Lucknow: A woman, in her 30s, has been offered a job and a house under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojna after it was found that manual scavenging was continuing in UP’s Barabanki district despite a ban on the evil.
Additional District Magistrate Sandeep Kumar Gupta said after a report by News18, a team of officials went to the area and found that many households did not have toilets due to which some people were hired for manual scavenging.
“I have ordered them to fill forms so that toilets could be built on priority," he said.
“We came to know about a lady, Poonam, who was doing manual scavenging in this area for quite some time. I have asked officials to act as per the rehabilitation provisions and have asked to offer her a job on contract basis. Also, I have asked officials to inquire about her house and if she does not have one then she will be given a house under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojna as well,” Gupta said.
News18 had published story how the claims of “Swachh Bharat” were falling flat in Barabanki district of Uttar Pradesh where manual scavenging was still being done even after being punishable by law. The residents had complained that their requests to the authorities to provide funds for building toilets have been ignored.
With the use of service toilets, the people in Banki area of Barabanki district were dependent on toilet cleaners, called jamadars in local parlance. The act of manual scavenging has already been declared as criminal and a non-bailable offence. Every morning, the jamadars cover their face and embark on a journey to collect human-waste on their heads in huge bamboo baskets.
“Ye kaam Kaun karna chahta hai, sahib, par agar nahi karenge to parivar kaise palenge? (Who wants to do this job, but then it is our livelihood)” said Poonam, the female toilet cleaner who collected human excreta from more than a dozen households in Banki area every morning - her only means to earn a livelihood.