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Bihar to use beggars for AIDS awareness

Bihar govt has a novel rehab scheme for beggars: Use them to create awareness against AIDS and polio.

india Updated: Oct 30, 2006 20:41 IST

Beggars in Bihar can now be choosers under a novel rehabilitation scheme floated by the state government to hone their talent for singing and dancing to create awareness against aids and polio besides other productive work.

The scheme - Pahchaan -a brainchild of the State Welfare Department Secretary Vijay Prakash, is intended to suitably rehabilitate 1.5 lakh to 2 lakh beggars in the state and harness their natural talent for some productive work, Prakash told PTI today.

Some beggars are good at singing, others are good acrobatic and dance performers while some have tremendous stamina which could be utilised in spreading awareness against diseases like aids and pulse polio programme through their street performance, the Welfare Secretary said.

Prakash said the department with the help of NGOs, was currently identifying beggars and studying their natural talents which would be further honed in a specific area through training programmes.

Depending on their aptitude, they would be engaged in varied works and paid a suitable "honorarium", Prakash said.

Some of them would be engaged in distributing milk and newspapers in households.

The department would provide bicycles and tricycles to the disabled among them.

First Published: Oct 30, 2006 19:56 IST