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-.--------THE SOOTH WALES…






I INDIAN IMPORT DUTIES. THE THREATENED MINIS- TERIAL CRISIS. REVOLT OF THE LANCASHIRE MEMBERS. In the House of Commons on Thursday, Sir HENRY JAMES (Ii.IL, Bury) rose, amid Oppositim cheers, to move the adjourn- irt-rit of the House, but before the right hon. Ii genklematii had time to proceed I Sir D. MACFARLANE (L., Argyll) asked whether the motion was in order. (Laughter, and cries of "Order," and a Voice: "There is no motion yet.") .1 Sir HENRY JAMES: I wish to ask the permission of the House to move its adjourn- ment for the purpose of discussing a. definite 'I matter of Urgent public importance, viz., the reoent impo&i'ion of duties upon the importation of cotton manufactures and yarns Ï¡,to India. (Opposition cheers.) Sir D. MACFARLANE: Sir, I wish to ask if a motiait of this kind is one contemplated by the Standing Order which permits motions tor the adjournment of the House upon matters of urgent public importance. This question might have been discussed an the Addi ess, a ) week ago, and it is xio more urgent than it was then. (Opposition cries of "Closure.") I I wish to ask you whether you did not srive this rub'ng on the 15th of April, 1894, with regard to a motion of this kind — I do not think that, under the Standing f Order of 1382, a, motion on a subject of this kind, having such a very wide scope, was ever contemplated." What I think was contemplated was the occur- rence of some sudden emergency—(Opposition cheers)—either in home or foreigm affairs. But I do not think it was contemplated that a ques- tion of very wide scope which would demand legislation to cl-xi with it in an effective manner should be the subject ot a discussion on a motion I for the adjournment of the House, because if that were so we might r have repealed motions made by rhe Opposition of the day, not so much in the direction of censure of Government for the steps whioh had b^en taken or had not b> °n I take-. 1. but to bring to public notice some grievance demanding instant remedy, as in the direction of wishing to introduce legislation on some particular subject. Now, I wish to ask if that, does not apply to the present motion, The SPEAKER I think it entirely inap- I plicable to the case. This iz; as I understand, I an alleged grievance requiring instant- remedy. I' 8ir D. MACF ARLANE Oh! The SPEAKER: Order, order. The hon. member is my ruling, and I expect him to bsten to ma. (Cheers.) Sir D. MAOFARLANE I beg pardon. The SPEAKER: The last words which the hon. gentleman has quoted brings this motion definitely within the rule on the point of order, I viz., action which has been taken, or not taimi. for bnnjpng1 to Dubhe notice home grievance demanding instant remedy, as in the direction of wishing to introduce legislation on some particular subject The reason why I objected I to the motion to which he referred was that it was of such a very vague character and wide was of such a very vague character and wide I soooe that it could not be held to affect a. par- I ticular interest. Here this imposition of duties J afreets a oarticular interest. This is a matter alleged to be of urgent public importance. I I cannot deny that it is of public importance. and, seemsi' that the duties have been recently imposed, I can net deny that it is of recent I occurrence. Upon all these grounds I must say the right bon. gentleman is in order. So far as I am concerned, I cannot interfere on the paint of order bo protect him bringing- hi': motion to the House, erf which it alone must he the judge. (Cheers.) Is it yenr pleasure that the motion be allowed? A larsc inmdier of members on the Opposi- A larsc inmdier of members on the Opposi- tion once rose, r.'odl*a<ve was giver: I according) v Sir H. JAMES, in moving -,e adjournment of the House, said that the public interest required that this dis<ra;«ion should take pJaee. He feared that there was an impression that this motton was made in the interest of » particular trade at tha expense cf 0:11 great Eastern dependency. But he trusted tLat he should he able to dispel that iiurvressicn. The prosperity of Imiia represented the pros I perity of Lancashire.; anything which inter- I fered unduly with the prosperity of India struck mora directly at the