Worker forced to enter manhole, panchayat denies it

Jun 9, 2017

MYSURU: Despite the ban on manual cleaning of sewers, the elected representative of Chamundi Hills gram panchayat allegedly forced a civic worker to climb down a manhole in front of her house and clean it on Wednesday.

A pourakarmika, Ganesh climbed into the overflowing manhole in Thavarakere grama on Wednesday morning while another pourakarmika, Cheluva supported him.

Athird person recorded the incident on a mobile phone and sent the video to the media. Ganesh has alleged that Chamundi Betta gram panchayat president Geetha and panchayat development officer Anand forced him to enter the blocked drain. Ganesh told reporters GP president Geetha called him and directed him to clean the overflowing manhole. When he said he would not enter the manhole, she and Anand threatened to fire him.
 GP executive officer C Lingarajaiah said Chamundi Betta GP has 10 pourakarmikas. The village needs only three so the GP president and PDO had written a letter to the taluk panchayat to remove the additional pourakarmikas. The workers recently held a protest and demanded a raise, which was refused. “To take revenge, the pourakarmikas have made the video and circulated it,” said Lingarajaiah.