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International Day of Older Persons – 1st October

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The world population has undergone a dramatic change over the past few decades. Over the last few years, the life expectancy worldwide rose to about 68 years. Still there are some persons who cross this limit and get an expected life of about 80 years. If we compare the world population, we find the population of women are nearly twice the number of men.

According to UN, almost 700 million people are now over the age of 60 and by 2050, 2 billion people will be 60 or older which would be 20% of the world population. As this number is increasing so the UN has decided in 1990 to celebrate October 1 each year as a day to dedicate all those older persons living in the world.

The older persons are the respectable members of the society and they have got the equal rights to enjoy all the leisure of life that we all do. The world might have celebrated this day in many ways. But a single day is not enough to pay tribute to the efforts of these people. These people are the responsible for building a new generation.

In our society, the class of older persons is being neglected. Children put their parents in old homes so they need not to be taken care by them. Many older persons can still be seen engaged in doing heavy work.

What we actually need to do is to raise voice for their rights. They also have equal rights of good health, adequate housing, enough food, access to productive resources and economic security.

Although government is taking care of older persons in terms of social security benefits and pensions but still there is a need to water their economic deprivation. There should be some sort of fixed monthly income that would allow them to live their own life. These persons should be given a place in the member committee of any society. The children must be taught about how to respect these persons and to gain something new from their past experiences.

Everyday should be the day of older persons and each day we should all take vow to bring some positive change in their lives. This will lead us to act on the UN slogan of SDGs “Leave No one Behind”.

By: Muhammad Tahir Naeem Khan

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