Organised begging is punishable by six months' imprisonment and a Dh100,000 fine Image Credit: Shutterstock

Dubai: Dubai Police have arrested 202 beggars in the first half of Ramadan, it was revealed on Wednesday.

The anti-begging campaign was launched by Dubai Police General Command in cooperation with strategic partners represented by the General Department the Residency and Foreigners Affairs Department in Dubai, Dubai Municipality, and Department of Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities in Dubai.

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Brigadier Ali Salem Al Shamsi, Director of the Department of Suspects and Criminal Phenomena at the General Department of Criminal and Investigation, said the campaign contributes to reducing the number of beggars annually. This Ramadan, the campaign has so far resulted in the arrest of 202 beggars, including 112 males and 90 females.

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Brig Al Shamsi said most of those arrested came on a visit visa, and others are residents and violators of the residency law who are exploiting the charitable spirit of Ramadan to make easy money.

He explained that Dubai Police annually develops an integrated security plan to combat begging in cooperation with partners, by intensifying patrols in places where beggars are expected. The director said begging threatens the security of society, harms the image of the country, and distorts its civilised appearance.

He pointed out begging is linked to crimes such as theft and pick pocketing, in addition to the exploitation of children, the sick, and people of determination by organised begging gangs. Brig Al Shamsi said there are official charities that anyone can approach to request financial assistance or for making donations for others.

He urged the public to report any beggar spotted anywhere on the call centre 901 or through the ‘Police Eye’ service available on the police app, in addition to the E-Crime platform (