§ Considered in Committee under Standing Order 71A.
§ [Mr. JAMES HORE in the Chair.]
Motion made, and Question proposed,
That, for the purposes of any Act of the present Session to amend the Law with respect to the constitution of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, it is expedient to charge on the Consolidated Fund the yearly salary of two thousand pounds to be paid under the said Act to each of the two persons to be appointed there under to be members of the said Judicial Committee."—(King's Recommendation signified.)—[Mr. McNeill.]
§ Mr. MACLEAN
I do not think this matter ought to go through without some explanation from the Financial Secretary to the Treasury. Surely it is preposterous that. we should be asked to vote £2,000 a year for two individuals, making £4,000 in all, without a word of explanation from him, and without some general statement as to the policy of the Government underlying its proposal. It is notorious that the Government come to this House with Financial Resolutions, and that when you, Mr. Chairman, or your colleague, puts the question from the Chair, the Financial Secretary or the Chancellor of the Exchequer gives a nod of the head, and on that it is expected that large sums of money are to he voted without explanation from those responsible. It is about time the House took charge of affairs, and demanded from those who are looked upon as being in control of the finance of the country that they should make some definite statement as to the reasons for the payments they ask the House to make. I think the House has a right to know just exactly what is in the mind of the Financial Secretary, and I hope we are going to have some statement, particularly when we have reminded the Government that there are other people in this country who, in our opinion, are more deserving of this money, who are more deserving of payments from the State, and who are being treated as though they were the worst possible aliens we could have in the country. When they ask for living conditions their claim is rejected, but here we have a proposal to pay £2,000 a year for year after year for two Judges. I am not going to protest against it at this stage, but I want to know what it means.
1254 There is another point I would like some explanation upon. It states in the Bill that, in the event of death or a vacancy occurring, further appointments can be made to make up the number of Judges to two. It is quite a reasonable thing to assume that in those circumstances—
§ The CHAIRMAN
The hon. Member can discuss the amount to be paid, but he appears now to be discussing provisions in the Bill. They can be discussed during the Committee stage of the Bill, but not on this Resolution.
§ Mr. MACLEAN
The Financial Resolution reads:That, for the purposes of any Act of the present Session to amend the Law with respect to the constitution of the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, it is expedient to charge on the Consolidated Fund the yearly salary of two thousand pounds to be paid under the said Act to each of the two persons to be appointed there under to he members of the said Judicial Committee.Surely I would be in order in putting a question as to the implications which the appointment of these Judges, and their payment, would bring upon this house?
§ The CHAIRMAN
I thought the hon. Member was discussing some provision in the Bill for further appointments on vacancies occurring.
§ Mr. MACLEAN
No, my point is this, if these Judges retired would they retire upon a pension, and would it be necessary for a further financial resolution to be brought in in order to provide the additional sum that would he necessary for their pensions? It is only right the House should know how far we may be pledged to payments to these individuals. It. may be that certain individuals may be appointed who may have to retire through ill-health, and we may he paying pensions to ex-Judges and paying £2,000 a year to the. Judges filling the places they have vacated.
The Government talk a great deal about the necessity for economy, how the country cannot afford this and cannot afford that, how old-age pensions cannot be increased, how housing subsidies have to be cut down, how health conditions are worsened, how payments to education authorities must be reduced—in fact, on every occasion when we make requests 1255 for expenditure on those social services to be maintained at the standard at which it used to be maintained, we are told the country cannot afford it. When, however, it is a question of finding money for Judges, finding money for individuals in this particular sheltered trade, they are not held up to ridicule and opprobium such as ordinary working men or women getting weekly wages in other sheltered trades have to encounter. When the case of those who are skilled in word-spinning and legal jugglery comes before this House, we are asked to believe that this is some wonderful and great profession which will attract men to it only if they get the highest possible standard of living that our civilisation can offer. If this is the standard of living to which Judges are entitled, I submit the standard of living of every other individual in this country ought to be equal to that of the best Judge in the land: and if this country cannot afford to give to the workers of this country, who produce the wealth, a standard of living higher and better than is found for them by the present Government, the House has no right to vote away £2,000 a year for new Judges, with the problematical addition of another £2,000. It is time the House took possession of the financial situation. If we have not the money to provide the people with the conditions which our present progress in civilisation merits, and which the productive activity of this country entitles them to have, this country is too poor to afford £2,000 a year for two new Judges.
§ The FINANCIAL SECRETARY to the TREASURY (Mr. Ronald McNeill)
The only reason I rise is that if I did not do so I might appear to be discourteous to the hon. Gentleman after the pointed appeal he made to me Personally; but really I do not think there is any occasion for me to discuss the matter, which has been fully dealt with already on the Second Reading of the Bill, a Debate which has just been brought to a close. Then my right hon. Friend the Attorney-General dealt fully with all the merits of the case. The hon. Member spoke as though on matters of this sort the Treasury had a separate and distinct standard. The hon. Member must remember that these are proposals of the Government, that this is 1256 the policy of the Government, and a Measure of this sort would not have been brought before the House if all the financial aspects of it had not been already considered by the Treasury. When a member of the Government like my right hon. and learned Friend brings forward a Bill, and a Resolution of this sort is required, I think the House may take it for granted that there is no divergence of view between the Attorney-General and the Treasury on the point.
§ Mr. MACLEAN
May I ask for an answer as to the point, T put regarding the possibility of pensions having to be paid? In that case would the Government have to bring in another Money Resolution?
§ Mr. McNEILL
If any question of pension for these Judges arises, of course provision would have to be made for it by the House, and that case, no doubt, another Money Resolution would have to be brought forward.
