KARACHI - Beggars from suburban areas have rushed to financial capital of the country with the onset of holy month of Ramazan.

Worship places, traffic signals, squares, shops and even doorsteps are swarmed with ‘seasonal’ beggars as every Muslim tries to show generosity to seek mercy of the Almighty in this month of blessing.

Up to 200,000 ‘seasonal’ beggars of all ages are reported to have been in action the port of city since the onset of Ramazan.

They operate in a well-organised manner. A contractor chooses them from suburbs and deputes them in ‘selected’ points to do business.

Their bosses have ordered them to work within the limits of assigned area.

These beggars, out of which mostly from South Punjab and brought to Karachi, are provided pick and drop service. The beggars may be changed but their points remain the same as these were leased out.

Many of these beggars are also involved criminal activities such as peddling.

A woman beggar who sits in front of KMC’s workshop in Sohrab Goth was involved in drug-dealing.

A teen begging at Karachi’s Burns Road said that he was doing it to look after his family, adding that the people of this city are very kind and use to give in the name of Allah.

Asked about the contractor, he said every area is leased out and no one can do business if the person does not give share to contractor.

Although citizens made a litany of complaints but to no avail as action against such a business is rare insight.

The person can be awarded an imprisonment of up to three years, if found guilty of begging or facilitating it in any manner as the offence is punishable under sections of Pakistan Penal Code.

A woman who used to go to market for purchasing commodities said that they (beggars) have increased considerably in Ramazan. She said that in these circumstances, this is very difficult for her and other women to go out for shopping as the beggars keep on troubling them. “The beggars keep asking for money and use different tactics till we are forced to give some amount to them”.

The administration seemed to have shut their eyes on the issue as neither provincial nor city government was willing to get Karachiites rid of this issue.

When contacted, Karachi Commissioner spokesperson stated Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) has a special department to tackle the problem but KMC spokesperson Ali Hassan Sajid rejected the statement.

“KMC has no such department to check this issue but Sindh government’s social welfare department is mandated to fix it,” the official said.

When contacted, representative of social welfare department was unavailable.