Sanitation workers are paid by the municipal corporation to sweep and clean the city streets
Chandigarh Municipal Commissioner KK Yadav was conducting a surprise inspection in June when he found out that 625 sanitation workers, who are paid by the government, were not on duty. Upon probing, he learnt that they were all working for babus, doing the personal chores of officials, retired govt employees, councillors, and sometimes even their kin.
An internal report submitted by the civic body mentioned that each of these sanitation workers draw a salary of around Rs 13,000 every month, effectively meaning that more than Rs 80 lakh goes out of the corporation’s coffers just to pay “ghost employees”.
Sanitation workers are paid by the municipal corporation to sweep and clean the city streets.
The medical officer of Chandigarh corporation’s health wing has now been asked to withdraw all the 625 workers immediately. If the sanitation workers do not return to their actual place of work, the commissioner has ordered their dismissal from service.
According to a report by The Indian Express, Yadav also has in possession a list of councillors who were making the sanitation workers do their personal work. Engineering department officials were also found exploiting services paid for by the government.
For instance, two sanitation workers were doing the household chores of a junior engineer’s mother-in-law. Six others were working at the house of a former municipal commissioner and two more at the residence of the former joint commissioner.
Mayor Rajesh Kalia said: “I told the officers that they will face suspension if workers in their respective areas do not return to work. Respective area officials have been told to send these safai karamcharis back. These people are supposed to clean up the city.”
He added that one of the councillors even had three safai karamcharis working for him. While one was mopping the house, the other would drive him around, and yet another would wash his clothes.
According to the Medical Officer of Health, most of the workers have returned to work and have been assigned new job roles.