§ Miss WILKINSON
May I ask two further questions The Attorney-General said the gentlemen who were going to have these posts would take them on the understanding that an extra £2,000 would probable be given in future by the Indian Legislature. Can we have an undertaking from the Secretary to the Treasury, first, that no pressure, political or otherwise, will be brought to bear on the Indian Legislature to provide this extra £2,000 for people whom, apparently, they do not want: and, secondly can we have an assurance that if the Indian Legislature persist in a refusal not to give this £2,000, he will not come to this House to make up the salary to £4,000—the amount which he has laid down as fie salary?
§ Mr. SULLIVAN
I want to ask the members of the Conservative party if this is what they preach at the election. Here the Government are making proposals for these appointments, and they imagine that we have no right to ask for an explanation to be given to the House. It may be that your Judges are worth £2,000 a year, and that you require two additional Judges, but what I want to know is that when you suggest that there is the possibility of a man of 72 years of age getting £4,000 a year you are doing something which you would be afraid to 1257 tell the electors of the country. I protest against this method of adding to the burdens of the nation, and I hope we shall take advantage of this opportunity of driving the Government supporters into the. Division Lobby in regard to this Vote.
§ Miss WILKINSON
On a point of Order, Mr. Chairman. May I point out that I have put two quite definite questions to which I have not received any reply?
§ The CHAIRMAN
That is not a point of Order. I can sometimes ask Ministers and hon. Members to desist from speaking, but I have no power to make them speak.
Mr. W. M. ADAMSON
Do I understand that if the Indian Government refuse to pay this £2,000 that we shall have to pay it?
§ Mr. CONNOLLY
I would like to ask whether these are going to be full-time appointments, or whether membership of the Judicial Committee carries with it the right to hold other similar positions?
§ The ATTORNEY-GENERAL
Membership of the Judicial Committee does not disqualify them from any other position, but there is no intention of appointing somebody who holds another position, nor can I think of any other position that could properly be held.
§ Mr. MAXTON
I want to know if these learned gentlemen who are going to be asked to take up these appointments are to be told that their remuneration is to be £2,000 or 24,000? Will they be told that the salary is £4,000 or £2,000? If the salary is to be £4,000, I want to know where the other £2,000 is going to come from? Is it going to be compulsorily taken out of the pockets of the Indian taxpayers, or will it have to be made up by our own Treasury in some way or another? If it is going to be imposed upon the Indian Government compulsorily 1258 by the home Government, then that is a matter for the strongest protest in this House. If it is to be paid by our own Treasury, then the Financial Resolution ought to be brought forward now. I would like the Attorney-General to answer that particular point. I would like to know if those who are Being to be asked to take up these appointments are to be told that their remuneration will be £4,000 or £2,000, or whether they will have to start at £2,000 with a prospect of getting another £2,000 later on.
§ The ATTORNEY-GENERAL
In appointing any person to these posts, they will be told the facts. We are now voting £2,000 a year, and, if and when the Indian Legislature should see fit to vote a similar amount, then they will be entitled to it.
§ Mr. MAXTON
Does the Attorney-General expect men to take on an appointment for a salary of £2,000, with a probability of receiving £4,000 in the future?
§ The ATTORNEY-GENERAL
I certainly hope, and so do the Lord Chancellor and the Secretary of State for India, that we shall be able to find persons who will accept these posts on those terms.
I feel that the preservation of the right of appeal is a very important part of our Imperial relations. I think in this matter we have a right to complain of a lack of candour on the part of the Attorney-General. First of all we were told that only £2,000 was to be voted, and then he told us that another £2,000 was to be paid by the Indian Legislature. Now it appears that there is to be a pension attached to it. I think we should be told that this is not simply a Vote for £2,000, but that there is a possibility of a further £2,000 if the Indian Legislature does not vote that amount, and besides this, there is the possibility of a pension. Some hon. Members on these benches who would not support a Motion for a reduction of this Vote feel that we should have had a little more candour from the Attorney-General on this question. Inasmuch as 1259 we are now dealing with the question whether the additional £2,000 is likely to be voted by the Indian Government, and whether we shall be asked to vote it in this House if the Indian Government refuses. I think some representative of the India Office should be here to answer that question. I do not know whether the Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies represents the India Office on this matter.
Then why is the Under-Secretary of State for India not present when this money Resolution is being discussed? How can the Attorney-General give us full information as to whether the Indian Legislature objects to paying this money or not. It is important that we should know these facts, and only one person can tell us and that is the representative of the India Office. I think we might have had a little more candour about the full financial position, and we want more information about the intention of the Indian Legislature.
§ The ATTORNEY-GENERAL
The hon. and gallant Gentleman has charged me with a lack of candour, but I wonder whether he took the trouble to be present, when I moved the Second reading of the Bill and listened to what I said on that occasion.
§ kind of attack, I wish to say that I was present, and I had the inestimable privilege of hearing what he then said.
§ The ATTORNEY-GENERAL
In that case, the hon. and gallant Member's charge is absolutely inexcusable. If he refers to the OFFICIAL REPORT of our proceeding on this occasion, he will see that we asked the House to vote a salary of £2,000, and that I stated explicitly that the Indian Legislature had been asked to give an additional £2,000, that last year the Indian Government did not agree, but that there is some hope that they may change their mind and do so later on. In view of the fact that the hon. and gallant Gentleman says he heard what I said, and has now been misrepresenting me, I say that his action is absolutely inexcusable. The only other accusation is that I did not tell the Committee that these Judges were to have pensions. The reason I did not tell the Committee that is that they are not to have a pension.
§ Mr. THURTLE
I beg to move, "That the Debate be now adjourned." I do so owing to the lack of information in regard to this Vote, and the absence of any representative of the India Office.
