NEW DELHI: In a shocking revelation, nearly one out of two elders are mistreated in the country with Bangalore turning out to be the highest perpetrator with 70 percent elders experiencing abuse, followed by Hyderabad with 60 percent.
While nationally 44 percent elders have actually experienced abuse and mistreatment by society due to their age but Hyderabad, Bangalore, Bhubaneswar and Chennai in most parameters are amongst the top five cities that mistreat elders in the public space.
The 19 city report by HelpAge India aims to understand in-depth how elders are treated in the public space across the nation. Previous elder abuse surveys show that 50 percent of India’s elderly are abused at home.
While abuse at home can be explained due to a variety of personal reasons such as lust for property, perceived financial and emotional burden on the care giver; mistreatment and abuse in the public space is inexcusable.
“Elder Abuse is a sensitive topic. Over the past few years we have been studying and researching Elder Abuse within the closed doors of one’s home. We have surveyed the elder perspective as well as the youth perspective. This year we decided to move out of the home into the much broader area of Public Space,” says Mathew Cherian, CEO, HelpAge India.
The research covers four main areas: Actual Experiences of the elders as they interact with people and service providers, Elder Perceptions on elder ill-treatment, the general state of mind of the elders as they step out of their homes and a Wish List of elder expectations from society.
Fifty three percent of elders find the behavior of motorists and bikers a challenge. While in Delhi, 45 percent elders feel unsafe with the behavior of motorists on the road, Bangalore ranks the highest with 73 percent.