§ 1. Mr. TINKER
asked the Minister of Pensions the number of claims that have been made that are not admissible through being beyond the seven-years' limit; and how many of them have been allowed under special sanction?
§ The MINISTER of PENSIONS (Major Tryon)
No separate record is kept of applications which for various reasons are not proceeded with. But, up to the end of September last, grants had been made to about 140 ex-service officers and men in the circumstances referred to.
§ Mr. R. MORRISON
Could the right hon. Gentleman say whether the 140 included any considerable number of tuberculosis cases?
§ Mr. T. WILLIAMS
Do we understand that, of all the cases beyond the seven-years' limit which have been submitted to the right hon. Gentleman's Department, only 140 have been accepted and have had pensions awarded?
§ Major TRYON
If the hon. Member will read the answer I have already given, he will see that we keep no record of the applications.
§ Mr. WILLIAMS
Is not the right hon. Gentleman aware that there are men all over the country who have been affected by gas and who have only recently presented themselves, and does not he think that, under the special powers which he has taken, some of these cases might be dealt with sympathetically?
§ Major TRYON
No, Sir; my information from every part of the country shows that the number of these cases has been greatly exaggerated, but I have already informed the House that I am prepared to consider exceptional cases in which it is clearly shown that a man has been seriously incapacitated by his war service and that a claim could not reasonably have been made at an earlier date.
§ Mr. SHEPHERD
Can the right hon. Gentleman tell us what proportion of the 140 whose applications have been accepted are officers, and what proportion are men?
§ Mr. MORRISON
Does the right hon. Gentleman realise that the proviso as to claims which could not reasonably have been made at an earlier date shuts out all those people who have kept on working until the last possible moment?