§ The CHAIRMAN
That is not quite the proper procedure. The hon. Member should move to report Progress.
§ Motion made, and Question put, "That the Chairman do report Progress and ask leave to sit- again. "—[Mr. Thurtle.]
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 108; Noes, 212.1263
|Division No. 519.]||AYES.||[6.42 p.m.|
|Adamson, W. M. (Staff., Cannock)||Dunnico, H.||Kennedy, T.|
|Ammon, Charles George||Gibbins, Joseph||Kenworthy, Lt.-Com. Hon. Joseph M.|
|Attlee, Clement Richard||Gillett, George M.||Kirkwood, D.|
|Baker, J. (Wolverhampton, Bilston)||Gosling, Harry||Lawrence Susan|
|Baker, Walter||Graham, Bt. Hon. Wm. (Edin., Cent.)||Lawson, John James|
|Barnes, A.||Greenall, T.||Lee, F.|
|Barr, J,||Grenfell, O. R. (Glamorgan)||Lindley, F. W.|
|Batey, Joseph||Groves, T.||Lowth, T.|
|Benn, Captain Wedgwood (Leith)||Gundy, T. W.||Lunn William|
|Bondfield, Margaret||Guest, Haden (Southwerk, N.)||MacDonald. Rt. Hon. J. R. (Aberavon)|
|Briant, Frank||Hall, F. (York, W.R., Normanton||Maclean, Nell (Glasgow. Govan)|
|Bromfield, William||Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvil)||MacNeill-Weir, L.|
|Bromley, J,||Hamilton, Sir ft. (Orkney 4 Shetland)||March, S.|
|Brown, James (Ayr and Bute||Hardie, George D.||Maxton, James|
|Buchanan, G.||Hartshorn, Rt. Hon. Vernon||Montague, Frederick|
|Charleton, H. C.||Hayes, John Henry||Morris, R. H.|
|Clowes, S.||Hirst, G. H.||Murnin, H.|
|Cluse, W. S.||Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)||Naylor, T. E.|
|Connolly, M.||Hudson, J. H. (Huddertfield)||Palln, John Henry|
|Crawfurd, H. E.||John, William (Rhondda, West)||Paling, W.|
|Dalton, Hugh||Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)||Parkinson, John Allen (Wigan)|
|Dennison, R.||Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd)||Ponsonby, Arthur|
|Duncan, C.||Kelly, W. T.||Potts, John S.|
|Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring)||Stephen, Campbell||Webb, Rt. Hon. Sidney|
|Riley, Ben||Sullivan, J.||Westwood, J.|
|Robinson, WC (Yorks.W. R.,Elland;||Sutton, J. E.||Whiteley, W.|
|Saklatvala, Shapurjl||Taylor, R. A.||Wilkinson, Ellen C.|
|Salter, Dr. Alfred||Thomas, Rt. Hon. James H. (Derby)||Williams, David (Swansea. East)|
|Scrymgeour, E,||Thomson, Trevelyan (Middlesbro, W.)||Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)|
|Scurr, John||Thorne, w. (West Ham, pialstow)||Wilson, C. H. (Sheffield, Attercliffe)|
|Sexton, James||Thurtle, Ernest||Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)|
|Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)||Tinker, John Joseph||Windsor, Walter|
|Smith, Ben (Bermondsey, Rotherhithe)||Treveiyan, Rt. Hon. C. P.||Wright, W.|
|Smith, H. B. Lees- (Keighley)||Varley, Frank B.||Young, Robert (Lancaster, Newton)|
|Smith, Rennie (Penistone)||Viant, S. P.|
|Snowden, Rt. Hon. Philip||Walsh, Rt. Hon. Stephen||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Spoor, Rt. Hon. Benjamin Charles||Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)||Mr. Charles Edwards and Mr. T. Henderson.|
|Acland-Troyte, Lieut.-Colonel||Fielden, E. B.||Macquisten, F. A.|
|Agg-Gardner, Rt. Hon. Sir James T.||Finburgh, S.||Mac Robert, Alexander M.|
|Ainsworth, Major Charles||Forestier-Walker, Sir L.||Makins, Brigadier-General E.|
|Albery, Irving James||Forrest, W.||Manningham-Bulier, Sir Mervyn|
|Astor, Maj. Hn. John J. (Kent, Dover)||Foxcrott, Captain C. T.||Marriott, Sir J. A. R.|
|Astor, Viscountess||Fraser, Captain tan||Merriman, F. B.|
|Baldwin, Rt. Hon, Stanley||Frece, Sir Walter de||Mitchell, S. (Lanark, Lanark)|
|Barclay-Harvey, C. M.||Gadie, Lieut.-Col. Anthony||Mitchell, W. Foot (Saffron Walden)|
|Barnctt. Major Sir Richard||Gault, Lieut.-Col. Andrew Hamilton||Moles. Thomas|
|Bellairs, Commander Carlyon W.||Gibbs, Col. Rt. Hon. George Abraham||Monscil, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. B. M.|
|Bennett, A. J.||Glyn, Major R. G. c.||Moore, Lieut-Colonel T. C R. (Ayr)|
|Bentlnck. Lord Henry Cavendlsb.||Gofl, Sir Park||Moore, Sir Newton J.|
|Birchall, Major J. Oearman||Grace, John||Moreing, Captain A. H.|
|Bird, E. R. (Yorks, W. R., Skipton)||Graham, Fergus (Cumberland, N.)||Morrison, H. (Wilts, Salisbury)|
|Bourne, Captain Robert Croft||Greene, W. p. Crawford||Newman, Sir R. H. s. D. L. (Exeter)|
|Braithwaite, A. N,||Grenfell, Edward C. (City of London)||Newton, Sir D. G. C. (Cambridge)|
|Brass, Captain W.||Grotrian, H. Brent||Nicholson, Col. Rt. Hn. W. G. (Ptrst'ld.)|
|Briscoe, Richard George||Guinness, Rt. Hon. Walter E.||Nuttall, Ellis|
|Brittain, Sir Harry||Gunston, Captain D. W.||O'Connor, T. J. (Bcdlnrd, Luton)|
