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Residents celebrate field workers

Honour for Tambaram-based couple engaged in conservancy work in Mogappair

Every morning, 46-year-old S. Anjaya cycles from his house in Mudichur — his wife A. Balamma on the rear seat — to reach the spot in Tambaram where they can board a special bus that would take them to their work spot in Mogappair. They are known to report for duty on the dot.

Both are conservancy workers, serving at Officers’ Colony, Mogappair, which comes under ward 89 of Zone-7 (Ambattur) of Greater Chennai Corporation. This stint began in 2016.

Their dedication to work has not gone unnoticed.

Anna Nagar Western Extension Phase – II Residents Welfare Association honoured them on Independence Day along with other concervancy workers.

Anjaya and Balamma received a cash prize of ₹ 1000 and a grocery kit.

The Association chose other field level workers for a similar honour. The list included 20 field-level workers with the Tangedco and Chennai Metrowater, who were each given ₹500 in appreciation of their work during the lockdown.

“Despite the challenges that went with coming to work, the conservancy staff had never failed to report to duty. Most of them come from faraway places and we admire their dedication to work,” says V. Rajagopal, president of the Association.

The cash support given to conservancy workers in the neighbourhood during the Independence Day celebrations was the third such initiative by residents since the beginning of the lockdown in March. On August 1, residents along with the Rotary Club of Mogappair, gave free safety kits including cloth face masks, gloves, sanitisers, headgears, soaps and snacks to 125 civic workers including conservancy staff and health workers.

In mid-April, residents started the initiative of providing free dry rations worth ₹ 350 and a cash support of ₹1000 each of the 30 conservancy staff. Conservancy staff in the neighbourhood start their work at 7 a.m and complete it by around 3 p.m. covering more than 6,000 households. On an average, around two tonnes of garbage is generated from the locality. Domestic waste accounts for much of the collected garbage. Earlier, they would handle the waste with their bare hands without a face mask.

As most of the conservancy staff are employed on a contract basis, they are not provided with sufficient amenities. Residents point out that they replace the damaged and wornout glove and cloth masks work by conservancy staff, once in three months.

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