Insurance and health cover for Safai Karamcharis: Prasad

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Pune, Oct 19 (UNI) The Central Government will make a policy to provide insurance and health cover to daily wagers, contract labour and substitutes working as 'Safai Karamcharis' in various corporations and departments in the country, Union Social Justice and Empowerment Jt Secretary Arbind Prasad said today.

Talking to reporters, the Jt Secretary, who is here following reports of death of 108 'Safai Karamcharis' due to unhygienic working conditions in the past 24 months, said the Government was committed to provide better working conditions to the 'Safai Karmacharis' and also a health and insurance cover to the long neglected segment of the daily wagers, contract labour and substitutes.

''We are trying to improve the working conditions in addition to the health, economic and social conditions of the regular 'Safai Karamcharis', contract and daily wages labour as well as the workers working in manholes,'' Dr Prasad said.

He said he had interacted with various 'Safai Karamcharis' in the city and found out, that in many places materials like gloves, masks and overcoats were not being supplied to the workers and in some places even if they had been provided, the workers were not using them.

''One of the Safai Karmachari's had worn a mask but was sweating and was rather uncomfortable,'' Dr Prasad remarked.

To a query about manual scavengers, he said there are still three lakh manual scavengers in the country and the government has given a deadline of March 2009, for the rehabilitation of the scavengers and removal of dry toilets.

UNI

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