|Brocklebank, C. E. R.||Hacking, Captain Douglas H.||Ormsby-Gore, Hon. William|
|Broun-Lindsay, Major H.||Hammersley, s. S.||Perkins, Colonel E. K.|
|Brown, Brig.-Gen. H. C. (Berks, Newb'y)||Hanbury, C.||Pefo, Basil E. (Devon, Barnstaple)|
|Buckingham, Sir H.||Harrison, G. J. C.||Peto, G. (Somerset, Frome)|
|Bull, Rt. Hon. Sir William James||Haslam, Henry C.||Phillpson, Mabel|
|Burman, J. B.||Hawke, John Anthony||Radford, E. A.|
|Burton, Colonel H. W.||Headlam, Lieut.-Colonel C. M.||Raine, W.|
|Butler, Sir Geoffrey||Henderson Lieut.-Col. V. L. (Bootle)||Ramsden, E.|
|Cadogan, Major Hon. Edward||Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel Arthur P.||Reid, Capt. A. S. C. (Warrington)|
|Cainc, Gordon Hall||Herbert, S.(York, N. R., Scar. 4 Wh'by)||Reid. D. D. (County Down)|
|Campbell, E. T.||Hilton, Cecil||Rentoul. G. S.|
|Carver, W. H.||Hoare, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir S. J. G.||Richardson, Sir P. w. (Sur'y, Ch'tVy)|
|Cayzer, Sir C. (Chester, City)||Hogg. Rt. Hon. Sir D. (St. Marylebone)||Ruggles-Brise, Major E. A.|
|Cecil, Rt. Hon. Lord H. (Ox. Univ.)||Hohler, Sir Gerald Fitzroy||Rye, F. G.|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. Sir J. A.(Birm.,W.)||Holbrook, Sir Arthur Richard||Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)|
|Chapman, Sir S.||Holland, Sir Arthur||Samuel, Samuel (W'dsworth, Putney)|
|Charteris, Brigadier-General J.||Hopkinson, Sir A. (Eng. Universities)||Sandeman, A. Stewart|
|Clarry, Reginald George||Hudson, R. s. (Cumberland, Whiteh'n)||Savery, S. S.|
|Clayton, G. C.||Hume, Sir G. H.||Slaney, Major P. Kenyon|
|Cobb, Sir Cyril||Hume-Williams. Sir W. Ellis||Smith, R.W. (Aberd'ni Klnc'dine.C.)|
|Cope. Major William||Huntingfield, Lord||Smithers, Waldron|
|Courthope, Colonel Sir G. L.||Hurd, Percy A.||Spender-Clay, Colonel H.|
|Cowan, O. M. (Scottish Universities)||Hurst, Gerald B.||Stanley. Col. Hon. G. F. (Will'sden, E.)|
|Craig, Ernest (Chester, Crewe)||Hutchison, G. A. Clark (Mldl'n & P'bl's)||Stanley, Lord (Fyide)|
|Crookshank, Col, C. de W. (Berwick)||lliffe. Sir Edward M.||Stanley, Hon. O. F. G.fWestm'elandJ|
|Cunliffe, Sir Herbert||James, Lieut.-Colonel Hon. Cuthbert||Storry-Deans, R.|
|Curzon, Captain Viscount||Jephcott, A. R.||Streatfield, Captain S. R.|
|Davidson. J. (Hertfd.Hemel Hempst'd)||Jones. G. W. H. (Stoke Newington)||Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)|
|Davies, Mai. Geo. F. (Somerset,Yeovil)||Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth)||Sugden, Sir Wilfrid|
|Davies, Sir Thomas (Cirencester)||Joynson-Hicks, Rt. Hon. Sir William||Tasker, Major R. Inigo|
|Davies, Dr. Vernon||Kidd, J. (Linlithgow)||Thorn, Lt.-Col. J. G. (Dumbarton)|
|Davison, Sir W. H. (Kensington, s.)||King, Captain Henry Doublas||Thomas, Sir Robert John (Anglesey)|
|Dawson, Sir Philip||Kinloch-Cooke, Sir Clement||Thomson. F. C. 'Aberdeen. Southl|
|Dean, Arthur Wellesley||Knox, Sir Alfred||Titchfield, Major the Marouess of|
|Drewe, C.||Lane Fox, Col. Rt. Hon. George R.||Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement|
|Duckworth, John||Lister, Cunliffe, Rt. Hon. Sir Phlilp||Turton. Sir Edmund Russborough|
|Eden, Captain Anthony||Locker.Lampson. G. (Wood Greeni||Vaughan-Morgan, Col. K. P.|
|Edmondson, Major A. J.||Locker- Lampson, com. O. (Handswth)||Waddington, R.|
|Edwards, J. Hugh (Accrlngton)||Looker, Herbert William||Wallace, Captain D. E.|
|Elliot, Major Walter E.||Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh Vere||Ward, Lt.-Col. A. L.(Klngstoncn-Hull)|
|Ellis, R. G.||Lynn, Sir R. J.||Warner, Brigadier-General W. W.|
|Elveden, Viscount||MacAndrew, Major Charles Glen||Warrender, Sir Victor|
|Erskine.Lord (Somerset Weston-s.-M.)||Macdonald, Capt. P. D. (1. of W.)||Waterhouse, Captain Charles|
|Evans, Captain A. (Cardiff, South)||Maclrttyre, Ian||Watson, Rt. Hon. W. (Carlisle)|
|Everard, W. Lindsay||McLean, Major A.||Wells. S. R.|
|Fairfax, Captain J. G.||Macnaghten, Hon. Sir Malcolm||White, Lieut.-Col. Sir G. Dairymple|
|Fermoy, Lord||McNeill, Rt. Hon. Ronald John||Wlggins, William Martin|
|Williams, A. M. (Cornwall, Northern)||Wise, Sir Fredric||Yerburgh, Major Robert D. T.|
|Williams, Com. C. (Devon, Torquay)||Withers, John James||Young, Rt. Hon. Hilton (Norwich)|
|Williams, C. p. (Denbigh, Wrexham)||Womersley, W. J.|
|Williams, Herbert G, (Reading)||Wood, E. (Chest'r, Stalyb'dge & Hyde)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Windsor-Clive, Lieut-Colonel George||Wood, Sir Kingsley (Woolwich, W,)||Captain Margesson and Captain|
|Winterton, Rt. Hon. Earl||Woodcock, Colonel H. C.||Bowyer.|
§ Original Question again proposed.
