February 12, 2010

INDIA: State taking good care of old people, says TN Chief Secretary

. MADURAI, Tamil Nadu / The Hindu / February 12, 2010 By Staff Reporter “Value system eroding ever since we started aping the West” The Tamil Nadu state Government had been implementing many schemes for the welfare of aged people. They included giving them pension, bringing them under health insurance coverage and noon meal scheme, said Chief Secretary K. S. Sripathi. He was addressing the inaugural function of an awareness programme on Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens’ Act organised here on Thursday by Indiram Education and Social Welfare Trust, Madurai Kamaraj University National Service Scheme (NSS), Thiagarajar College of Engineering and Lakshmi Vidhya Sangam. India had a value system since time immemorial about which the citizens could be proud of. However, in recent years, the value system had begun to erode as the country started to ape the West, he said. That an Act was needed to care for the aged and elderly, which should be a basic duty of every child, was itself a pointer to the degradation, he said. The success story of the economy of the United States of America and many European countries was largely due to the efforts of the Indian youth working there. This had been recognised by those countries. A reversal of this outflow of youngsters was being witnessed with more people seeking to work in India. This augured well for the future, Mr. Sripathi said, adding that their contribution would go towards making the country an economic superpower in a decade or so. The Chief Secretary also read out a pledge for the youngsters and made them take a vow to care for the elderly. He also took part in the ‘sashtiabdapoorthi’ (completion of 60 years) ceremony performed on stage for 20 couples. Illustration by courtesy of mohan60.blogspot.com Speaking earlier, Commissioner of Police P. Balasubramanian praised the work of the Indiram Trust for conducting such programmes. A study by the trust found that the number of homes for the aged was increasing exponentially in recent times. Former Special Director of Intelligence Bureau K.V.S. Gopalakrishnan said that longevity in India had increased from 50 years in 1950 to 68 years. It was estimated that the country would have 81 million old people by 2016. Director of Lakshmi Vidya Sangam R. Srinivasan, and trust secretary K. Ramprabhu spoke.[rc] Copyright © 2010, The Hindu