Senior Citizens Need Our Care And Respect: Calcutta High Court

Calcutta HC

The Calcutta High Court emphasised the importance of paying attention to and caring for senior citizens, while dismissing a criminal case filed against two senior citizens over a property dispute.

The bench was dealing with a plea filed by a widowed senior citizen, Sharmila Bhattacharjee and her brother-in-law (petitioners) seeking to quash a First Information Report (FIR) lodged against them citing charges of cheating and criminal conspiracy. 

The matter was brought up before Justice Shampa Dutt. The case prompted her to make a statement about the value of seniors and the necessity of providing for them in their latter years.

“The senior citizens in our lives need our care and with respect also our guidance and support regarding their total welfare. More so, those who are left alone to spend their remaining days, missing the warmth of a family that disintegrated with time. Children moving out for better opportunities and then progressing to set up their own families elsewhere leaving behind the guardians with only their memories,”the court stated.

The judge pointed out that elderly people and guardians who raised children with unconditional love and care would now require children for assistance.

It was notified to the bench that the widowed senior citizen agreed to sell few property of hers. But due to allegations that the prospective buyer failed to fulfil his end of the bargain, the contract was terminated. The Court was also informed that the petitioner’s advance payment had been refunded.

However, the buyer later filed an FIR against the petitioners, accusing them of deception and criminal conspiracy. A trial court also took cognizance of the case, prompting the senior petitioners to seek relief from the High Court.

The High Court determined that no prima facie criminal case had been made out against the petitioners, especially since the petitioners had refunded the buyer’s/earlier complainant’s advance payments.

Justice Shampa Dutt went on to emphasise that these kinds of cases should be resolved at the earliest instead of burdening the courts and also the public.

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About the Author: Nunnem Gangte