Indian Army (Home Leave)

Oral Answers to Questions — India – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 26th October 1944.

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Photo of Major Abraham Lyons Major Abraham Lyons , Leicester East 12:00 am, 26th October 1944

asked the Secretary of State for India what steps are being taken to give home leave to married and single officers and other ranks belonging to, or attached to, the Indian Army; and with what success.

Photo of Lieut-Colonel Leo Amery Lieut-Colonel Leo Amery , Birmingham Sparkbrook

British Service personnel attached to or serving with the Indian Army are entitled to consideration under the War Office "home posting" scheme; they may, however, if they wish to return to the Indian Army, choose leave instead of "home posting." British personnel belonging to the Indian Army cannot be treated under a "home posting" scheme, since the Indian Army has no home establishment, but a leave scheme was opened some time ago and is now in full operation. The working of this scheme depends on the number of passages which can be allotted, and the number of officers who can be spared for operational reasons. Both these points are under constant review, in order that the maximum advantage may be taken of the arrangements.

Photo of Major Abraham Lyons Major Abraham Lyons , Leicester East

Will my right hon. Friend do his best to see that, after a reasonable period, the opportunity of home leave is given to every rank, and every man serving in India?

Photo of Mr Quintin Hogg Mr Quintin Hogg , Oxford

Will my right hon. Friend bear in mind that these officers and men belonging to the Indian Army are really ordinary civilian soldiers, if I may use the term, who happen to have joined the Indian Army for some reason or other during this war? Will he see if cross-posting between British Army units and Indian Army units can be made possible?

Photo of Lieut-Colonel Leo Amery Lieut-Colonel Leo Amery , Birmingham Sparkbrook

In so far as they are attached to the Indian Army, the facilities of the British Army scheme are open to them. In so far as they voluntarily joined the Indian Army, their services are, naturally, in continual request for operational purposes, and those who have longer service have prior claims.

Viscountess Astor:

Is it not a question of transport; and, now that the seas are practically clear, could my right hon. Friend not put on extra transport, because this matter is very important?

Photo of Lieut-Colonel Leo Amery Lieut-Colonel Leo Amery , Birmingham Sparkbrook

I will do my best; but the seas, although relatively clear from interference, are certainly not clear from urgent operational demands.