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Manual Scavenging In India

Today India looking a permanent membership of UN, he is already a prominent member of international organisations like SAARC and BRICS.
Many big MNC’s had already made their homes in India and many are in the process to do so , India is also achieving great heights in industries and defence sector .
By looking at these developments we can say that indeed India is progressing at a very fast pace! But to an extent it is a artificial or illusion. Still India is thousand years behind if we compare it with the developments of western countries , A country which is still in 21st century is bound in the shackles of Caste & Religious atrocities , Honour killing , Manual Scavenging  etc from thousands of years ,then how can we say that this country is developing in a true sense .
“We have to end the biggest Dehumanising Activity called Manual Scavenging”
The Employment of Manual Scavengers and Construction of Dry Latrine Prohibition Act in 1993 was indeed to give some relief from this activity, but still nothing has done to eradicate this practice. Tens of thousands of people are engaged in Manual Scavenging.
There were 118474 Manual Scavengers or their dependents which are identified in under the self employment scheme for the rehabilitation launched in 2007.
One of the difficulties in eliminating this activity is lack of Proper Sanitation Facilities in Rural India and urban slums. There are poor Sanitation Facilities in these places. People are still using dry latrines which encourage Manual Scavenging. We have to stop the dry latrines practices and help them in making Proper Sanitation Facilities.
There are no sewerage facilities in rural areas, Urban Slums are also not touched by proper sewerage facilities .Still workers manually clean the septic tanks, “these septic tanks are becoming death tanks for the workers”.  It is full of many poisonous and dangerous gases, many people are died by inhaling poisonous gases and many of them going to die if we would not stop this Dehumanising Practices.
Many of them are the sole bread winners of their families .These dependents were force by social and economic conditions to come into these practices to feed their families. Most of the Manual Scavengers belongs to SC & ST, last year MHA (Ministry Of Home Affairs) told to all states that engaging or employing a member in SC or ST in manual scavenging fall within the ambit of SC & ST prevention of Atrocities Act, but there is no record of any one being convicted under this Act.

We need to create awareness regarding manual scavenging and bad sanitation facilities among the community to safeguard the rights of people against evil practices of Manual Scavenging. We can eradicate the Manual Scavenging practice by improving the Sanitation Facilities in every part of India.


  1. This is really a very big issue , we have to create awarness ,to stop this practice .

  2. i have worked with various means of disposing of human waste for over 25 years now in the US. A properly installed and properly operating septic tank and drain field should theoretically never need to be emptied. Are there geological factors in India that prevent a septic system from operating properly? i am just curious as to why the tanks need to be manually emptied, as a drain field would normally empty the tank and microbes take care of the solid waste.

    1. Thank you very much for your kind concern. The scene regarding the sanitation facilities and septic tanks is different in India and US , In India the septic tanks are need to be cleaned manually because the drains which leads into the tanks and comes out of it are choked with filth and dirt as people do not have awareness and throw away all the waste and plastic into them and this filth get clogged in these drains. We have to create the awareness regarding the same in the community regarding proper decomposition of waste and also regarding manual scavenging, people suffered a lot while doing manual scavenging. Please mail us your views on :-

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. I have been working in India for almost 2 years now and have spent a lot of time looking at sanitation. I think the problem here is that what is often called a septic tank isn't... a brick lined pit in the ground, or something like in the image attached with this post is often referred to, incorrectly, as a septic tank. Furthermore, if a septic tank can not outlet it is no longer performing one of the crucial tasks that makes it a septic tank - meaning it is just a tank. Septic tanks are not the problem a lack of holistic planning, municipal services, and information etc. are.... However, I couldn't agree more that we all need to be more aware of what happens to poo after we poo.

