Public Generosity is supporting the Child Begging Mafia in Pakistan

Is it high time to stop giving money to child beggars?

The moment your vehicle stops at a traffic signal you notice a small group of children knocking at the glass windows asking for money. Similarly child beggars are often found in shopping streets and districts asking shoppers and passersby to have pity on them. It is obviously true that any kind hearted person would have pity on shabby little children and therefore immediately offer them some money. Despite having anti beggary law and an imposition of child beggary in Pakistan one witnesses an ever growing number of street beggars. According to an estimate 1.2 million children beg on the streets of the major cities and urban centers in Pakistan. However, many children have been rescued by anti-begging squads ever since child beggary emergency has been declared by the Chief Minister of Punjab Usman Buzdar. Last year the Sindh government imposed a ban on child beggary in the province without addressing the factors that cause these children to beg on streets.  There is no denying the fact that poverty is the main factor which forces these children to take up beggary as a profession.  It is strange that the begging mafia is one of the most sophisticated and organized gangs forcing children to beg in most of the countries. There are several kinds of child beggars in Pakistan some have been forced by their own parents to beg while others are kidnapped at a young age. According to a survey some parents from penurious families rent their children to begging gangs at a cost of Rs. 500 to 1000 per day. Resultantly we often come across women at traffic signals holding infants and asking for money. A survey team after having done laboratory tests reported that these infants had been injected with morphine so to avoid any in convince caused by these children.

According to an estimate some 70 thousand beggars from all age groups daily ask for alms in the metropolitan city of Karachi. Sadly the regional begging mafia is sophisticated to the extent that children from India, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Burma have been reportedly trafficked into Pakistan as beggars. Similarly, large numbers of children are daily kidnapped in Pakistan and unfortunately some of them are trafficked to other countries since begging is a thriving business. Therefore, we need to change our mind set regarding beggary in general and child beggary in particular. Public generosity is actually causing harm to young beggars as your money helps the begging mafia to ruin the society by shaping the next generation of beggars.

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