Royal Commission on Labour in India: Report(1929)||
So far as housing and sanitation are concerned, the practice appears to vary. In some cases contractors are required to take measures regarding sanitation and health and housing; but this is not always the case, even on large works where much labour is brought from a distance; nor does Government undertake to house contractors' labour. Further, it does not appear to be the regular practice to consult the medical and public health departments before large engineering works are started, or to secure their co-operation during the progress of the schemes. Too often the determination of the scale of medical and public health activity is left to the public works authorities, and the engineer in charge of the construction is made responsible for the control of health on the work. In some provinces the rules do not appear to require previous consultation with the Department of Public Health. In more than one case an important work has been started without any such reference, and occasionally a big work has been carried on for some time without any control being exercised by the medical or public health authorities over the health arrangements. The results, as our evidence shows, have not been satisfactory. We recommend that, where large construction works are to be carried out either by the Public Works Department itself or through the agency of contractors, and especially where workers are to be employed for any length of time in the same area, the Medical and Public Health Departments should be consulted beforehand. In addition, definite rules should be framed in all such cases regarding the supply of proper housing and sanitary arrangements for all persons employed and providing for the treatment of cases of sickness or accident, including accommodation for cases of infectious disease. We also recommend that the Medical Department should be entrusted with responsibility for the health of those employed on such works.