Despite several claims of the UT administration to stop the menace of child beggary in the city, the authorities seem to have failed to keep a check on it.
These child beggars can be seen at almost every market of the city, pestering people and asking for alms. The administration last year had also announced that by October 2015, it would put an end to the child beggary, but a visit to the markets across the city on Sunday reflected a different picture.
The beggars on the road dividing Sectors 34-35 not only ask for alms at the light point, but have set up their temporary shelters on the pavements.
A group of persons, including women and children from Rajasthan, have made their makeshift tenements on the pathway outside in front of Sector-35B market. Despite several drives, the authorities concerned have failed to stop the encroachment. In the same market, some children, a part of the same group, were also seen selling balloons, while others were asking for alms. Similarly, beggars asking for money or food were also seen in other areas including, Sectors 17, 20, 22, 34, 44 and 37.
When contacted, Devi Sirohi, chairperson, Chandigarh Commission for the Protection of Child Rights, said, “We will meet the deputy commissioner next week, and will submit the proposal. The issue was also taken up with former adviser Vijay Dev. The menace of beggary certainly needs to be checked and stopped.”
Virender Chaudhary, municipal corporation joint commissioner, said the anti-encroachment drives are conducted on regular basis. On asking about the encroachments outside the Sector-35 market and other areas, he said, “We’ll look into it.”