Senior citizens narrate tale of woe to cops

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Senior citizens narrate tale of woe to cops

The sorry plight of senior citizens in their twilightyears was the talk of town this week in Ahmedabad. But the police have just brought smiles on their gap-toothed faces by patiently listening to their tale of woe.

By Mahesh Trivedi (Gujarat Goings)

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Published: Sat 21 Apr 2012, 4:56 PM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 11:51 AM

At least now, the law-keepers stand guard to the gray-haired men and women living alone but this was not the case only a few weeks ago when the latter were robbed and assaulted by goons and harassed by their own greedy blood relations.

Sexagenarian Daxa Patel was stopped by two men when she was about to enter a popular temple. The duo identified themselves as cops and advised her to remove her gold ornaments before mingling with the crowd of worshippers. Thinking that the valuables will be safe with the courteous ‘guards’, the golden-ager put the jewellery in her purse and gave it to them only to find later that the two had played the vanishing trick.

In separate incidents, while three lonely old-timers were robbed of cash from their homes last month, two others were assaulted and their golden rings and necklaces were snatched by gangsters while they were passing by desolate places.

As crimes against oldsters shot up, the police department decided to rush to their rescue, despite being short-staffed and busy in back-to-back government functions being organised by the Narendra Modi regime at the drop of a hat.

In no time, a special helpline (1096) was launched for the elderly and it evoked a good response. Not long ago, the Gujarat RTI (right-to-information) commission had already vowed to give top priority to complaints and appeals of senior citizens.

What’s more, the uniformed men, including top-drawer officers, also started personally visiting the homes of those living alone and organizing group meetings. During this interaction, the cops not only gave their own contact numbers but also offered countless safety tips. Even their neighbours were taught ways to protect the debilitated and distressed loners and to inform the police at the earliest in times of emergency.

Again, the visiting policemen began collecting detailed information on each and every citizen on the wrong side of 60. The drive to help the elders was further strengthened by putting up eye-catching hoardings on busy crossroads, urging citizens to be passionate toward those on the road’s last turn who were easy targets for thieves and crooks.

Not only this, with a view to keeping a tab on incidents of property-related crimes, the police started coordinating with watchmen of various localities and security guards manning important establishments in the city. These chowkidars were shown how to raise an alarm in time to nab the accused.

In a recent incident, an alert watchman, who had the phone number of a constable associated with a nearby police station, called the police team to the spot in the nick of time which led in the arrest of the goon.

According to joint commissioner of police Ajay Tomar, the result of all this was that the crimes against the elderly population nosedived and the veterans started feeling safe and happy. But little did the guardians of the law realise that soon they will also have to turn psychological guardians of the golden-agers who gradually poured their hearts out to the golden-hearted cops.

Listening to their tale of woe on the helpline, the police-men were shocked to know that it was the raw deal meted out to them by their sons, daughters and other kith and kin that worried them more than their safety and

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