Senior citizens demand hike in allowance

  • Say they should be provided Rs 5,000 a month
- Post Report, Kathmandu
The government through the budget announced senior citizens would get Rs 2,000 in social security allowance

Jul 28, 2016-The Senior Citizens Struggle Committee, a group of senior citizens which has changed its name to Senior Citizens Society (SCS), has launched its “second round of struggle” demanding that the government ensure a monthly social security allowance of Rs 5,000 for the elderly.

The SCS, which first began its peaceful struggle three years ago, had called of protests in May after the government through the budget announced that senior citizens would get Rs 2,000 as monthly social security allowance. As part of their struggle, the senior citizens used to stage sit-ins on a daily basis. 

As per the new provision, senior citizens 60 years or above are entitled to receive Rs 2,000 as monthly social security allowance. 

“The government acknowledged our demands by increasing the allowance. Many of our members were too old to participate in the protest, hence we decided to call of the sit-ins two months ago,” said Maha Prasad Parajuli, president of the SCS. “But our demand that the government provide Rs 5,000 a month to senior citizens continues. Increasing the amount by Rs 3,000 will not mean any extra burden on the state coffers.”

According to the national census 2011, there are around 2.1 million people aged 60 or above in the country. Providing Rs 5,000 a month to them would mean the government has to spend Rs 10 billion as social security allowance for senior citizens. 

“Senior citizens need special care and the government must pay attention to their needs,” said Bharat Mohan Adhikari, a former finance minister who first introduced the “old age allowance” during the late Man Mohan Adhikari’s tenure as prime minister in 1994-95. 

Published: 28-07-2016 10:22

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