  5. I think there is alot to be said for recycling human waste as a valuable resource. True the victorian sewer system introduced in the uk had a massive impact on public health but if we were to start again I wonder whether with hindsight we would install such a wasteful system. We use water treated to drinking water standard to flush our toilets which is expensive to treat and then have the expense of treating it again before releasing it into the environment. A major issue with 'wet' systems is that the effluent has to go somewhere and if not treated sufficiently it pollutes the environment creating more risk to public health. In my humble opinion if there was well regulated waste collection and reuse from dry latrines that employed the same manual scavengers but trained them in hygiene matters and provided them with appropriate equipment then there may be some benefits all round. However, nothing is easy and one major challenge is the space for dry latrines. With exploding populations all over the world and rapid urbanisation I honestly see dealing with human waste effectively as one of the biggest public health challenges of the future...... you may be interested to read about experiences in Kabul, Afghanistan of dry latrines and collection systems

  6. I am afraid even though the issue is very critical, the article doesn't do full justice to the nature of the problem by not diagnosing the problem holistically. It is all fairly obvious to say the problem happens due to explicit absence of sanitation facilities in India but the article should have at the very least explored the socio-economic,sociological, political and psychoanalytic aspect of the preponderance of this problem despite the growing propensity of the marginalized and socio-economically backward sections of the society to spend a disproportionate fraction of incomes on technological accompaniments like mobile phones which by the most modest standards are a greater luxury than basic necessities of sanitation, housing and nutrition.

    Is it possible to have more mature contributions from people who are better researched, please? Thanks for creating awareness though!

  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

  8. I am agree with your Blog.Thanks for the useful information.I have been reading a lot of stuff about it. but the way in it is presented is nice.
    Septic Tank Cleaning Toowoomba

    1. Hi Dev Smith ,

      Thank you very much for liking the post .

      Manual scavenging is very big problem in India . Dry latrine and lack of toilet facilities in rural and urban slums making this worse , One voice against Manual scavenging practice can bring true justice to the sanitation worker .

      Join Us To End Manual Scavenging


  9. in present time septic tank is main problem in every house. your post on this topic is to good.
    septic tank cleaning toowoomba

    1. Thanks William James ,
      Sanitation crisis is the one of the biggest crisis of the present time .

  10. Hi William James

    Thank you so much for liking the post .
    Manual scavenging is the most dehumanizing activity on the earth . Every day 2 or 3 sanitation worker is dying inside manhole .
    You can see how big is this problem . we need support from all over the world to end this practice.


  11. This article is really remarkable, particularly since I was searching for thoughts on Manual scavenging last couple of days. Thanks for creating awareness about these kind of issues....

    Septic Tank Pumping

    1. Dear Ben Affleck ,

      Thank you very much indeed for your comment , It is very big shame that still this practice is prevailing in our society . We can not do alone ,we need support from people like you ,who join us to end this practice .To know how you can join us please visit our website : .or email us at :

  12. Value of your property is not increased by the home improvement, your home is with septic system add value and cost to your property if you choose to sell it in the future. Proper maintenance and operation will extend the life of your system and save your money in the long run.
    Thanks for sharing..
    Septic Tank Pumping


  13. شركة ركن نجد لتنظيف الخزانات بجدة والتي تسعي لأن تكون افضل شركة تنظيف خزانات لكافة احياء مدينة جدة حيث نقدم خدمات تنظيف الخزانات للفلل و العمائر السكنية والشركات مع تقديم خدمات التعقيم والتطهير لأرضيات وجوانب الخزانات كما تقدم في شركة ركن نجد أفضل خدمات شركة تنظيف بجدة
    تنظيف خزانات بجدة - شركة تنظيف خزانات بجدة

  14. نقدم شركة العربي للخدمات المنزلية خدماتها في مجال تنظيف السجاد والفرش والمجالس

    شركة تنظيف سجاد

    شركة تنظيف فرش

    شركة تنظيف موكيت

    شركة تنظيف كنب

    شركة تنظيف مجالس

  15. تقدم شركة العربي للخدمات المنزلية خدماتها في مجال نقل الاثاث داخل المملكة

    شركة نقل اثاث بحائل

    شركة نقل عفش بحائل


  16. تقدم شركة العربي للخدمات المنزلية خدماتها في مجال مكافحة الحشرات وخاصة مكافحة النمل الابيض كما تقدم ايضا خدماتها في مجال رش المبيدات

    شركة مكافحة حشرات بحائل

    شركة مكافحة النمل الابيض بحائل

    شركة رش مبيدات بحائل


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