The State Advisory Board on Disability, Chandigarh on Thursday proposed free travel in CTU buses, skill development training programmes, redressal system for persons with disabilities (PWDs) in Chandigarh.
The proposals came after the recent report of National Sample Survey (NSS) report on “Persons with Disabilities in India” which pointed out that Chandigarh is the most inhospitable city in the country, for PWDs.
During the first meeting of the State Advisory Board on Disability held under Manoj Parida, Adviser to the UT Administrator, the members put forth various proposals to ensure the welfare of PWDs in the city.
Kamlesh (ex- mayor) Advisor, Youth Innovative Society suggested that special skill training programmes may be designed leading to self employment of PwDs citing an example of jute/paper bag making and government agencies may be involved for the marketing of said products.
It was also proposed by various members that there should be free travel facility in CTU buses outside Chandigarh, 100 percent Unique Disability ID implementation, holding of awareness camps, websites accessibility and effective redressal system for people with multiple disabilities.
During the meeting, it was decided to come up with a policy to address various problems related to the PWDs in the city.
Earlier, it was apprised that there are around 14000 PwDs for which Department of Social Welfare, Women and Child Development is implementing number of Schemes including Pension, Petrol Subsidy, Scholarships, Skill Development Training and four percent reservation in Govt. Jobs for PwDs.
Notably, there were 14796 PWDs in Chandigarh, as per census 2011.
Recent NSS report on “Persons with Disabilities in India” using a reference period of 365 days had revealed that Chandigarh is the most inhospitable city in the country, for PWDs.
The NSS report stated, “As many as 85.7 percent people with disabilities, who used public transport in the city faced difficulties. The percentage is highest in the country.”
The report had also exposed how unfriendly the city is for the PWDs as 83.6 percent of them who assessed public buildings faced difficulties. Among the various obstacles to life in the city for the PWDs is assessing public buildings and use transport facilities.
In the past audits also, it has been pointed out several times that the city lacks dedicated parking areas, toilets, wheelchairs, ramps etc for PWDs at major locations here.