§ Mr. MACLEAN
There are two points on which I should like to ask for an explanation. The Attorney-General, in reply to the hon. and gallant Member for Leith (Captain W. Benn), said that he did not mention any pension because no pension was attached to the office. I take that to be a direct and definite statement. Will the Attorney-General now smooth over the statement of the Financial Secreary to the Treasury in which he said he would be prepared to come to the House for a further Financial Resolution for pensions when the occasion arose?
§ Mr. MACLEAN
When I asked the right hon. Gentleman a question about pensions, he put forward the statement that he would come before the House for a. Resolution dealing with pensions if necessary—
§ Mr. MACLEAN
Will it not be necessary where lawyers are concerned? Have von ever known it not to be necessary? I want to know what the intentions are. That was the point of my question to the Financial Secretary, and he met it by stating that there would be a pension, and a Financial Resolution to support the pension. The Attorney-General says there is going to be no pension. I wonder where the Government are getting to, or whether they understand each other in the various Departments?
With regard to my second point, I see that the Under-Secretary of State for India s now here. He sat through the Debate on the original Bill, and I would like to ask him whether he can give the House any information with regard to the statements that have been made as to the refusal of India to pay this additional £2,000. The statement was made by the Attorney-General in his original speech, and he supplemented it in the speech he 1264 made just before the Division, that the Indian Government had refused the £2,000 last year, but that he was living in hopes—I hope he will not die in despair—that they would come info a better frame of mind, from his point of view, next year, and grant the £2,000. I should like to ask the Under-Secretary whether he can give the House any information as to the intentions of the Indian Legislature, and whether there is any possibility of their granting this additional £2,000 to supplement the £2,000 that each Judge will be voted by this House; or can he say whether the definite objection taken last year by the Indian Legislature still stands, and that, so far as the House knows, only £2,000 is to be paid to each Judge.
§ Earl WINTERTON
I apologise to the Committee for not having been present during this stage. As the hon. Gentleman has very courteously pointed out, I was present during the earlier stage, but, as the Bill was in the hands of the Attorney-General, and very properly so, as it is a judicial matter, I was out of the House for a few moments taking part in some official business. As soon as I ascertained that these questions were being asked. I hurried back.
I can answer the hon. Gentleman's question very simply. In the first place, in his speech there was, if I may say so, some confusion of terms. It was not the Indian Government that turned, down the proposal, but the Indian Legislature. The hon. Gentleman asked whether I could state what is likely to be the attitude of the Indian Legislature towards this proposal if it is brought before it again in future. Obviously I do not know, and it would be most improper for me to attempt to predict, what would he the attitude of the elected representatives of the people of India in deciding on this point. What I can tell the hon. Gentleman is that, so far as I am aware, it is the intention of the Government of India to bring up the proposal for a grant in the Indian Legislature at some future opportunity, which will probably be in the first Session of next year.
§ Mr. MACLEAN
May I ask the Noble Lord whether there is any other Department of the Indian Government or of the Indian Legislature from which this additional payment which it is suggested is likely to be made to any Judge appointed under the Bill can be drawn?
§ Earl WINTERTON
The matter has to come before the Indian Legislature and has to be accepted by the Indian Legislature. As to whether they are likely to accept it or not, I am not, as I have said, in a position to tell the hon. Gentleman, any more than I am in a position to say what this House is likely to accept in the future. I can tell him, however, that, so far as I am aware, it is the intention of the Government of India again to bring this proposal for a grant before the Indian Legislature at some future date.
§ Mr. THURTLE
The Noble Lord says that it is the intention to bring this question of a grant before the Indian Legislature again, but can he say whether, in the event of the Indian Legislature rejecting the grant, it is the intention of the Viceroy to exercise his power of certification under the Government of India Act, and pass this grant over the heads of the elected representatives of the Indian people?
§ Earl WINTERTON
I think the hon. Gentleman, on reflection, will realise that that is a question which it is impossible for me to answer. How can I predict what action the Government of India will take in certain hypothetical circumstances in the future? On the last occasion the Government accepted the view of the Indian Legislature, but whether or not they will accept it in future I am unable to tell the hon. Gentleman.
§ Mr. THURTLE
Will the Noble Lord undertake that the India Office will make representations to the Government of India that, in the event of the Legislature turning down this grant, no pressure by certification should be brought to bear in this case? Will the Noble Lord undertake to make representations in that sense?
