By : M.S.Yatnatti Editor and Video Journalist Bengaluru : Our nation is facing a crisis in ageing as we attempt to understand and prepare to meet the needs of millions of older adults, current and future. Public and private sectors are engaged in a dialogue to address the needs of a diverse ageing population; to promote their dignity and independence, and expand opportunities for current and future generations of older persons. In 2006, the United Nations General Assembly declared June 15th as "World Elder Abuse Awareness Day”. There is no beter time than now to discuss ways to combat this social malaise that has crept into our families and communities unchallenged.
Reportedly Officials at several police stations in Bengaluru have not been effective in implementing action plans for the protection of senior citizens specified by the state government .Section 21 of Karnataka Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Rules, 2009 specifies an action plan for the protection of life and property of senior citizens, which includes maintaining an up-to-date list of senior citizens living within their jurisdiction, especially seniors who live alone. Reportedly Ageing is a natural process, which inevitably occurs in human life cycle. It brings with a host of challenges in the life of the elderly, which are mostly engineered by the changes in their body, mind, thought process and the living patterns. Ageing refers to a decline n the functional capacity of the organs of the human body, which occurs mostly due to physiological transformation, it never imply that everything has been finished. The senior citizens constitute a precious reservoir of such human resource as is gifted with knowledge of various sorts, varied experiences and deep insights. May be they have formally retired, yet an overwhelming majority of them are physically fit and mentally alert. Hence, given an appropriate opportunity, they are in a position to make significant contribution to the socio-economic development of their nation.
Reportedly The Karnataka High Court recently directed the State government to ensure that each police station maintains an up-to-date list of senior citizens in its jurisdiction, if no such list is maintained as per provisions of the Karnataka Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Rules, 2009.Observing that it is high time the State government prescribes a comprehensive action plan for protecting the life and property as per the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007 and the Rules, the high court said that the government is required to provide a helpline to senior citizens in taluk and district headquarters as well.Justice Ashok B. Hinchigeri passed the order while disposing a petition filed by 70-year-old Pachamma. She was living in a house, allotted by the Karnataka Slum Development Board, at New Byappanahalli in Bengaluru since 1970. She had borrowed Rs. 30,000 from S. Karunakaran, a money lender, in 1996, as her child was suffering from heart related ailments. She had repaid the loan within six months. She alleged that Karunakaran had secured her signature on a blank sheet of paper at the time of giving money to her and continued to demand more money. With the help of his henchmen, he removed her from her house in 2008 and illegally took possession of the property.On her complaint, Byappanahalli police had registered a case under provisions of the Karnataka Prohibition of Charging Exorbitant Interest Act and the Prize Chit and Money Circulation Schemes (Banning) Act. However, the court noted that the police had not filed a charge sheet, for reasons best known to them, against Karunakaran for taking possession of her house unlawfully. The court directed the police commissioner to restore the house to her after verifying the facts while asking the State to ensure that an action plan is in place for the protection of life and property of senior citizens as per Section 21 of the Rules framed in 2009.