India is known as the country of youth since around 50% of our population falls in the age group of 19-30 years. However, we also suffer from a bigger problem when this youth starts hating or neglecting the older people of their own family.
On an average, around 60% of the elderly couples in India are forced by their children to leave their homes. Since they are forced to leave the homes, which they had built in with all their hard work; they are left clueless with no place to go. They take refuge in old age homes as their shelter, but many old age homes in India do not guarantee first class treatment. However there is an organisation called The Golden Estate which has come up with a novel concept of service apartments only for senior citizens offering first class treatment to all the residents.
In India, children find it extremely difficult to accept the fact that their parents are getting older and would need their support & love just like they once shared with them. There are times when parents just want to relax and want their children to reciprocate their care. Parents do not want themselves to be treated as unnecessary burden by their children.
Every other day, we see news of parents being beaten up by their children, parents and in laws being forced to do the house hold chores, being made to live in small dungeon rooms, their property being forcefully taken over by over ambitious children. Although the former president of India; had given her assent to the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act which punishes children who abandon parents with a prison term of three months or a fine, situation is dingy for elderly people in India..However only a very few cases get reported while majority of them go unheard.
According to NGOs, incidences of elderly couples being forced to sell their houses are very high. Some elderly people have also complained that in case of a property dispute they feel more helpless when their wives side with their children. Many of them suffer in silence as they fear humiliation or are too scared to speak up.
It’s ironic that we tend to forget that the reason we exist is because of our parents, right from our health to our education is only because of the 2 people on this earth. And we hate to take care of them when they need us the most.
But the truth is that even when they are counting their last breath, they are still thinking of their children!
Government should take initiative to counsel the children who do not take proper care of their parents. Come on the so called youth nation, it’s high time now, we should stop neglecting the older generation of the country and create a country wide campaign to protect the welfare of senior citizens.
We solicit responses / comments / sharing of good / bad deeds which highlight this issue or provide solutions.