The terrible nature of the drinks and drugs consumed by the Natives, I have already had occasion to describe, as also the increasingly large number of those who are becoming enchained by the habit.
In connection with our present Social Reform, special efforts will be made to reach this class. They will be personally dealt with, and placed as far as possible in circumstances that shall put them beyond the reach of their besetting temptation.
For some time past our Officers, more especially those in charge of the Prison Gate work, have visited liquor-shops and opium and ganja dens, speaking personally to the frequenters, and in some cases distributing among them suitable appeals and warnings in regard to the fatal consequences of the habit.
Untimately it is intended to establish homes for the most hopeless class of inebriates, both for those habituated to liquor and for those who are the slaves of the still more fatal drugs, such as opium and bhang.
THE RESCUE HOMES FOR THE FALLEN.
Here again we have made a beginning. It is now a year since the opening of our Home in Colombo, and during that time 52 girls have been received into our Home. Of these
2 have been restored to their friends,
4 are with others—doing well,
23 have turned out unsatisfactory, and
23 are with us in the Home, almost without
exception giving evidence of
being truly reformed.
Heart-rending are the tales which have reached our ears as to the way in which many of them have been decoyed from their homes, and as to the miserable existence which they have since been dragging out.
Every Indian city teems with a too fast increasing number of similar unfortunates, for whom at present nothing has been attempted. We propose, therefore, very largely to extend our Homes at all the large centres of population.
Connected as will be this department with the network of other agencies that we have already established, and increased as will be our facilities for reaching this class, we are confident that we shall be able to carry out this much-needed reform on a scale commensurate with the evil, besides warning the youths of our cities against the terrible contamination to which they are at present exposed. All the weight of our increasing influence will be thrown into the scale for cutting off both the supply and demand of this infamous traffic in human souls.
“THE COUNTRY COLONY”—“WASTEWARD HO!”
As has been already explained in the first part of this book, the congested state of the labor market in the agricultural districts is leading to an enormous and increasing immigration of the country population towards the towns, not as a matter of preference, or of choice, but of dire necessity. The object of the Country Colony, as applied to India, will be twofold: