BHOPAL: The 7,000 sanitation workers including contractual and regular employees who were hailed as heroes during Swacch Bharat Mission and during corona battle have yet to receive safety kits including the rain coats, gloves and shoes to work in rainy season.
Due to recent reshuffle in Bhopal Municipal Corporation (BMC) and also due to shortage of funds, priorities of civic body have changed. It is focused on controlling pandemic and other issues. The monsoon has arrived and the workers will need rain coats, gloves and shoes for sweeping roads and collecting garbage from households. Besides, they need more than one face mask if it gets wet during rain.
These workers demanded safety gears in rain in 2019 but the civic body had only given half of them in the kit. The BMC, which is financially starved, is reluctant to float tenders for it. A sanitation worker wishing anonymity said that BMC distributed safety kits to over half the number of sanitation workers engaged in the drive. He said rain coats have worn out and they need new suit now.
Anil Shrawan, an office bearer of the sanitation workers union, said they had demanded rain coats and safety kit from the former commissioner but he has been transferred now. “And new officials are busy with other assignments,” he added.
Additional municipal commissioner Shashwar Meena said he is new and unaware of problems. “But I will look into it,” he added.