Aimed at making society beggar free, the administration of Gopalganj Sadar upazila has taken steps to rehabilitate beggars in the district.
For the first time, the administration on Saturday rehabilitated at least 37 beggars by providing them with alternative sources of income.
Nine among them were given grocery shops, four were given tea stalls, one a pitha (cake) shop, 22 were given poultry farms and one a bookstall at a cost of Tk8 lakh.
Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) Shammi Akter handed over the shops and livestock among the beggars at a function organised by the administration at Social Welfare auditorium on the day.
A discussion was also held where Social Welfare Officer Sultana Zahid Parveen, Raghunathpur union council Chairman Sreebas Biswas and Gopinathpur UP Chairman Aminul Haque Bachhu, among others, spoke on the occasion.
A total of 85 people are begging in the upazila at last count.
The UNO said all of them would be rehabilitated soon by being provided with alternative sources of income.
The government aims to free the country of beggars by 2018 in line with sustainable development goals, a United Nations agenda to end poverty and protect human rights following the expiry of the millennium development goals in 2015.
Directives for launching a beggar rehabilitation programme have already been given to district officials by former principal secretary to the Prime Minister’s Office Abul Kalam Azad.