A 90-year-old woman committed suicide after building her own pyre. She ended her life in Bamani village in Maharashtra. She was living alone next to her 57-year-old son’s residence.

On Nov 13, her granddaughter gave her food and then the woman, Kallavva Dadu Kamble, went back to her house, locked the door and arranged her own pyre with sticks and cow dung. She poured kerosene over it and ignited it

The next morning, her granddaughter found that she could not enter the house. She called her father, who is a conductor with the state transport department. He entered the house and spotted ashes and her body in the middle of the room.

Superintendent of police, Kolhapur, Sanjay Mohite, said, “The woman was fed up with her life, that is the reason she took the extreme step and ended her life.”

Police have registered a case of accidental death in this connection and further investigation is on, he said.

The percentage of elderly people is expected to go up to 19 per cent in 2050, from 8 per cent in 2015. India has a challenge of taking care of its elders. According to a report released by the UN Population Fund, the section which requires the most attention is women because they have a higher life expectancy and little income.

The sex ratio of the elderly has increased from 938 women to 1,000 men in 1971 to 1,033 women to 1,000 men in 2011. The number is only increasing. The population of people who are over 80 will grow 700 per cent between 2000 and 2050. Migration of younger people means that more and more elderly people live alone and in social isolation. Older people prefer to live in a community, says the report. Technology can bridge this gap, but only for those who have access to it.

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