Delhi govt forms vigilance committee to probe sewer deaths

Image for representation only

Image for representation only

Close on the heels on deaths of three sanitation workers in Delhi last week, two more sanitation workers died on Saturday after inhaling toxic gases in the national capital.

Deputy Commissioner of Police, Shahdra district, Nupur Prasad said the father of the deceased, who was working with them inside the sewer, and a fireman, who went to rescue them, have been admitted to hospital after they too complained of suffocation and are now under observation. "The incident happened around 1 pm", the police officer said.

The brothers were residents of Sahibabad, Uttar Pradesh, which borders Delhi.

One of the men had gone inside the sewers to clean it. "Head Constable Mahipal from the fire department then went in to rescue the trio, but he also inhaled the gas, hit his head against the wall of the tank and sustained injuries".

All the four were rushed to the Hedgewar Hospital, where Jahangir was declared "brought dead" and Izaz died subsequently, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Shahdara) Nupur Prasad said. The DCP further said that Yusuf and Mahipal are undergoing treatment and will be kept under observation for the time being. "We have sent the bodies for post-mortem and are awaiting the reports", said the DCP.

Delhi minister Rajendra Gautam today set up a vigilance committee to look into sewer deaths in the city.

In a similar incident, four sanitation workers died of suffocation while cleaning a septic tank in South Delhi's Ghitorni area on July 14.

Last week, three men who were manually cleaning a sewer line at Lajpat Nagar had died after inhaling noxious fumes. When he did not come out, a second worker went inside to check on him. The reported cases are a violation of both clauses of the Act.

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