HC Deb 02 March 1921 vol 138 cc1773-4

asked the Secretary of State for India whether the Report of the Joint Select Committee on the Government of India Bill Clause 36, expressed the definite opinion that in the case of members of the Indian services who felt that they could not usefully take part in the new reform schemes they should be offered an equivalent career elsewhere, or that they should be allowed to retire on proportionate pensions; whether, in consequence of this recommendation, members of the Indian Civil Service memorialised the Secretary of State with a view to securing such pensions; whether the Secretary of State, in his despatch to the Viceroy of October, 1920, stated that he would not consent to a scale of pensions which it would be open to any member of the service to claim as a matter of right on a mere statement that he found himself unable to serve under the new conditions; upon what grounds he has overridden the decision of the Joint Select Committee; and what is the present position with regard to members of the Indian Civil Service who desire to retire on proportionate pensions?


The despatch to which my hon. Friend refers does not in any way override the recommendation of the Joint Select Committee, which can be adopted without devising a scale of pension. I can assure the House that any case of the kind which comes before the Secretary of State in Council will be dealt with in strict accord with the recommendation of the Joint Select Committee and the pledges that I have given to the House.

15. Dr. McDONALD

asked the Secretary of State for India if he will take into consideration the hardship of many old well-tried Indian Civil servants who retired prior to 1913, and have not, therefore, benefited by the increased pension; and will he take steps to place these pensioners on an equal footing with their younger brethren, especially recognising the fact that their increasing years is a bar to other remunerative employment?


I would refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Education on my behalf to a question by the hon. and gallant Member for Melton on the 28th October last. I will send the hon. Member a copy.