"The practice of manual scavenging, arising from the continuing existence of insanitary latrines, still persists in various parts of the country," Gehlot said in a written reply in the Lok Sabha.
The minister added that as existing laws were inadequate in eliminating the evils of insanitary latrines and manual scavenging, parliament had enacted the Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act, 2013.
"This legislation came into effect from Dec 6, 2013," the minister said.
The first act passed by parliament to end manual scavenging was the Employment of Manual Scavengers and Construction of Dry Latrines (Prohibition) Act in 1993.
He added the government had also constituted a central monitoring committee to monitor the implementation of the act.
"The implementation of the act has already been reviewed in Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and West Bengal," said Gehlot.
According to the Houselisting and Housing Census, 2011, there were 794,390 insanitary latrines in the country. Another survey says there are 11,584 manual scavengers identified in 12 states.
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