Abandoning senior citizens is an offence, cautions Amarinder Sharma

May 15, 2017 03:34 PM

Punjab News Express/Y.S.Rana
CHANDIGARH: Mr Amarinder Sharma, CJM-Cum-Secretary, District Legal Services Authority, U.T., Chandigarh, while speaking in the seminar on International Day of Families here on Monday emphasized that there are over 82 Million old people in India and it was, therefore, the social collective responsibility that the sunset years should not be an ordeal for them.

The seminar was organized in the Old Age Home, Sector 15, Chandigarh and the provisions of The Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007, was discussed with the Old Age Home Inmates.

He stated that the Constitution of India guarantees right to life and liberty of every individual under Article 21 and this has been interpreted to include the right to live with dignity and would encompass the right to live with dignity of the Senior Citizens. The CJM-cum-Secretary, District Legal Services Authority, U.T., Chandigarh, further discussed the entire legislative framework relating to provisions for maintenance of the parents as well as senior citizens including the provisions of the Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act, 1956, Section 125 to 128 of Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 as well as the important feature of the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007, whereby, abandoning of Senior Citizen by anyone having care and protection of such senior citizens is an offence punishable of maximum period of 3 months or fine up to Rs.5,000/- or of both.

It was emphasized that this is a very important provision for protecting the life and property of senior citizens and from protecting their being abandoned. The Act also provides for the establishment of Old Age Homes for indigent Senior Citizens. He has also inspected the entire premises of the Old Age Home including the quality of meals being served to the Old Age Inmates and emphasized that there should be availability of proper health care and recreational facilities including proper arrangement for physiotherapy care. He also revealed that SLSA would encourage the students in Legal Service Clinics which have been set up in various schools and colleges to visit Old Age Homes and provide legal services to the Senior Citizens at the community level.

The state legal authority shall also depute sufficient number of Para Legal Volunteers for the implementation of the NALSA(Legal Services To Senior Citizens) Scheme, 2016 and for this purpose they shall draw upon PLVs who are trained to attend to the problems of Senior Citizens.

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