Society gets in the way of fighting beggary

Updated 11 June 2016
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Society gets in the way of fighting beggary

MADINAH: While beggars are becoming visible at their favorite places during Ramadan, such as mosques, malls and traffic lights, officials are standing up to this phenomenon in various ways.
Abdulrahman Al-Ahmadi said child beggars subject themselves to dangers since they don’t care about the changing lights or traffic congestion, and about kidnapping, which is spreading among their ranks.
Mansour Al-Sini said visitors to the Grand Mosque find disabled people taking extra care to reveal their disabilities to earn more sympathy, and hence money, and it has become important to put up signs about places allocated for alms-giving.
Beggars of various nationalities, most of whom are children and women, have been seen in shopping malls, despite efforts of security guards to keep them away. Teacher Mansoura Al-Heibi, said women beggars, whose numbers increase during Ramadan, are usually found in various shopping malls around the Kingdom.
Sociologist Amani Al-Alyan said society doesn’t understand the reality of alms and those who take up begging as a profession to make money. Needy people should go to donation areas and special locations that have been licensed by the government. She called on relevant bodies to encourage people to pay their Zakat and organize awqaf and other property to house the needy.
The director general of the Labor and Social Development Ministry's branch in Madinah said that 14 patrols have been deployed the yards of the Prophet's Mosque, other mosques and commercial centers to catch beggars. Other campaigns will start next week, which is the time when beggars start coming from outside the city.
He added that the anti-beggary campaign teams will comprise officers from the Haia, police, the governorate and officials from social services.
The official said that any foreigner found begging will be sent to the embassy of his or her country for the necessary procedures, while cases of Saudi beggars will be studied by social affairs entities and then referred to the welfare home or psychological care if they suffered from psychological problems. Other cases will be referred to charitable and voluntary bodies.
He said society is the biggest obstacle to eliminating beggary. As soon as they are approached by a beggar in the yards of the Grand Mosque, for instance, they start defending him against any anti-beggary squad. He said people do this because they don’t know the dangers that result from such a phenomenon.


Saudi Arabia offers one million sim cards and internet access to Hajj pilgrims

Updated 16 July 2019
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Saudi Arabia offers one million sim cards and internet access to Hajj pilgrims

  • The move aims to serve pilgrims who are keen to communicate with their dearest ones back home

MAKKAH: One million sim cards and free internet will be offered as gifts to pilgrims performing Hajj this year upon arriving at the King Abdulaziz International Airport in Saudi Arabia.

The initiative is part of a program aimed at serving pilgrims who are keen to communicate with their nearest and dearest back home.

A field team will be working 24 hours during the Hajj season to offer this service to the arriving pilgrims so that they can share their experience with their families.

The project comes as part of  efforts by the Kingdom to serve pilgrims under directions by King Salman and the Crown Prince to allow pilgrims to perform their rituals with ease.