IS IT THE ‘POVERTY’ OR THE ‘POOR’ ?
Among the busy streets of Cochin, among the hustle-bustle of the roads, we find many hands reached out to us, begging for a coin. These beggars, indeed, are not found just in Cochin, but almost everywhere in India. Begging has always been a concern in the Indian society where some people are against it while some others encourage it.
A society is always a clash of ideas, a mix of opinions, and an amalgam of both good and bad. Likewise, begging has also been an issue where the question rises as to whether it is fair to give alms to a vagabond or else just to ignore them. It is quite true to say that there are certain groups or masses that force the poor into begging by making them handicapped forever. It can be blinding them or even cutting of their limbs; but at the end of the day, it is their ‘profit’ that actually matters to them. But at the same time, we do not realize that some others, are not part of any group, but may be begging for themselves or for some loved one. The problem is, we are not able to distinguish between the ‘slaved’ ones and the ‘free’ ones.
The government has been trying to solve the problem of poverty since Independence, but still, a large proportion is below the poverty line and is beyond any economic reach. The government has tried to fight the term by stating many measures such as the introduction of various schemes and also by trying to provide some basic facilities. But the depth of the situation is still not being valued, because instead of its eradication, it is doubling every year. The government, for example, has set up many hospitals for the poor in rural areas. The situation of these hospitals is nothing but pathetic, which does not really come out to the limelight. Similarly is the case of sanitation, food, shelter etc. The situation is depriving year by year despite of Independence, freedom and democracy. The major problem as to why the government is not able to improve the current scenario can be because of lack of funds, or it’s lethargic atmosphere, or the problem of not knowing from where to begin. Along with this, we find the police driving away the beggars from streets and prohibiting begging.
Why driving away the poor when it is poverty that has to eliminated? Why driving away the victims when it is the condition that has to be vanished? Why driving away the helpless when help can be provided? Some of the major reasons as to why poverty is still on the run is because of the lack of education among the poor. Proper education can inculcate improved chances of employment thus leading to an improved lifestyle. Proper education has to be the main objective of the Indian government in the process of chasing away the problems of poverty.
Along with education, comes all the other basic facilities such as sanitation, health, shelter etc. Although poverty is still a major concern in India, many active NGO’s and various other schemes by the government is trying it’s level best to solve the problem. Hoping for a betterment in the lives of the poor is what we can all do now!