BENGALURU: Not many senior citizens are aware that if they are ill-treated by their own children after passing on their property to their name, there is a possibility of retrieving it back. And with June 15 being celebrated as World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAWD), the city elders’ helpline number 1090 at the Commissioner of Police (COP) needs to be reworked on to protect city’s elders.
Within a year, 27 cases have been registered under the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act which protects the elderly who have transferred their property and then have been abandoned. Out of them, the results of 17 cases have been in favour of the elderly. “In most cases, elderly parents hesitate to file a complaint against their own children and hence are prone to vulnerability. Not only that, when they decide to approach the local police station, cases are not registered since police feel family disputes can be resolved amicably,”says Sandhya, project-in-charge of the helpline.
“Earlier this year, an elderly couple in Boganahalli had to live on the streets after their 38-year-old son abandoned them. The petitioner alleged that the son had been taking money from them as much as Rs 18 lakh for studying in Canada, however, the son never left and the money was being misused, the complaint stated.
The son argued that he was being ill-treated by his parents since childhood and had also spent `35 lakh for the construction of the house. “We approached the Tribunal on their behalf and after five months, the court ruled in their favour following support from their other son,” Sandhya explained.
Another case registered earlier this year saw a daughter-in-law trying to force her elderly mother-in-law to transfer her property to her son’s name. The complaint which was registered at Hanumantha Nagar police station stated that the elderly woman was being physically and mentally harassed. The court finally ordered that the couple move out of the house and allow the 69-year-old to keep her property. “Most of the cases see the elderly getting neglected and harassed in their own homes,” says Sandhya.