24/06/2016 9:26 AM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:27 AM IST

This Is How The PMO Responded When Senior Citizens Sent Their Day's Pension In Protest

Hindustan Times via Getty Images
BHOPAL, INDIA - OCTOBER 1: Old age pensioners staging a protest to increase their pension on the occasion of International Day of Older Persons on October 1, 2014 in Bhopal, India. Indias older population aged 60 or above 100 million as of 2011 is the second largest in the world. Under National Old Age Pension Scheme (NOAPS), modest pension is provided to people aged 65 or above, with no regular income or family support. Pensioners want it to be increased to atleast 1000 rupees per month. (Photo by Praveen Bajpai/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

Last month, aiming to draw attention to their low pensions, over a hundred senior citizens from across 10 states had chipped in mostly with Rs 7 each, it amounted to a day's pension.

They raised Rs 1,063, wrote a covering letter mentioning that the money was raised by the donors in the hope that the PMO would recognise their " tyaag (sacrifice)" and sent it to the Prime Minister's Office.

This was to sensitise the government to the plight of the elderly living below the poverty line.

A month later, the PMO sent them a perfunctory response. "We acknowledge with thanks the generous contribution made to the Prime Minister's National Relief Fund," the letter said.

According to The Telegraph, the acknowledgement letter with a formal receipt added: "The Prime Minister appreciates this thoughtful gesture and conveys his gratitude. This valuable contribution will be of immense help in providing assistance to the persons in distress."

The PMO's letter completely ignored their petition to increase the pension from Rs 200 to half of the minimum wages.

Unfazed, the pensioners decided to repeat their protest by dispatching a day’s pension to the PMO once again.

“The Pension Parishad received a patronizing and disgraceful response to this protest “thanking” the poor and elderly for their “generous contribution” to the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund," the Pension Parishad led by Aruna Roy and Baba Adhav told Deccan Herald.

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