HC Deb 01 May 1891 vol 352 cc1842-3
MR. CREMER (Shoreditch, Haggerston)

I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for India whether his attention has been called to letters which appeared , in the Times on the 29th inst. from Mrs. Grimwood and Lieutenant Albert Wood, concerning the way in which the massacre at Manipur commenced; if he can inform the House whether the statement in regard to the attempt to capture the Jubraj is true; and whether the agent was authorised; and, if so, by whom, to capture the Jubraj, and the reasons which prompted such attempt?


May I be allowed to put to the right hon. Gentleman a question on the same subject for which I have given him notice for Monday next, namely, whether he will lay on the Table a copy of the Instructions which were given for the expedition to Manipur?


The information in the possession of the Secretary of State does not lead him to believe that the Government of India contemplated that the Senaputty should be invited to a Durbar with the intention of his being arrested. My noble Friend informs me that he should be much surprised if that were so. The Papers on the subject will be presented to Parliament as soon as the information is more complete than it is at the present time.


Will the right hon. Gentleman be kind enough to inform the House whether it is true that an attempt was made to capture the Jubraj, and, if so, on whose authority the attempt was made. Had the Political Agent received any instructions from the Indian Government, or was he acting entirely on his own responsibility?


I am sorry that I am not able to answer the question, nor has the Secretary of State received information that will enable him to answer it. The officers who were engaged in the expedition have unhappily been killed, and probably all official records have been destroyed. Certainly at the present moment there is no information in the possession of my noble Friend the Secretary of State that would enable him to reply to the question. I may mention that Despatches are on their way, and we expect to receive them on Monday next. Immediately on receipt of the Despatches, Papers will be laid upon the Table of the House, and probably they will give all the information the hon. Member desires to have.


I beg to give notice that I will repeat the question on Monday.