June 30, 2011

INDIA: A different league of senior citizens

LUDHIANA, Punjab / The Times of India / News / June 30, 2011

By Deepti Dua, Times News Network



The barren wasteland that was sort of an infamous landmark in Urban Estate of Dugri has transformed into a lush green park, all thanks to the five powerpuff men. Till three years ago the land was used to dump garbage and most residents cribbed about its condition. Now, it is a hot spot with swings for kids to play, benches and umbrellas where elders can relax, a fountain and a tube well too.

The change began when the five senior citizens got together and decided to take charge of the park's maintenance. The men did everything from going door-to-door and requesting residents to pool money, to constituting a special committee for the project. They also opened a bank account where the contributions were deposited.

Their hard work pays off every evening when the park turns into a lively hangout where women, children and elderly people spend time. Morning walkers also frequent the park to stay fit. Any public function or ceremonies are strictly not allowed in the park.

A gardener has been appointed to take care of the plants and ensure the park stays clean. To make the garden more attractive and beautiful, the flower plants have been bought from Punjab Agricultural University (PAU).

Sheetu Chawla, a regular morning walker, said, "I am really lucky that I have a park so close to my house where I can go for brisk walks and stay fit. The greenery this has brought to our locality makes the scene pleasant and soothing to the eyes."

Another resident, Renu Shori, said, "After closing my boutique every evening I rush to the park for a walk. It infuses me with energy and helps to restore my energy."

Copyright © 2011 Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd.
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