Beggars can`t be forced to leave Delhi: HC
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Last Updated: Thursday, October 29, 2009, 18:58
  
New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Thursday came down heavily on the city government for forcing the beggars to leave the city for their native states terming it as a "crime against humanity" and equated it with the action of Mahararashtra Navnirman Sena's campaign against migrants.

A bench comprising Chief Justice A P Shah and Justice S Muralidhar took strong exception to such action saying "poverty is not a crime" and beggars cannot be forced to leave the capital.

"It is a crime against humanity. What is the difference between it and what MNS is doing in Maharastra?" the Bench said while referring to Raj Thackeray-led party's attacks on "outsiders", mainly migrants from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, in Mumbai and other parts of Maharashtra.

"It's strange that a criminal can reside in the city but if someone is asking for alms then he is thrown away," the court said. The Court sought the assistance of Attorney General to deal with de-criminalisation of begging as under Bombay Prevention Of Begging Act it is a criminal offence punishable upto three years of imprisonment if arrested for the first time and he/she can face to ten year jail term for repetition of the offence.

The Court was hearing a PIL filed by one well-known social activist Harsh Mandher challenging the constitutional validity of the Act.

Bureau Report


First Published: Thursday, October 29, 2009, 18:58


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