prosperity of Lan- cashire than any other portion of the conn try. and it would. therefore, be idle to bring for- ward, in the interest of Lancashire, any motion inconsistent with the interest of India. Hie textile industries of Lancashire did not. fear the competition of the Indian m?nu facturant. All they aeked was that the raee should be run at level weights. He con tended that that would not be the case if duties were imposed upon the import, of English cf-tum goods into India in the manner now pmpneed and sanctioned by her Majesty's Government In early time-, the textile indus- tries of England had no competitors in India, but in 1855 the first cotton mill vw estab- tiebed; in Bombay, arid %om that time the Indian mwmifaefcure had developed, and at I present it had taken from England aimofet the whole trade with China, and Japan, to say nothing1 of India itself. For some time the I "English manufacturers had felt the 1877 duties imposed upon, the import of their gccxte into India as# a dead weight, because it acted as a probibitiv&duty in favour of Indian produc- tioo, and in 1879 the H««ee of Commons bad passed a mssohitiou declaring that, in the interest both of the English product and tiie Indian eoiisumer this import duty should be abolished. The duty was accordingly abolished in 1882, and the manufacturers of Lancashire believed that it would certainly never be re- impoBod without the assent of IWliaaaent being previously given. But in the course of the last reoets the Government had assented to the re-imposition ot the duty without the sanotion of Parliament. The alleged juft!- fieatioiirof th,;¡j step was the deficit in the Indian. finances, caused by tuft deprioia-tion in 'I the vwlue of the mpes. The truth, however, was that tiie duty was only requirwl in order to rompcii-Me the Ai^flo-Indian officials for I bItQt losii on exdiange which they susta:rie<l in remitting their savings to Rigland, and it was entirely to tbe a^tatio*i set on foot hy tyijbse ofticiais and by the Bcwafcay cotton rnill- wvners that. the a^kparent sudden demand for <6be re-imposition, of these duties was due. The Secretory of State had allowed himself to be Hifluencetl by tbesa reftfeaentafcons without foosulting the znerdisnts or nianufacturers of I Jjiincop'bii^, whoae interests bad been sacri ficeti wifelioiut,. their ever having been beano. Tl»e result was that 5 per cent, duty ws»s now imposed on the Ln duty W'iW9 now imposed on the value off ail" cotton goods imported into India. It was elear thai this must be injurious to the trade, arnd as it was. in fact, a. pfoteotiva duty on the- produce of the Indian mills, it neces- sarily'weakened our position as the advocates of I'Vsie Trade. The Secretary cf State ha1, indeed, imposed an Esc!so, duty on Indian produ ction, and it was argued that this deprived theim.port duty on English imports of ib.j pwtiactive oharaofcer. But the Excaso duty, Ün- poaisd, M 1t. was, only en the higher counts of yarn or oloth manufactured therefrom, would not countervail tiie import duty, and the latter we<asd, therefore, still operate as a protection ta .ithe fndiaai millownera, amounting, it was oc>ncli,aed, to 2 per cent. This would enable bdia. to compete m future with Lancashire in fi»e fcwjber elomg of goods, inyt^ad of. as at pre- ^sent, »f>nly in the coamar sorts. After contrast- fins' fee rapid, development and growing pros- parity of the, I-U(Iiatt cotton iaanufacjturer with the growing depression, in LIv" British industry, botigmii-=LLu odutoxded thafetiie effect of a targe reduction in the export to Indis prrast..Lave'*disasrfroua effect upon the interests of Lafiossi^xe. Under these a'rcumstances, the n uertiOn was wbetlier iiie Houe« would sanction tliq rc-impcpltion of 'h>s ijis.aor» duty or would I require trie xnaiau uovernmens to reaovt to some other iorm of iaxiit:oxi uitd so tne other source of revenue. Why should not a graduated Income-tax and death duties be adopted upon the wealthy natives of j-iidia? (Hear, hear.) The protest against this duty did not proceed merely from the ca.pitali.ite, but frcni the wt>. 1 ing classes of (Cheers.* Air, FOWLKK (Secretary for India) said that the time bad now arrived when -» clear and explie.t statement should be made on this question an a whole. His right hon. friend had described the A ngl.