Non-local beggars disappear from city

Locals take over

Srinagar: With the revocation of special status and splitting of Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories, non-local beggars have disappeared from the city markets here.
One cannot find a single non- local beggar on city streets these days, who usually would dot roads, markets, public parks and spots outside religious places.
Most of the non-local male beggars were apparently physically challenged, while females could be seen carrying babies in their laps while begging.
With non-local beggars disappearing, the number of local beggars has increased in the city.
“We can only find local beggars on the traffic signal at Sanat Nagar from last two months,” Sajad Ahmad, a shopkeeper from Sanat Nagar said.
He said that children to senior citizens, both male and female, could be seen begging for alms from commuters.
Local beggars can also be seen on other traffic signals like at Nowgam Chowk and Dalgate these days.
A senior official from district administration, Srinagar said that begging was legally prohibited in erstwhile state, under Jammu and Kashmir Prevention of Beggary Act I960, however, it was yet to be cleared weather the Act was still applicable here or not.
“I am not aware about this right now. It needs to be verified at government level,” he added.

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