MCD cries ‘mistake’ over spraying of disinfectant on migrant workers


News: Hundreds of migrants in Lajpat Nagar were sprayed with disinfectant by workers of the South Delhi Municipal Corporation. The body later apologised and said it happened by “mistake”.

Here are five components of the story:

  • Hundreds of migrant workers who had registered for the Shramik Special train were waiting in line for their screening outside a school in Lajpat Nagar-3. While they were in line, they were all sprayed with disinfectant in the middle of a sanitation drive by SDMC workers.
  • Videos of the incident show clearly the sanitation worker spraying the migrants with disinfectant and have been circulating on social media.
  • The SDMC responded by saying that it was an accident, because the sanitation worker couldn’t handle the pressure of the jet spray, and said that the staff has been instructed to be more careful.
  • The SDMC upheld that disinfectant spraying was important and was being done as per protocol. It said the civic body had distributed food and water to migrant workers who had come for screening.
  • During the pandemic, there have been multiple instances of migrant workers being inhumanely mass sprayed with disinfectant before or during their travels. The Union Ministry issued an advisory against it that said spraying chemical disinfectants is “physically and psychologically harmful”.

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