-J iidian offieiMs as agitators to whose iilandishmente he (Mr. Fowler) had succumbed. He denied, however.* that there had been any agitation or conspiracy on the. part of tJf)bf? officials; and, indeed, ii, I was as absurd as it was unjust to in-rut- to a man jike tine present Finance Minbr of India., or to a Viceroy iute Lord I.Jowne, that they had framed their financia proposals in combination or concert with onicials who desired to raise their salaries. (Hear, hear.) desired to raise their salaries. (Hear, hear.) Sir H. JAME3. I never said anything of the kind, i made no imputation upon Lord Lans- downe nor upon a>n.y of the officials. Mr. H. FOWLER said the rigut lion, gentle- man told the House that he (Mr. Fowler) was itniv an Indian Miuisttlr. Yes. that was the post he fiUed—{cheers)—nud it was to India that he was resDonsible as well as to that House. When his rignt hon. friend charged him with sacrificing the interests of England to the inte- rests of India he would have to give a. more satisfactory reason than he had done. (Cheers.) He was attacked from two different points of the compass, and it wtvs impossible that both I attacks could be well founded. He could not have sacrificed Lancashire to India and a.t the same time have facrificed the interests of India to Lancashire. He had endeavoured to steer an even keel, and to do fair justice to both. (Hear. hear.) These duties had been imposed upor. the cotton import into India ever since the Government of that- country was handed over to the Crown, and originally they were practically what was now being- proposed, viz., 5 per cent., but they were at one time 10 per oenk They were attacked entirely on the irreimd of their protective character, but, at tbe same time. there were differences even anione tite most fatal wart Free Traders, and Mr. Fawcett said they mucit consider, not merely whether a particular tax was fcliMWeta- callv bed, but whether it created discontent- amongst the people- Looking at this question in that liarht. he asserted that there was no tax levied in India which was so satisfactory to the people of that country as revenue raised from import duties. (Hear, hear.) In 1877 the reso- lution tliat these duties were protective and ought to be repealed was only accepted with the qualifying addition "when the revenues of India permit. That was the crux of the situa- tion. The import duties on cotton '.vera not repealed till 18f2, and were repealed then nocause the financial condit-joai of India allowed of the repeal of all iropoil duties. (Hear, hear.) That measure led to a great development of the cotton industry, both in England and India, but last year the Government found themselves face to face with a deficit on the tii-anoes of India, a deficit which amounted to 3 000,000 rupees. The Indian Government proposed to meet that parily by the re-imposi- proposed to meet that parily by the re-imposi- bon of the, import duties on cotton goods. The home Government at first refused to permit this, and other measure? were taken to meet the deficit, b d at the same time Lord Kim- II berley, who was t-li?n Secretary of State for India, stated trust if there wac no improvement in the finances of India ho was prepared to receive fui-tlter reprc.-entation on the subject, and when he <Mr. Fowler), a short time after, became Secretary of State he wr ite a dispatch to the Government of India in which he stated that, while the home Government could not 1>J parties to the imposition of protective duties, tl.ey would ar»oept aaiy proposals of a non-pro- tective cliaraoter. Shortly after that there was an ini[x>rtant. discii,~sion in the House of Lcids, in tliecour.s^of which l^ord Lai»sdowne and Lord Roberts drew attention to th» poli- Lcids, in tliecour.s^of which l^ord Lai»sdowne and Lord Roberts drew attention to th", poli- tical aspect of this questicn, and insisted upon the immense importance of doing nothing to shake the confidence of the natives of India in our diSin'ertsted desire and determination to consult their interests, while Lord Cross in- sisted that the question of the re-imposition of thes e dut:d!