Environment at Pashupati old-age home not clean

Birendra Chamlagain, Kathmandu, Oct 12 (RSS): The elderly who are taking shelter at the Pashupati old-age home do not have to worry about two square meals a day but they are not getting the healthy environment around the place. 

To live in a clean and healthy environment and get drinking water is the inherent right. However, the environment and the drinking water at the old-age home is not wholesome. There is a public toilet constructed by the Pashupati Area Development Trust (PADT) right on the side of the gate to the home. The toilet is always stinking. This has not only spoilt the environment but has also harmed the health of the elderly persons.

The old-age home also lacks clean water. The water supply to the old-age home has been disrupted due to the digging up of the ground around the home for constructions. The constructions have not been completed as yet.

Moreover, the accommodation blocks at the old-age home are also old and not fit for the purpose. The home also lacks enough space. As a result, scores of the elderly people have to be accommodated in crammed rooms. There are 160 elderly people at the home. There are 65 male and 95 females currently living at the old-age home. Thirty five of them are incapacitated.

It is stated that around 40 per cent of the elderly people living in the old-age home are getting the old-age allowance and the rest are not getting it as they do not have citizenship certificates. Those elderly people deprived of the allowance have urged the authorities concerned for making arrangements for providing them with the citizenship certificate.

Not only the old-age allowance, those without the citizenship certificates also cannot avail of other facilities like the allowance provided to the single women and the disabled.

The Pashupati Old-age Home is the oldest old-age home in the country. It is being run with support of donors from within the country and abroad. The government has been managing the home.

The home spends around Rs 33 thousand on food daily which is provded from the contributions made by the donors. Although the government allocates Rs 10 million a year for food, this amount goes in freeze, office secretary at the Pashupati Old-age Home, Manoj Basnet, said.

"Approximately Rs 33,000 is required for food monthly, which if fulfilled from donor's aid. Many elderly people are suffering from eye problem. We are providing treatment in coordination with Tilganga Eye Hospital," said Secretary Basnet. A doctor is available for health check-ups three days a week, he said. Two nurses including one from government quota works for the shelter.

On the occasion, PADT member secretary Dr Pradip Dhakal said the public toilet at the entrance of the House would be cleaned within a week, and another well-equipped toilet would be built.

President of the Women and Social Committee Nirudevi Pal informed that the respective sector has been directed to clean toilet and drinking water problems related to the shelter within a week.

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