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Ramakanta Biswas

Cuttack: Two workers engaged in manual scavenging of sewage tank died due to suspected asphyxiation in CDA Sector-10 area of Cuttack on Thursday.

Three workers were engaged in the cleaning works when they got trapped inside a sewerage line. Fire services personnel rescued them in a critical condition and admitted to SCB Medical College and Hospital. However, doctors at the hospital pronounced them dead.

The deceased have been identified as P Shankar of Patapur and Bishnu Nayak of Baramba in Cuttack district.

According to locals, the workers entered the sewage tank without oxygen masks and other protective equipment that led to the mishap.

Niranjan Bal, a local said, “Three workers had entered the sewerage line for the cleaning work. One of them first sought help after feeling uncomfortable due to bad smell in the line. Later, two others rushed to his rescue and got trapped. We immediately called up the fire services personnel who rushed to the spot and rescued them.”

“We suspect two of them had already died inside the sewerage line; another worker may survive,” he added.

Meanwhile, Housing and Urban Development Principal Secretary said a joint inquiry by Cuttack Tahasildar and Deputy commissioner (Enforcement) of Cuttack Municipal Corporation has been ordered into the mishap.

On March 19, two labourers hailing from Mayurbhanj district, who were engaged in the maintenance of the sewage tanks at Brahmeswar Bagh area under Badagada police limits in the city, also died of asphyxiation.

Recently, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) sought action taken report from the State Chief Secretary and Director General of Police in this regard.

(Edited By Pradeep Singh)

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