The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has sought the response of Kerala government functionaries over the death of an elderly woman due to the alleged negligence by her children in Thiruvananthapuram.
The Commission has issued notice to the Chief Secretary, Director General of Police, Secretary in Department of Social Justice and Director of Social Justice, Government of Kerala and District Collector, Thiruvananthapuram in the case of death of the woman due to alleged neglect by her children, who are highly placed officers in the state government.
"The act of the children of the victim elderly woman, if true, is not only inhuman but also illegal. As per the extant laws, it is the duty of the children to maintain and take care of their aged parents," according to it.
The Commission has also observed that it appears the administrative functionaries as well as the police failed to enforce the provisions of Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act 2007 and Kerala Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Rules 2009, which resulted in violation of the Right to Life of the elderly woman.
The Commission has taken cognisance of the matter on a complaint, accompanied by media reports, that the elderly woman was forced to live in Saranalayam 'Tapasya' run by the Sree Narayana Women's Cultural Association at Thiruvananthapuram, said an NHRC statement.
Her children did not turn up to her even when she was hospitalised and refused to perform the last rites, when she died in the hospital on January 24, it has said.
The complainant had submitted that Parliament has enacted the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act 2007 and the State of Kerala has promulgated the Kerala Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Rules, 2009 for the protection, welfare and maintenance of Parents and Senior Citizens.
"The Department of Social Justice is the nodal agency to implement the above mentioned Act and the Rules. Allegedly, the Director of Social Justice completely failed in his duties as the incident happened in Thiruvananthapuram itself," the NHRC statement added.