I don’t need a pension, I can work: 100-year-oldAugust 21st, 2008 - 11:31 am ICT by IANS
Jagatsinghpur (Orissa), Aug 21 (IANS) According to official records Bandhu Das is 100 years old, though he claims he is older. However old he may be, age has not been a deterrent for Das who leads an active life and refuses to take old age pension from the government. Das is poor but he says he says he needs no help from the government and is strong enough to earn his bread and butter.
“The government should help the disabled, those in distress and the weaker sections of the society but not able persons,” says Das.
The resident of Salijanga village in Jagatsinghpur district gets up at five each morning. After a breakfast of milk and muri (puffed rice), Das goes to the fields located over two km from the village to cut grass, feed cows and pluck betel leaves, villagers said.
He feeds his cattle himself. He also often involves himself in farming, said the villagers.
Das’s eyesight is perfect. “I have never used spectacles,” he told IANS.
“He has not suffered from any major disease and lives a healthy life,” said his daughter-in-law Lata.
The old man recites folk songs and often participates in village programmes.
Das has two sons and two daughters, all married. His wife Labani is 90. She is bedridden with paralysis.
“I am fit because I used to drink milk, and eat other milk products including ghee,” says Das.
Social activist Santosh Sahoo of neighbouring Balansa village said Das is an inspiration to people of the region.