Ramakanta Biswas

The Orissa High Court has directed the State government to pay compensation to the families of some labourers who died after being stuck in septic tanks during manual scavenging.

The Court passed the order while hearing three separate petitions regarding the death of labourers in septic tank mishaps in Cuttack, Rayagada and Bhubaneswar. 

The Rayagada Collector has been asked to provide compensation to the families of three labourers who had died in Tikiri area. The Collector has been asked to submit a compliance report with the Court after releasing the compensation to the kin of the deceased. 

Similarly, the Court has directed a construction firm to submit report regarding the death of two labourers while cleaning sewage tank in CDA area of Cuttack. 

Moreover, the Court has ordered disbursement of compensation to the family of a labourer who died in septic tank in Brahmeswarpatna in Bhubaneswar. 

In June this year, the Orissa HC had sought response from Water Corporation of Odisha while hearing a case related to the position of manual scavengers working in the State and disbursement of compensation to the families of sanitation workers who died in mishaps. 

Notably, three casual workers were asphyxiated while they were working at an under-construction septic tank at Panchali village under Tikiri police limits of Rayagada district on October 18. 

Similarly, two workers engaged in manual scavenging of sewage tank died due to suspected asphyxiation in CDA Sector-10 area of Cuttack on April 15 this year.

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