HC Deb 21 August 1916 vol 85 cc2242-4
25. Colonel YATE

asked the Secretary of State for India whether on the outbreak of War officers of the Indian Army permitted to reside at home until they become eligible for pension were informed that the India Office had no employment available for them, but that the officers were at liberty should other employment offer to accept it; whether those officers who accepted other employment have been penalised by having deductions made from their Indian pay, in some cases months after they had accepted other employment, and the deductions then recovered in arrears, and this despite the fact that in the order granting them permission to accept other employment no intimation was given that any portion of their Indian pay would be deducted; and, if so, whether he will now have orders issued that these deductions irregularly levied shall be refunded to the officers concerned?

The SECRETARY of STATE for INDIA (Mr. Chamberlain)

At the outbreak of war unemployed officers of the Indian Army not required for Indian employment were informed that they might offer their services for other employment. At that time the terms of employment under the War Office had not been settled. The eventual decision was as stated in the answer to the hon. and gallant Member's question, No. 64, of 4th July last. The rules apply to all officers of the unemployed list irrespective of the date on which they have been re-employed by the War Office. I will look into any cases in which recovery as an arrear of sums paid in excess of the sanctioned terms is being enforced.

Colonel YATE

Is there any Regulation regarding officers of the Indian Army authorising this deduction from their pay?


I must have notice. I cannot profess to carry all the Regulations in my mind, but I believe what has been done is to place them in the same position as officers of the British Service.

Colonel YATE

As there is no such Regulation, will my right hon. Friend have this question reconsidered?


The hon. and gallant Gentleman has just asked whether there is such a Regulation.

26. Colonel YATE

asked the Secretary of State for India whether officers invalided from Mesopotamia have been detained for considerable periods at Bombay before being sent home owing to sanction having to be obtained from Simla to the decision of the medical board invaliding them home; and, if so, whether greater discretionary powers will be given to the local authorities at Bombay and the excessive centralisation at Simla thus avoided?


It has been the general practice to obtain the permission of the Commander-in-Chief in India before sending the officers home, but it has always been open to the local authorities to act in anticipation on their own responsibility when circumstances demanded it. The permission when sought was given by telegram. Discretionary powers are now being definitely given to local authorities to act without reference in all urgent cases.

27. Colonel YATE

asked the Secretary of State for India whether the refund granted early in 1915 to officers of the Indian Army of the cuttings from their pay on account of rations in the field for themselves, servants, and horses, has not yet been adjusted in certain cases owing to the complicated instructions issued by the Indian Hay Department from headquarters; and, if so, whether orders can be issued for this refund to be now completed?


A simplified procedure for making the refunds has now been arranged by the Government of India, and the matter is under completion.