§ 30. Mr. MORRELL
asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether a cablegram has been received from the Ceylon Reform League and the Ceylon National Association informing the Government of the disappointment caused in Ceylon by 1451 the announcement of the Government that the time was inopportune for the discussion of reforms in Ceylon; whether there are any and, if so, what reasons why the same consideration should not be given to the demands of the people of Ceylon for responsible government as the Government is now giving to similar demands from the neighbouring people of India; whether any and, if so, what reply has been given to the Reform League and National Association; and whether he will call for and publish a Report of the Governor of Ceylon upon the steps necessary for introducing into Ceylon a measure of responsible government similar to that proposed by the Secretry of State for India?
§ Mr. HEWINS
Telegrams have been received from the Ceylon Reform League and National Association. I have asked the Governor to inform these and other bodies in Ceylon who have approached me that I will carefully consider their views, but that I am not prepared to form any definite conclusions until the time is more opportune for examining all the proposals which have been submitted. I have no doubt I shall be furnished with the Governor's views in due course.
§ 31. Mr. MORRELL
asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies how many persons condemned by court-martial for offences during the Ceylon riots of June, 1915, are still in prison?
§ Mr. HEWINS
I have no recent Return giving the desired information. The bulk of the prisoners were released in 1916, and the sentences of those remaining have been carefully reviewed.
§ 32. Mr. MORRELL
asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he has received a memorial from Ceylon denying that all the cases of illegal shooting alleged to have taken place during the riots have been investigated, and containing sworn affidavits going to show that the eye-witnesses of the shootings and the relatives of the persons shot have never been examined, and that the inquiry was confined to calling for a report from the officers accused of illegal action; and whether, in these circumstances, he will order a full public inquiry into all these cases?
§ Mr. HEWINS
I have received no such memorial, and I have nothing to add to the answers previously given on the subject of the proposals for a further inquiry.
§ Mr. MORRELL
Are we to understand that the Government entirely declines to clear up this old question?