New Delhi: The Delhi High Court has sought response from municipal agencies, especially the Delhi Jal Board (DJB), on whether they have complied with the provisions of the 2013 law prohibiting employment of manual scavengers and are providing for their rehabilitation.
A bench of justices B D Ahmed and S Mridul questioned whether the provision in Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and Their Rehabilitation Act 2013, prohibiting people from being employed to clean hazardous wastes and septic tanks has been complied with and if so, to what extent.
The court also asked if any survey of manual scavengers, who may still be working in urban areas, has been conducted by the municipalities and DJB and sought details of when the exercise was commenced and concluded, if at all.
It has also sought information on whether those found to be engaged in manual scavenging have been rehabilitated according to the provisions of the Act.
The information has to be provided, within four weeks, through an affidavit which will also contain a list of contracts and contractors employing manual scavengers according to the court’s earlier order of August 2008, the bench said and listed the matter for further hearing on November 19.
The court also observed that if there is non-compliance of its orders, then even an FIR can be lodged against those responsible.
Meanwhile, New Delhi Municipal Council has informed the court that manual scavenging has been banned in all the areas falling under its control.