33. Sir HERBERT ROBERTS
asked the Secretary for the Colonies whether, in view of the allegations publicly made at meetings of the Planters' Associations in British Malaya, with regard to the spread of drinking habits among the immigrant population, especially Tamil estate labourers, further steps will be taken to remedy the admitted evils arising from the drink traffic in the States and Colony; whether it is the intention of the Government of the Federated Malay States to establish a system of licensing boards upon the lines recently adopted in Bengal; whether it is proposed to substitute a system of fixed licence fees for the auction system and to ensure a stricter supervision and inspection of places licensed for the sale of drink; and whether it is intended to include toddy and beer in the restrictions now applicable to the sale of spirituous liquors to Tamil coolies?
The High Commissioner for the Malay States informed me 1902 on the 30th of April last that the reports which had been called for from the residents on the working of the 1912 Excise Enactment had been received; that they showed that the system established by the Enactment was certainly better than that previously followed; and that the question of introducing further improvements was under consideration. A further dispatch is promised after receipt of a report on the subject from the Acting Comtroller of Labour, who has visited India lately and studied the system adopted there.