Delhi Social Welfare Minister Mangat Ram Singhal Friday asked the city mayor to ensure an adequate number of night shelters for homeless people in the capital, and offered to provide funds for this purpose.
According to an official statement, Singhal offered financial help to the mayor in setting up of temporary night shelters. He proposed to provide funds for setting up of night shelters and told the mayor that setting up of night shelters should not stop due to lack of funds.
"Following the directions of the Supreme Court, the state government has started the work of setting up temporary night shelters and instructions have been issued to MCD (Municipal Corporation of Delhi) in this regard," Singhal said, according to the statement.
Expressing concern over the condition of homeless in the city, the apex court Wednesday directed the Delhi government to provide night shelters to all the homeless in the capital by Wednesday evening itself.
Delhi Chief Secretary Rakesh Mehta convened an emergency meeting the same day and asked MCD to identify places for setting up night shelters. The civic body Thursday identified 37 places for night shelters. The additional night shelters are expected to provide relief to 4,510 men and 410 women and children.
"A total of 26 night shelters are presently being run by MCD, in which about 5,000 people can stay. This number is very less. Apart from it, the Delhi government has also set up 18 night shelters at 16 places," Singhal said.
"After the direction of the supreme court, seven more night shelters have been set up," he added.
Singhal also appealed to Delhi residents to take homeless people to night shelters if they find them out in the cold at any place.