§ Miss WILKINSON
During the Noble Lord's absence, when this point was put to the Attorney-General, the Attorney- 1266 General shook his head very violently when we asked whether it was proposed to certify this grant. We are now told by the Under-Secretary that he cannot say whether certification will take place or not. On this matter we have had three Members of the Government—the Financial Secretary to the Treasury, the Attorney-General, and the Under-Secretary for India—contradicting each other for the last two hours. Whenever matters have been raised we have had contradictory answers, and, after a very hasty consultation, they have managed to smooth matters over more or less respectably. Might we suggest to the Government that they should withdraw this grant until these three gentlemen have had time at least to make up one tale to put before the House?
§ Earl WINTERTON
My right hon. and learned Friend assures me that he made no such signs as the hon. Lady seems to have thought he made, so that her last speech was based on a misapprehension.
§ Earl WINTERTON
That is really a question for the Attorney-General and not for me to answer, but I understand it will be at an early date.
In that case, who is going to pay the additional £2,000 pending the proposal being placed before the Indian Legislature?
§ Earl WINTERTON
If the hon. and gallant Gentleman had listened with his usual close attention to the earlier part of the Debate, he would have realised that the Attorney-General has already explained that. if the money is not forthcoming it will not he paid.
Then we understand the position to be—certainly it has been rather difficult to extract all the facts—we understand the position to be this: We understand that the appointments are to be made immediately, and I presume that some candidates are in view. Are they to go on at £2,000 a year ad interim, and, supposing that the Indian Legislature does not vote the additional £2,000, shall we pay it retrospectively as from the date of the 1267 appointment? [HON. MEMBERS: "Oh!"] That is rather an important thing to know exactly. It is a very great mistake for anyone to suppose that I wish to attack either the legal profession or its rate of remuneration, or this particular important part of the fabric of our judicature, but I do say that the House of Commons in Committee is entitled to know what it is voting. We have not the least idea. We know that we are going to pay £2,000 a year as from the date of these appointments, but we do not know whether the additional £2,000 is going to be found from India. Are we to understand that if it is not found we are to pay it retrospectively? The Attorney-General told us, in his brief way: "No pension." [Loud laughter.] Subsequently he was corrected by the Financial Secretary, who said that when the moment arrived, and these gentlemen had done their service, he was willing, and presumably intended, to come before the House of Commons and move pensions for them.
§ Mr. McNEILL
May I say that I said nothing of the sort? What I did say, in reply to the hon. Member for Govan (Mr. N. Maclean), was that no pension was provided, and that if at any future time it should be desirable to give a pension it would be necessary to come to the House for a Resolution.
Yes, but the right hon. Gentleman has not really dealt with the point. Either these appointments are or are not in their nature appointments entitled to pension—I will not say pensionable in the technical sense that they carry a pension under the terms of agreement, but in the nature of pensionable appointments. Therefore, it is surely possible for the Government to say whether they are or not, and we should like to know. I am inclined to think they are appointments such that, when the Judges retire, the Government of the day would be asked to propose a, pension for them. It would have been much better if we had been told at the outset that this would ultimately be involved in the transaction. I am still completely ignorant as to whether or not this £4,000 is to date from the date of appointment and is to be retrospectively 1268 paid by us, should the Indian Government fail to find the money. That is a question which has not been answered.
§ Mr. MAXTON
I want to suggest to the Noble Lord and to the right hon. and learned Gentleman that already they have men under discussion for filling these vacancies and they have probably already suggested to certain men that they should fill the appointments. They know the two men, and I am perfectly certain that they have told them something more definite than has up to the present been told to the House of Commons. These men are not going to start with £2,000 a year on the sporting chance that they may perhaps get £4,000. They are not going on any sporting chance of getting a pension at 72 years of age, but they will have had a very definite promise from the right hon. and learned Gentleman and from the Noble Lord the Secretary of State in another place, who would not have dared to approach his professional brethren or men of high legal standing in his own professional organisation to fill these vacancies without giving them something a great deal more tangible. If I know a anything of the standards of the legal profession, the members of that profession would not go into this unless they had definitely a bird in the hand. They are not going to be content with the right hon. and learned Gentleman pointing to two birds in the bush. They would want to know quite definitely what the conditions of their appointments are, how they are going to be paid, how much, and what are the conditions as to retirement. If the right hon. and learned Gentleman and the Noble Lord can discuss these matters inside their trade union organisation, we want to know just exactly what have been the promises made to them in the name of the House of Commons and of the Indian Legislature. They know all about it, but we know nothing, and I am going to oppose this Resolution most strenuously until such time as we hear some more plausible story than we have had up to now.
§ Mr. PALING
As the Noble Lord has said, the Indian Legislature have refused to endorse these payments and there is the possibility that this year they may do the same thing. Apparently, they are not going to pay until they have been 1269 asked to pay for these Judges. I would like to ask the Noble Lord if we are justified in thinking that they have been influenced in reaching that decision not to pay these high wages by the statement the Prime Minister made this year that the wages of all British workers must come down.
§ Earl WINTERTON
I was just going to rise on a point of order, because as far as I know it is entirely out of order to discuss what was in the minds of members of an elected assembly in another
§ part of the Empire in corning to a decision.
I submit it is also entirely out of order and contrary to the practice for the Government to come forward with a vague and undefined payment which pretends to be £2,000 and may very likely be £4,000 with pension rights.
§ Original Question put.
