Chief Justice asks lawyers, NGOs to create awareness

Chief Justice of the Madras High Court M.Y. Iqbal on Sunday said the provisions of the Puducherry Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act 2007 and the Puducherry Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Rules 2011 should be utilised well to protect senior citizens against land grabbing and harassment.

Participating in a function organised by the Puducherry Legal Service Authority here, he said there were complaints by elderly persons that their houses, land and other properties were forcefully or illegally grabbed by their children and relatives. Some of them had been facing harassment. Though there were other laws to protect them against land grabbing and other offences, the above said laws had a number of provisions to protect the rights and welfare of senior citizens. They would enable the senior citizens to get speedy justice.

Stating that a conducive atmosphere must be created for the peaceful living of senior citizens, Mr. Justice Iqbal, who has been elevated to the Supreme Court, said the representatives of various forums, lawyers, non-governmental organisations and others should create awareness among people, particularly in rural areas of the provisions of the Acts. Senior citizens must be made aware of legal remedies against those grabbing their property or those who failed to take care of them.

David Annoussamy, former High Court Judge, said the fine component stated in the Puducherry laws against those who failed to look after their parents was very less. Similarly, the pension amount for senior citizens was also less. Steps must be taken to increase fine and pension.

G. Chockalingam, Registrar General, Madras High Court, C.S. Murugan, Chief Judge, Puducherry, D. Ramabathiran, District Judge and Member Secretary, Puducherry Legal Services Authority, spoke.

Earlier, the Chief Justice released books titled ‘The Puducherry Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and the Senior Citizens Act 2007’ and ‘The Puducherry Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Rules 2011.’ The books in Tamil version were also released.

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