§ SIR WILLIAM WEDDERBURN (Banffshire)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for India whether, looking to Mr. Nicholson's recent Report on agricultural banks in India and his declaration that success depends on incessant experiment, he will direct the initiation of practical experiments in the different provinces; whether he will state what experiments, if any, have been carried out since 1892, when Mr. Nicholson was placed on this duty; and whether he will state the grounds upon which sanction was refused to the experiment unanimously recommended in 1884 by the Viceroy in Council, and approved by Sir Evelyn Baring and Sir Auckland Colvin?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR INDIA (Lord GEORGE HAMILTON,) Middlesex, Ealing
I have ascertained that the Government of India are expecting a report from the Government of Madras, pending the receipt of which they have suspended action on Mr. Nicholson's Report. Some experiments have been tried by private bodies or individuals since 1892, but none by the Government. At Pages 55–58 of the Papers presented to Parliament in 1887 on Agricultural Banks in India, will be found a full statement of the circumstances in which my predecessor withheld his sanction from the proposals put forward in 1884, stating at the same time that he was prepared to give his careful attention to any further or alternative proposals.