§ SIR W. WEDDERBURN (Banffshire)
I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for India whether the Government of Bengal proposes to diminish the cost of the Cadastral Survey of Behar by employing the village "Patwaris" (or accountants) as surveyors, without paying these officials for the extra duties imposed upon them, and without paying for the "Naib-Patwaris" (or substitutes) whom the Patwaris would be compelled to employ in their villages; whether the Commissioner of Patna has questioned the legality of compelling the Patwaris to do the work which it is proposed to exact from them, and has suggested that the proposal should be either confirmed or set aside by legal advice; whether the Law Officers of the Government of Bengal have advised that the imposition of new duties, other than those expressly recognised in the existing regulations as incumbent on Patwaris, would be legally indefensible; and, further, that the Patwaris cannot legally he required to undergo training in practical cadastral surveying or to carry out such survey work; whether the Bengal Board of Revenue has advised that, apart from the question of legality, the economy secured by their employment would be dearly purchased on the ground that the results would not he trustworthy; and whether the grounds on which the decision of the Government of Bengal have been based can be laid before Parliament?
* MR. G. RUSSELL
The Secretary of State is not in possession of precise information on the topics raised in my 306 hon. Friend's questions. But he will ask the Government of India to furnish a Report upon the matter.