HC Deb 30 March 1961 vol 637 cc1517-8
35. Dr. King

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department why the Chinese student, Mr. Don Pan, studying at the University of Southampton, was deported from Southampton on 11th March.

Mr. Renton

Mr. Pan was informed on 26th October last that he was expected to end his stay in the United Kingdom by 15th November, 1960. He did not do so, and as my right hon. Friend was satisfied that his departure was conducive to the public good he was deported.

Dr. King

Is it not a sorry tale, following the recent spy trial, that the great "fish" got away for a long time and a poor little "minnow" is interrupted in his academic studies at a university where everybody said he was a likeable and harmless young man engaged in research? Is the Minister aware that the faculty and the students at Southampton University are deeply concerned about this? Is he aware that British universities have been the guardians of intellectual freedom for a long time? Cannot he reconsider this question?

Mr. Renton

I have nothing to add to what I have said except to assure the hon. Gentleman that my right hon. Friend came to his decision after the most careful consideration, and also to say that there are thousands of foreign students in this country who are most welcome here.

Mr. J. Howard

Like the hon. Member for Southampton, Itchen (Dr. King), I have received a letter from the president of the Students Union on this question of Mr. Don Pan. Is my hon. and learned Friend aware of the disquiet in the university, and could he not consider giving the two Members concerned an opportunity of judging for themselves the validity of this decision?

Mr. Renton

I am certainly willing to receiving any representations from any hon. Member of this House on any matter.

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