HC Deb 07 March 1898 vol 54 c835

I beg to ask the Secretary of State for India whether the original estimate of the Indian Minister was that a sum of £15,000,000 in gold would be sufficient to secure a gold standard for India, and to guarantee the inter-convertibility of the sovereign and the rupee; and whether, as £16,000,000 has already been borrowed since the mints were closed in 1893, the gold standard for India has now been secured, or will a further loan for this purpose be necessary?


Sir David Barbour, when Financial Member of Council, in a minute dated June 21st, 1892, expressed an opinion that gold coin to the amount of Rx23,000,000—say, £15,000,000—would be a sufficient proportion to the active circulation in India to maintain a gold standard effectively. No sterling debt has been incurred since the closing of the mints to provide any such fund; whatever debt has been raised has been exclusively for other purposes. The latter part of the hon. Member's Question is, in effect, a question as to particular Measures which the Government of India might or might not consider necessary to secure the maintenance of the gold standard, and as to these I am not now prepared to give any information.