HC Deb 03 May 1935 vol 301 cc693-709

Motion made, and Question proposed [30th April], "That the Clause be read a Second time." — [Major Milner].

Question again proposed.

11.6 a.m.


When, on Tuesday night, the discussion on this Clause was interrupted. I thought that the Under-Secretary had not met our point of view. It is true that he gave a long explanation, but I was not satisfied that he had met the many points put forward by my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for South East Leeds (Major Milner). My hon. and gallant Friend gave many reasons why the franchise should be extended over a certain period. He asked that during the 10 years, if the Provincial legislature felt that there ought to be an increase of franchise, it should be ratified, and that if at the end of 10 years they had not done that, power might be given to bring it about nevertheless. My hon, and gallant Friend said that under the present franchise those in charge might not give to the adult people the full right that we think they ought to have.

Much may be said for the view that it would be unwise to give this right to all adults, and my mind goes back to a meeting that I once attended in a Committee room upstairs, when a prominent advocate from India was speaking for the rights of the people of India and urging that something more ought to be done for them. I asked him whether that meant adult franchise, and he replied," No, not for the moment." I could not understand then why, when he was speaking about the freedom of India, he could not see his way to give them adult franchise immediately. He said that it would take a little time to get a knowledge of self-government into their minds, and that therefore for a period the franchise should be restricted. There may be something in that argument, but we are asking that over a period of time some attempt should be made to increase the franchise.

After all, we must look upon the Indian people as trying, somewhat like ourselves, to get into the position of being able to deal with their own affairs, and, unless we can hold out to them some hope that they will have that opportunity, it will be very hard on the ordinary person who has not got it at the present time. The points put forward by my hon. and gallant Friend are well worth repeating. He urged that there should be equality of political rights; we consider that, when a man reaches adult age, he ought to have equality of political rights. My hon. and gallant Friend also pointed out that this would be the best means of getting representation for the people as a whole, without distinction of class. We regard it as very important to remove the distinction of class, and to give everyone the right to vote for self-government.

The Under-Secretary, in reply, admitted that these points were good ones, but his main arguments were, first, that the Franchise Committee had been categorically against the introduction of adult franchise in the immediate future, and, secondly, that this proposal would raise the number to whom the franchise was now being given, namely, 35,000,000, to 130,000,000—a big step forward; and one is bound to pay attention to that argument. But the Indian race is a tremendous race, and 35,000,000 voters can hardly be said to represent the extent of the franchise that they ought to have. Whenever the change takes place it will be a big jump, and mere figures of that kind ought not to weigh with us, because we are dealing with a tremendous population—a population numbering, I understand, 350,000,000—and therefore the suggested figure of 130,000,000 must be regarded in relation to the total population.

A third reason given by the Under-Secretary was that after 10 years any Provincial legislature could appeal to the Home Government, and that then would be the time to deal with the question. He also spoke about the question of the administrative practicability of making such a change in the immediate future. That, however, is a matter that will right itself after a year or two. We are dealing with a period of 10 years, but in five years, or even before, we shall reach the period for which we are asking, and by that time any difficulty as to administrative practicability may have been overcome. The Under-Secretary's concluding argument was that it would be a mighty jump at one step from the franchise proposed at present to the immediate establishment of adult suffrage.

In dealing with this Bill one is interested to see the turn that events take from time to time. The Government occupy a unique and interesting position There are two sides, of course, to the Bill. There is what may be called the repressionist side—and I use that word advisedly—represented by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Epping (Mr. Churchill), the hon. and gallant Member for Bournemouth (Sir H. Croft), and the hon. Member for Barnstaple (Sir B. Peto). The hon. Member for Barnstaple has already spoken on this matter, and has shown where he stands in regard to it. He could not see why we should extend the franchise to a number of people who probably have no knowledge as to how to use the vote, and I gathered that he thought that we had already been unwise in this country in giving the vote to so many people. The point I would urge this morning is that the repressionists come to the help of the Government on anything that the progressives, who represent the other side of the Bill, bring forward. When we argue for any improvement in the Bill to advance the prospects of the people of India, the Government are aided by the repressionist section, while, on the other band, when the repressionist side put forward their point of view to retard what is in the Bill already, we come to the aid of the Government. Consequently, the Government occupy the very happy position of always knowing that, whichever way matters go, they will receive support from the one side or the other. I expect that today they will be in the same happy position, and that the repressionists will go into the Lobby with them and help to keep up the majority that they have had all the time. I hope, however, that we may be able to get from the Under-Secretary something further in reply to our arguments which will give us some hope that something better will be done as the Bill goes forward.

