National Policy on Older Persons (NPOP) This policy seeks to assure Senior Citizens that their concerns are national concerns and they will not live unprotected, ignored and marginalised. It aims to strengthen their legitimate place in society and help older people to live the last phase of their life with purpose, dignity and peace. It provides a broad framework for inter-sector collaboration and cooperation, both within the government as well as between government and non- governmental agencies. The Policy also recognises the role of the NGO sector in providing user-friendly affordable services to complement the endeavours of the State in this direction. While recognising the need for promoting productive ageing, the policy also emphasises the importance of family in providing vital non-formal social security for older persons. For more details visit http://socialjustice.nic.in
Concessions and Facilities are given to Senior Citizens:
Ministry of Finance Health Insurance Regulatory Development Authority (IRDA) vide letter dated 25.5.2009 issued instructions on health insurance for senior citizens to CEOs of all General Health Insurance Companies which, inter-alia, includes: Allowing entry into health insurance scheme till 65 years of age; Transparency in the premium charged; Reasons to be recorded for denial of any proposals etc. on all health insurance products catering to the needs of senior citizens. Likewise, insurance companies cannot deny renewability without specific reasons.
Income tax exemption for Senior Citizens of 60 years and above up to Rs. 3 lakh per annum and for SeniorCitizens of 80 years and above up to Rs. 5.0 lakh per annum; Deduction of Rs 30,000 under Section 80D is allowed to an individual who pays a medical insurance premium for his/her parent or parents who is a senior citizen. An individual is eligible for a deduction of the amount spent or Rs 60,000, whichever is less for medical treatment of a dependent senior citizen. This deduction limit is Rs 80,000 if the dependent older person is 80 years or above.
Senior Citizen not having income from profits and gains of business or profession shall not be liable to pay advance tax and allowed to discharge his/her tax liability (Other than TDS) by payment of self-assessment tax. Senior Citizen will be able to avail of monthly income streams by mortgaging a house owned by him/her. A senior citizen over the age of 80 years with a total annual income of more than Rs 5 lac or having a refund claim is exempt from the mandatory e-filing of his/her ITR. No deduction of tax at source is required to be made under Section 193, 194, 194A, 194EE or 194K of the Income Tax Act in case of Senior Citizen if he furnishes to the deductor a declaration to the effect that the tax on his estimated total income of the relevant previous will be nil.
Protection of Senior Citizens:
Ministry of Home Affairs, Chapter V of the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007, provides for the protection of life and property of senior citizens. State Governments are required to prescribe a comprehensive action plan for providing protection of life and property of senior citizens. The Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India issued detailed advisories dated 27.3.2008 and 30.08.2013 to all the State Government/UTs, who are primarily responsible for the prevention, detection, registration, investigation and prosecution of crime including crime against senior citizens as “Police” and “Public order” are state subjects. The Ministry of Home Affairs in its advisories has advised the States/UTs to take immediate measures to ensure safety and security and for elimination of all forms of neglect, abuse and violence against old persons through initiatives such as identification of senior citizens; sensitisation of police personnel regarding safety, security of older persons; regular visit of the beat staff; setting up of toll free senior citizens helplines; setting up of senior citizen security cell; verification of domestic helps, drivers, etc. For details log on to http://socialjustice.nic.in/pdf/MHAtostates.pdf
Facilities for Senior Citizens Anubhav:
A platform for retiring employees to showcase significant achievements made during their service period. Initially, this facility is provided only to retiring Central government employees. Employees retiring in the next 6 months may be provided with an online facility to submit their outstanding achievements. For more details log http://pensionersportal. gov.in/anubhav/
An initiative from the Department of Pension & Pensioners’ Welfare, Government of India, to provide a place for the pensioners to access opportunities available for useful interventions in the society. For details log on to http://pensionersportal.gov.in/SANKALP/
Department of Telecommunications Faults/complaints of senior citizens is given priority by registering them under senior citizens category with VIP flag, which is a priority category. Senior citizens are allowed to register telephone connection under N-OYT Special Category, which is a priority category.
Concessions in Railways:
Ministry of Railways Indian Railways provides fare concessions in all classes of Mail / Express including Rajdhani /Shatabadi/Jan Shatabadi/Duronto trains for senior citizens aged 60 years and above. 40% and 50% concession in rail fare for male (60 years) and female (58 years) respectively. For more details logon: http://www.indianrailways.gov.in/railwayboard/uploads/directorate/traffic_comm/pdf/Facility_