Govt to send 1,000 pourakarmikas abroad to study manhole cleaning

Govt to send 1,000 pourakarmikas abroad to study manhole cleaning
The state government is sending 1,000 pourakarmikas on a study tour to Singapore. Social Welfare Minister H Anjaneya told reporters they would study mechanised cleaning of manholes.

The department has earmarked Rs 10 crore for the purpose. The first group of 70 will leave for Singapore in July. The department will bear the full cost of the tour. Manual cleaning of manholes is banned in India, but many contractors violate the law and get workers to clean them. Three workers who descended into a manhole were choked to death in Bengaluru last month.

The municipal authorities have bought machines to clean manholes in many cities and towns, but poura­karmikas are not properly trained to use them.

That is the reason the government is sending them to Singapore, where the cleaning is completely mechanised, he said.

Workers selected from across districts will also learn safety measures. They will be accompanied by department officials.

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