Item 2 - Telegram from Lord Reading to Edwin Montagu

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MONT II/A/3/23/2

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Telegram from Lord Reading to Edwin Montagu

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  • 24 Dec. 1921 (Creation)

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Part 1. Malaviya came to see him yesterday. He said that Reading’s answer to the deputation favourably impressed the extremists and non-co-operators, and he brought a document signed by Das and other leading non-co-operators proposing a conference in January (Gandhi and other non-co-operationists to represent the Congress), subject to the withdrawal of proclamations and release of prisoners. The signatories undertook to prevent a hartal on the 24th and to observe a real truce. At the same time, however, Reading received an agency telegram advising of statements by Gandhi which made it impossible to consider the question. Malaviya was much upset. Reading emphasised to him that he would not make arrangements expressly covering hartals, as they would be covered by any arrangement to desist from non-co-operation activities. Montagu has also misunderstood his proposals on this point. The discussion was repeated in the presence of Lord Ronaldshay.

(Typed. Continued in A3/23/3.)

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