No manual scavenging deaths, but 941 died cleaning sewers: Govttext_fields
While denying any deaths due to manual scavenging, Social justice and empowerment Minister Virendra Kumar on Wednesday informed Rajya Sabha that 941 workers have died while cleaning sewers or septic tanks. Furthermore, the minister did not reveal the period during which these deaths were reported.
"There is no report of death due to manual scavenging. However, we have reports regarding deaths of workers while being engaged in cleaning of sewers or septic tanks," he said.
The highest number of 213 cases were reported in Tamil Nadu, followed by 153 in Gujarat, 104 in Uttar Pradesh, 98 in Delhi, 84 in Karnataka, and 73 in Haryana.
Though manual scavenging is banned under the Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act, 2013, 59,098 manual scavengers have been identified countrywide, the minister revealed.
The minister further claimed that one-time cash assistance of Rs 40,000 was deposited into the banks of all those identified and eligible under the Scheme for Rehabilitation of Manual Scavengers (SRMS). He further claimed that 16,057 manual scavengers and their dependents have been provided skill development training in various trades, and 1,387 manual scavengers, sanitation workers, and their dependents have been provided capital subsidy for self-employment projects, including sanitation-related projects.