Royal Commission on Labour in India: Report(1929)||
The provisions relating to the control of child labour have apparently been framed with the larger factories in view. These are mostly situated in towns where official part-time or whole-time certifying surgeons are available, and the system gives rise to no serious difficulty in such cases. In seasonal factories situated far from headquarters of any size, its working is not so smooth. An inspector may find children who are clearly under 15 years of age working adult hours, or even children under 12 so employed. He is not authorised to expel a child except on the ground of physical unfitness and he may not expel an adult in any circumstances. If his belief that a child is under 15 years is questioned, it would seem doubtful if he can take the child from the factory, but even if no objection is raised to his doing so, he cannot do more than take him to the local doctor and this in practice has not always been found satisfactory. Further, we understand that the certification of children by local doctors is not always reliable, but no others may be easily obtainable. We hope that, with the employment of medical inspectors which we have recommended, the necessity of employing non-official practitioners will disappear or be greatly reduced. But we also recommend as a further safeguard that provincial Governments should have the power, for any or all classes of factories, to prescribe standards corresponding to the normal height of children of 12 and 15 years of both sexes and that, when such standards have been prescribed, the employment of a child who is either under the prescribed age or under the prescribed height should be illegal. We further recommend that the law should empower inspectors to exclude and to arrange for examination by the nearest surgeon qualified to grant certificate, any uncertified person whom he has reasonable ground for believing to be under 15 years until the age of that person and his or her fitness for employment have been duly certified. This last provision should be equally useful in the case of the smaller and more isolated perennial factories and should, therefore, apply to all factories coming under the Factories Act.