Sunday, September 5, 2010

Manual Scavenging in India

"Bye ma", said Pratigya as she dashed out from her home towards the bus stop. She was already late for the office. "Call Mr. Sharma, Complete the report....", Pratigya was making the list of things she had to do on reaching office when suddenly a filthy garbage's smell entered her nose. She immediately covered her nose with her dupatta. She saw a couple of men working in the garbage, separating, chaffing and putting them in a large truck which shall carry it to the outskirts of the city.

This is a common sight in India. Hundreds of thousands of Manual scavengers. People who clean our garbage with their own hands sans any tool or equipment. We see them everywhere and everyday. We close our nose and hearts when we pass by them.
Its a pity that such a practice still continues in India.

But isn't there something called Municipal Corporation in every city? One may ask. Yes, there is. The task of municipal corporation, inter alia, is to clean the city's garbage. It employs people for this task. But does not provide them any tools. They are supposed to use their own hands.

But the government can't be so insensitive. It must be doing something for them? Yes, it is. It passes funds every year to the municipal corporations of every city to improve their work. Unfortunately, the grant received seldom reaches the recipients. It is siphoned off by the officials. So the money allotted to buy new tools and machinery which would help in cleaning the city's garbage more efficiently actually goes in buying a jewelery set for the wife. No wonder, corporation officials are sought after marriage prospects.

You can know more about manual scavenging here.

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