11.14 a.m.


When I was speaking on this Clause on the last occasion, I asked the Under-Secretary whether he could give the figure, or at any rate an approximate figure, for the cost of the proposal now before the Committee with regard to adult suffrage, and I believe he was good enough to look up those figures. I think that, if he is going to make any further reply on the appeal of the hon. Member for Leigh (Mr. Tinker), it would be very useful to the Committee if he could tell us what would be the cost of this proposal, because that is a very material factor in view of the additional cost all round that must be involved in these great proposals for changing the method of government in India.

11.15 a.m.


It will be generally agreed, I think, that we have never had a Minister who resists Amendments so persuasively as the Under-Secretary of State for India, but on Tuesday night he was more than usually persuasive in resisting this Clause. The reason was that he had to resort to all kinds of rather weak arguments. He pointed out that it would be very costly and administratively difficult because of the lack of education among the people of India; it would be geographically and educationally difficult to get returning officers and other officials necessary to carry through an election on such a basis. I believe that such arguments may be applied to India for centuries to come. If it be a question of cost, India will never have adult suffrage because it will never be cheaper. These are not powerful arguments against the proposed new Clause. The hon. Member for Barnstaple (Sir B. Peto) has said that he is not concerned whether he is elected by a small number of voters or by a large number, and that he does his work just as effectively now as he did when he was elected by a smaller number. I do not think that the franchise is a thing to be arranged to please the elected member or that he should have any complaints to make about it. It is our policy to give the franchise to the people we represent, and we have no regrets in regard to the giving of adult franchise in this country. Our experience is that we ought to give adult suffrage of a more complete character. We should say to India that within a limited period we intend to give them that which we think they will discharge effectively.

Some of us doubt whether the time is ripe to give adult suffrage to India, and personally I believe that at the moment it would be a doubtful step to take. Some hon. Members say that we should do it now, but I doubt whether now is the moment to grant adult suffrage to India as a whole. There may be Provinces in India, as I feel sure there are, in which adult suffrage could be given effectively, but we have to remember that the very constitution of the Legislatures makes progress impossible in this direction. We think that the Legislatures have been so arranged that it can never be expected that adult suffrage will be granted. I read the last few lines of our Clause several times before I found myself in agreement with it. I am not inclined to over-ride elected bodies, and when they are elected they should be allowed to discharge their duties without any interference from a superior body. But these bodies are elected in such a way that I can never hope that any Provincial Legislature in India will grant adult suffrage in the next 100 years, never mind 10 years. It is because I see no hope of the Indian people getting universal adult suffrage that I am in support of the Clause. I hope that the Under-Secretary will give a further reply, and, if possible, base his objections on firmer ground than he did on Tuesday night. His objections were weaker than any he had brought forward against any previous Amendment in this Committee. It is no use saying that it is difficult. We know that adult suffrage in India does not mean the same as it does in Great Britain; that adult suffrage for 350,000,000 people is a very different thing from adult suffrage for 50,000,000. When people are fit to vote they should have the vote.

11.20 a.m.


