he fact is that due to advancement in medical science and pharmaceutical industry the average life span of human beings is increasing. The USA, UK and Japan are coming to a point where in a few years time half of the population would be above 50 years of age. The increase in the average life span is attributed to the fact that due to vaccinations against diseases, broadcasting of health programs on television and radio , access to primary and tertiary healthcare to about 90 percent of world population.
In Kashmir due to the less polluted air and fibrous organic food the average life span is increasing. Improvement in lifespan, even though is always seen as a cipher of joy, has also got a bagful of worries tethered to it. The posh Rajbagh, Lal Bazar, Sanat Nagar, Rawalpora and Hyderpora areas of Srinagar are full of palatial houses with the septuagenarian or octogenarians couples with their non-local domestic helpers living away the last few years of their lives-their children and grandchildren are off to foreign places like Dubai, UK, Turkey, Saudi Arabia or USA.
With the cost of living skyrocketing in the metropolis of these countries and already burdening with the education fee of their own children, home rent, countless taxes the non-resident Kashmiris do not relish the prospect of taking their old parents to those metropolitan cities. Though the decision of not taking old parents to foreign cities may appear a bit harsh but it is practical when seen in a broader perspective.
The non-resident Kashmiris left Kashmir in 90s, when there were no jobs in Kashmir. Business was at its lowest ebb. The tourists disappeared. So in thousands people flocked the passport office to move to greener pastures.
The problem of lonely septuagenarian and octogenarian parents in Kashmir cannot be seen in isolation. The need of the hour is for some non-governmental organizations to do a survey that how many lonely old age parents live in Srinagar, get them registered and organize community programs for them.