Indian police have rounded up beggars in the southern city of Hyderabad ahead of a visit by Ivanka Trump, the daughter and adviser to US President Donald Trump.
Police said on Friday that Ivanka Trump was planning to join India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other leaders during a 3-day Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Hyderabad later this month.
Hyderabad police commissioner M Mahendar Reddy reportedly issued a communique ordering law enforcement officers to gather the beggars from the streets.
Reddy said that beggars, plentiful in the poverty-stricken country, would cause “obstruction” to traffic and “danger” for the public, making it necessary to remove them from the streets.
Although begging is an illegal act in India, the law banning beggars from public locations is rarely enforced, and in this case the ban will only be in place for two months.
The city has set up a rehabilitation center to accommodate the beggars until they were able to “lead normal lives” like other citizens.
So far, police have removed nearly 400 beggars from the city center and lodged them at a rehabilitation center at the Chanchalguda Jail.
City officials aim to gather 6,000 beggars from the city before the start of the summit.
In the year 2000, Hyderabad police gathered beggars ahead of a visit by then US President Bill Clinton.
Hyderabad has about 9 million residents. The city has had a rapid economic growth in recent years and is considered a global tech hub.