Beg­gars swarm city roads, mar­kets dur­ing Ra­mazan

Pakistan Observer - - TWIN CITIES - STAFF RE­PORTER

RAWALPINDI—Pro­fes­sional beg­gars have swarmed the city roads and mar­kets in the holy month of Ra­mazan, try­ing ev­ery trick they know to get peo­ple’s sym­pa­thies.

Beg­gars are hav­ing a roar­ing busi­ness as the po­lice and ad­min­is­tra­tion seem reluc­tant to take any ac­tion against them. Nowa­days, groups of beg­gars mostly women and chil­dren are seen beg­ging in mar­kets, shop­ping cen­ters, roads and streets of the city cities. The shop­ping malls in the town are also amongst the choic­est busi­ness lo­ca­tions of th­ese beg­gars. The beg­gars are wit­ness ev­ery­where in the city and can­ton­ment ar­eas. Sev­eral groups of beg­gars have oc­cu­pied main traf­fic sig­nals of the town where one can see a lot of chil­dren and women throng­ing at ve­hi­cles ask­ing for alms. The beg­gars use new tech­niques to at­tract peo­ple as their sole pur­pose is to take money from them. Pro­fes­sional beg­gary is be­com­ing a so­cial me­nace as more and more beg­gars in­clud­ing phys­i­cally fit, healthy and young men, women and chil­dren are turn­ing to­wards this pro­fes­sion. Mosques and other re­li­gious places are also amongst the most prof­itable sources for the pro­fes­sional beg­gars.

A large num­ber of men, women and chil­dren beg reg­u­larly at roads and streets from dawn to dusk. Mostly th­ese are very pro­fes­sional and ex­pert beg­gars.

Though, sev­eral drives were launched against pro­fes­sional beg­gars in the past, but the po­lice and author­i­ties con­cerned had failed to take a se­ri­ous and vis­i­ble ac­tion against the pro­fes­sional beg­gars. The real de­serv­ing poor peo­ple should be pro­vided max­i­mum in­sti­tu­tion­al­ized help dur­ing this drive, while the mafias run­ning large groups of pro­fes­sional beg­gars should be taken to the task. In Rawalpindi, es­pe­cially on busy places like Raja Bazar, Sad­dar bazar, Com­mit­tee Chowk, Ma­reer Chowk, sixth road chowk, Tench Bhatta, com­muters and driv­ers face ir­ri­ta­tion on red lights as a large num­ber of beg­gars seek fi­nan­cial sup­port claim­ing they are not pro­fes­sional. Beg­gars some­time also turn nasty to­wards the cus­tomers.

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