Expressing serious concern over the persistence of manual scavenging in 22 States of India, social activist and National Convener of Safai Karamchari Andolan, Dr Bezwada Wilson said that his mission would not be over until manual scavenging is fully eliminated. He was speaking at the RV University in Bengaluru after inaugurating the Mahatma Gandhi Centre for Contemporary Ethics.
According to the university’s press release, Dr Wilson expressed deep pain towards the plight of women who are forced to persist in manual scavenging for earning their daily bread and declared that he would not rest until the last woman who is engaged in cleaning dry toilets is liberated. He also referred to 2000 people who lost their lives while cleaning sewers and septic tanks since 1990, Dr Bezwada Wilson stressed the need for strict enforcement of legislation prohibiting manual scavenging, proper conduct of surveys by the District Collectors to identify manual scavengers and thereafter rehabilitate them. Pointing out that data regarding such tragic deaths is not maintained by the National Crimes Records Bureau, Dr Wilson emphasized the need for maintaining proper data in this regard.
Inaugurating the Centre, Dr Bezwada Wilson said, “Gandhiji’s teaching is imperative in today’s world, and they are more relevant than ever before. The youth of today will be the next generation of leaders and they must lead with empathy and compassion. It is imperative to place interest of others ahead of self and fulfil our responsibility as responsible citizens. Many have sacrificed their lives for us, now it is our time to destroy the hurdles ahead of us and create a world with liberty and freedom. Regardless of age, ability, status or gender, we need to be better human beings who practice equality and equity before we become citizens of the nation. We tend to lose track of our lives in this busy world, I’m happy to see that RV University follows its legacy and help build a better future for the next generation.”
In his welcome address, Professor YSR Murthy, Founding Vice-Chancellor, RV University, Bengaluru said, “Manual scavenging continues in many places including big cities. It is a barbaric practice and is an affront to human dignity. Dr Bezwada Wilson has been waging a relentless crusade for many decades to help manual scavengers reclaim dignity and all cherished human rights. He has been working tirelessly to change the lives of thousands of marginalized, dispossessed, socially oppressed sections of our society. We are honoured to have him inaugurate this Centre and address our students and faculty. All of us must contribute to this effort”.Posted in Campus, News