Prohibition of employment of manual scavenging  and rehabilitation.

There was an enactment to ban manual scavenging as early as early as 1993; many States were not  keen  on  implementing the same. A Public interest litigation sought the enforcement of the provisions of Art. 17, 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution.

Sanitation is  in the State List and  hence  the lacunae in the implementation of the act.

The bill of 2012 broadens the definition of manual scavenging and it includes cleaning of sewers which is defined as a hazardous occupation.

The bill defines what a insanitary latrine is and prohibits individuals and agencies from employing manpower for scavenging and prescribes severe penalties for the same

There are agencies to monitor the implementation of the act at the district and State level.

Comprehensive schemes have been earmarked for rehabilitating the affected persons and the Govt. of India has earmarked separate jobs for them.

However certain lacunae prevent the bill from achieving its objectives.


  1. Define the constitutional provisions- Art. 17,14, 19 and 21
  2. What are the penal provisions for those indulging /employing  scavengers?
  3. What are the job opportunities offered by Govt. of India?
  4. Which are the agencies identified for rehabilitation?
  5. What are the limitations/shortcomings of the bill?
  6. What is the Protection of civil rights act?




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