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3. Similar quarantine regulations were applied in Government Resolution
No. 4530, dated 13th October 1896, at Karchi, against vessels arriving from
4. The question whether similar regulations should be applied against
arrivals from Bombay at the numerous small ports on the coast of this Presidency
was next considered. The difficulties, however, in the way of applying quaran
tine regulations to the ferry and coasting steamers which called at ports along
the coast at intervals of a few hours throughout the day and night were obvious.
The adoption of measures calculated to stop the large passenger traffic by
these steamers would have been open to the same objection as the prohibition of
railway traffic. The proposal was therefore abandoned as impracticable.
5. It was next considered whether passengers by the coasting steamers
should be medically examined before their departure; but apart from the legal
difficulties, the Municipal Commissioner supported the view of the Executive
Health Officer of the Municipality, Brigade-Surgeon-Lieutenant-Colonel Weir,
that the examination of these passengers would be both troublesome and useless,
and Government were guided by the advice of these officers. It was recognized,
moreover, that Messrs. Shepherd and Company would naturally be unwilling to
carry by their steamers persons suffering or suspected to be suffering from plague,
and it was ascertained on inquiry that strict instructions on the subject had been
given to their officers and servants. Medical officers were appointed by the
Company on November 13th for their Kthiwr and Karchi steamers.
Sketch of the early measures taken by the Municipal Commissioner
in the City of Bombay.
1. In the beginning of September, some cases of fever attended with swell-
ings in the neck had been observed by the Health Officer in Mndvi and a few
cases are reported to have been treated by some native practitioners in the month
of August in the same locality. The existence of the plague in the city was
first made public by Dr. Viegas in the Standing Committee of the Municipality on
September 23rd, and when questioned on the subject the Health Officer reported
that the cases referred to by that gentleman were engaging the most serious
and constant attention of his department.
2. As regards the abnormal mortality in the city at this time, the Health
Officer points out in his report that in the neighbouring districts of Thna and
Surat a similar phenomenon had been observed, although it is beyond dispute
that in those districts it was not to be explained by the presence of plague.
3. In the case of Bombay there seems to be little doubt that the presence
of the disease in an epidemic form was brought to light almost as soon as it
appeared, owing to its occurrence among a wealthy class of natives, chiefly
Banias, who are in the habit of employing qualified medical men. No time
was, therefore, lost in extending the same sanitary measures to the outbreak
reported by Dr. Viegas in Mndvi as had already been applied to somewhat
similar earlier cases at the beginning of the month. These were a thorough dis-
infection of the house affected, and a removal as far as possible of insanitary
conditions in the vicinity. The Municipal Commissioner writes:
"Extra carts and bigarries had been engaged, and men had been transferred from other
sections for duty in Mandvi, Nowroji Hill, Chukla, and the Port Trust Estate. All cases of
fever were treated as suspected; houses and gullies were being vigorously flushed and disin-
fected, and all infected rooms limewashed. All the flushing apparatus of the Health Depart-
ment was in full employment, and the Fire Brigade had supplied three engines for the same
service. All the bedding and clothing of the sick was burnt, and that of their neighbours, so
far as possible, disinfected. At the same time the Drainage Department were actively engaged
in opening up, cleaning and flushing the drains and pouring disinfectants into them. Between
the 25th September and the 17th November the whole of the Port Trust drains, some 26,000
feet in length, west of the Frere Road as far as the G. I. P. Railway, were thoroughly cleaned
of silt; as many as 1,337 men being employed on the work on one day At the same time 450
openings were made and manholes constructed, and a large number of house gulkes were re-
modelled and repaired. The manholes were carefully disinfected, and during this period the
drains were thoroughly flushed with sea-water and carbolic acid which was poured into them by
B 1135-3

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