HC Deb 18 March 1919 vol 113 c1929W

asked the Secretary of State for War whether Corporal J. B. Barnes, No. 8135, 45th Division, Signal Company, Trimalgherry, Deccan, India, joined the Army as a volunteer on 19th February, 1907, for seven years with the Colours and five years with the Reserve, but agreeing to serve one year extra beyond the seas, was in India on completion of seven years; whether he would in ordinary course have returned to civil life in February, 1915; whether he went to India 20th September, 1907, and served in many places and in German East Africa; if he is aware that the sending home of men who have been in India only two years, many of whom have done no fighting, is causing discontent amongst men of the class of Corporal Barnes; and will he state whether he will give men who have served abroad so long preference in transport facilities to others who have been in India only a short time?


I am informed that men of short service are not being sent home from India except in the case of pivotal men, demobilisers, special release, or compassionate cases, or men who are non-effective owing to wounds or ill-health. The regulations at present in force provide for a proportion of men of long service overseas being included in each dispersal draft. The soldier referred to cannot be identified from the particulars given, but if my hon. Friend will verify the regimental number and unit I shall be happy to have inquiry made.