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The Delhi High Court on 19 March 2017 passed a ruling stating that children who assault or abuse their parents while staying with them in their house can be evicted from the property.
The ruling was delivered by Justice Manmohan who specified that the house need not be self-acquired or owned by the parents. This is a major shift from the 2007 law that left it upon the state governments to frame rules to protect the life and property of senior citizens.
• The court delivered its verdict in relation to an appeal filed by an alcoholic former policeman, whose service was terminated by the Delhi Police and his brother, challenging the verdict given by a senior citizens’ Maintenance Tribunal in October 2015 that ordered the eviction of the two from the residence where their elderly parents resided.
• The brothers had challenged that the tribunal had exceeded its jurisdiction in passing the eviction order and argued that even in cases of allegations of physical assault, maltreatment and mental harassment of parents, no eviction order could be passed under the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act 2007.
• While interpreting the provisions of the Act, the court stated that it was in the jurisdiction of the senior citizen's maintenance tribunal to issue an eviction order to ensure the safety and protection of senior citizens in their house without forcibly having to accommodate a child who assaults and harasses them and threatens to throw them out.
• The court in its 52-page judgement noted that the direction to evict the adult children from the property was necessary in some cases like the present one, to ensure a normal life for senior citizens.
The court also noted that while the Delhi government’s rules only allowed a senior citizen to complain to district authorities to evict abusive children from a self-acquired property, the Act, in fact, made no such discrimination and allowed parents to evict their abusive children even from a rented accommodation.
Further, the court directed the Delhi government to amend its rules and create a new action plan to protect the life and property of senior citizens.