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Class & gender concerns at night shelters in Delhi

New Delhi: In the bone chilling winter when finding a place to sleep becomes an utter necessity, many homeless people in the national capital are making a deliberate choice of not sleeping in night shelters due to concerns of class, gender and personal hygiene among others.

A sizeable chunk of the roughly estimated one lakh homeless in the national capital are ready to brave the chill but are not very enthusiastic about using the night shelters set up for them.

“These night shelters are like mini villages where we can easily see the class, gender and hygiene contradictions among people living there. I have seen people refusing to sleep with beggars,” says Sanjay Gupta, Director of city-based NGO, Chetna.

26-year-old Salim refused to sleep in a night shelter where, according to him, people do not bathe regularly.

“I can not sleep with them.

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