What is the Senior Citizen Card and how does it benefit the Indian senior citizens?
Entering the old age is like a second childhood, one needs help in many things. In order to support the elderly of our country, the Indian Social Welfare Department issued senior citizen cards to those people who are of 60 years of age and above. The main aim of issuing such cards to the senior citizens of India is to ensure they’re well being and make their life easier by providing them with discounts, concessions and
other services in the private and public sectors, as well as the government establishments.
The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment is the administration under which the welfare of senior citizens is being taken care of in India. Specifically, the Social Defence Division under this administration is responsible for looking after the needs of such cardholders and implements various Acts, to ensure that they lead a safe and secure life.
Who is eligible to apply for the senior citizen card?
The eligibility criteria for issuing the senior citizen card in India is very simple. If a person falls under such a category, he/she is considered eligible to apply for this card.
● People who are of 60 years of age and/or above, living with a spouse or alone.
● A residential proof is also needed which can prove that the applicant belongs to
the particular state they are applying from.
What benefits come in handy after issuing a senior citizen card?
The main purpose of getting a senior citizen card is to offer any help possible to the senior citizens so as to ensure their well-being and safety.
- A railway concession of about 30% is given to the senior citizen cardholder.
- It provides a valid age proof.
- Many government hospitals provide such cardholders with free treatments. The private hospitals provide a concession of about 30%.
- The benefit of priority hearing is also offered by the Indian high courts for those who are o.f 65 years of age and above.
- A 50% .discount on the regular fare of any transport for people above the age of 65 years..
- An additional interest is provided by banks to the cardholders of about 0.5.%.
- A separate line/queue is always available for the senior citizens in railways..
- Admission into old-age homes or retirement-homes is mostly free or is done at a minimal cost.
- Income tax relief is also provided.
● As per the 2011 population census, the population of senior citizens card in India is approximately 104 million, out of which 51 million are males while females are 53 million. By 2026, this number is said to increase by 73 million according to a report released by the Help Age India.
● 71% of the entire senior citizen population is living in urban areas, where there are better health and tax benefits compared to the 29% urban population.
● The ratio of old-age dependency was recorded to be 10.9% in the year 1961. this percentile had an increment and became 14.2% in 2011 in India. For males, this ratio was 14.9% and as for males, it was 13.6%.
● For people falling between the age of 60 to 64 years, 76% of them were married and had a living spouse while 22% of them were widowed, and about 2% were either divorced or were never married.
This article contributed by Diksha Govekar.