Colombo beggars to be removed | Sunday Observer

Colombo beggars to be removed

All beggars found violating the prohibition against begging in Colombo, after January 1, will be transferred to the rehabilitation facility in Rideegama, Ambalantota.

According to the Secretary to the Ministry of Megapolis and Western Development, Nihal Rupasinghe, the beggars found within the city will be picked up with the assistance of the Municipal authorities and the Police.

Police media spokesperson SP Ruwan Gunasekara told the Sunday Observer that the Police will arrest beggars under the Police Ordinance and the Vagrants Ordinance.

“They will be fined for the offence after arrest,” he said, adding that the police is prepared to assist in the plans of ridding Colombo of its beggar population.”

According to Gunasekara, the Police also currently monitor city centres and traffic lights and take action against people found to be begging in these places.

According to sources of the Ministry of Megapolis and Western Development, discussions regarding the project to remove beggars from the city from January 1 were held in October among all related parties with a comprehensive plan devised for the purpose.

Last week, Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka declared that begging in Colombo will be prohibited from January 1.

According to the Minister, there are around 600 beggars who operate within the Colombo city limits.