Thursday, September 19, 2013

It’s the enemy within for Capital’s elderly

It's the enemy within for Capital's elderly

For a majority of senior citizens in Delhi, the enemy is not some criminal who takes advantage of their vulnerability to rob or murder them. It's the enemy within.

Bal Mukund Sharma, 78, had to fight for over three years with his son to win the right to live in the house that he built for his family. His son used to beat him up in the hope of grabbing his father's property.

Sharma is not alone.

One in five senior citizens in Delhi face abuse by their family members, mostly by daughter-in-law and sons. According to a report by HelpAge India, as many as 20% elders from Delhi and 23% across India said they had experienced abuse.

The NGO, that also runs a helpline for the elderly, claims most of the calls they receive in Delhi are about harassment by the family over property disputes. "On an average, we receive 20-22 calls every day. Most of them are about a son or a daughter trying to grab the property. Sometimes it is only emotional but when it turns physical, we coordinate with police and take the relatives to the court," said Mathew Cherian, CEO, HelpAge India.

The report found that as many as 70% of the respondents who admitted facing abuse did not report the matter. "Maintaining confidentiality of family matters" was a major reason behind not reporting abuse (for 33% among them), followed by "fear of retaliation" (for 39%).

Many did not report abuse as they "did not know how to deal with the problem". The most common forms of abuse experienced by the elderly were disrespect (41%), verbal abuse (32%).  As many as 27% faced physical abuse, including beating/slapping.

The son is the main perpetrator of abuse (34%), followed by the daughter-in-law (24%).

Police statistics show 63 senior citizens had been murdered and 27 were robbed in various parts of the capital in the past three-and-a-half years. "Apart from having a senior citizen cell at the police headquarters, we directed the district police to visit senior citizens living in the area regularly. Last year, 265,339 visits were conducted and 170,208 phone calls were made," said a senior police officer.




This news item was distributed in sss-global by Sri VRV Rao
For regular news on senior citizens subscribe to sss-global

Monday, September 16, 2013

Corporate Social Responsibility and Senior Citizens

Given below is a message from Sri RN MItal President All India Senior
Citizens Confederation


Dear friends,
Mr. Biju Mathews of Help Age has raised a very important issue in his
mail dated September 10 and it is that in the 10 activities which
qualify under the mandatory 2% CSR in the new Company Law, there is
no reference to the issues arising out of the fast ageing population.
Many of our Welfare activities could be given practical shape as the
resources which are expected to be generated through this provision
are huge being of the order of 20,000 crores.

It is unfortunate because while in the above activities all other
vulnerable groups such as women. the disabled, scheduled castes and
tribes etc have been mentioned, the large group of 11 crore senior
citizens has been omitted, though the 4 crore destitute senior
citizens are regarded as the most vulnerable segment of society.

AISCCON brought it to the notice of the Nodal Ministry through my
monthly letter dated June 10 and as there was no response a
representation was made directly to Hon'ble Shri Sachin Pilot through
our letters dated July 6 and later again on August 19. Both have
remained unacknowledged.

Now since the Act has already been passed by the Rajya Sabha also and
the Rules are being finalised, the only alternative left with us is to
get an advisory issued under last clause number (x) of the activities,
reading as " such other matters as may be prescribed" and get the
Senior Citizens related issues included. To my mind it can be best
achieved by meeting the Hon'ble Minister in a delegation. We will take
an appointment and will revert.

We may know that CSR is not a concept unique to India. In almost all
other developed and under developed Countries it is the major source
for financing welfare programmes. We have the distinction of being
about the lowest in private and corporate philanthropy which is less
than 0.5% of the GDP compared with around 5% in Scandinavian
Countries or 4% in Tanzania.It may be of interest to know that in
China Corporate houses, in addition to financial contribution, are
obliged to give 20 days paid leave to their employees so that they
can spend that time with their parents if they live in some other
town, to make them feel that they are not alone.


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Problems with moderating Yahoo Groups

During the past few months problems in using Yahoo Groups have
multiplied. I have been moderating a decent Yahoo Group sss-global for
the past 12 years. THere are more than 680 members - all are senior
citizens - 60+ who are Net Savvy. There are many problems in running
this group.

1. The number of active members (subscribers) is shown on home page of
the group at the URL: When additions and deletions
of members is made the number shown in the Home Page does not tally. I
do know that this information has to be fetched from a different
independent server that hold info of ALL groups. Still even after days
the data on Group Home Page does not get updated.

2. The facility of "Direct Addition of Member" has been discontinued.
This is a great loss. When invites are sent, they never arrive at
potential member's inbox.

3. Digest mode of delivery of messages trims off some messages every
day. Not all messages are delivered. Attachments and images are lost
in digest mode.

4. Recent changes of Yahoo Groups have added to my worries.
Subscribers are missing messages. Messages are delivered erratically,
out of turn. Most messages land in Spam folder. Email
addresses suffer most.

5. While messages appear in Server site they fail to reach member's Inbox.

6. Changes made to delivery mode are not honored.

7. Many illegal members gain membership without knowledge of
moderator. No simple way to delete them.

8. At times Removing a Member does not work.

9. Current web side changes are difficult to understand and use. Confusing.

10. Large scale complaints from members about non-delivery of their
posts, non-receipt of messages

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Lemon rain


Though the law says:
"All that crosses the Compound wall into your side is yours"
I was hesitant to pluck a few ripe lemons
that were too tempting and were left un-cared for,
from my neigbor's tree all along.
Lat night there were heavy winds
accompanying rains;
It rained lemons from neighbor's tree
right into my garden.