The Clause contains good parts and bad parts, and the part of it which lays down that an Order-in-Council may—we have always been told "may" means "shall" make provision after 10 years is thoroughly bad. I do not believe in doing these things in that way. The hon. Gentleman pointed out that the Government on these occasions are in the happy position, that if the progressives support them, the other people attack them, and vice versa. I have never held, as a good solid Conservative, that adult suffrage has been in any way bad for the Conservative Party. The history of adult suffrage in this country shows that we now have the biggest Conservative majorities we have ever had. I have always believed in adult suffrage. I do not see why as time goes on the workers of India, who are probably just as conservative as, if not more so than, the workers of this country, if they get their own way and are not duped by Socialists and others, should not return enormous Conservative majorities, who will see to it that India as a whole plays its full part in the comity of the British Empire. I do not stand against universal suffrage on that basis at all. I think that it might be very helpful in the future. But you are met with an appalling difficulty in a great country, which is really a continent, having enormous areas holding some 350,000,000 adult males and females You have to build up a system of voting and get people used to going to the poll in an organised way such as is done in this country. In these circumstances, it is absolutely impossible at the present time to grant adult suffrage to India in any shape or form.

But it is not right that we in this House should lay down that the cost of such an electorate is prohibitive. I do not think that that is the right spirit in which to enter upon the question. The cost would fall on India and the representatives of the Indian people, and sooner or later they are the people, who should decide the position of the franchise for themselves. Whether the time is now, or whether, as I think probable, it will not be for a considerable number of years, I do not want to see it, laid down in this House of Commons that the working masses of the Indian people are to be deprived of the franchise indefinitely. It should be part of a clearly thought-out Government policy on this question to have a gradual extension of the franchise in that country, given possibly to some Provinces earlier than to other Provinces. I hope that it will not go out from this House of Commons that the Conservative party, who have benefited so much from universal franchise, are against it in any shape or form. It might do harm, and would revive memories of bygone days, when we had curious ideas about this or that section of the people in India. Broadly speaking, if you have a good policy you can get it across the people, but if you have a rotten policy you will remain in an insignificant position.

11.25 a.m.


It is extraordinary that when democracy throughout the world is trembling in the balance we should think of extending adult suffrage to India, even in 10 years' time. Doubt is arising in many of our minds whether we were wise in extending adult suffrage to this country, and whether the result has been satisfactory. Since the Parliament of Simon de Montfort it has taken 600 years for us to get adult suffrage in this country, and yet it is suggested in the new Clause that in ten years' time in India adult suffrage should be given. I doubt whether the intelligence of the ordinary Indian is anything like as great as the intelligence of the Anglo-Saxon 600 years ago. If hon. Members would propose to give adult suffrage to India in 500 years from now I would vote for it, but it is ridiculous to suggest that adult suffrage should be given to a country where you have a mass of unparalleled ignorance. The people are probably fairly contented but very ignorant. They know nothing about politics and very little about the world, and yet hon. Members would seek to give these people a vote in ten years' time. I am sorry that hon. Members on the benches below me have not more common sense.

11.27 a.m.


I do not like the proposed new Clause, not merely on the grounds of expense but on general lines. We are indulging in a great experiment in India and it seems to me foolish to make certain that the experiment will fail, as it evidently would fail if this Clause were passed. Anyone desiring to destroy the Bill should without any doubt vote for the Clause. Some months ago I was talking to a friend who had been an officer in India, in charge of a large district, and he told me that one day he was in the principal town of his district, when he met a prominent Indian from a village 30 to 40 miles away. He said to the Indian: "What are you doing here?" The reply was: "Government have sent me". My friend said: "The Government have sent you? That cannot be, because anything that the Government do passes through me". The Indian answered: "A man came from Government and told us we must come here to-day. We have spent a lot of money, 40 of us, because Government told us we had to put a cross on a piece of paper with an elephant on it." That incident happened quite recently. What is the use of talking about adult suffrage for such people? To them "Government" is something quite different from what Government is to us. To them "Government" is a mysterious, permanent, benevolent autocracy which goes on for ever. These people have not got it in their minds that the Government changes as the result of an election.

