New Delhi, Apr 6 (PTI) The National Human Rights Commission has issued a notice to the Delhi government over a report which also carried photographs showing a man standing “chest-deep in muck” inside a drain at Kashmere Gate area here, officials said.
The NHRC has observed that the incident indicates that despite unwarranted deaths in sewers and sheer indignity of the work, manual cleaning of drains continues in the national capital.
The Commission has taken suo motu cognisance of a media report with the photographs of a man chest-deep in muck, standing inside a drain at Kashmere Gate area of Delhi, reportedly under the PWD.
Accordingly, it has issued a notice to Delhi chief secretary, seeking a detailed report specifically intimating the measures that the government of Delhi has already taken or likely to be taken to prevent such “gross violation of human rights” of poor and underprivileged people, who are susceptible to be employed for this type of manual scavenging or sewage cleaning without any mechanical device by the public or private organisations, the NHRC said in a statement.
The response is expected within four weeks, it said.
The Commission has also observed that despite specific judgments given by the Supreme Court and guidelines issued from time to time by different government agencies, “sewage workers are still being exposed to extreme danger and being subjected to indignity by the public authorities”.
The Commission had also issued Advisory on Protection of Human Rights of the person engaged in Manual Scavenging or Hazardous Cleaning on September 24, 2021, which was circulated to the chief secretaries of all states, and administrator of all UTs and the Union ministries of social justice and empowerment; housing and urban affairs and to the secretary, National Commission for Safai Karmacharis, it added.
According to the media report carried on April 3, the NHRC had taken suo motu cognisance of an incident two days ago in which four persons had died in a sewer in Rohini area of Delhi.
Reportedly, such incidents clearly show that the “manual cleaning of sewer is still being allowed by the government agencies and the poor workers taking advantage of the desperately needy who out of sheer necessity accepts the hazardous work for the mere income”, it said. PTI KND TDS TDS
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Source: The Print