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The court also raised questions on the petitioner, saying that granting all the prayers sought in the petition would be like an “invitation to people not to work”.

Image used for representational purposes
Image used for representational purposes

MUMBAI: Dismissing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL), the Bombay High Court made oral observations on Saturday that homeless persons and beggars should work. since everything cannot be provided by the state. A bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice GS Kulkarni disposed of a PIL filed by Brijesh Aarya, who sought a directive from Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to provide nutritious meals thrice a day, potable water, shelter and clean toilets for homeless persons, beggars and the poor people in the city.

The BMC informed the court that food packets were distributed to such people all over Mumbai with the help of NGOs and sanitary napkins were also provided. The court accepted this submission and said no further direction is required to augment the distribution. “They (homeless persons) should also work for the country. Everyone is working.

Everything cannot be provided by the state. You (petitioner) are just increasing the population of this section of the society,” the court said. The court also said that granting all the prayers sought in the petition would be like an “invitation to people not to work”. In its order, the bench noted that public toilets in the city and across the state charge a minimum amount for usage and directed the Maharashtra government to consider allowing homeless persons to use such facilities with the charge.
“We direct the state government to look if the homeless persons can use these toilets for free.” The judges also noted that the petition lacks details of who a homeless is, the population of homeless persons in the city and so on. “We are of the considered opinion that the state and BMC are taking steps in the right direction for the homeless and no direction is required at this stage. PIL petition stands disposed of,” they said.

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