< was .not one of a. lXlrty character, but was one that must be decider) by the Govern- ment of the day u|»n their own responsibility ™d with record to the state of the Indian finances. Tliat was the last statement made by any one of the leaders of the Oppo- sition on this subject. (Hear, hear.) arns imported into India, were all of the higher cjass, so tha* there was practically no competi- tion. The l7>dian Government proposed an import dutv of 3i per 'Lent, upon varus mA 5 p^r cent, upon pitve goods, but he and his advisers thought there should !>e an equal duty on both, though trie Indian people <sontended that to impose a ur iform dntv of 5 p«r f>cnt wa« charging them J £ .jvr < /nore than Lan- c.3«h:ro msnufaotnreirs were billed upm ia pay. The r.-ree main dbieotions that Lancashire took to the proposals of the Government were thflt they violated the principles of the Free Trade, tbast- they imnosed a heavy burden upon Lan- I cashire, and 'that the Excise duty was inadequate for the prevention of Protection. (Fear, hear.) But import duties and protective duties were Dot the same thing. re was no principle of F1'oo Trade tha.t was viur-ted bv an import duty unless Protection accompanied it. What we had recommended foreign countries to do was I not t't do away with import duties, but to atobsh rsroteofcive duties. It was no violation of Free Trade to levy :1. Customs dutv on spirits I when an equivalent Excise duty was levied on spirits made at home. (Hear. hear.) It. rnifst not- be Bupnos«l that the Government ha<l no sympa-tny with the depression in Lancashire. hut he denied that the Government by their action in this matter were aggravating it. Who paid that tax ? We levied :tn import duty on Indian tea, and that tea paid last year wiilun a fraction of £ 3,000.000 I towards the taxation of this country, but. the duty w.) paid by the consumers. (Hear, hear.) So aJsn would the duty or. cotton sroods be paid bv the jieople, and he did not believe it would affect, in any way tiie con- sumption of cotton goods. (Hear, hear.) The Excise duty was not levied on the coarser counts, because there wias pr-ctically no impor- tation of them. The principle oil which the Government had pixioaeded was that there should be no protection, and he paid frankly that if it oonld be shown that any injustice ,as done to Lancashire bv the motle in which the line of the Excise duty was drawn, he would do his best to remedy that injustice. (Hear, hesr.) The reason, for re-impo«ing this ctut-y waa that this was. rendered necessary by the financial difficulties of India, arising from increased expenditure a-nd the fall in the value of the rzpe, To abolish all import, duties wouki be an affair of mill ions, and hen;r was it possible to justify the exemption from dnfcy of imports from Lancashire alone! (Hear, hp«.r.) Tndia WM not a. self-governing conn try .but thev were bound to consult the public opinion of India on questions li>e this. They rould not expect the people of India, to ignore the duties imposed on the import of cotton goods, in our self-governing Colonies, In Canada, for instance, the dutv on yarns ranged from 25 to 40 per cent, r.nd on woven goods from, 22 to 30 per cent., while at the Cape of Good Hope there wa> fj, nmiform. duty of 12 per cent, on cotton import. The people of India knew thi", and he ventured to say thafc if lie hswl taken the course which it was said he ought to h<w taken it wouid have had a very ;rrav«. effect on tliat country. F/srery ofess, bojb European u>d native, was I 1 H.i ted as t-liey had never before I.een on this question. and it wag the deliberate c.;aiviction of the Govern- ment that II- very widespread and t angerous feeling of dt-satisfaction would hn-ve been crf»aied if tbe feelings of the peop'e of T'.dia had been disregarded- The course which i the- Government had ta-keu followed the mode j which the finances of Tndia had always taken, •nd w;i» both legal and in accisdanet) with pre- cedent. Their case was that the necessities of India compelled the imposition of additional taxation, tliat- the opinion of Tndia was in favour of import, duties, and that the Honae or the Government could not compel the people of I India to exempt Sheir largest import* from duty. t But the Government were determined that the new import duty should not be protective, and if it could he shown that the line at which they had drawn the Excise duty would havsp tliat effect, thy Government would concert