GANGTOK, May 16, 2018:
National Commission’s chairman for Safai Karmachari, Manhar Valjibhai Zala on Tuesday said Sikkim is the only State in the country where Safai Karmacharis are living with great respect and dignity.
Lauding the State initiatives for the welfare of the Safai Karmacharis and giving respect by calling them as ‘Gangtok Beautifiers,’ in the capital, Zala said Sikkim has reported no deaths of Safai Karamcharis while cleaning potholes and sewers as have the case been in some other States.
Zala, who enjoys the status of Minister of State in the Union Social Justice and Empowerment ministry, made the observations during a media interaction at Gangtok Municipal Corporation here today as part of his official visit to the State. The chairman also met and interacted with the Safai Karmacharis of GMC. He was told all the facilities like medical benefit, safety kit, health insurance and others have been provided by the capital’s civic body.
“It is great that we did not receive any grievances or any complaints with respect to wages or others,” observed Zala.
He stated that in some other States Safai Karmacharis are living in pathetic conditions with little or no benefits but in Sikkim they are living in good standard with adequate facilities without any problems and complaints.
“Sikkim has set high standards and is doing commendable work. Sanitary workers are the unsung heroes behind making Sikkim neat and clean and free of diseases emanating from unhygienic conditions,” he added.
A total of 169 Safai Karmacharis are currently engaged by the GMC of whom 16 are on regular appointments and others on daily wage basis as per the minimum wages act of the State government.
The chairman also urged the GMC to apply Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana and Pradhan Mantri Jeewan Jyoti Bima Yojna for sanitary workers and also touched upon Awas (Housing) Yojana for sanitation workers and regularization of casual workers.
Later in afternoon, Zala held meeting with east district collector and SP and other senior level officers, representatives of Rangpo and Singtam nagar panchayat and supervisor and sanitation workers at Sichey.
During the meet, various issues related to sanitary workers were discussed, their grievances and demands were put-forth.
DC (east) Kapil Meena apprised the visiting chairman that Sikkim has always being blessed to follow the positive culture and tradition towards cleanliness which is part of the Sikkimese culture including government initiatives. He further informed that manual scavenging is not practised in Sikkim.
Source: Sikkim Express
Featured image: Daily News