HC Deb 06 February 1941 vol 368 cc1055-6
15. Mr. Cary

asked the Secretary of State for India whether it is to be accepted as Government policy that not until Indian leaders have come to an agreement among themselves is any forward step to be taken for constitutional reform in India; and further, that the form of agreement must have the approval of His Majesty's Government?

Mr. Amery

I do not feel that I can do more than refer my hon. Friend to the statements of policy made by the Governor-General on 8th August and 20th November last.

Mr. Cary

Is India to continue in-definitely in her present political status in relation to our Empire war effort? Surely she deserves a more positive policy.

Mr. Amery

No, Sir, the policy to which I referred is a very positive policy and marks a very great advance.

Mr. Sorensen

May we take it that the right hon. Gentleman does not repudiate the principle of at least sympathetically considering and implementing any majority decision of any democratically elected body?

Mr. Amery

It depends upon the area over which the election takes place and the amount of consent there is. Naturally, our whole sympathy is on the side of establishing self-government in India.

Mr. Harvey

Is the right hon. Gentleman prepared at all times to use his good offices to promote understanding among the people of India?

Mr. Amery

My good offices will always be available.