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 209; Noes, 99.1271
|Division No. 520.]||AYES.||[7.5 p.m.|
|Acland-Troyte, Lieut.-Colonel||Ellis, R. G.||Mac Andrew, Major Charles Glen|
|Agg-Gardner, Rt. Hon. Sir James T.||Erskine, Lord (Somerset, Weston-s-M.)||Macdonald, Sir Murdoch (Inverness)|
|Albery, Irving James||Evans, Captain A. (Cardiff, South)||Macdonald, Capt. p. D. (I. of W.)|
|Astor, Maj. Hn. John J. (Kent, Dover)||Everard, W. Lindsay||MacIntyre, Ian|
|Astor, Viscountess||Fairfax, Captain J. G.||McLean. Major A.|
|Atholl, Duchess of||Fenby, T. D.||Macnaghten, Hon. Sir Malcolm|
|Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley||Fermoy, Lord||McNeill, Rt. Hon. Ronald John|
|Barclay-Harvey, C. M.||Fielden, E. B.||Macquisten, F. A.|
|Barnett, Major Sir Richard||Finburgh, S.||Mac Robert, Alexander M.|
|Bellairs, Commander Carlyon W.||Forestier-Walker, Sir L.||Makins, Brigadier-General E.|
|Bennett, A. J.||Forrest, W.||Manningham-Buller, Sir Mervyn|
|Bentinck, Lord Henry Cavendish-||Foxcroft, Captain C. T.||Margesson, Captain D.|
|Birchall, Major J. Dearman||Fraser, Captain Ian||Marriott, Sir J. A. R.|
|Bird, E R. (Yorks, W. R., Skipton)||Gadie, Lieut.-Col. Anthony||Merriman, F. B.|
|Blundell, F. N.||Gauit, Lieut. Col. Andrew Hamilton||Mitchell, S. (Lanark, Lanark)|
|Bourne, Captain Robert Croft||Gibbs, Col. Rt. Hon. George Abraham||Moles, Thomas|
|Bowyer, Captain G. E. W||Glyn, Major R. G. C.||Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. B. M|
|Braithwaite, A. N.||Goff, Sir Park||Moore, Lieut.-Colonel T. C. R. (Ayr)|
|Briant, Frank||Graham, Fergus (Cumberland, N.)||Moore, Sir Newton J.|
|Briscoe, Richard George||Greene, W. p, Crawford||Moreing, Captain A. H.|
|Brittain, Sir Harry||Grenfell, Edward C. (City of London)||Morrison, H. (Wilts, Salisbury)|
|Brocklebank, C. E. R,||Grotrian, H. Brent||Neville, R. J.|
|Broun-Lindsay, Major H.||Guest, Capt. Rt. Hon. F. E.(Bristol, N)||Newman, Sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter)|
|Brown, Brig. -Gen. HC.(Berks, Newb'y)||Guinness, Rt. Hon. Walter E.||Newton, Sir D. G. C. (Cambridge)|
|Buckingham, Sir H.||Gunston, Captain D. W.||Nicholson, Col. Rt. Hn. W. G. (Pirsl'ld.)|
|Bull, Rt. Hon. Sir William James||Hacking, Captain Douglas H.||Nuttall, Ellis|
|Burman, J. B.||Hammersley, S. S.||O'Connor, T. J. (Bedford, Luton)|
|Burton, Color, H. W.||Hanbury, C.||Ormsby-Gore, Hon. William|
|Butler, Sir Geoffrey||Harrison, G. J. C.||Perkins, Colonel E. K.|
|Cadogan, Major Hon. Edward||Haslam, Henry C.||Peto, Basil E. (Devon, Barnstaple)|
|Caine, Gordon Hall||Hawke, John Anthony||Peto, G. (Somerset, Frome)|
|Campbell, E. T.||Headlam, Lieut.-Colonel C. M.||Philipson, Mabel|
|Carver, W. H.||Henderson Lieut.-Col. V. L. (Booties||Radford, E. A.|
|Cayzer. Sir C. (Chester, City)||Heneage, Lieut.-Col. Arthur P.||Raine, W.|
|Cecil, Rt. Hon. Lord H. (Ox. Univ.)||Herbert, Dennis (Hertford, Watford)||Ramsden, E.|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. Sir J. A. (Blrm., W.)||Herbert. S. (York, N. R., Scar. & Wh'by)||Reid, Capt. A. S. C. (Warrington)|
|Chapman, Sir S.||Hilton, Cecil||Reid, D. D. (County Down)|
|Charteris, Brigadier-General J.||Hogg, Rt. Hon. Sir D. (St. Marylebone)||Rentoul, G. S.|
|Clarry, Reginald George||Hohler, Sir Gerald Fitzroy||Richardson, Sir P. W. (Sur'y, Ch'ts'y)|
|Clayton, G. C,||Holbrook, Sir Arthur Richard||Ruggles-Brise, Major E. A.|
|Cobb, Sir Cyril||Holland, Sir Arthur||Rye, F. G.|
|Courthope, Colonel Sir G. L.||Hopkinson, Sir A. (Eng. Universities)||Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)|
|Cowan, D. M. (Scottish Universities)||Hudson, R. s. (Cumb'l'nd, Whiteh'n)||Samuel, Samuel (W'dsworth, Putney)|
|Craig, Ernest (Chester, Crewe)||Hume-Williams, Sir W. Ellis||Sandeman, A. Stewart|
|Crawfurd, H. E.||Huntingfleld, Lord||Savery, S. S.|
|Crookshank, Col. C. de W. (Berwick)||Hurd, Percy A.||Slaney, Major P. Kenyon|
|Cunliffe, Sir Herbert||Hutchison. G. A. Clark (Mldi'n & P'bl's)||Smith, R. W.(Aberd'n & Kinc'dine.'C.)|
|Curzon. Captain Viscount||Hiffe. Sir Edward M.||Smithers, Waldron|
|Cavldson, J. (Hertf'd, Hemel Hempst'd)||James, Lieut-Colonel Hon. Cuthberl||Stanley, Col. Hon. G. F.(Will'sden, E.)|
|Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset, Yeovil)||Jephcott, A. R||Stanley, Lord (Fylde)|
|Davies, Sir Thomas (Cirencester)||Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth)||Stanley, Hon. O. F. G. (Westm'eland)|
