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| Last Updated:18/01/2014

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‘Manual scavengers identified’

The Hindu, 18 January, 2014


Action to be taken against those employing manual scavengers


M. Shivanna, chairman, National Commission for Safai Karamcharis, arriving at the zilla panchayat hall on Friday.— PHOTO: M.A. SRIRAM

MYSORE: M. Shivanna, chairman, National Commission for Safai Karamcharis, said here on Friday that stringent action would be initiated against those employing individuals as manual scavengers.

Hesaid more than 850 manual scavengers had been identified in Karnataka, of which 302 were in Bangalore city.

The statements issued by the Social Welfare Minister that more than 10,000 persons were involved in manual scavenging in the State was disturbing. The government should initiate a resurvey to ascertain the truth, he said.


Manual scavenging includedsweeping roads, cleaning drainages and clearing toilets. Mr. Shivanna said all urban local bodies and the Panchayat Raj institutions had been instructed to stop manual scavenging and instead use suction-cum-jetting machines to clean toilet pits.


An alternate system was will be devised to handle situations where faecal matterneeded to be manually cleared,” he said.


The Central government had directed all State governments and Union Territories to identify safai karmacharis (pourakarmikas) in order to rehabilitate them.


Karnataka had taken the initiative much ahead of other States and bank accounts were opened for as many as 36 persons, Mr. Shivanna said. A sum of Rs. 40,000 each would be transferred to the bank accounts of identified persons as incentive.


Job guarantee would be provided to the rehabilitated safari karmacharis.


Mr. Shivanna said he would urge Chief Minister Siddaramaiah to adopt the Haryana fund model to make direct payments to safai karmacharis to avoid exploitation by middlemen.