The International Alliance of Waste Pickers is a union of waste picker organizations representing more than 460,000 workers across 34 countries
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Country India

May 28, 2018

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Mukesh Vaniya photo. Source:

This is the letter endorsed by members of the Alliance of Indian Waste-pickers condemning the killing of Mukesh Vaniya, a waste picker in Rajkot Rajkot, Gujarat (India).

Dated: 25th May 2018

Shri Narendra Modi
Prime Minister
Government of India
New Delhi

Copied to Union Home Ministry & Chief Minister’s Office, Gujarat

Subject: Condemnation of the brutal killing of waste-picker Mukesh Vaniya in Rajkot & demand for immediate action to be taken against those responsible behind the killing

Respected Sir

According to a news-report in The Indian Express (Dated 22nd May 2018), Mukesh Vaniya, a waste-picker in Rajkot was beaten to death by unidentified persons of a factory at Shapar village in Rajkot. The incident took place on 20th May 2018, in the morning. Mukesh Vaniya along with his wife Jaya and acquaintance Savita were picking up waste near the factory. The women folks were beaten and sent away, whereas Mukesh was held captive and beaten to death.

We the members of the Alliance of Indian Waste-pickers condemn the brutal killing of Mukesh Vaniya and demand for immediate action to be taken against those responsible for the killing. We request for speedy justice and an adequate compensation and safety for the family members of Mukesh Vaniya. The family should also be provided access to other social and economic protection measure.

Through this letter, we would like to bring this to your note that waste-pickers play an important role in solid waste management. Waste-pickers pick up waste from the streets. They convert the discards in useful material for manufacturing. Thereby keep our cities clean. The vitality of their work has been acknowledged in Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan guidelines and Solid Waste Management Rules 2016. The rules mandate their inclusion and integration. There are many programmes started by different ministries at union and states level for their integration process. With all the discussion about their integration, on ground they are discriminated because of their caste and occupation. They are looked at as thieves and criminals. We demand an end to this discrimination, which a lot of times turn violent. We demand that all social actors including police and state institutions are sensitized about the work done by waste-pickers. They should be provided safe, non-discriminatory and violence free environment to work in.

Endorsed by members of Alliance of Indian Waste-pickers

  • All India Kabadi Mazdoor Mahasangh (AIKMM), Delhi & Bihar
  • Asangathit Shramik Mahila Sanghathan, Indore
  • Avani Sanstha, Kolhapur
  • Bal Vikas Dhara, Delhi
  • Chintan, Delhi
  • Dalit Bahujan Resource Centre, Guntur & Vijayawada
  • Hasiru Dala, Bengaluru
  • Janvikas Society, Indore
  • Kachra Kamagar Union, Delhi
  • Kagad Kach Patra Kashtakari Panchayat, Pune
  • Kagad Kanch Patra Kamagar Sanghatana, Aurangabad
  • Parisar Bhagini Vikas Sangathana, Navi Mumbai
  • Rajasthan Kachra Majdoor Sangh, Jaipur
  • Safai Sena, Delhi
  • Seva, Nashik
  • Stree Mukti Sangathana, Mumbai
  • SwaCH, Pune
  • Wainganga Samudayik Vikas Kendra, Balaghat

Endorsements of the allied individuals and organizations of the Alliance of Indian Waste-pickers

  • Aruna Roy, Shankar Singh & Nikhil Dey, Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan, Rajasthan
  • Bonded Labour Liberation Front
  • Centre for Health & Social Justice Delhi
  • Harsh Mander, Aman Biradari, Delhi
  • Monika Khanna Gulati, Gurgaon
  • NCR Waste Matters, Gurgaon
  • Pratibha Sharma, Global Alliance for Incineration Alternatives, Mumbai
  • Prof. Ravi Srivastava, New Delhi
  • Prof. T. Swaminathan, Chennai
  • Manohar, Human Rights Defender Alert India (HRDA-India) & All India Network of Individuals and NGOs working with State & National Hum Rights Institutions
  • Rajiv Khandelwal, Aajeevika Bureau
  • Ritu Dewan, Mumbai
  • S.Q. Masood, Aseem, Hyderabad
  • Saahas Waste Management Private Limited, Bengaluru
  • Saahas, Bengaluru
  • Sandeep Khare, Vigyan Foundation Team
  • Shweta Tambe, Habitat and Livelihood Welfare Association, Mumbai
  • Solid Waste Awareness & Action Forum, Gurgaon
  • Sudhir Katiyar, Majur Adhikar Manch, Ahmedabad
  • Sunil Kumar Aledia, New Delhi
  • Sushant Agarwal
  • World Council of Arya Samaj