The Beggar Problem
Standing at the roadside one can see a beggar or two, asking for alms and charity. Some beggars visit houses at regular intervals for alms. Many crowd strategic points of the city roads. Haunts of the beggars are sprinkled all over the city. These beggars simply depend on others’ charity for their livelihood. We ourselves are responsible for perpetuating the institution of beggary.
We have beggars’ colonies where beggars increase their tribe. Nobody can deny the truth that it is an eye-sore to see beggars in streets and on cross-roads. We have all classes of beggars old and young, male and female, able-bodied and crippled, diseased and healthy, real and pretended. They plead or press you to give them alms.
Beggary perhaps enjoys religious sanctity. Pilgrimage places, scattered all over India, are best shelters to these beggars. They are not beggars but parasites. Strangely enough beggary has become a profitable trade. That is why boss-beggars recruit people of all ages for beggary. It has made beggary an organized business. Criminals rejected by society adopt beggary. Beggars earning their livelihood easily lure others to become beggars
We do have real beggars and they certainly need our help. There are plenty of kind-hearted people who provide amply for these cursed and unfortunate class. We have trusts, orphanages and destitute houses to look after this class.
The beggar problem is a social problem and it is acute one. It has assumed a horrible shape. Begging has become a profession an art. It is impossible to distinguish between the genuine beggars and the non-genuine ones. The problem of begging is very knotty. We must fight it from all sides. One, public opinion, must be created against it. Two indiscriminate alms-giving should be stopped and only the deserving deserve our sympathy and charity. Third, government must make efforts to rehabilitate able-bodied beggars. Four, laws should be enforced to round up non-genuine beggars. Five, services of religious preachers should be pressed into to influence their followers to desist from indiscriminate alms-giving. Six, law enforcing agencies must perform their duty sincerely to check this menace of beggary. Though the beggar problem is gigantic, it can be solved if we are serious to do away with it.