Every Colonial and Indian servant you talk to uses the word "Government" in a way that we never do. Here was this prominent Indian actually saying that he had gone to that place because "Government has told us to put a cross on a paper which has a picture of an elephant on it". I suppose that if the hon. Member for Leigh (Mr. Tinker) went out there he would tell them to put a cross on a piece of paper which had the picture of a tinker on it. Perhaps another picture would have a picture of a tailor on it. If my hon. Friend the Member for Wednesbury (Mr. Ban-field) was concerned there would be a piece of paper with the picture of a baker on it, and they would be told to put a cross there because there was the picture of a baker. What is the use of talking about adult suffrage in India which has not the faintest resemblance to adult suffrage in this country? The proposal is so incredibly stupid that I could not understand it except that it comes from the party opposite.

11.30 a.m.


I dealt with the main points that a rose when I spoke in the previous discussion but perhaps hon. Members will desire me to give a short answer to the points that have since been raised. My hon. Friend the Member for South Croydon (Mr. H. Williams) has attempted to define what "Government" is. I can only suggest that his description of Government as "A mysterious, permanent benevolent autocracy which goes on for ever," applies to the National Government. He attempted to draw a distinction between human nature in India and in England, and said that in India the people voted when they saw the picture of an elephant on a piece of paper. My hon. Friend is so persuasive that the voters in his Division vote for him when they see his picture, and return him by large majorities. The fact is that human nature is very much the same in India as in England. In the franchise that we suggest we are including a great many of the peasant owners and small cultivators and I am sure, despite the difficulties that have been described, they will exercise the franchise in the spirit of common sense that one associates with agriculturists all the world over.

When we come to consider the extension of the franchise on an adult suffrage basis it means, as I said on the last occasion, an immediate jump from 35,000,000, which we propose, to 130,000,000, which is half the adult population of British India, apart from the States. We in this country, as has been pointed out by several speakers, have taken a long period to reach adult suffrage. There are some countries in Europe to-day which have not yet attained that position and there are some countries which have not yet enfranchised their women. We are, as my hon. Friend the Member for Torquay (Mr. C. Williams) pointed out, very much indebted to adult suffrage, and I believe that the wider the suffrage the more votes the National Government will receive. That is why on the last occasion when I spoke I said there was no objection to adult suffrage as an ideal. In the case of India it would do away with all the fancy franchises, the difficulties of representing communities, and so forth, which one has had to explain to the Committee on several occasions, but I must point out that it would be folly and administrative madness, as well as politically inexpedient, to extend the franchise at one jump in the immediate future, which is what the new Clause would allow the Provincial Legislatures to do. The Indian people must get accustomed, through their representatives, to the franchise, and must learn what the vote means and what its use implies. I have said already that the administrative machine could not possibly handle the vast numbers of voters that would be created by adult suffrage. I do not think that we can possibly go any further and impose any further burden on the administrative machine than is proposed in the Bill.

My hon. Friend the Member for Barnstaple (Sir B. Peto) asked me about the cost. The only assessment of cost that has so far been made is in the appendix to the Franchise Committee's report, on pages 278 and onwards. That was an estimate of the cost of the proposals that we have suggested, and there has been no assessment of what adult suffrage would cost. I think it would entail referring to India and careful working out before we could give a final figure. Taking 50 or 60 lakhs as the cost to the Provincial Governments of an election on the basis of the franchise we propose, which would be a sum of £375,000 or £400,000 for the whole of the Provincial elections all over India, if we were to multiply that figure by four times and take a simple sum in arithmetic the cost of adult suffrage on that basis—it might not be completely accurate—would be in the neighbourhood of £1,800,000. That is the cost to the Governments. Then there is the cost, which is not easy to assess, to the candidates and parties. One would rather not conjecture what that cost would be, but one knows that as English democracy has progressed the cost to the candidates and the parties has become increasingly great, which I am sure would be the case in India. It would be rather unwise to give any estimate of the costs to the party and candidates but if the Committee requires it I should say that it would be in the neighbourhood of three or four crores, that is on the basis of the Committee's Report, about £2,000,000 or a little over. For reasons of political expediency, and the danger of hurrying too much in a matter on which all nations of the world have found it inadvisable to rush, and because of questions of administrative difficulty and costs, it would be unwise for the Committee to accept the new Clause.

