Sayan Hazra is an independent documentary storyteller based in India. So far Sayan has been focusing on personal projects because this is the only way he can work on subjects he deeply cares about. He believes in producing work that pushes...
For the elderly living in care homes, life is both calm and chaotic. I spent more than a year chronicling the lives of residents at one such care home in southern India.
According to the UNFPA (United Nations Population Fund), while the population of India is expected to see a rise of 56% between 2000-2050, the number of people aged above 60 and 80 will grow by 326% and 700%, respectively. The last 20 years have experienced a considerable fall in total fertility rate (TFR) and rise in life expectancy. We can, therefore, expect a significant rise in the percentage of elderly people in India in the next three decades. However, without corresponding psychological and social support, there is a persistent threat to the mental and physical wellbeing of this rapidly greying population. According to the 2011 census, there are more than 104 million Indians over the age of 60. Taking into account the change in the composition of the average Indian family in the last few decades, their futures are uncertain. Large, joint families have been increasingly giving way to smaller, nuclear ones; and a lot of Indians no longer live in the same cities or the same country as their parents. In such a situation, many elderly people in India are finding themselves helpless.
The AISCCON (All India Senior Citizens' Confederation) 2015-16 survey shows that 60% of elderly people living with their families face abuse and emotional harassment, 66% are either 'very poor' or below the poverty line and 39% have been either abandoned or live alone. Insecurity, loneliness, and lack of companionship — some of life’s harder-to-swallow problems — become a daily reality for these people, whose children have either settled abroad or in some other city for better educational and career opportunities.
Note: This gallery does not include all images from this project.