§ MR. BALDWIN (Worcester, Bewdley)
I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for India if the attention of the Secretary of State has been called to the statement in paragraph 18 of the official Report on the Material Progress of the Punjaub during the decade 1881–91, that in some parts of India the leading Euro- 1617 pean dealers grind up clay and mix it with their wheat in order to get the full benefit of the allowance for refraction; and whether any steps have been taken or will he taken by the Indian Government to prevent the continuance of a practice which is described as not only unfair to the Punjaub trade but demoralising to the cultivator?
*MR. GEORGE RUSSELL
(l)The passage quoted has been seen by the Secretary of State for India. (2) Papers presented to Parliament (Nos. 5,702 and 5,760) in 1889 show that steps were taken by the Home and Indian Authorities to remedy the evil under notice. Some improvement has already taken place. The Secretary of State has requested the Government of India to consider plans for procuring the establishment of grain elevators at some of the chief grain marts. If this is done, it will conduce to the export of cleaner grain. It is not intended to propose a Wheat Frauds Act. The real remedy lies in the hands of the European exporting firms. If they demand cleaner grain the exporters will find it necessary to supply it.