Monday, May 25, 2009

Driven From Delhi, Beggars Clog Shimla

Parul sood,

Hindustan Times

With the capital under surveillance a head of commonwealth games child beggars, many from up, Bihar, find Himachal a safe haven.

Shimla February 5। A major trafficking ring is pushing street children into begging, Shimla child line coordinator Shafiq-ur- Rehman khan said while talking to Hindustan Times about the increasing number of child beggars in the state।

“There is a major network behind child trafficking and the children have been diverted to Shimla from Delhi, where child begging is at its peak, ahead of preparations for commonwealth”. Shafiq alleged.

There days Delhi is under close surveillance and these children, many of whom are from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, find Himachal Pradesh safe. However even though child begging has assumed mammoth proportions in the state ,both the stakeholder and the administrations have turned a blind eye to the problem .Shafiq feels the biggest hurdle in finding a solution is the fact that the authorities concerned have a regional approach regarding such children.

The first question any one involved in rehabilitation efforts asks is.” where is the child from.” in these circumstances ,the best they can do is book the children under the begging act and send them to the Justice Board in Una.the police have done much so far but has adopted a humane approach towards the problem.

According to Superintendent of Police R.M.Sharma,”begging is a social issue and the society as a whole must come forward to find solutions to it.” The Police cannot do anything alone ,he says as the procedure for juveniles forbids them from confining the children to the police station .he does not have data regarding these children or if they have ever been act booked under the begging act either.

All said and done, the problem seems to be snow balling as the administration and NGOs pass the buck the each other. There are many other issues associated with child begging including hooligans, harassment of tourists, abusive language against people and petty theft.


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