In Telangana, abandoned old folks rue misfortune

By DECCAN CHRONICLE | Bansari trivedi J

13 January 2023

Hyderabad: Instances of abandonment of senior citizens by their children are on the rise, with the elderly saying that their children take care of them only if there is a monetary gain for them and kick them out the moment they have to spend money on them.

In two instances, senior citizens abandoned by their children told Deccan Chronicle that they are afraid to return home, fearing for their lives, as they were abandoned ruthlessly in the first instance, in poor conditions.

Seventy-year-old Rajamma is one such woman, who suffers from poor health after working for decades as a domestic help. Around six months ago, her legs weakened, following which she was bedridden and unable to work. She thought she would have time to spend with her family, but she said she did not expect the brutal treatment she faced.

Rajamma was beaten up regularly by her daughters and grandchildren, made to sleep outside the house and not given food for days, as her family members did not want to take care of her. She was finally thrown at a bus stop two hours from her village and left to fend for herself.

“I tried to kill myself by consuming poisonous substances but unfortunately survived. After bearing three months of mental and physical harassment, I was left to die at a bus stop. The police took me to an old-age home and the trauma still haunts me. Even though I am in a safe space now for the past three months, there is no peace,” she said, shedding tears. 

Seventy-five-year-old Raja Mouli said his life was shattered the day he slipped and broke his hipbone. He was abandoned by his sons as soon as they were informed that he would be bedridden for the rest of his life and was dropped off at an old-age home during the peak of Covid-19. While they initially used to call to check on him, there has been no contact over the past year, and they do not contribute to his treatment either.

“I can go home only if I can walk and take care of myself, else I am a burden. Instead of taking care of me, my sons are forcing me to give away my Rs 2 crore property to them. I will not go back to my sons, else I will be killed as they are not interested in taking care of me and only want my land,” said Raja Mouli.

 Both Raja Mouli and Rajamma ended up at an old age home run by Dr Rama Krishna, who also provides free medical treatment to senior citizens for over 15 years.

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