At a tender age when children should study in schools, play with toys and enjoy their leisure, many of them are seen on roads seeking alms to make both ends meet due to selfish motives of some miscreants that make them beg under extreme conditions. Masked perpetrators of such deeds are making it a huge business by remaining behind the scenes. The plight of such children is really heart-wrenching. Several initiatives are taken by various institutions and NGOs to check it, but to no avail. Not because they are not true to the work they are doing, but because people like us are not ready to accept that by giving them money we are encouraging begging. The situation is not better throughout the nation as these beggars can be seen begging at traffic intersections, market places, religious places and outside educational institutions. Many of them are mowed down by speeding vehicles. Such children sometimes take to stealing and snatchings. They also disrupt the traffic. There is a need to unmask those elements who are behind the menace. Don’t encourage begging, instead help them by instilling positive ideas and educating them. JASPREET SINGH, PATIALA,

A Street Beggar Begging has been declared an offense in independent India, but it has really no real impact. On almost every red light’, there are number of beggars who beg in the name of mercy or religion. Initially, people used to beg only in desperate circumstances but now-a-days, it has become a profession. Those who can make easy money by begging. do not want to work. And at times, they can earn more than an honest worker. At every crossing, a woman carrying a child, a handicap person. young children asking for alms for food or in the name of God, IS a common sight. They can all work to earn their livelihood, even the handicapped, because all self-respecting people try to stand on their own feet. Of course, crippled people should be helped, but not by giving them alms. Begging cannot be justified at any cost. People use different innovative ideas for begging. Some form singing parties, some wear saffron clothes and carry a bowl, others beg in the name of charitable institutions. Some try to rouse sympathy by carrying small, crying, hungry infants but while giving aims to any beggar, one should always remember that one is not helping the beggar in any way by giving them money but is only satisfying his ego of being a kind and benevolent man. Begging is a stigma on the name of any nation and charity should be given only to charitable institution so that it reaches those who really need them.

Don’t encourage begging!