In a first, CMC employs women in cesspool operation in Odisha
During the survey, they were found to have been engaged in cleaning of public toilets at nursing homes and private hospitals and were earning about Rs 7,000-Rs 8,000.
Published: 17th October 2022 08:32 AM | Last Updated: 17th October 2022 08:32 AM | A+A A-
CUTTACK: Laxmi Naik (35) and Junulata Naik (33) of Bali Sahi slum here have got a chance to lead a life of dignity, thanks to Cuttack Municipal Corporation (CMC) who engaged them to operate two newly procured cesspool vehicles.
Both previously worked as a community and public toilet cleaners. Now, their new role will provide them with additional and consistent income. Moreover, the remuneration will be in accordance with the prescribed Highly Skilled and Risk & Hardship Allowance.
Both of them were surveyed last year as core sanitation workers (CSWs) for rehabilitation under the Garima Scheme launched by the State government in 2020, which aims to ensure the economic safety and social dignity of core sanitation workers in Odisha. Notably, CMC says for the first time in the State, two women CSWs have been engaged to operate cesspool vehicles.
During the survey, they were found to have been engaged in cleaning of public toilets at nursing homes and private hospitals and were earning about Rs 7,000-Rs 8,000. “We counselled them and asked if they are comfortable working in cesspool operations. We showed them live demos and videos related to the nature of work involved in cesspool operations,” Deputy Commissioner (Sanitation) Sanjeebita Ray said.
While they came to know more about the work and all the safety equipment including the PPE kit which makes their job safer, they showed interest.
“We then imparted comprehensive training as to how to stretch pipe and go for emptying, collecting and transporting faecal sludge and septage from toilet septic tanks by using a suction pump, with all safety measures in place. After the training, both are now engaged with CMC as cesspool operators,” said Ray.
Two newly procured cesspool vehicles having a 1,500-litre capacity have been handed over to them which can even ply through the narrow lanes and streets of the city. Both Laxmi and Junulata joined work on Saturday in their new roles.
“We were earning Rs 200 to Rs 300 per day by cleaning toilets manually but now we are engaged with CMC as operators of mechanised cesspool vehicles with more dignity,” both said.