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(Sir J. Anstruther) opposite to him, was completely mistaken in supposing the secret committee, and the court of directors, as being connected; it was, in point of fact, a complete mistake, in form as well as in substance. The secret committee was the express, direct, and immediate organ of the board of control. Their proceedings were utterly unknown to the court of directors. The secret committee was subject, in no way or respect whatsoever, to the court of directors, who were, indeed, ignorant of the proceedings of the secret committee. This act, there fore, of the secret committee, which the hon. baronet treated as the act of the court of directors, was an act in which they had no share, of which they had no knowledge;—an act, with which they had not the slightest concern ; and it was an act on which the board of control had exercised its authority ; and as that board was superior in India concerns, it became extremely difficult for the court of directors even to express an opinion, much less exercise a judgment on a decision of the board of control, without incurring the imputation of resisting superior authority. It was liable to great objection of leading to great derangement in their affairs. Another reason which prevented the interference was, the assumption of the Carnatic had become the subject of parliamentary enquiry, which superceded both the board of control, and the court of direclors. Sir John Anstruther denied tha
he wished to oppose enquiry. He only said, that it ought not to be allowed to drag on for years. The court of directors had instructed their officers to pay the same deference to the orders of the secret
committee as to those of the directors themselves, and as the secret committee had approved of the coilduct of Lord Wellesley, he was fully warranted in saying, that the directors through them had expressed their approbation of it. Mr. Grant denied that the court of directors submitted then)selves entirely to the guidance of the secret committee. Sir A. IPellesley said he was fully disposed to pursue the same line he had adopted last session, and was, therefore, willing to accede to every motion for papers, that could enable the house to decide upon the whole case. Neither could any friend of his noble relation give any opposition to the production of such information. But it was his opinion, that all the papers should be re-printed, and with that view he should feel it his duty to move, as well as for those omitted by the hon. baronet, as well as any others that might be necessary to the elucidation of the transaction. He wished the house to consider the situation of his noble relation, with this charge hanging six years over him. It appeared by the papers, that the count of directors had sent out instructions to take possession of the Carnatic, at the commencessient of the war with Tippoo Sultan, and not to restore it to the nabob. It was rather extraordinary, therefore, that a charge should be brought for a transaction commanded and approved by the court of directors, and sanctioned by his Majesty, and by act of parliament. Mr. R. Thornton complained of the accusations thrown out against the directors, without documents on the table to warrant them. I le regretted the delay which had taken place, but maintained that no blame rested with the directors. The redsons given by the right hon, gent. over the way (Mr. Sheridan) for his abandoning the case, did not appear to him satisfactory. When he had brought forward the question, he thought he was going hand in hand with him, but he soon found that he himself was to be accused. There were some points with respect to the government in India, that required the interference of the house, which was the dernier resort in such cases. But the court of directors were not the proper persons to become accusers. If they put themselves forward in this way, they might do a great deal of mischief to the interests of India; from the nature of their situation it was not expedient in any view, that they should come prominently forwards, unless assured of effectual support. The hon, baronet (Sir J. Anstruther) had himself before gonea considerable way back in the enquiry into India transactions. It was but reasonable that he should allow the same privilege to others. He was glad that the subject had come under investigation, and was not much alarmed as to the result. He denied that the directors had given any instructions to sanction the revolution in the Carnatic. The court of directors were quite distinct from the secret committee, which was not responsible even for such papers as had its own signature. Mr. Tierney would not object to the re-printing of the papers which had been before produced, and agreed that that house was the dernier resort in such cases; but lamented that the subject had been now brought forward, as he could see no good that could result from it. It had before been properly brought forward, and he lamented that it had not been then proceeded in. He begged of the house to con
