Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The Elderly and Bangalore

I see a pathetic sight in Bangalore...a struggling elderly population with very little or minimal support systems and if one were to drive through the city at any point of the day or night you see at least one elderly person in doldrums silently asking for help but none sensitive to the situation.

This happens in the bus stands and railway stations and at pedestrian crossings. Are we an ill-educated city not sensitive to yearnings around.

It is high time that a general awareness is created in the populace and also governmental mechanisms respond to such situations in a be-fitting manner. Let me suggest at least 06 mechanisms that could be put in place to make the city a more age friendly place;

1. The police force of all kinds must during their duty at various points enlighten themselves to be proactive when they see elderly people in the city and respond to any imminent need.

2. The general public must be aware of being empathetic if not concerned and do within their ambit some support that an elderly entity might need when they are spotted in the public.

3.The BMTC buses where ever feasible could pick up an elderly person from any point of the road and not necessarily from bus stops. The staff must be ingrained of this necessity and the same carried out. A case study could be a mid-afternoon and an elderly person stranded mid way between bus stops and a relatively empty bus passing that way fails to do what it should..pick up the person from the spot.

4. Auto rickshaw drivers could do their bit by providing fee lifts where ever possible.

5. Conduct a survey to find out the reasons why the elderly have to move out of their habitats into a risky environment and create a hot line so that their needs could be met up-front and they need not move into town.

6. Whenever you see an elderly person in the bus do everything possible to share the seat with him or her whatever the situation may be.

Let us not be a heartless city in these modern times of economic chaos and growth so much so that we don't care for the demands of frailties around and let this city be a model for such initiatives for all cities across the globe.


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