I just read the news reported by UK media: The police have discovered several cases of professionals who have suffered major salary cuts begging on the streets at night to supplement their falling incomes from. One woman in the east Midlands town of Leicester admitted that she begged at night after her office job, so that she could pay for a new kitchen in her flat.
According to the Leicester police, street beggars are collecting almost 200 pound a night, which amounts to an annual salary of 73,000 pounds – and that too, tax free.
Underwood added: “A lot of well-intentioned people see someone begging and think they are deserving causes. Would they give them money if they knew that person had just come out of a flat, was receiving benefits and had food in the larder?”
This is not the story of only U K. This happened in America, Middle East countries and even in India also as an article published at: at expressbuzz.com, on July 31.
Should we give or not, if someone is begging as mentioned above about the woman of Midlands town of Leicester? I try to find out the answer in this article.
Our Finance Minister is going to announce: Tax only up to 10% tax for salary up to Rs 10L. Even then heavy tax payers of India and abroad may keep zealous feelings towards needy professional beggars. This feeling is right or wrong, this is not the subject of this article.
Is begging of the woman mentioned above right or wrong?
In the process of finding answer, I recall some remarkable instances which may be followed by the beggars as said woman.
Prime Minister Kevin Rudd once cleaned toilet
Kevin Rudd cleaned toilet at a saw mill on his way to Australia’s top job as reported world media on July 31, 2009.
Indian Prime Ministers studying under streetlights
Both Atal Behari Vajpayee and Dr Manmohan Singh have boasted publicly about studying under street lights, it is for them a badge of honor.
JP as a shoe polish-boy
Jayaprakash Narayan name means, “Victory to the light”. JP did his higher studies including his PhD in politics and sociology in the United States. Jay prakash Narayan did boot polish in hi student life for meeting his education-expanses.
Students doing part-time job abroad
Many Indian and other countries’ students in universities abroad take up part-time jobs – working in your university cafeteria or at a book-store around the corner is a great way to make some money on the side to help pay for their rent and living expenses.
Mrs. Gandhi was an 18-year-old student of language college that was in the premises of Cambridge in 1965 (Not affiliated to the Cambridge University as claimed by Sonia), making ends meet by working as a waitress in the Varsity restaurant, when she met a handsome young engineering student Rajiv Gandhi. “As our eyes met for the first time, I could feel my heart pounding . . . as far as I was concerned, it was love at first sight,” Sonia Gandhi wrote later in a rare moment of self-revelation.
If you have walked around a major city in North America for any period of time, you have probably seen some sort of pan handler. For whatever reason, they can’t seem to find a job so they resort to begging for money on the street. Often times they have addictions, some of them have psychological problems and some of them are in it for the money. Often times pan handlers and beggars can make much more money.
However, Prafful Chipanlukar just is not only the grandson of renowned freedom fighter Veer Sawarkar but he himself is an IITian of 1971 batch and had worked in Thailand .
According to the channel, he lost his wife and son in a car accident in Thailand after which he came to India.
Stung with misery, he even worked as a watchman for eight years and is presently feeding on the mercy of the people. For his condition he blamed himself instead of others.
Above example relates to the begging due to psychological problems.
Politically beggar-ministers of India
Former American President Bill Clinton said during his visit in India, “India is not a poverty stricken nation. My visit will help to correct this wrong impression of my fellow Americans that India is poor.”
Opposite to this our Former Minister Mani Shankar Aiyar loyalist of Congress queen was a beggar before the Nowrway Prince and Princess to say publicly “Bhikchham dehi”.
Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram on Aug 26, 07 in Lucknow said the books that propounded the glorious past of India were liable to be burnt.
Maoists burn historical Hindu books in Nepal. Now FM becomes historian to burn them.
In the last of this article, my observation is:
If Ishwar (God) gives us sufficient or more than sufficient means in excess, then we must work for mercy and give something to the needy which may be called professional beggar or else. That’s because they are the ones that keep us grounded in our humanity and fraternity, before they get spoiled with all sorts of rationalizations that we can now easily make.
Mr Clean.Manmohan Singh government’s stand is that tainted ministers should be “presumed innocent” until conviction in the cases against them. Should this may or not may not be said about the professional beggars discussed in this article?
Analysis by Premendra Agrawal