Govt proposes new schemes to ensure uniform age of senior citizens across all sectorsCurrently, the railways offers concessions to men over 60 years of age and women over 58 years of age while the insurance sector considers 65 years as the age for senior citizens.
The Centre has proposed new schemes to replace nearly a two-decade old National Policy on Older Persons (NPOP).
In its submission before the Supreme Court yesterday, the government said that the new policy will ensure uniform age of senior citizens across multiple sectors for availing government welfare schemes.
Currently, the railways offers concessions to men over 60 years of age and women over 58 years of age while the insurance sector considers 65 years as the age for senior citizens.
The development comes after the apex court said that schemes like NPOP are of 1990s and these need to be ‘reconsidered and revised’ by the government.
"We are of the view that the existing schemes such as the National Policy on Older Persons (NPOP), Integrated Programme for Older Persons (IPOP) and National Social Assistance Programme (NSAP) are of 1990s and these need to be reconsidered and revised," a bench comprising Justices MB Lokur and Deepak Gupta, which was hearing a PIL filed by former Union law minister Ashwani Kumar on right to live with dignity of elderly persons, observed.
Additional Solicitor General Pinky Anand, appearing for the Centre, said that the process of revision and reconsideration of schemes is already underway.
The court then posted the PIL for further hearing to August 17 and asked the Centre to file a status report with regard to the suggestions given by Mathew Cherian, who is assisting the bench on behalf of Help Age India and also an update on the proposed revision of the schemes and programmes.
During the hearing, Cherian gave a note containing suggestions for improving the conditions of elderly people in the country.
He suggested that there should be old Age pension for besides creation of infrastructure and facilities for the elderly.
He also said that the government programmes and schemes should be followed scrupulously and there should be a national policy and advisory bodies for implementation.
The former minister had said that right to live with dignity of the elderly people was being violated due to lack of care.