1 in 3 elders subjected to abuse
A nationwide survey by HelpAge India reveals that about 38 per cent of the elderly, residing in the city, don't receive proper care from their children. Some of them are thrown out of their houses and forced to live in old age homes run by charitable organisations.On the occasion of the first UN International Day to Prevent Elder Abuse and the seventh World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, statistics show that one in every three senior citizens in Hyderabad is subjected to abuse and humiliation, shockingly by none other than their own children.
A few stay in paid old age homes. According to the survey, a higher number of elderly women than men are subjected to abuse. In most cases, the sons are the culprits, followed by the daughters-in-law.
The survey also reveals that while all the elders were verbally abused, substantial percentages reported being disrespected and neglected. "Psychological abuse has multiple impacts, which is more than physical and financial abuse," said one senior citizen.
According to Naveen Mittal, special commissioner, Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation, the problem of elder abuse was increasing due to "the loss of cohesiveness in families probably due to children migrating for employment; and increasing materialism in society," he said.
He said the GHMC had started a senior citizens' welfare programme, Aasara, and was also starting local committees to focus on major areas of improvement like health, legal awareness and entertainment.
Lok Adalat for senior citizens inaugurated
Justice Madan B. Lokur of the Supreme Court on Friday inaugurated the Lok Adalat bench for senior citizens on the occasion of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. Terming it the only Lok Adalat of its kind in the entire country, he said the state of Andhra Pradesh had shown the lead and determination to help senior citizens.
R.N. Mittal, president of the All India Senior Citizens' Confederation, said the Adalat would have a three-judge panel.
"This Adalat will be the first of its kind in the country, helping solve the many problems, particularly abuse, that elders suffer," he said. A brainchild of Justice Lokur and Justice B. Subhashan Reddy, former chairman of State Human Rights Commission, the Adalat will be presided over by the latter and it comprises former High Court judges Justice Motilal B. Naik and Justice S.V. Maruthi as members.
The bench will conduct its sitting twice a month to hear disputes of senior citizens, except pension matters as separate Lok Adalat is there for the purpose. Justice V. Eswaraiah, acting Chief Justice of AP HC, Odisha HC Chief Justice V. Gopala Gowda were among those present.
105-year-old among others felicitated