Value elders 

Every year, World Senior Citizen Day is celebrated on August 21. As has been rightly observed by the Lieutenant Governor Maoj Sinha, senior citizens are the living repositories of our history and culture, holding within them a treasure of experiences and values. Their hard work, dedication, and sacrifices have paved the way for progress and development. As such everyone amongst us must remain committed to ensure that they enjoy a healthy and dignified life.

There is need to be appreciative of the elders and uphold their rights and dignity. It is the collective duty of all of us to accord due respect and care to the esteemed members of the community.

Senior citizens bring wisdom from the past experiences of their lives which can help the younger generation to learn immensely. They also help in preserving culture and heritage by passing on the wisdom and facts over generations.

However, over the years, there has been disrespect and allied problems faced by the elders as depicted by a survey which said that 44 percent of the elderly identified disrespect as the common form of abuse, followed by neglect (30 percent) and verbal abuse (26 percent). However, when it came to reporting the abuse, only 45 percent did.

As per the United Nations, elder abuse is a problem that exists in both developing and developed countries yet is typically under-reported globally. Even though the precise degree of elder mistreatment is unknown, its social and moral significance is obvious. As such, it demands a multifaceted response, one which focuses on protecting the rights of older persons.

As per Social Justice and Empowerment Ministry, a number of schemes exist to ameliorate their living standards. The ministry referred to National Policy on Older Persons, 1999, which envisages State support to ensure financial and food security, health care, shelter, protection and other needs of older persons to improve quality of their lives.

Besides there is Atal Vayo Abhyuday Yojana, Integrated Programme for Senior Citizens (IPSrC) and Rashtriya Vayoshri Yojana (RVY) etc. While various programmes and schemes are there, implementation in an apt manner remains important.

One expects the administration to plan and strategize taking into account local considerations and frame action plans for the welfare of senior citizens. The administration is also required to provide greater attention to the specific challenges affecting elders.  It is the responsibility of all to reciprocate the care they showed towards us when we needed it. By doing so, one can create an environment where they can lead happy and fulfilling lives while knowing they are valued and cherished members of the society.

Related Articles