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Delhi HC: Need of Stringent Compliance with Laws for Senior Citizens

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Delhi High Court Law Insider

Priya Gour

Published on: 5 August 2022 at 20:38 IST

The Delhi High Court issued orders for the city government for better compliance with the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007. The law mandates maintenance by children for their parents, and the government to provide old-age homes and ensure medical care for senior citizens.

The Issue:

Advocate Neha Rai, in her letter 2022, pointed out the poor implementation of the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007. In this regard, the Court initiated a Closed PIL on it’s own. The matter highlighted the poor state of affairs in the execution of the act.

The letter by the lawyer noted that the statutory authorities, namely the District Magistrates and the SDMs (Sub-Divisional Magistrate) are not rightfully implementing the Act.

The letter pointed out that, “appeals and cries of the senior citizens have to be attended to on an urgent basis to provide them relief, lest their very existence is put in jeopardy”.

In response, orders were issued by the High Court to all the District Magistrates as well as the SDMs to file their status reports in this regard, mentioning about individual complaints received by them under the act as well as the time frame within which they were addressed.

Also, orders were issued to submit the reports regarding the total pendency. The court also called for the data on number of complaints received on the website/ helpline number with a complete log, since January 2022.

The Bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad noted:

The respondents [government and its departments concerned] should also ensure that the helpline numbers are active and functional, and also ensure the status and next date of hearing/ proceedings are duly reflected and accessible online.

Submitting its defence, it was informed by the Delhi government that District Magistrates were taking due and timely action in the matter.

However, the Court, not being satisfied with the submissions, directed the Delhi Government that the act be implemented expeditiously and closed the PIL.