Thursday, January 19, 2012

Senior Citizens of AP score a Victory

I am giving below the story of a significant victory of Senior
Citizens in a case filed before SHRC AP. This is from Sri RN Mital
President of AISCCON. Read on ....
If you deem it fit please tweet about it or mention it in your
Facebook Wall, citing this blog post accessible to all Thanks.

Dear friends

The Senior Citizens in Andhra Pradesh have won a significant victory
Here a paradoxical situation prevailed. As perhaps you know the
Arogyasri  Health Care Trust provides health security to the entire
BPL population of AP and thus covers 82%
population [AP has its own definition of BPL].But unfortunately the
BPL inmates of Old Age Homes who are obviously the most entitled, are
deprived of it because they do not possess a proof of Identity and
also the white Ration Card.

If a BPL inmate falls sick, his family is asked to take him back.
Usually the families do not respnd. As neither the inmate nor the OAH
have the resources to afford medical treatment. the fate of the sick
can be imagined. The fate of the terminally ill or disabled is
miserable.Therefore, adequate health security for the inmates in OAH
homes is a must.

But in AP the  Administration  has laid down a condition regarding the
possession of white ration card for their own convenience as it is not
specified in the Trust Deed of Arogyasri. Therefore, imposing an
arbitrary condition and depriving a vulnerable segment of society of
the benefits of a welfare scheme, is a violation of their Human
rights; more so because being in the average age group of 75+ it is
not possible for them to run around to get a ration card issued.They
have  neither the resources nor the physical ability to do so.

The other mandatory requirement is to submit a deletion certificate
from the original ration card endorsed by the local Revenue Officer.
It is generally impossible because their families are nor interested
in providing it as in most cases they are the abandoned souls or those
picked up from Hospitals, roads etc.

On account of these facts they are also denied the Old Age Pension and
the right to vote..

Having failed in their effort to persuade the Administration to take
remedial action in the matter,, the APSCCON [Andhra Pradesh Senior
Citizens' Confederation] finally filed a petition before the State
Human Rights Commission in 2010 and after two years of hearings and
adjournments the Commission has accepted our plea and has directed the
State Government in short to
              1] to arrange visit of an administrative officer
periodically to issue the Ration Cards/Health Cards/ Identity Cards to
eligible inmates on the spot.
              2] to issue Arogyasri Health Card on the basis of the
above and to arrange deletion of the names of inmates from the
original ration cards.
              3] to ensure payment of Old Age Pension and enrollment
as voters using the above cards as proof of identity.
              4] to set up CMCO referral centres in all District
Headquarters for all poor residents to avail benefits of the Arogyasri

The State Government has been given 5 months to implement the order.

The petition filed by us before SHRC and their order dated January 9,
2012 are attached.
(This blog post does not have these two attachments. Those interested
may get it by email from author / me). We are trying to give it as
wide publicity as possible so that friends in other States can use
this case as an example, where necessary, to get similar rights of the
poor .senior citizens in Old Age Homes in their States recognised.

Best regards,
All India Senior Citizens' Confederation [AISCCON]
8-2-333/14a, Rd.3,Banjara Hills, Huderabad - 34
Tel : 09052004913

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