Need to empower Safai Karamcharis: Valji Bhai Zala

Need to empower Safai Karamcharis: Valji Bhai Zala

They are backbone of SMC: Deputy Mayor

3-day workshop on manual scavengers starts

SRINAGAR: A three-day workshop organised by the Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) on ‘Implementation of the prohibition of employment as manual scavengers and their rehabilitation act 2013’ began on Monday at the SMC central office here at Karan Nagar.
The workshop was attended by Chairman National Commission for Safai Karamcharis, Government of India, Manhar Valji Bhai Zala, who was accompanied by Secretary National Commission for Safai Karamcharis and Principal Private Secretary Mahindar Prasad. Consultant Puran Singh was the chief guest on the occasion, a statement issued here said.
Deputy Mayor Shiekh Imran in his welcome address said that Safai Karamcharis are not only the strength but the backbone of the Corporation, and hence their needs, grievances, genuine demands and required equipment have to be prioritised.
While welcoming Valji Bhai Zala, he said, “It is a big day, particularly for Safai Karamcharis that the Chairman had come all the way to interact, know the issues Safai Karamcharis face and also to see whether their basic rights and other genuine demands are being taken care of by those who are at the helm of affairs.”
Valji Bhai Zala while speaking on the occasion said, “Cleanliness has a greater significance in all the religions. Our Safai Karamcharis who perform their duties from dawn to dusk with utmost dedication are the real heroes to provide clean and safe environment to the people. But it is unfortunate that if their health, other basic rights and their genuine demands are not taken care of in a timely manner.”
Through such events, we want to empower and encourage this Safai community and know their present status in terms of their working mechanism, health conditions and the conditions of their houses/colonies they are living in, he said.
Commissioner SMC Khurshid Ahmed Sanai in his presentation gave an overview of the Corporation and its various areas of functioning. He also threw light on various topics including the mechanism of waste segregation taking place in Srinagar city and its disposal at the Achan dumping site.
The workshop was followed by a meeting with the representatives of the Safai Karamcharis, employees’ welfare unions/associations and the Municipal councils/committees of other districts.
Chairman Safai Karamchari Workers Union Ghulam Mohammad Solina while expressing his gratitude to the guests on behalf of Safai Karamcharis highlighted various issues of sanitary workers and expected that their genuine grievances will have timely redressal.
Long question-answer sessions were held at the end of the event in which Chairman National Commission for Safai Karamcharis Zala along with his team presented a questionnaire to the concerned at the helm of affairs.
The questions mainly remained focused on Safai Karamcharis and included those regarding the total number of Safai Karamcharis working in the Municipal Corporation, their break-up in terms of status of their employment i.e. whether they were on regular/daily wage basis, on temporary/part time basis or on contract basis.
Similarly questions like promotional avenues for the Safai Karamcharis, provision of proper working gear and equipment, including safety gadgets like gumboots, gloves, face masks etc, to carry out their jobs, whether health checkups of Safai Karamcharis are conducted on a regular basis and the steps being taken to implement the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and so on were posed during the session.
Joint Commissioner Adm Syed Abul Qasim later presented the vote of thanks.
Besides senior officers of the Corporation, officers from various administrative departments including ULBs, SC/ST/BC Development Corporation, Corporators, NGOs and various experts attended the workshop.