Follow Us:

Four sanitation workers die cleaning septic tank in Bihar

According to data available with the National Commission for Safai Karamcharis (NCSK) 50 workers have died cleaning sewers in the first six months of 2019.

SNS | New Delhi |

Four sanitation workers lost their lives in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur district on Tuesday after they inhaled to poisonous gas inside a septic tank which they were cleaning.

District official Kundan Kumar said the labourers died due to suffocation after they entered the septic tank to remove some construction material. “Prima facie, it is suspected that they died of suffocation inside the septic tank.”

The labourers belonged to the same family and were trying to clean the newly-built septic tank in an under construction building in the Madhuban Kanti village. Kumar said the district administration will provide compensation to the victims’ family under the disaster management fund.

According to the police officials, the labourers were later pulled out of the septic tank and taken to a local hospital where they were declared dead. A case has been registered in connection with the incident.

Manual cleaning of sewers and septic tanks has come under sharp criticism since the job is degrading and hazardous for the labourers. According to data available with the National Commission for Safai Karamcharis (NCSK) 50 workers have died cleaning sewers in the first six months of 2019. The given data only includes figures from eight states, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Delhi, Punjab, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.

With rising demand for a more respectable treatment of labourers, government is planning to amend The Prohibition of Employment As Manual Scavengers and Their Rehabilitation Act, 2013 to make it more stringent.