with the Government of India the means of carrying out their deotermination to avoid protpotion. That was the poliev he had pursued during the time he had been in office. He had endeavoured to do his duty as Minister for India, and he did not believe that he had neglected the interests of Lancashire. t'ftmr. hear.) Tbe House-knew what consequences would follow if they refused to sanction the administrative acts of the Government. The Government would not shrink from accepting those consequences if Uiat censure were iiifiicted, but let it not be forgotten that,, if the Government was respon- sible to tliat House, that House was responsible to the people of India. lie nekm the House to discharge their gigantic trust to fchat country uninfluenced by any selfish or party feeling, but in a siwrit of wisdom, justice, and gfnerontv. (T^jud cheers.) Sir G. CHF-SNEY (C.. Oxford) hoped that the House would not sanction sneh a. policy as was n.lnmbrated by the motion for adiounftnesat. It would be extremclv unjust if that. House were tf) iic-inte to the Government or the j»eople of India %vhat thsir financial arrangeDtsnta should i)p. Mr. BARLOW (L., Somerset), having been Rnarasred for many yeans in the exportation of L-moa^nire ootion syoods to India and other places in the East, bore testimony to the fact that that trade had increased even when an impart duty existed, and expressed tb", opinion that, with the countervailing Excise duty, no intastioe was done 'to Lancashire. Mr. HANBTTTIY, (C., Preston) entirely svm- T*vtSii«ed with the op?>eal fat complete jus- hoe to Indis, but retttr'ed it ØJtI a ^ery serious *hmg in the prestut depressed roK;iit;'M» agriculture that the next greatest industry of the country should be crippled: in any way whatever. Captain SINCLAIR (L., Dumbarton) recog- nised the necessity of imposing an import duty, but took exception to the oomitervailing Excise duty which it was proposed to impose. I Mr. T. H. SIDEBOTTOM (C., Stalybridge) thought that even from an Indian point-of view this duty was altogether i:(defensible. 1Ir. STANHOPE (I, Burnley) denied that on this matter the people of Lancashire were animated by selfish considerations. But they protested against being uiusecessarily made the victims of the deficit ill. the Indian, finance. Sir JOSEPH LEIGH (L., Stockport),, but for the concession that had been made, should have felt it his duty to vote for the adjourn- ment. ment. After some unimportant speeches, j Mr. GQSCHFN (L.U., St. George's) ex- pressed his regret that we should have been brought \0 this point--that a very strong opinion in Indin should be opposed to an equally strong opinion in Lancashire. (Hear, hear.) They must recollect, howev er, thar, they were, not. only in the House the representatives of tbe people of Indi. but tliat they were also the trustees of our great Indian Empire, and it would be a thousand pities if on this occa- sion they should give an impression either to ou, Indian fellow subjects or to the world that those principles which were at the bar is of our Indian administration were no longer binding upon (Hear, hear.) He could not. but regret, one passage in the epeeeh of the hon. and learned member for Bury, in which he conveyed I tbe impression that the men in India upon wlu»e capacity and impartiality our rule in I timt country depended had been influenced by a small class of Bombav millowners. It weald be unfortunate if any doubt ware I thrown on that ota. who if they were other than they were should not be able to hold I India. (Cheers.) He did not believe tha-t it was possible to give European representative institutions to India., but for that very reason he head that they were bound to the highest, regard to Indian opinion. The voice of India nntst be heard on this matter, and he thought there could be no doubt what the view of the people of India was. The Council of India was unanimously in favour of imposing this inrport. duty. That W!f,/i! the view of the I Secretary of State, and he must assume that it was also the view of the Cabinet, or thev would have overridden dIe Secretary of State. (Hear, hear.) Let them consider what would be the effect in India of a vote of that kind, adverse to this duty. It would not strike the people of India that the opposition was based on Free