Royal Commission on Labour in India: Report(1929)||
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The Labour Department of the Madras Government and one or two co-operative building societies have built a number of houses i n certain areas, but these efforts have had little effect on the main problem. The one pleasing feature of the situation in the Presidency is the housing scheme carried out by the Buckingham and Carnatic Mills Company in Madras City. This Company has already built, three villages with 459 houses and another village of 200 houses is in course of construction. The usual type of house consists of a living room, a kitchen and a washing place with a front verandah and yard. The lay-out is made as spacious as possible and all roads are lighted with electricity, although lighting is not carried into the houses. A pipeed water supply is obtained from the municipal mains and all charges lor lighting, conservancy and water are paid by the Company. A nominal rent of Re. 1-8-0 per month is charged, and neither sub -letting nor occupation by tenants in other employ is permitted. We have inspected these model villages and consider that the improved housing conditions and the new opportunities for recreation are bound to make their occupants more healthy and contented. Every credit must be given to the Company for its efforts, but the difficulty of obtaining suitable sites and the high cost of land and buildings make provision on an adequate scale a slow and expensive undertaking. Only 10 per cent of the mill workers have so far been accommodated, and the great majority still live in houses rented from private landlords or crowd into huts erected by themselves.