Royal Commission on Labour in India: Report(1929)||
Apart from the need of creating machinery to form a link between the administration and the workers with regard to the settlement of grievances and the prevention of industrial disputes, developments in welfare work have called for organisations intended to encourage the staff to participate in welfare activities. Reference has already been made to the formation on various railways of staff committees, staff welfare committees and staff councils. In addition, on almost all railways sanitary committees have been formed at various centres; these meet periodically and make suggestions for improving health conditions in the railway colonies. On the South Indian Railway the jurisdiction of these sanitary committees has been extended to include all matters relating to the comfort and well-being of the railway communities, the expenses incurred being borne by the railway administration. Although the local medical officer is always a member, the organisation of local and sanitary committees is often placed under the engineering department, on the ground that it is considered best fitted to supervise. the general conditions of the quarters and to correct deficiencies. The duties of these committees are only advisory and the executive charge of sanitation and health should always remain in the hands of the medical department. It seems desirable to extend the functions of all local committees to welfare work. We consider that both Chief and District medical officers should take an active part in encouraging this work and in stimulating local interest in the general advance of the health and welfare of the railway communities. On more than one railway the election of workers to the committees by the votes of fellow workers has proved of value, and we recommend that, wherever possible, each committee should have a proportion of elected members representative of different classes of workers living within the area it serves.