In a noble initiative, Delhi Police’s beat staff will visit homes of the elderly living alone in southwest district every evening and connect them with their children through phone or video calls, officials said on Wednesday. The step comes after a 93-year-old woman died alone inside her house at Safdarjung Enclave in south Delhi. Her body was kept in the mortuary for at least five days until her son returned from the US for her final rites. She had been living alone for several years since the death of her husband. The incident made the district police come out with a way to deal with the loneliness of senior citizens, especially those whose children are abroad and hardly get to connect with them. Police said the elderly citizens living alone in the area told the security personnel that their children did not call them or contacted them after months. Deputy Commissioner of Police (Southwest) Manoj C said, ”A total of 3,347 elderly people are registered with Senior Citizen’s Cell of the district, of which 1,075 live alone, 1,167 stay with their spouses and 1,105 reside with their family members. The police beat staff regularly visits the residences of the elderly to know about their safety, security and well-being. Various steps have been taken for the welfare of senior citizens.” ”During our interactions with the elderly, they often talk about their loneliness and express their desire to talk to their children and family members, which gives them immense happiness. But their children never call them or call after several months,” he said. The officer explained that every evening, cops will visit the residences of senior citizens and help them talk to their children. Evening hours have been chosen because of the time difference between India and foreign countries. Most of these elderly have children abroad, so evenings are the best time to talk to them through internet calls or otherwise. Southwest district has upscale areas like Vasant Kunj, Vasant Vihar, Safdarjung Enclave and Satya Niketan, and police have also undertaken security audits of the residential premises of senior citizens, police said. Regular verification of tenants, maids and fruit and vegetable vendors who regularly visit the residences of the elderly is done. CCTV cameras are also being installed in areas where senior citizens live, they said.
”During the visit, police staff also check safety equipment like cameras and safety alarms installed in the houses of the elderly. To improve security, senior citizens have been advised to install security equipment like door chains, magic eyes, iron grilles and safety locks,” the DCP said. PTI AMP SRY
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