Royal Commission on Labour in India: Report(1929)||
In this connection we would observe that the participation of labour in the sphere of local self-government is no less desirable. In the past, industrial workers had no voice in municipal councils and other local bodies, even where they and their dependents constituted the bulk of the population. Recently labour members have been added to the Bombay municipality, but it is still very general for those who are vitally concerned in municipal administration to have no representation on the council. As a result, councils tend to be composed mainly of those who, if their interests do not conflict with those of the workers, are insufficiently acquainted with their needs. The proper representation of industrial labour should lead to more attention being given to health and housing than in the past. It will be difficult to secure the changes in policy advocated elsewhere so long as municipal councils are not made more representative of the population for whose welfare they are responsible. Notwithstanding that it is customary to base representation on the payment of particular taxes, we consider that, where there is a substantial industrial population, it should be allowed to take a share in municipal government. We recommend that it should receive, either by means of a franchise such as we have already suggested or in some other way, the power to exercise an adequate influence over the policy of local self-governing bodies.