The articles on the problems faced by senior citizens (Open Page, May 16) were interesting and informative. The average Indian senior citizen is faced with poverty, poor health and gross neglect by his or her dear ones.

Age does not bring respect any more but only fear. Insurance, health care, telecommunication and transport can do a lot to ease the physical and psychological burden of the aged. In western countries, one can work as long as one is physically and mentally fit, avoiding loneliness and neglect. But here, the aged often end up running errands for sons and daughters.

H.K. Lakshman Rao,

Chennai

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In my personal experience, the single most important need is financial independence. While money cannot replace close family ties and day-to-day interactions, it can certainly buy you necessities, help, and security.

Residing at an accessible distance from your children's homes assures you help in emergencies. Conscious non-interference in the family affairs of our children while intermittently hosting family get-togethers can go a long way in our carrying on successfully during the trying period of our lives.

K.R. Kamath,

Mangalore

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