11.36 a.m.


I am sorry that the Under-Secretary of State has given so unsympathetic an answer. There are two parts to the new Clause. The first empowers a provincial legislature to make a law, and on the general merits of allowing a provincial legislature to make a law in regard to the franchise in its own province there is very little necessity, I should imagine, to argue the case. If anyone ought to know the case for and against an extension of the franchise it cannot surely be the Imperial Parliament as compared with a provincial government in India. The other part of the new Clause says that if in the event of nothing having been done in the course of 10 years "His Majesty in Council may." It does not say. "must"; it is not mandatory; it is merely permissive. It does not necessarily follow that at the end of 10 years the Government will take immediate action. The situation would have to be reviewed and some time must elapse. Arguments in regard to procedure have been addressed to the Committee. The hon. Member for Canterbury (Sir W. Wayland) I know was speaking in a jocular vein, but it would be rather a pity if his speech was read in India tomorrow and the conclusion drawn that he was speaking in earnest. One cannot allow his remark to pass that the intelligence of the people of India is on a level with that of people 600 years ago. The people who would benefit by the operation of the new Clause are the younger people. Older people are already enfranchised under the proposals of the Bill, and the people who would benefit by the new Clause are the younger people who have no property qualification, but who are, however, possessed of better educational qualifications. Unless the new Clause is accepted it is the more intelligent and cultured section of the people who will be excluded from the franchise, although there are a certain number of these young and cultured people who will get the vote by virtue of a property qualification. A large number of the peasant classes will also be excluded from the franchise unless there is some provision of this kind.

I admit, of course, that there are practical difficulties, but we must not forget that nothing is likely to be done, even under the new Clause, for some years because provincial legislature will not begin to operate, so far as their ordinary work is concerned, for some time after the Bill becomes law, and no one would suggest that their first task would be to extend the franchise. All sorts of other things will have to be done and, therefore, any extension of the franchise will not be taken up for some considerable time after the Legislature has begun its ordinary tasks. The new Clause says that His Majesty in Council may do this, not must, and that, of course, depends on the advice of the Government of the day 10 years hence. The hon. Member for Canterbury said that democracy was trembling in the balance all over Europe and asked why we proposed a step like this. We want to show our abiding faith in the efficacy of democracy. We believe that the stability of our own constitution in the welter of confusion which exists in Europe provides a striking example of the value of democracy, and we think it is worth while that the young people of India should have their share in the actual task of government, because if they are cut off the chances are that their activities may go into less constitutional channels. At a time when ideas, some of them held by Government supporters to be subversive and disturbing, are making themselves apparent in India it is important that these young people should not feel that it is no use trying to use Parliament, but should be encouraged to use that institution. That is the only way of guiding the youth movement of India along channels which are desirable, from the standpoint of everyone. Therefore I urge upon the Government that they should look more sympathetically on our proposal.

We admit the practical difficulties, no one would be so foolish as to say that there are none. They are obvious, but I do not think that it does any good to cite individual cases as the hon. Member for South Croydon (Mr. H. Williams) did. I can produce numerous instances of people in this country walking up to the ballot box and asking to be allowed to vote for Mr. Lloyd George or some other well-known politician though that distinguished person was not a candidate in that division. We shall all agree that the power to vote has been an excellent vehicle for expressing the desires and aspirations of the people, and at a time like this, when we are making a new departure in constitution building in India, it is, in my judgment, desirable that young India should be saved from undesirable courses and guided along the path of constitutional progress.

11.44 a.m.


