HC Deb 27 August 1895 vol 36 cc909-10
MR. T. R. BUCHANAN (Aberdeenshire, E.)

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for India whether, in view of the decided expression of opinion of the House of Commons on 21st February, on the subject of the Indian Cotton Duties, he will promise that the Duties shall not be repealed until the House has again had an opportunity of expressing its opinion on the subject?


The hon. Gentleman may rest assured that nothing in connection with these Duties will be done hastily or surreptitiously. The vote given on the 21st of February last may fairly be interpreted as giving a sanction to the imposition of these Duties; but that approval was obtained on a distinct undertaking from the then Secretary of State for India that the Duties should in no sense whatever be of a protective character. Since that Debate the Duties in Burma on yarns of 20 and under have been reduced by the executive action of the Government of India from 5 per cent. to ½ per cent., as they were found to be protective in their operation.


wished to ask whether it was not a fact that the expression of the House of Commons would not, in practice, preclude the Indian Government from making the change if they found that the state of the Indian Exchequer allowed of it?


The Indian Government unquestionably have power to deal with it.