V.C NCSK chairs meeting for socio-economic welfare of sanitation workers

SRINAGAR: The Vice Chairperson (V.C), National Commission for Safai Karamcharis (NCSK), Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, Government of India (GoI), Anjana Panwar today held a marathon meeting regarding social, economic and educational welfare of the Sanitation Workers and their dependents, and implementation of self-employment schemes for their rehabilitation.

At the outset, the Vice Chairperson maintained that the Sanitation Workers stand at the end of line whose welfare is imperative for improving their living standards by providing basic amenities at work places and to enhance their social status by showering them with respect and addressing their core issues.

She maintained that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has seriously fostered the welfare of Sanitation workers through different initiatives. She added that the success of Swachh Bharat Mission has been materialized with the proactive and overwhelming support of Sanitation workers.

She also said that the PM’s message to the people of nation has been to give Sanitation workers equal respect. The aim of the commission is to give confidence to Safai Mitra’s by addressing the issues confronting them.

Underlining the importance of clean and green Kashmir, considering the influx of huge numbers of tourists and growing tourism industry, the V.C emphasized on the administration to implement welfare measures and schemes to help Sanitation workers out of depravity.

She called on officers of SMC and ULB to provide them uniforms twice a year, raincoats, safety gears besides increase their minimum wages to eliminate discrimination, provide quality education to their wards and augment their basic amenities.

Considering the fact that these workers are prone to diseases, Panwar further directed for extensive medical check-ups including blood tests, ECG, X-Rays twice a year. Among other facilities, she stressed on keeping their blood groups, permanent I-cards and most essentially 2-room sets in each zone for changing their uniforms, comfort and eating purposes.

Vice Chairperson National Commission for Safai Karamcharis said that these steps should be taken with immediate effect and an Action Taken Report should be submitted to the Commission.

On the occasion, the representatives of Sanitation workers working in different districts and municipalities apprised the chair regarding the multiple issues of service and other requirements including regularisation of services, jobs to NoK’s of those workers who die during the service, promotion to next higher levels, payment for overtime, weekly-off on rotation basis, filling of vacant posts and other issues.

The Vice Chairperson on the occasion directed the officers to resolve the issues at the earliest so that their lives would move towards a better future.

She also educated participants about MS Act of 2013 and MS Act of October 2023 wherein she said that Hon’ble Supreme Court has given direction for compensation to the victims who succumb during manual scavenging. She directed that only machinery should be used for scavenging and if the same are not available then the departments shall procure machinery immediately. Taking cognizance of two workers who died in Kulgam on 19 April, 2024, she directed ADC Kulgam to submit the report within fifteen days regarding the disbursement of compensation.

Among others, the meeting was attended by Commissioner SMC, Dr Owais Ahmad; Additional Commissioner Kashmir, Qazi Sarwar; Director ULB; Additional Deputy Commissioners of all Districts, Joint Commissioner of SMC, Executive Officers of Municipalities, Labour Commissioner, officers of Social Welfare Department and other officers.

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