I did not put it forward that the question of cost should be the governing factor in considering the proposed new clause. That aspect of the question is not before the Committee at the moment, but I thought that the Under-Secretary of State might have some figures which might be some guide to hon. Members as to whether they should vote for or against the proposal. I did not put it any higher than that. What does the new Clause propose? The hon. Member for Caerphilly (Mr. M. Jones) rather glossed over the important question of cost.


I must remind the hon. Baronet that this is the third speech he has made on this Amendment.


With all respect to the Chair I must point out that what you may term my second speech was merely a question and a request for information.


If the hon. Baronet will confine himself to asking for information I shall not complain. He had made one speech.


What the new Clause really proposes is that if in the next 10 years the state of the finances of India and other considerations do not permit of an advance to adult suffrage, His Majesty in Council may, in effect, order the introduction of adult suffrage. If the Indian Legislatures are of opinion that the extra cost, which the Under-Secretary has told us is in the neighbourhood of £1,250,000, is not justifiable, His Majesty in Council may, in spite of that opinion of the Legislatures, put adult suffrage into force. A more undemocratic proposal I have never heard put before a Committee of this House, and I am astonished that hon. Members opposite, who are sticklers for preserving the powers of legislatures, should put before this Committee such a proposal.




May I appeal to hon. Members and point out that it was intended generally by the Committee to complete consideration of this Clause at the last sitting? We have had a lot of discussion upon it. If we were to get to the end of the fourth Schedule to-day we should be three days behind the time-table.

11.48 a.m.


I will not keep the Committee more than a couple of minutes. I do not think I can be accused of intruding unduly on the Committee, because in the Sittings of the last 10 days I have not risen once. I merely wish to say that I should have given this Clause hearty support if it had been conceived in a more practical spirit. I can heartily support much that has been said in support of the new Clause. I think it is a pity that the Bill completely debars both the Legislatures and ourselves from reconsidering the question of the franchise for so long a period as 10 years. We all recognise that the form of franchise proposed to be given by the Bill is inadequate, and especially inadequate as far as the women are concerned. Ten years is rather too long a period to pass without reconsideration of the subject. I, therefore, make an appeal to the Government. If they cannot accept this Clause as moved they might at least consider an Amendment in a form that would give power to the Provincial Legislatures or to this Parliament to initiate proposals for adult suffrage, and for these proposals to be carried both in the Provincial Legislatures and in this House before His Majesty in Council agrees.

The new Clause as moved is open to dangers. If it was worked in perfect good faith it might be all right, but we have to face the cold realities of the subject. There are elements in India which may take control and endeavour to bring about chaos for the purpose of proving that this Bill is an unworkable Bill. I hope that that will not happen, but those who study the literature issued by the Youth Movement, to which the hon. Member for Caerphilly (Mr. M. Jones) referred, know that there are leading persons in that Movement who directly want to bring this Act to nothing for the purpose of introducing something that is the very opposite of complete democracy, if possible a dictatorship. Though I am in favour of the proposal of the Clause, I cannot support the Clause because I think it is not sufficiently safeguarded.

Then there is the possibility that an extension of the franchise might be considered, not in the form of complete adult suffrage, but in the form of suffrage for urban districts, which are more educated and advanced, or in the form of that group system which was so strongly approved by many experts of India and was thrown out by the Joint Select Committee only because it was thought to be impracticable administratively. In 10 years there may be reasons to change their views on the subject, and


I wish to ask the hon. and gallant Baronet the Member for Bournemouth (Sir H. Croft) and his friends whether they desire to take a

we ought to leave a loophole by which that can be brought about.

Question put, "That the Clause be read a Second time."

The committee divided: Ayes 21; Noes 164.

