HC Deb 11 May 1931 vol 252 cc791-3
6. Colonel HOWARD-BURY

asked the Secretary of State for India whether any censorship was exercised on the first reports that were sent to the Press of the Cawnpore riots; and, if so, for what reasons it was imposed?


I am grateful to the hon. Member for North Paddington (Mr. Bracken) for his courtesy in postponing a similar question from last Wednesday. This has given me time to make careful inquiries. The Collector of Cawnpore exercised his discretion to cut out from two telegrams addressed to local newspapers or organisations passages of an alarmist nature. No message to this country was affected in any way.


Does the right hon. Gentleman mean to say that the earlier telegrams minimising the severity of the events in Cawnpore were in no wise affected by Tress censorship at all?


I have answered the question most specifically. No message to this country was affected in any way.


asked the Secretary of State for India if the inquiry into the recent outbreak at Cawnpore has now been concluded; and when the report will be available for this House?

26. Major POLE

asked the Secretary of State for India whether he will take all possible steps to accelerate the progress of the commission of inquiry upon the Cawnpore riots in preparing their report, in order to prevent the dissemination of unfounded accounts of the events?


I am informed that the Commission of Inquiry has completed the taking of evidence and will submit its report to the Local Government, it is hoped, in about 10 days. As to the latter part of Question 26: My attention has been called to many extracts from letters and other sources giving the accounts of eye-witnesses of the disturbances in Cawnpore. I have no means, at this stage, of judging the truth of the statements made, but I would point out that the proper course for the persons concerned was to submit their evidence to the public inquiry. It will be impossible to express any reliable opinion either as to the facts or the causes of the riots until the report of the commission has been received.