BANGALORE: Safety of clothes is the main issue for the washermen at Madiwala dhobi ghat. On many occasions they were compelled to pay money
for the missing clothes.
The dhobi ghat situated on Madiwala lake bund is the smallest dhobi ghats in Bangalore. Around 50 washermen families depend on this dhobi ghat for washing clothes. The sewage drain is also a cause of concern for the washermen. “Things are difficult for us during monsoon. There will be plenty of sewage water in the drain, making it tough for us to reach the bund from dobhi ghat to erect clotheslines on the bund,’’ said a washerman.
The lack of fence or a compound wall make it easy for the thieves to lay their hands on the clothes. “We are losing clothes at least twice a month. We have to pay the customer for the loss of clothes. We have lodged several complains to the police but in vain. It would be a great help for us if the BBMP constructs a compound wall around this dhobi ghat,’’ said B V Srinivas, president, Sri Madivala Machideva Kshemabhivrudhi Association.
The washermen complain about the shortage of water. As of now, the dhobi ghat has one borewell to supply water. “We have to buy water from private water supplier whenever the borewell is out of order. Using the lake water is out of question as it is highly polluted,’’ said Karthik, Secretary of the association.
They remorse that there is no drinking water facility at the dhobi ghat. “We have requested the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB) to ensure at least one water connection for us. There is an urgent need for driers since we have only one drier,’’ said a washerman.
There are more than 50 washermen who depend on Madiwala tank for water since they are not members of the association. They are from Ananthapur, Kalyanadurga and Adoni from Andhra Pradesh and settled at Madiwala. “We are unable to accommodate them at this dhobi ghat since it is already overcrowded,’’ said Srinivas, president of the association.
Meanwhile, Corporator of Bommanahalli Ward, B S Manjunath Reddy, said that a proposal was sent to the BBMP for modernisation of Madiwala Dhobi Ghat on lines with Malleswaram Dhobi Ghat. “There is a proposal to construct a building and provide washing machines, driers and hydro extractors but the BBMP is yet to sanction funds for this. We will start the work as soon as BBMP releases the funds,’’ said Reddy.
On washermen using Madiwala tank water, the Corporator said that he had already advised them not to use the water for washing clothes.
Will the washermen at Madiwala Dhobi Ghat get some helping hand from the BBMP? They have to wait and watch.