GP chief in manual scavenging controversy

Pauline Gross
June 9, 2017

A case of manual scavenging has been reported from Tavarakatte under the Chamundi Hill Gram Panchayat limits on Tuesday.

The PDO Anand has been placed under suspension and a case has been registered against the gram panchayat president Geetha.

Guru Shanthappa, a person living in Mysore's Thavarekatte village, has lodged a complaint against village panchayat president Geetha for forcing two municipality workers, Ganesha and Cheluva, to clean a blocked manhole.

Geetha, on recommendation of village development officer Anand, ordered both workers to clean the manhole.

In March, three contract labourers had died of suffocation after they entered a manhole on a road in Bengaluru, without any safety equipment, to clear a block. I have offered Ganesh soap and water to clean himself. The video was later handed over to the media. While Ganesh got into the manhole, Cheluva supported him.

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Despite various laws banning manual scavenging, yet another despicable incident has come to light in Mysuru.

A complaint has been filed at Krishna Raja Police station.

According to Zilla Panchayat (ZP) Chief Executive Officer P. Shivashankar, the complaint was filed after ZP officials did a preliminary enquiry and spoke to the civic workers. "Since she is not an official, we have sent a report to the government to remove her from the presidentship and membership (from the Panchayat)", Shivashankar told Star of Mysore this morning.

Shettar said when civic workers initially did not agree to clean the manhole manually, the gram panchayat (GP) president Geetha threatened them that they they would lose their jobs.

He also said that a probe is underway to check if any other officials are involved.

Other reports by GizPress

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