sider the consequences. The subject was one of the deepest importance, particularly with a view to transfer property, which had taken place since the transaction which had been adverted to. But at the same time he admitted, that even the inconvenience that might result from the disturbance of property, ought not to deter the house, if it was called upon, from investigating the case, and applying its censures where censure was due. He was sorry that the hon. baronet had not mentioi ed more distinctly whom he intended to accuse. He admitted that the board of control was responsible for the secret committee, but he o that this committee was such a nullity as some might suppose from the description of it, which had that night been given, and he cautioned gentlemen against speaking of it in these terms, as they might, by these means, propagate an opinion that it was useless. He gave no opinion respecting the merits of the transactions. He agreed to the motion respecting the former papers; but it was doubtful whether the others could be granted, till the hon. baronet should state what they were, and till he had an opportunity of examining whether they could be produced without detriment to the
public service. Lord Folkestone contended that, with respect to the assumption of the Carnatic, blame lay somewhere, and it was a matter of serious investigation where all the censure of that most extraordinary revolution should devolve. The hon baroner had been pressed to state distinctly his object in calling for those papers; it might be impossible for the hon. baronet distinctly to state his object, until he had been previously furnished with the necessary evidence by those papers; but before that evidence
dence should be furnished, he thought it a subject of too great magnitude to warrant any member in distinctly pledging himself to a specific charge. Mr. Hiley Addington begged gentlemen to recollect, that there had been more papers relative to India called for, and produced in the last session of the late parliament, than for six sessions before ; he was entirely of opinion, that in calling for papers upon any subject, the object should be distinctly stated; he acquitted the hon. baronet of being actuated by any sinister motives of party or vanity in bringing forward his present motion, and praised the manly and ingenious conduct of the gallant general (Wellesley) in every question relating to Indian enquiry. Mr. S. Stanhope thought it a most extraordinary mode of opposing the hon. baronet's motion, by refusing to assent to the papers called for, until the object had been distinctly stated, which object the papers in question were alone to ascertain. He complained of a radical defect in the present state of the government in India, and knew not whethermoregovernments had been subverted by it in the East, or by Buonaparte in the West. Sir Thomas Turton, in reply, said,
, and perseverance. As to the voln
minous papers with which he had been threatened from the other side, if such papers contributed in the least degree to the defence of the accused, he, himself, should gladly second the motion for their production. He had been urged to state distinctly the object of his motion; it was impossible to state, in a case of such magnitude, on whom the evidence found in these papers should especially bear; and it was, therefore, in the present stage of the business, impossible for him distinctly to pledge himself, farther than avowing it as his intention to submit a motion, committing the house to a censure of the East India company, or its servants, in the assumption of the government of the Carratic. The hon. baronet concluded with an appeal to the feelings of the house, in which he alluded to the melancholy fate of the deposed prince, who, he could prove, had perished in a duneon. Sir A. Wellesley explicitly denied that the prince, as stated by the hon. baronet, was imprisoned in a dungeon, or died by any other than natural causes. He thought it became a gentleman of the hon. baronet's profession, to be more cautious in making such charges. Sir T. Turton maintained that the papers bore him out in his assertion, though he did not in the least implicate Lord Wellesley in that dark transaction. Mr. Fuller thought the enquiry should be fully gone into. Mr. Sheridan acquitted in the fullest manner the noble lord (Wellesley) but had not a doubt upon his mind, that the young prince came to his death by foul and extraordinary means.—The motion was then put and carried. Monday,
Monday, March 23, 1807.
Sir T. Turton, in a speech of considerable length, which he prefaced by observing, that no change of administration could, in any measure, affect the question now before the house, inveighed strongly against the assumption of the government of the Carnatic, which he repeatedly termed one of the most gross and infamous stretches of tyranny that ever disgraced the annals of India. He dwelt much upon the subsequent treatment of the Polygars, who, he contended, were no more subjects of Britain than of Hesse Cassel. He did not charge the lords Clive or Wellesley with the murder of the nabob of Arcot, but insisted that both had been the means of bringing about that murder. The hon. bart. concluded with moving, that there be laid before the house a copy of the instructions given to lord Mornington by the board of control, or the secret committee, previous to the treaty respecting the Carnatic in 1792. The hon. baronet said, that beside the one now before the house, he had, upon the same subject, twelve other mctions to submit to the house.
