§ Lieut.-Colonel FREMANTLE
asked the Under-Secretary of State for War if he is aware that gratuities granted by Army Council Instruction 131, of 1919, have not been allowed to be retained by dental surgeons who, at the conclusion of their temporary service, entered the permanent service, notwithstanding the fact that their form of contract was identical with that of contract doctors, by whom gratuities have been retained; and whether this anomaly will now be rectified?
The hon. and gallant Member is under a misapprehension. The contract for medical officers specifically provided for a gratuity, which was not included in the contract for dental officers. The gratuity under Army Council Instruction 131 of 1919 was an act of grace, and the conditions attaching to its refund in the event of any recipient being granted a permanent commission are similar to those generally applicable to officers. The contract for medical officers places them in an exceptional position. I am afraid I can hold out no hope that the decision on this question, which has been carefully and exhaustively considered, will be modified.