I would like to join in the tributes paid by the good gentleman, the member for Woodford (Mr. Churchill). First of all, it should be emphasized that the viceroy showed great state art and a combination of patience, initiative and energy, which is indeed rare. Across the British Commonwealth, we have all been waiting for the statement just made by the Prime Minister and we are delighted that the three major parties in India have agreed on the plan. Since this country announced its intention to hand over to the Indians the Government of India and the direction of Indian affairs, we have been concerned about three things: first, that there should be an accountable authority to which power and duty can be entrusted to the government; secondly, that authority should be as the Indians themselves would like, and of their own conception and choice; and thirdly, that there should be riot prevention. The less we talk today about the details of the statement that has just been made by the Prime Minister, the better. We strive to hear Indian opinions and opinions and we should not say anything that could lead to disruption. We hope that he will settle by mutual agreement for the good of Indians of all classes and without distinction. It would simply be added that time passes, 44 and the sooner steps are taken to allow for an effective transition, the better. I do not want to give up the Indulgence of the House, but we must finally ask ourselves from the outset whether, after the evolution of things – and my opinions are well known on this – we can find a better way to save India from the bloodshed that could be so close. I have no doubt that at first glance, and subject to the unknown factors that seem favourable, it seems that regulation along these lines could offer India some prospect of fleeing one of the most abominable disasters that have ever devastated the vast expanses of Asia. Of course, we cannot form an opinion on the very large outlines and complex details that have been given; Nor can we form firm opinions without knowing how the real facts of what is expected of them are hoped for by the government, the viceroy and other officials of India.
However, I will say right away as far as the good Hon is concerned. The gentleman`s statement on the upcoming legislation, that if the facts correspond to the contours with which we have been presented this afternoon, and if it is necessary, I understand, that Law 43 should be introduced to quickly implement the transfer of power to the different parts of India, so that they can decide for themselves their future in peace, It would not be fair for such legislation to be considered controversial or for long delays to elapse after its introduction before it enters into force. That is why, although we reserve all our freedom to discuss matters of detail, we will not reject laws that would confer dominion status on the various parts of India, which can be presented to us on the basis of the Prime Minister`s statement this afternoon. . . .