PM Modi blind to plight of manual scavengers, “Swachh Bharat” a hollow slogan: Rahul Gandhi

manual scavengers

In the wake of the death of a sanitation worker in Delhi, Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi is blind to the plight of thousands of manual scavengers and that his “Swachh Bharat” is a hollow slogan.

“Anil’s tragic death in the sewers of Delhi & photographs of his grieving son have made headlines worldwide. Our PM’s “Swacch Bharat” is a hollow slogan, when he’s blind to the plight of thousands of manual scavengers forced to excavate toilets & sewer lines in inhuman conditions,” he tweeted.

Anil, a sanitation worker, died due to asphyxiation while cleaning a sewer pit in Delhi’s Dabri area on September 14. What is known is that while he was climbing down the sewer, which was to be cleaned, he slipped and the rope around his waist broke, due to which he fell in the 20-feet deep sewer.

This news came less than a week of five sanitation workers who died inside a sewage pipe of DLF Capital Greens in Moti Nagar.

According to numbers collected by the National Commission for Safai Karamcharis (NCSK), the statutory body that was set up by an Act of Parliament for the welfare of sanitation workers, at least one Indian worker had died while cleaning sewers or septic tanks every five days since January 01, 2017.

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According to data and post-mortem reports maintained by the Safai Karamchari Andolan (SKA), the actual death count since January 2017 is about 300.

In fact, the activists of National Commission for Safai Karamcharis (NCSK) said that the real death rate is much higher.

11 sanitation workers have died so far in this month.

“Manual scavenging” is still a job prevalent in India, in which, Indians, overwhelmingly belonging to the Valmiki community, clean sceptic tanks and sewers and majorly, without any protection.

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