Elderly stage dharna demanding universal pension

May 7th, 2012 - 11:32 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, May 7 (IANS) Nearly 3,000 people from 22 states started a five-day dharna at Jantar Mantar Monday demanding universal pension for the elderly.

Supporting the demand, key campaigners Aruna Roy and Baba Adhav said the demand for universal pension was something no political party could afford to neglect.

“(There is an) urgent need for mandating a single window delivery system where all vulnerable people can avail pensions, medical facilities and other services with dignity and as a right,” Guild of Service chairperson Mohini Giri said.

Rajya Sabha member R.A. Mungekar assured his support to the demands of protestors, while fellow parliamentarian and Communist Party of India leader D. Raja said his party “will raise the issue during the course of this session inside and outside Parliament”.

Renowned journalist and human rights activist Kuldip Nayar told the crowd that they had “overcome 50 percent of the struggle with (their) concerted presence and (their) resolve to stay here for the next five days and fight for (their) demand”.

Citing the Nitish Sengupta Committee on unorganized workers, former Delhi High Court chief justice Rajinder Sachar said that pension was the right of every citizen.

“Given this grinding poverty, it is obligatory on the part of the government to meet the demand of universal pension of two thousand rupees,” he said.

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