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The Golden Club of Gilgit-Baltistan

By Didar Ali

seniors of gilgit-baltistan

It’s not Gold, it’s the Man — Writer

Human being has diverse lifespan, ranging from infancy to old age and at every stage a person has to face challenges within the social loop. Senior citizens are known as ‘’Golden People,’’ which is an increasing segment of modern society. Their roles and incomparable experiences are highly important for a developing and developed society. The old aged locals of Gilgit-Baltistan are titled as reformers, who have accepted modernization and have played crucial role in educational development of the region; devoid of gender discrimination.

For example, a local survey (conducted by the Social Welfare Board for village Gulmit, Gojal in 2012) found that the old age citizens in the whole area (from Shishkat village to Passu) are 329 in number. Considering the figures of small survey, it seems that the number of senior citizens is increasing in the region.  Now they are at a stage where they deserve special attention. However, it has been observed that due to tough work schedule, it’s hard for the family members to take care of their elderly.

Educational development has steered the educated youth of GB towards big cities in search of better life, which has encouraged urbanization. Such trend has widened the gap between the working class and the elderly family members, who normally prefer living in villages, among relatives and friends, which can be hardly managed in big cities.

The trend of dislocation and generation gap has brought many adverse changes among families, which is making it growingly harder for the educated youth to live in villages of Gilgit-Baltistan to take care of their parents and also for the old aged locals to understand the delineation of modern society. This has brought bitterness in relations, leading to ignoramus approaches and later ends in frustration, psychological issues, solitary confinement, and various physical disorders.

Gilgit-Baltistan is situated in the mountainous region of Pakistan, which lacks basic facilities for senior citizens. Therefore, it’s high time to form and construct clubs for the seniors; one having all the essential facilities. The word “Club” has been used to materialize the concept here, rather chanting “Old Homes,” which the locals dislike.

Building traditional houses and providing every facility, ranging from central heating and cooling systems, indoor games, musical instruments and books will help to keep them lively. Whoever has the skills like wood carving, handicrafts manufacturing shall be given facilities to practice their skills. Such activities will not only keep the seniors engaged with life, but will also make them self-reliant.

There is hardly any facility available for senior citizens in Gilgit-Baltistan; mostly they stay at home, or go to local shops, Chai Wala or hotels, where one can hardly find quality food or clean environment. Materializing the concept of Golden Club will maintain their good health condition and enhance socialization among senior citizens of the region.

Providing basic nursing facility within the premises will help to keep them hale and hearty, which will be a great help for the working family members. The nursing facility will help to monitor their physical conditions.

It’s high time to take care of those who sacrificed their life for betterment and development of society and new generation.

Didar has a passion to write about arts, culture, philosophy, politics, technology and tourism. He is also a cultural and social critic. He blogs at OINOMANCY. He can be reached at alee_st@yahoo.com

The views expressed by the writer, the reader comments, the perceptions, opinions, beliefs, and attitudes expressed through this blog are those of individuals and participating users, and are not necessarily aligned with the views, policies, standards, and practices of Mountain TV.

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