He has completed his B Com, BA in journalism, MA in Globalisation and Labour, Masters in Social Work and is currently pursuing M Phil at the reputed Tata Institute of Social Sciences. Mr. Sunil Yadav is 36 years old and is working with the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) in Mumbai as a garbage collector despite having these degrees that he has earned after working hard for nine years studying.
NDTV reported that four generations of Mr. Yadav’s family have worked as manual scavengers. he took up his father’s place at the BMC after he was declared medically unfit. He said, “We were born as scavengers. Right from our birth we have been slaves. We never really had any rights. We are trying to get out of it, and there is only one way to do that. Baba Saheb Ambedkar said ‘if you study, you will grow’, but people still don’t accept us. Not every Dalit is a scavenger, but every scavenger is a Dalit. There is 100 per cent reservation in that category.”
He has worked hard to earn the degrees and even after that, he never gave up. He has funded his education while simultaneously working at the municipal body. Talking about it, he said, “I worked in the night from 9 pm to 2 am and studied during the day and even though BMC rules state I am entitled to a study leave, it took me 18 months to get it approved.”
The Central Government has recently published a socio-economic census which puts the number of manual scavengers in Rural India at over 1.8 lakh. Mr Yadav’s wife Sanjana also completed her graduation after getting married. He said, “He has always been very supportive. He told me to complete my graduation and explained that society will respect me only if I was educated.”
The National Convenor of the Safai Karamchari Andolan, Bezwada Wilson said, “A new act has come in 2013, two years have gone, and we have not prosecuted even a single person across the country. So, when the law is not working, the bureaucrats are not working, when political will is not there, when the society is not sensitive, where is the question that we can achieve our target?”
The question is open. How is the reservation helping people like Sunil Yadav who despite of working so hard to get an education cannot get a job they deserve?
News and image is sourced from NDTV