Division No. 164.] AYES [11.54 a.m.
Banfield, John William Grenfell, David Rees (Glamorgan) Smith, Tom (Normanton)
Batey, Joseph Hall, George H. (Merthyr Tydvil) Thorne, William James
Brown, C. W. E. (Notts., Mansfield) John, William Tinker, John Joseph
Daggar, George Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly) Williams, Edward John (Ogmore)
Davies, David L. (Pontypridd) Lansbury, Rt. Hon. George Williams, Thomas (York, Don Valley)
Davies, Rhys John (Westhoughton) Lawson, John James
Edwards, Charles Macdonald, Gordon (Ince) TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—
Gardner, Benjamin Walter Parkinson, John Allen Mr. Paling and Mr. Groves.
Agnew, Lieut.-Com. P. G. Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. William G. A.
Allen, Sir J. Sandeman (L'pool, W.) Gluckstein, Louis Halle Patrick, Colin M.
Allen, Lt.-Col. J. Sandeman (B'k'nh'd.) Glyn, Major Sir Ralph G. C. Percy, Lord Eustace
Applin, Lieut.-Col. Reginald V. K. Goff, Sir Park Petherick, M.
Apsley, Lord Goldie, Noel B. Peto, Sir Basil E. (Devon, Barnstaple)
Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley Goodman, Colonel Albert W. Peto, Geoffrey K. (W'verh'pt'n, Bilston)
Beaumont, Hon. R. E. B. (Portsm'th, C.) Grattan-Doyle, Sir Nicholas Pike, Cecil F.
Beit, Sir Alfred L. Grimston, R. V. Power, Sir John Cecil
Blindell, James Guest, Capt. Rt. Hon. F. E. Raikes, Henry V. A. M.
Boulton, W. W. Guinness, Thomas L. E. B. Ramsay, T. B. W. (Western Isles)
Bower, Commander Robert Tatton Gunston, Captain D. W. Ramsbotham, Herwald
Bowyer, Capt. Sir George E. W. Guy, J. C. Morrison Reid, David D. (County Down)
Brass, Captain Sir William Hacking, Rt. Hon. Douglas H. Reid, William Allan (Derby)
Briscoe, Capt. Richard George Hamilton, Sir George (Ilford) Rhys, Hon. Charles Arthur U.
Broadbent, Colonel John Hanbury, Cecil Rickards, George William
Brocklebank, C. E. R. Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry Roberts, Sir Samuel (Ecclesall)
Brown, Ernest (Leith) Hartington, Marquess of Ross Taylor, Walter (Woodbridge)
Brown, Brig.-Gen. H. C. (Berks., Newb'y) Harvey, George (Lambeth, Kenningt'n) Runge, Norah Cecil
Browne, Captain A. C. Harvey, Major Sir Samuel (Totnes) Russell, Albert (Kirkcaldy)
Buchan-Hepburn, P. G. T. Headlam, Lieut.-Col. Cuthbert M. Rutherford, John (Edmonton)
Butler, Richard Austen Heilgers, Captain F. F. A. Samuel, M. R. A. (Wds'wth, Putney)
Campbell, Sir Edward Taswell (Brmly) Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel Arthur P. Savery, Samuel Servington
Campbell, Vice-Admiral G. (Burnley) Herbert, Major J. A. (Monmouth) Shaw, captain William T. (Forfar)
Caporn, Arthur Cecil Hope, Capt. Hon. A. O. J. (Aston) Smithers, Sir Waldron
Cayzer, Maj. Sir H. R. (Prtsmth., S.) Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney, N.) Somervell, Sir Donald
Chapman, Col. R. (Houghton-le-Spring) Hudson, Robert Spear (Southport) Somerville, Annesley A. (Windsor)
Chorlton, Alan Ernest Leofric Hume, Sir George Hopwood Southby, Commander Archibald R. J.
Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston Spencer Inskip, Rt. Hon. Sir Thomas W. H. Spencer, Captain Richard A.
Clayton, Sir Christopher Jackson, Sir Henry (Wandsworth, C.) Stanley, Rt. Hon. Lord (Fylde)
Cobb, Sir Cyril Kerr, Hamilton W. Stanley, Rt. Hon. Oliver (W'morland)
Cochrane, Commander Hon. A. D. Keyes, Admiral Sir Roger Stevenson, James
Colfox, Major William Philip Knox, Sir Alfred Stewart, J. Henderson (Fife, E.)
