KOCHI: In the wake of increasing incidents of elderly abuse being reported across the country, non-profit organisation HelpAge India recently undertook a survey to study the situation of the old in India. While statistics show Kochi is quite low in elderly abuse, it’s prevalence cannot be neglected. According to the study, many of the senior citizens felt they were being disrespected in many ways, both by their children and grandchildren.
The study highlights that in Kochi, showing disrespect amounted as the biggest form of abuse. Twelve per cent of those interviewed said that they have been slapped and hit by loved ones, which is a testament to the growing abuse in society.
Twenty four per cent of the elderly, who range between 60 and above, said they are verbally abused on a frequent basis. Economic exploitation of the elderly is also quite common in the city as many men and women forcefully take away pension or their life-savings from their parents.
People’s Council for Social Justice project manager Bitty Joseph said that many families now consider their parents as a huge liability. “This increases when the parents are mentally unstable. Also, financial constraints and other priorities result in children abandoning the elderly,” she said.
Some of the elderly feel that the increasing use of gadgets are resulting in many youngsters not giving them the attention they deserve. Changing lifestyles is also a reason for elderly abuse.