§ MR. ARTHUR PEASE
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for India, whether the Government have any information as to the progress made by the Government of India in arranging that the Behar Opium Agency shall, as the Benares Agency already does, deal direct with the cultivators of opium instead of dealing through middlemen?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR INDIA (Lord GEORGE HAMILTON,) Middlesex, Ealing
The latest report from the Board of Revenue, dated February 1896, shows that the plan of dealing direct with opium ryots is being tried this season, at the time of making payments, in selected sub-divisions of the Behar Opium Agency. As soon as experience has been gained of the new system, both by ryots and opium revenue officials, it can be introduced gradually into the whole Agency.