Royal Commission on Labour in India: Report(1929)||
In 1929 the Government of India issued their orders on the recommendations of the Seamen's Recruitment Committee. Under these orders, which were framed after consultation with the shipping companies, the leading ratings (i.e., serangs and butlers) are recruited either direct by the shipowners or through the Shipping Office. A broker must not be employed in any capacity in the selection of these men, and the companies undertake that " preference will, as far as possible, be given to men who have been longest out of employment ". The Shipping Master has no power to interfere in the selection, but we are informed that, as far as possible, the shipping companies endeavour to honour this undertaking. Recruitment is made through the Shipping Office where shipowners or their agents are unable to make the arrangements necessary for the registration of their men. The Shipping Offices maintain employment registers of serangs and butlers; the shipowners, their agents or the ship's officers select their men at an open muster. Here, too, there is no compulsion, but it is stated that in practice an endeavour is made to give preference to those longest out of employment. In the recruitment of lower ratings, there is no interference or control. The general practice is for the serang or butler to produce candidates in excess of the number required and for the Marine Superintendent or the ship's officers to select from the men thus produced.