§ Sir J. Mellor
asked the Secretary of State for War how many of the officers compulsorily commissioned in the Indian army have applied to re-transfer to the British service in accordance with the 61W Indian Army Order of April, 1945; how many have been re-transferred; why three or four months elapse between application and re-transfer; and whether he will explain the system for dealing with these applications in London.
§ Mr. Lawson
The total number of applications for re-transfer is not known, but to date the War Office has received applications from 1,105 officers. Of these, 825 have been transferred to the British Army and the balance of 280 cases are at present under examination with a view to transfer. I understand that, owing to the distances involved and the pressure of communications in India, it is difficult to expedite the transmission of applications from the officers' station, which may be in S.E.A.C. to G.H.Q. India. No undue delay occurs in the War Office. It is necessary to check the service and technical qualifications in order to ensure that applicants are placed to the best advantage and, in some cases, where the particulars are incorrect or incomplete, reference back to India may be necessary. But in the normal case the time taken varies between a few days and, at most, three weeks, after which the Military Secretary's Department arrange for the officer to be gazetted. It will be appreciated that the branches concerned are working at high pressure at the moment.