Delhi temples, gurudwaras roped in for anti-begging drive


New Delhi : Temple and gurudwara committees have been roped in by the Delhi government in its ongoing anti-begging campaign. This is in addition to the awareness drive to discourage people from giving alms.

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Beggars often throng religious places for alms.

“Temple committees, gurudwara prabandhak committees and railway authorities have been requested to help in the anti-begging campaign (by the Delhi government),” Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment D. Napoleon told the Lok Sabha Thursday.

He was answering a query on whether the government was working on any plan to remove beggars from the capital ahead of the Commonwealth Games. The games are scheduled to be held Oct 3-14.

“The government has also undertaken awareness campaigns against begging through different media so that public desists from giving alms,” he added.

According to the minister, the Delhi government’s expenditure over the last five years in implementing beggar related programmes rose from Rs.695.01 lakh in 2005-06 to Rs.1,078.28 lakh in 2009-10.

The minister said that on the direction of the Delhi High Court, letters have been issued to chief secretaries and directors of department of social welfare in 10 states to coordinate in repatriation and rehabilitation of beggars.

“Regular raids are being conducted by the 13 anti-begging teams constituted under Bombay Prevention of Begging Act, 1959, and to decentralise the work of beggar courts. Two mobile beggar courts are operational,” Napoleon said.