Delhi government on Friday announced that it would be opening 100 new night shelters across the city over the next few days with a view to providing relief to the homeless from the biting cold.
Talking about the proposed move, Urban Development Minister Manish Sisodia said the SDMs who had been asked to map the homeless in the city had found 4,018 persons sleeping in the open at 212 locations.
"At some places, the SDMs found more than 100 homeless in flocks... at some places, 30-40 people, while at many others, they found 15 to 20 people who were without shelter," Sisodia said.
"Of these 212 locations, we have found that we need to provide shelters at 100 places," he added.
"Some of the night shelters will be bigger, accommodating 100 to 300 people. Such shelters will be opened near hospitals, railway stations and bus terminuses.
"Small night shelters, to house up to 100 homeless, and others accommodating 30 to 40 persons will be developed at the remaining locations. These night shelters will soon be constructed," Sisodia said, adding that the porta cabins would be put up in two-three days.
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had on Wednesday directed all SDMs in the national capital to conduct night-time inspections in their respective areas to ensure that the existing shelters were being run properly.
The SDMs had also been asked to prepare a list of areas where night shelters are required to be put up on a priority basis within three days.
Following its recent decision to survey 45 locations identified by an NGO, Ashray Adhikar Abhiyan, Sisodia said shelters would be put at many of those sites.
"After the government's announcement, a large number of NGOs have come forward to develop the night shelters for the homeless in the city," he added.