Mr. Tierney, in answer to the hon. baronet's long speech, should briefly observe, that of the papers now called for, one part did not exist, and the other part was already printed.
Sir T. Turton said, that not being in the office of the right hon. gentleman, he had not the same means of information, and, therefore, was not aware of what had just been mentioned. He thought the righthon. gentleman's answer a fair one, and was willing to withdraw his motion.
Lord A. Hamilton thought it better that the proper officers be required to lay before the house a copy of all instructions that had been issued. Sir A. Wellesley contended, that all the instructions which had been transmitted, were already in possession of the house. Colonel Symes asserted, that there would not be time in the present session to examine all the papers, for which the hon. baronet had moved. Though he had given a long explanation of the object of these motions, yet the explanation was so imperfect, that he could not pretend to understand him. Yet there were one or two observations in his statement which he could not pass over without some notice--SirT. Turton rose to order, affirming, that the honorable gentleman ought to confine himself to the particular question before the house.—After a few words from sir J. Anstruther, Mr. Tierney, and col. Synues, the motion was agreed to. The motion for a copy of the Review, promised by marquis Wellesley to the directors, was then put and carried, it being understood that there was no such paper, but sir T. Turton wishing to have that fact formally before the house. Sir T. Turton also moved for copies of the official letters, other than that of the 23d April, 1800, respecting the papers discovered at Seringapatam, with the answers so far as not already printed. Colonel Symes contended, that the greatest moderation had been practised in acting on these papers. He denied that the papers had been come by unfairly, or that any improper means had been used to shorten the life of the nabob, who was said not to have died a natural death. He died in consequence of the the intemperate use of opium. The governor of Madras sent Dr. Anderson to him when ill, whose
report was, that he sound him labouring under an incurable dysentery.
Sir T. Turton would not now enter upon the merits, but he was at issue with the hon. gent. in the whole of his statements. Motion agreed to.—He next moved for a copy of the paper containing the approbation given of the conduct of lord Clive in the tansaction above alluded to, and in the subsequent arrangements with respect to the prince. Agreed to—The hon. baronet also moved for copies of the letters of Omdut Ul Omrah, &c. complaining of grievances. Ordered. He next moved for a copy of a letter from lord Hobart to Omdut n! Omrah, complaining of the permission given by him to certain artizans, &c. servants of the company, to settle in his dominions. Sir J. Anstruther said, there was no such paper, and that it was not respectful to the house to be moving for papers which it was known did not exist. Colonel Symes observed, that gentlemen might exercise their imagination to the great inconvenience of the house, if these things were permitted.—The house then divided on this question, which was lost by a majority of 30 to 24. The other motions were agreed to.
March 25, AFFAIRS OF INDJ A. Sir Philip Francis wished to call the attention of the house to a subject of the greatest importance, and for that purpose rose to ask some questions of the president of the board of coutrol, or of the
person who had lately filled that situation. On the subject to which he alluded, he could speak, perhaps, with more knowledge than any who had heard him. It related to the state of India. He was not so vain nor so ill instructed by experience, as to imagine that any thing he could say would make any very strong impression on the house, or rouse them to give a more than ordinary attention to the subject which it was his object to press upon their most serious consideration. But though experience had almost deprived him of hope on this point, yet there were some duties that survived even hope, and this was one of them. The questions which he was about to ask, were merely with a view to procure information, and it would depend on the answers, whether he should think it necessary to render them the grounds of any subsequent motion. The first question, then, was, why the accounts on which the East India Budget must be founded, were not as yet on the table, for the house must be aware that it was now three years since the last view of the state of India finances had been given on full and authentic documents. This was a point of great importance, and worthy of the serious attention of the house. But this was not what he had particularly in view at this time, and the material object of his rising was, to obtain information on a subject which ought to be before the house. The first part related to the transaction at Vellore ; a transaction, melancholy and disastrous in its immediate effects, and to the last degree dangerous, with a view to its ultimate consequences. Whether, therefore, we looked back upon the past, or forward to the future, it was