Kerala, which has around 42 lakh senior citizens, may soon have an exclusive commission to deal with the issues of the elderly people on the model of women, youth and child rights’ panels.
The Left government in the state is mulling setting up a panel to address the issues and concerns of the elderly in view of increasing complaints of atrocities and harassment against senior citizens, Minister for Social Justice and Higher Education, R Bindhu said.
”The government is actively considering the proposal as it was come to its notice that many elderly people, who had once toiled hard for the society and the family, are facing neglect, insult and torture in their later years of life,” she said on Friday.
The Minister was speaking after conducting the district-level inauguration of the ”Kanivu” programme, the maintenance tribunal adalat to settle the complaints in connection with the welfare and protection of senior citizens, at Kalamassery. Bindhu said the society has the moral responsibility to take care of senior citizens and provide them a secure environment to live in. Detailing various schemes being implemented by the government for the old people, she said the Social Justice Department would take initiative to set up clubs, parks, neighbouring groups and so on exclusively for them.
Geriatric care centres should be there in all panchayats and nurses having specialist training in their care should be evolved, the minister said, adding that the objective of her Department is to have secure home nursing facilities in all 14 districts of the state.
Interestingly, Kerala was one of the earliest states to have introduced an ‘Old Age Policy’ in 2006 for senior citizens to ensure maximum welfare measures for them.