asked the Minister for Finance whether it is proposed to make an Order under Section 5 of the Superannuation and Pensions Act, 1923, authorising the grant of pensions, allowances or gratuities to ex-members of the Royal Irish Constabulary, and, if so, whether he can indicate the probable time at which the Order will be laid before the Dáil.

The Order referred to is at present in course of preparation. I hope to be in a position to have it laid on the Table in a very short space of time.

Can the Minister give us any indication of the actual time when it will be placed on the table? It has been in preparation for a long time, and I would like if he would tell us whether it will apply only to those who have been before the Inquiry Committee. Would the Minister be able to give the Dáil some information as to the general position regarding those dismissed and resigned R.I.C. men?

The only thing that I can add now to what I have said is that I hope to have it on the table within a very few days. I regret the delay that has occurred in the matter, but I can promise it will be placed on the table in a very short time now.

I take it the Minister is aware that there is very great distress amongst many of these men.

I am aware of that.