NEW DELHI: In a move to rehabilitate manual scavengers in the city, the Delhi government is all set to turn the 'safai karamcharis' into entrepreneurs by providing them loans to own sewer cleaning machines.
The decision to rehabilitate manual scavengers by providing them loans for procurement of specially-designed sewer cleaning machines was taken on Thursday in a meeting chaired by the Delhi Social Welfare and SC/ST Minister Rajendra Pal Gautam.
"This scheme will not only provide a dignified life to safai karamcharis/manual scavengers but also create a clean and safe environment to Delhiites," said the Social Welfare Ministry in a statement.
Special attention will be given to the dependents of the manual scavengers who lost their lives during manual sewer cleanings, it said.
Initially, the government will hire 200 machines, with each machine creating job opportunities for four persons, thus generating around 800 jobs.
Finances have been arranged through various institutions, including the State Bank of India, which will provide 95 per cent of the cost as a loan to each machine owner, who can repay their term loan amount in next five years.