Trade views. They would comment on the fact that., while we did. not object tp import duties in general, we did object to one upon Lancashire eotton goods, and they would draw the inference tfliat in objecting to this duty that House was acting, not in the interest of India, but in that of Lancashire. So far I as he was conoerned as a representative of I India, as well as of St. George's, Ha.'iover- I syeare, he wo.dd noc risk the misinterpretation of his vote in India, naid he could not think that he should have been doing his duty if ho had given a silent vote He nared mot in what way bis vote was interpreted as regarded party, but he wanted India thoroughly to understand that in that House on both sides there was a detenninati-tn that Indian opinion shoidd be considered as well >s the feeling of any part | of this country. (Cheers.) j Sir W, H ARCOITRT (Chancellor of the Ex- j chequer; ;aid the speech which thev had ju^t he-ird was of such gravity and importance titat he desired to take notice of it at once, He j hoped there would .Dever K; wanting in this country men responsible for the prosperity of | this great Empire, of which India formed the greate-4 part, who would want the courage to ¡ take the lu." winch was nsce-tsary for its secu- rity, and the right hon. gentleman deserved all credit for the language be bad rsed. (Cheers.) I he right hon..uentleman inigjjt depend upon it that he would hear no wo- i from him which coiud in a.ny respect prevent th t. reeonoiliatiou of the nreat. intercuts of this c ountry and of India which lie had express d himself as earnest!v desiring. He was not disposed to .xxmpy the time of the House on this matter, which had been so splendidly dealt with by the Secretary of Statf). (Cheers.) It was only necessary for. him to repeat what his light hon. friend bad said, that he was perf"ctlv ready and anxious to meet And discuss wiih the representatives of Lancashire ihe mode of removing any injustice I v inch this duty might inflict on the industry of that, county. licrd G. HAMTLTON (C., Liverpool) said the poliev of abolishing all ludiat) imposts of a protective character had not only been l'avocsed during the rei'ess by the Secretory for India, but had t¡.eon rqjersed without con- sulting the representatives of Indift or giving timt House an opportunity of considering the subjc»tt. He did not know whether a, divisiArt was to lw taken, hut if the. House did divide he should be happv to vote, for the motion, m a protest against the inaction of the Government on the currency question, and as a protest ajrainst raising a revenue that India required by taxing one industry in this country. (Hear, hear.) Mr. NAOROJI (L.. Finsbury) said if he were a rebel at heart he should welcome this motion with delight. He warned lTnionints and Con- servatives that. if they allowed it to pass they would drive the first nail into the ooffin of British rule. Sir F. MTLNER intimated his intention to support the Governnunt on this occasion. The House then divided, when there were- For the adjotirnment 109 Against 304 Maioritv 195 The motion far ihe ad,;buimment of the Reuse was, therefore, negatived. The result was received with loud Ministerisd cheers. HOW THE VOTfNG WENT. The Press Association says that in the divi- sion upon Sir Henry James's motion, which wsa rejected by 304 to 109, there voted with the Government in the majority a large number of Conservative members, including [Mr. Gosohen, Sir F Mdner. S:r J. Savory, Sir Seymour Kiiig, Sir George Cheney. Sir Mark Stewart, Mr. ,W. L. Jackson, Messrs. Hugges- sen, Bigwood. Hope, Bethell, Round, Befiett. &o.; also Mr. Courtney, tjOlonel Seely, end several other Liberal TTnionist«. as well sui Mr. Labouchere, Mr. Kcir Hardie, and other Radicals, with a number of Liberal members for Lancashire constituencies, including Mr. Jacob Bright, Mr. Snaoe, Mr. Schwann, Mr. Mather, and Sir Joseph Leigh. Amonst tbope wtlO voted in the minority were Lord George Hamilton and a number of Conservatives, Mr. Chamberlain, Mr. T. W. Russell, and several Liberal Unionists, together with Mr. Clement TTiggins. Baron F. de Rothschild and several other Unionists abstained from voting. Mr. Pjiilip Stanhope and Mr. Whiteley were tellers for the minority.




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