Sharjah: As many as 119 beggars have been arrested in Sharjah in the first 15 days of Ramadan, officials said on Thursday.
Efforts to combat begging have been stepped up in Sharjah during Ramadan, with the police urging the public to report beggars to hotline numbers.
“Guard” service of Sharjah Police wesbite
Sharjah Police road patrols
Sharjah Police urged residents in the emirate to call the dedicated numbers and report what is described as “seasonal begging”.
Sharjah Police launched a campaign against begging from the first day of Ramadan. Among those arrested are 109 men and 10 women, authorities said.
They were reported through direct communication channels provided by Sharjah Police — the 80040, 901 numbers, and through the “Guard” service available on Sharjah Police websites, and through the field campaigns of the control teams that patrol the roads of the emirate.
Exploiting religious sentiment
Most beggars exploit people’s religious and charitable sentiments to make easy money, police warned. saying that a public complaint would be followed up by a police patrol that would be despatched to the location from where any incident of begging is reported.
Brig. Gen. Arif bin Hudaib, Director of the Media and Public Relations Department at Sharjah Police, stated that the total sums of money found with beggars who were arrested by Sharjah Police Anti-Beggary Committee since the beginning of Ramadan exceeded Dh33,000.
Brig. Bin Hudaib explained that members of the community compete to provide charitable works and donations in the month of mercy, which provides an opportunity for the weak-minded to practice begging.
Give to licensed charities
He called on members of society wishing to donate their alms to deal with licensed charitable associations and institutions accredited by the state, in order to ensure that it reaches the deserving among the poor and needy.
Brig. Bin Hudaib said that the campaign, entitled “Begging is a crime and giving is a responsibility” came with the aim of educating members of society about the methods used by beggars who take advantage of Ramadan to collect money from.
The official said begging is a negative behaviour and distorts the image of the state, pointing out that this phenomenon is linked to behaviours and risks that threaten the security of individuals, such as theft, exploitation of children and patients, in order to achieve personal financial gain.