Despite the government banning manual scavenging 25 years ago in a majority of Indian states, there are 34,859 manual scavengers in our country.
Revealing the truth of the banned act, National Commission for Safai Karamcharis (NCSK) chairperson, Manhar Valjibhai Zala said, as many as 801 sanitation workers have died cleaning sewers since 1993.
Considering very little has been done for the rehabilitation of sanitation workers in India, the now NCSK chairperson, has tried holding meetings with the responsible agencies.
Zala, who is on a six-day tour of Himachal Pradesh, instructed officials to rehabilitate manual scavengers and advised switching over to mechanised cleaning of sewers.
I have come to know that 622 posts of safai karamchari are vacant in the state against the sanctioned strength of 1,365. I have directed the Chief Secretary to fill the vacant posts at the earliest.
As the visit officially came to an end, the chief secretary ordered the labour department to check for irregularities, pay outstanding wages and aid the workers in getting financial security of some sort in the future.
For more on the lives of manual scavengers, watch this documentary by ScoopWhoop Unscripted.