Royal Commission on Labour in India: Report(1929)||
It is, moreover, insufficient to set down criteria for the grant of exemptions; principles should be formulated for the application of these criteria. Hitherto, the Government of India have not been able to do more than make a few general recommendations at infrequent intervals. It is desirable that there should be more uniform standards for the grant of exemptions throughout India. Here we cannot do more than suggest certain broad guiding principles. The most important of these is that exemptions should be given for specified and limited periods; these should in no case exceed three years, and should be shorter when possible. This will ensure that all exemptions are periodically reviewed. While a certain amount of latitude may reasonably be shown when further limitations on the hours of work arc introduced (provided always that exemptions are limited to the abnormal), the aim should be steadily to tighten up the administration and to reduce exemptions to the smallest dimensions possible. A further principle to which we attach importance is that, if workers are compelled to work in circumstances which involve the grant of an exemption, they should, whenever possible, receive a benefit in a form balancing as closely as possible the deprivation involved in the exemption. Mere monetary compensation does not satisfy this condition; what we contemplate is that, where workers are required to work on the day of rest, they should receive an extra full holiday at an early date. We observe, for instance, that. at any rate in some provinces, workers appear to be deprived of weekly holidays almost as a matter of course in factories working continuous processes, although fortnightly holidays are generally secured. We do not regard the difficulty of providing for relieving shifts once a week, instead of once a fortnight, as sufficient justification for demanding so many consecutive days of work. If, however, it is not practicable to give weekly rest days, two rest days should be required at the end of the fortnight or failing this either a continuous period of rest of 24 hours once a week or of 48 hours once a fortnight. Similar principles can be applied where overtime work is demanded. We desire to add that in future the 60 hour week should be regarded as a limit which is to be exceeded only in most exceptional circumstances.