In a bid to eliminate manual scavenging, the Delhi government is going to deploy 100 more automated jet sewer suction pumps in the city.
A financial help to successful bidders from among sanitation workers for operating the machines has been approved by the government, said a Delhi government statement.
The Delhi SC ST OBC Minorities Handicapped Financial and Development Corporation (DSFDC) provides financial assistance up to Rs 5 lakh to the members of its target groups belonging to schedule castes, other backward classes, minorities, safai karmcharis and persons with disability.
“It has been decided by the Delhi government to deploy 100 more automated jet sewer sucking machines in addition to 200 deployed earlier through an open bid by the Delhi Jal Board,” it stated.
The cost of one machine, its fabrication and working capital total Rs 40.16 lakhs.
The manual cleaning of sewers have resulted in deaths of several sanitation workers in the past.
“This practice of manual sewer cleaning is present since generations and only one particular community is forced to continue this practice,” said Social Welfare Minister Rajendra Pal Gautam.
A delegation led by Gautam studied a pilot project of the Andhra Pradesh government and found mechanised sewer cleaning suitable. The scheme was subsequently launched in Delhi.