In this paper, we propose a model-based scattering removal method for stereo vision for robot manipulation in indoor scattering media where the commonly used ranging sensors are unable to work. Stereo vision is an inherently ill-posed and challenging problem. It is even more difficult in the case of images of dense fog or dense steam scenes illuminated by active light sources. Images taken in such environments suffer attenuation of object radiance and scattering of the active light sources. To solve this problem, we first derive the imaging model for images taken in a dense scattering medium with a single active illumination close to the cameras. Based on this physical model, the non-uniform backscattering signal is efficiently removed. The descattered images are then utilized as the input images of stereo vision. The performance of the method is evaluated based on the quality of the depth map from stereo vision. We also demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method by carrying out the real robot manipulation task.