States

‘Book officials failing to enforce manual scavenging law’

National Safai Karamchari commission member Jagadish Hiremani interacts with workers engaged in desilting of drains at Nallacheruvu in Guntur on Monday. Municipal Commissioner Srikesh B. Latkar is seen.

National Safai Karamchari commission member Jagadish Hiremani interacts with workers engaged in desilting of drains at Nallacheruvu in Guntur on Monday. Municipal Commissioner Srikesh B. Latkar is seen.   | Photo Credit: T_VIJAYA_KUMAR

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Spots identified for desilting manholes as part of pre-monsoon exercise

With work on removing silt from manholes taking off before the monsoon here, member of the National Commission for Safai Karamcharis Jagadish Hiremani has directed municipal authorities to book contractors who violated the Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act, 2013 and officials who failed to enforce it.

During a surprise check on the Nallacheruvu Road, Mr. Hiremani found workers standing waist-deep in open drains removing silt without the mandated equipment — rubber gloves, gum boots and helmets, and directed the Municipal Commissioner to act against the contractor.

“The condition of manual scavengers in Guntur is pathetic and in gross violation of the Act. They are being forced to work in the most unhygienic conditions,” said Mr. Hiremani.

Official suspended

Mentioning that 109 spots were identified for desilting, Municipal Commissioner Srikesh B. Latkar said, “It is the responsibility of contractors to provide safety gear to workers.”

Meanwhile, the sanitary inspector tasked with supervising the works on the road was suspended, said Mr. Latkar.

“Even in urban areas, where machines have been used to remove silt from manholes, we have found men forced to work,’’ said Mr. Hiremani.

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Printable version | Dec 14, 2019 7:13:27 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/states/book-officials-failing-to-enforce-manual-scavenging-law/article24256763.ece

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