§ Mr. F. E. SMITH
asked the Undersecretary of State for India what are the 1573W respective values of exports of cigarettes from the United Kingdom to India for the months of March, 1908, 1909, and 1910; and whether he is prepared to advise the Indian Legislative Council to reduce the recently increased duties on the imports of cigarettes into India, which have materially raised the price to the British soldier, the principal consumer of imported cigarettes?
§ Mr. MONTAGU
The values are:—
£ March, 1908 … … … 19,730 March, 1909 … … … 27,128 March, 1910 … … … 15,064
With regard to the second part of the question, according to the information before the Secretary of State, the bulk of the trade in imported cigarettes is for the supply of the general population of India, which is now a large consumer of cheap tobacco in this form. The magnitude of the trade is against the supposition that it is chiefly for the British soldier. The Secretary of State is not prepared to interfere, though he has directed the Government of India to watch the effect of the duties.