Nitin, a 27-year-old safai karamchari with the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD), travels to the Capital from Palwal (Haryana) every day.
Despite the long, tedious journey and the hard work involved in his job in Kalkaji, he is struggling to get even the salary due to him.
Nitin, who joined his duty back in August 2023, said that he has not received “even a single rupee” for the last 5-6 months. “My father died two years ago near Govindpuri Metro Station in an accident. He was also a daily wage worker,” he said.
He was allegedly promised a permanent job and compensation. “But I got nothing,” he said.
“Even though I got a [temporary] job after one-and-half years thanks to Naveen Vaid (MCD Swachhata Karamchari Union member), I haven’t received a single penny in salary or help despite submitting all my documents. I don’t even know how much my salary is.”
Nitin, who is the sole bread-winner of the family, lives with two brothers who are also struggling. They don’t even have a proper house in the village.
“When my father died, they said that I would get a job the next day. But now we are facing crisis without salary. I have to purchase even wheat on credit. I am in debt. One of my brothers is handicapped, so I have to take complete responsibility of him. If you see our home, you’ll imagine how desperate we are. I am not able to stay in Delhi because of the responsibility at my home,” said Nitin helplessly.
Ahead of the MCD election in 2022, the Kejriwal government promised to regularise safai karamchari (sanitation workers) and solve their other problems but the employees feel the promises have remained unfulfilled.
On January 10, hundreds of sanitation workers gathered at the gate of the civic centre — headquarters of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) — demanding regularisation of their jobs and payment of arrears.