The consumption in Upper Burma is not known.

MR. MAC NEILL (Donegal, S.)

When did the consumption of opium in Upper Burma begin? How was it not forbidden by the late Government, and encouraged by the present?


I must ask for notice of that question. I believe that the consumption of opium in Upper Burma dates from a period long antecedent to our annexation.


Cannot the right hon. Gentleman say of his own knowledge that Lord Dufferin and Lord Dufferin's Council protested solemnly against it; and that, despite that protest, Lord Cross allowed licences to be issued?


That question does not in the least arise out of the question on the Paper.

MR. MAC NEILL (ironically)

Hear, hear.