Indore civic workers evict homeless elderly persons and leave them outside the city to suffer in the biting cold

Published : January 30, 2021 18:50 IST

Elderly women along with some Congress workers protest against the Indore Municipal Corporation's anti-encroachment drive. Photo: PTI

The Shivraj Singh Chouhan-led State Government in Madhya Pradesh faced political and social outrage after three videos showing Indore Municipal Corporation (IMC) employees forcibly evicting elderly destitute persons and leaving them in the lurch in biting cold went viral.

A series of videos show how IMC employees forcibly drove homeless elderly people out of city limits, and dropped them near a village called Kishpra. The IMC staffers were seen throwing away the belongings, mostly rags and torn bags, of elderly homeless after dropping them on the highway.

In one of the videos, local residents are seen opposing the move of the IMC staffers, but the latter do not pay any heed to them. The brutal nature of the anti-encroachment drive has invoked thorough condemnation from people, with the Congress, the main opposition in the State, questioning the conduct of the IMC as well as that of Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s government.

In a tweet, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi termed the incident “shameful and a blot on humanity”. She said that the Government and the local administration should apologise to the elderly, and instead of taking action against employees following orders, action must be initiated against those who gave the orders. Former Chief Minister Kamal Nath rued the national shame brought to the State by the incident.

Following the outburst, Deputy Municipal Commissioner Pratap Solanki was suspended and two more contractual employees of the IMC were sacked. Chouhan expressed annoyance at the IMC’s shabby treatment of the elderly. However, Kamal Nath said, “Action of suspension is not enough against the responsible. Strict action should be taken against them so that such incidents are not repeated.” 

Actor Sonu Sood also lambasted the IMC’s actions. “I saw the video in the news. I want to appeal to Indoreans that we should take steps to provide them a shelter. I want to provide them their rights and shelter and to arrange for their food but it will not be possible without your (people) help. It should be a lesson for people who abandon their parents. We all should set an example so that our elders never feel alone and abandoned. I am with you and we will set an example for the country,” he said in a tweet.

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