|Davies, Dr. Vernon||Kidd, J. (Linlithgow)||Storry-Deans, R.|
|Davison, Sir W. H. (Kensington, S.)||King, Captain Henry Douglas||Streatfield, Captain S. R.|
|Dawson, Sir Philip||Kinloch-Cooke, Sir Clement||Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)|
|Dean, Arthur Wellesley||Knox, Sir Alfred||Sugden, Sir Wilfrid|
|Drewe, C.||Locker- Lampson, G. (Wood Green)||Sykes, Major-Gen. Sir Frederick H.|
|Duckworth, John||Locker-Lampson, Com. O. (Handsw'th)||Tasker, Major R. Inigo|
|Eden, Captain Anthony||Looker, Herbert William||Thorn, Lt.-Col. J. G. (Dumbarton)|
|Edmondson, Major A. J.||Lord, Walter Greaves||Thomas, Sir Robert John (Anglesey)|
|Edwards, J. Hugh (Accrington)||Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh Vere||Titchfield, Major the Marquess of|
|Elliot, Major Walter E.||Lynn, Sir Robert J.||Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement|
|Turton, Sir Edmund Russborough||White, Lieut.-Col. Sir G. Dairymple||Wood, E. (Chest'r, Stalyb'dge & Hyde)|
|Vaughan-Morgan, Col. K. p.||Wiggins, William Martin||Wood, Sir Kingsley (Woolwich, W.)|
|Waddington, R.||Williams, Com. C. (Devon, Torquay)||Woodcock, Colonel H. C.|
|Wallace, Captain D. E.||Williams, C. p. (Denbigh, Wrexham)||Wragg, Herbert|
|Ward, Lt.-Col. A. L. (Kingston-on-Hull)||Williams, Herbert G. (Reading)||Yerburgh, Major Robert D. T.|
|Warner, Brigadier-General W. W.||Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel George||Young, Rt. Hon. Hilton (Norwich)|
|Warrender, Sir Victor||Winterton, Rt. Hon. Earl|
|Waterhouse, Captain Charles||Wise, Sir Fredric||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Watson, Rt. Hon. W. (Carlisle)||Withers, John James||Mr. F. C. Thomson and Major|
|Wells, S. R.||Womersley, W. J.||Cope.|
|Adamson, W. M. (Staff., Cannock)||Henderson. T. (Glasgow)||Scrymgeour, E.|
|Ammon, Charles George||Hirst, G. H.||Scurr, John|
|Attlee, Clement Richard||Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)||Sexton, James|
|Baker, J. (Wolverhampton, Bilston)||Hudson, J. H. (Huddersfield)||Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)|
|Baker, Walter||John, William (Rhondda, West)||Slesser, Sir Henry H.|
|Barnes, A.||Johnston, Thomas (Dundee)||Smith, H. B. Lees (Keighley)|
|Barr, J.||Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)||Smith, Rennie (Pentstone)|
|Bromfield, William||Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd)||Snowden, Rt. Hon. Philip|
|Bromley, J,||Kelly, W. T.||Spoor, Rt. Hon. Benjamin Charles|
|Brown, James (Ayr and Bute)||Kennedy, T.||Stephen, Campbell|
|Buchanan, G.||Kenworthy, Lt.-Com. Hon. Joseph U.||Sullivan, Joseph|
|Charleton, H. C.||Kirkwood, D.||Sutton, J. E.|
|Clowes, S.||Lawrence, Susan||Taylor, R. A.|
|Cluse. W. S.||Lawson, John James||Thorne, W. (West Ham, Plaistow)|
|Compton, Joseph||Lee, F.||Thurtle, Ernest|
|Connolly, M.||Lindley, F. W.||Tinker, John Joseph|
|Dalton, Hugh||Lowth, T.||Trevelyan, Rt. Hon. C. P.|
|Dennison, R.||Lunn, William||Varley, Frank B.|
|Duncan, C.||MacDonald, Rt. Hon. J. R. (Aberavon)||Viant, S. P.|
|Dunnico, H.||Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan)||Watson, W. M. (Dunfermillne)|
|Gardner, J. P.||March, S.||Webb, Rt. Hon. Sidney|
|Gibbins, Joseph||Maxton, James||Westwood, J.|
|Gillett, George M.||Montague, Frederick||Whiteley, W.|
|Gosling, Harry||Murnin, H.||Wilkinson, Ellen C.|
|Graham, Rt. Hon. Wm. (Edin., Cent.)||Naylor, T. E.||Williams, David (Swansea, E.)|
|Greenall, T.||Palin, John Henry||Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)|
|Greenwood, A. (Nelson and Colne)||Paling, W.||Wilson, C. H. (Sheffield, Attercliffe)|
|Grenfell, D. R. (Glamorgan)||Ponsonby, Arthur||Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)|
|Grundy, T. W.||Potts, John S.||Windsor, Walter|
|Guest, Haden (Southwark, N.)||Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring)||Wright, W.|
|Hall, F. (York, W. R., Normanton)||Riley, Ben||Young, Robert (Lancaster, Newton)|
|Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Robinson, W. C. (Yorks. W. R., Elland)|
|Hardie, George D.||Saklatvala, Shapurji||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Hartshorn, Rt. Hon. Vernon||Salter, Dr. Alfred||Mr. Charles Edwards and Mr. Allen Parkinson.|
Question put, and agreed to.
§ Resolution to be reported To-morrow.