Guwahati: Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal has directed the Welfare of Plain Tribes and Backward Classes Department to formulate a state-wide survey to identify manual scavengers.
He asked the department to prepare a comprehensive roadmap for skill development of the manual scavengers to ensure opening up of new job opportunities for them.
Chairing a meeting of the state-level monitoring committee for implementation of Manual Scavengers Act, 2013 here Thursday, Sonowal stressed on the need for adopting a focussed approach to abolish manual scavenging in the state.
He directed the department to conduct the survey in collaboration with the Urban Development department.
Advocating the need for introducing mechanised cleaning of sewerage, he ordered procurement of more cesspool emptier machines in the urban areas.
He asked the department to formulate a subsidy policy for the procurement of the machines and open the field to private players.
The chief minister also instructed the officials concerned to get the manual scavengers registered for availing government welfare schemes.
The concerned department has already conducted such surveys in Golaghat, Lakhimpur and Jorhat district and has identified 542 manual scavengers, official sources said. (PTI)