Free Press Journal

Awareness ‘yatra’ highlights pension-related issues


New Delhi: Issues like capping of pension allocations, meagre amount and whimsical delivery of pension were identified during a week-long awareness campaign here that concluded Friday.

“The Right to Food Campaign and Pension Parishad” campaign, aimed to remind vote seekers to prioritize the pension demand of people, visited several slums and impoverished areas across all seven Lok Sabha constituencies in the national capital.

At the end of the “yatra”, a review was held to identify problems that were bothering people the most.

These included issues like capping of pension allocations, lengthy documentation requirements, the meagre amount and whimsical delivery of pension, and finally, undue political interference in nod to pension application, said an official statement.

The “yatra” that began March 28 covered people in slums, the homeless population and colonies of waste-pickers, with most of them not having ration cards and no pension.

“Issues faced by those in Delhi are common across India. In India, even when you are close to dying, you have to work, you have no relief because you will die of hunger and what stands out is the sheer indignity that they are subjected to,” said Mathew Cherian of the National Council for Older Persons.

At the review meeting, social activist Aruna Roy said the “yatra” is a continuing effort to highlight the problems faced by the elderly people in the country.

“One thing has become clear that in Delhi the forms and identity proofs asked of those applying for pension were highly exclusionary,” she said in the statement.

“How can you ask someone for identity proof who is not even sure where they were born? It is a travesty,” she added.