Kathmandu, March 24

Officials of Pashupati Area Development Trust have said that they are planning to make Pashupati area no-begging zone.

Member Secretary of PADT Pradeep Dhakal said, “Preparations are under way to rehabilitate the beggars by providing jobs to those who are physically fit and sending elderly, minors and disabled to foster homes. As soon as we manage all the beggars, we will declare the area no-begging zone.”

According to PADT officials, there are as many as 152 beggars in the Pasupati area. These beggars reside in shelters built on the premises of the temple.

Dhakal also claimed that the office has already rehabilitated more than 50 people by giving them various jobs inside the area and in places like Nepal-India friendship Dharmasala.

“Some women are sent to organisations like Rakshya Nepal and elderly people are sent into Pashupati elderly home. We have also approached organisations like Matribhumi Sewa Ashryam at Kumarigal to rehabilitate beggars of the area,”said Dhakal.

Ramesh Upreti, executive director of PADT, said the biggest challenge in managing beggars is to make them stay at designated places. He said, “Despite our efforts, lots of beggars returned to the same place to in a bid to make money and avail free food served during various religious festivals by the devotees and donors.”

Officials also said by just declaring the area no-begging zone would not solve the problem, they had to monitor the area regularly to stop people from begging in the area.

According to a recent study conducted by the Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare, poverty, physical disabilities, senility and poor health conditions are some of the factors that push people into begging.