NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Tuesday directed the Central and State governments to continue providing timely old age pension, mask, sanitisers and essential good and services to all senior citizens living alone amid the Covid crisis. A bench headed by Justice Ashok Bhushan asked the state governments to promptly respond on the matter and take necessary steps when senior citizens, especially those living alone amid the pandemic, make such requests.
The SC told the governments that they are obliged to take care of senior citizens who are living alone by ensuring that they are provided essential goods and services. It also directed the Central government to ensure that all the safety precautions for Covid-19 are followed in old age homes and caregivers there are well equipped with masks, personal protection equipment (PPE) kits, and sanitisers. The order came on a plea filed on former Union Law Minister Ashwini Kumar’s pending PIL, which highlighted the plight of the elderly in the country.
During the hearing, Kumar told the bench that during Covid- 19 situation food, water, medicines, masks and other facilities should be provided to elderly people, especially those who are living alone as they are finding it difficult to access food, market and medicines.