Conant, R. J. E. Lambert, Rt. Hon. George Storey, Samuel
Cooper, A. Duff Leighton, Major B. E. P. Stourton, Hon. John J.
Courthope, Colonel Sir George L. Lennox-Boyd, A. T. Strauss, Edward A.
Craddock, Sir Reginald Henry Liddall, Walter S. Strickland, Captain W. F.
Croft, Brigadier-General Sir H. Lindsay, Noel Ker Sugden, Sir Wilfrid Hart
Crooke, J. Smedley Lloyd, Geoffrey Sutcliffe, Harold
Crookshank, Col. C. de Windt (Bootle) Loder, Captain J. de Vere Touche, Gordon Cosmo
Cross, R. H. Lovat-Fraser, James Alexander Tufnell, Lieut.-Commander R. L.
Cruddas, Lieut.-Colonel Bernard Lumley, Captain Lawrence R. Wallace, Captain D. E. (Hornsey)
Davidson, Rt. Hon. J. C. C. Mabane, William Wallace, Sir John (Dunfermline)
Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset, Yeovil) MacAndrew, Capt. J. O. (Ayr) Ward, Lt.-Col. Sir A. L. (Hull)
Despencer-Robertson, Major J. A. F. McLean, Major Sir Alan Warrender, Sir Victor A. G.
Dickle, John P. Macquisten, Frederick Alexander Wayland, Sir William A.
Duckworth, George A. V. Magnay, Thomas Whiteside, Borras Noel H.
Dugdale, Captain Thomas Lionel Margesson, Capt. Rt. Hon. H. D. R. Williams, Charles (Devon. Torquay)
Duncan, James A. L. (Kensington, N.) Mayhew, Lieut.-Colonel John Williams, Herbert G. (Croydon, S.)
Emmott, Charles E. G. C. Mills, Sir Frederick (Leyton, E.) Wills, Wilfrid D.
Entwistle, Cyril Fullard Mitchell, Sir W. Lane (Streatham) Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel George
Fielden, Edward Brocklehurst Monself, Rt. Hon. Sir B. Eyres Wise, Alfred R.
Fleming, Edward Lascelles Moore, Lt.-Col. Thomas C. R. (Ayr) Worthington, Dr. John V.
Fox, Sir Giflord Nation, Brigadier-General J. J. H.
Fremantle, Sir Francis Nicholson, Godfrey (Morpeth) TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—
Galbraith, James Francis Wallace North, Edward T. Sir George Penny and Sir Walter
Ganzoni, Sir John Norie-Miller, Francis Womersley.

Division upon the new Clause in their names. — (Higher duties not to be imposed on United Kingdom imports than on other imports.)

Brigadier-General Sir HENRY CROFT

In accordance with the general understanding there will be no debate upon this new Clause to-day, and I, of course, would not attempt to refer to the subject at all except to say this—


There is no question before the Committee on which the hon. and gallant Member can speak. I told the hon. and gallant Member and others that I would select this new Clause for the purposes of taking a Division upon it. I have asked whether they wish to divide upon it or not, and I only wish to get an answer to that question.


May I ask for your guidance, Sir Dennis? The subject matter of this new Clause was not mentioned in any of the debates so far except for a passing reference by myself. My hon. friends and I would rather not divide upon it now if we thought that to do so would preclude us from raising the question again on the Report stage. I am aware that you, Sir Dennis, can give no undertaking in that respect, but if we thought that it would be possible to raise the question on Report we would not divide upon it to-day. If that fact could be borne in mind, we would prefer not to delay the Committee by a Division on the present occasion.


I am afraid I cannot help the hon. and gallant Baronet at all. I have no control whatever over the Report stage.


In the circumstances, we shall endeavour to raise the matter on the Report stage and will not press it to a Division now.