PUNE: The society which teaches to respect the elders has however failed in carrying forward the tradition as the recent survey by HelpAge India showed that nearly 60 per cent of elders in the country face one or other type of verbal or physical abuse.
Among the types of abuse - disrespect (56 per cent), verbal abuse (49 per cent) and neglect (33 per cent) were the most common form of abuse in the society from past five years. HelpAge released the nationwide report on elder abuse in India on the occasion of ‘World Elder Abuse Awareness Day’ which was observed on June 15. The survey was conducted in 23 cities across the country in May and as many as 5,014 elders participated in it.
The highest abuse was reported in Mangalore (47%) closely followed by Ahmedabad (46%), Bhopal (39%), Amritsar (35%) and Delhi (33%). The lowest number of abuse cases were reported from Jammu (12%), Mumbai (13%), Vizag (13%), Kochi (15%) and Guwahati (17%). On the national level, 52% of elders did not report the matter ‘to maintain the confidentiality of the family matters’.
Whereas 34% of elders did not know ‘how to deal with the problem’.
The survey included two cities from Maharashtra i.e. Mumbai and Nagpur. The abuse percentage in Mumbai was 13 per cent while in Nagpur it was 22 per cent. In Mumbai, 40 per cent elders considered ‘disrespect’ as abuse whereas in Nagpur, 60 per cent elders faced verbal abuse. About 55 per cent elders in Mumbai did not report abuse to maintain the grace of the family. Whereas, in Nagpur it was 61 per cent.
Arun Rode, Secretary, Federation of Senior Citizens’ Organisations of Maharashtra (FESCOM) while speaking to Sakal Times, said, “Pune is considered as ‘pensioners’ city’ and crime related to the elders are comparatively less as compared to other parts of the country.”
He also added that FESCOM’s legal advisors, whose services are totally free for elders had solved 10 cases out of 47 since 2010 in Pune. Apparently, the city has 152 organisations which are working for senior citizens and these organisations have approximately six to seven lakh members. According to records, 4,000 to 5,000 elderly people live alone and for their security, Police Commissioner Rashmi Shukla had already launched a helpline number 1090 in August 2016.”
ELDERS DO MATTER
- More than 60% of elders agreed that phones and computers have reduced the quality times spent by elders, children and grandchildren.
- 65% elders stated that extreme attention given to phones and computers is disrespectful.
- In Dehradun, Jaipur, Chandigarh, Vizag and Mumbai, more than one-fourth elders above 80 years could not articulate and say what amounts to abuse. Delhi, Faridabad, Kanpur, Ahmedabad and Nagpur reported a relatively high frequency of beating or slapping.