Home Essay/Articles ARTICLE : “Swavlamban” - The Mantra for Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities
ARTICLE : “Swavlamban” - The Mantra for Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities
Wednesday, 27 May 2015 04:34


 


“SWAVLAMBAN”

THE MANTRA FOR INCLUSION

OF PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES

 

The Department of Disability Affairs was created in the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment on May 12,2012 to ensure greater  focus on policy matters to effectively address disability issues and to act as a nodal Department for  greater coordination among stakeholders, organizations, State Governments and related Central Ministries.  According to the Notification dated December9, 2014 the Department has been renamed as Department of  Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities.

The Department envisions an inclusive society where equal opportunities are provided for the  growth and development of persons with disabilities to lead a productive, safe and dignified life.  To this end the Department strives to create an accessible barrier free environment for PwDs and also for their empowerment through legislation, policies, programmes and schemes.  Financial assistance for creating a barrier free environment under SIPDA Scheme; Financial assistance for purchase of aids and appliances for PwDs under ADIP Scheme; Physical rehabilitation: Services like early detection and intervention, counseling and medical rehabilitation, Research and Development for technological advancement; Educational empowerment; Social empowerment; Development of rehabilitation professionals/personnel; Advocacy and  awareness generation are steps taken in this direction.

Shri Pranab Mukherjee, President of India during his address on the occasion of International Day for the Disabled Persons on 3rd December, 2014 had said that education was one of the key instruments for empowering Persons with Disabilities. The President further added that children with disabilities should have access to educational opportunities that will enable them to equally compete for gainful employment and lead a life of dignity.

Shri Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of India, in his message has saluted the indomitable spirit of those with disability and had urged the people to work together to create a better world for them.  “Let us all work together to create a world where Persons with Disabilities can scale new heights of success without any obstacles,” the Prime Minister tweeted from his personal account.  On the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, he saluted persons with disabilities and hailed them as “heroes”.  Today is a day to pledge our commitment towards our unwavering support to Persons with Disabilities and ensuring equal opportunities for them.

The Secretary-General of United Nations, Mr. Ban Ki-moon has called for efforts to ensure that the technology of the 21st century is accessible to Persons with Disabilities so that critical information can reach them.

Shri Thaawar Chand Gehlot Minister of Social Justice & Empowerment has been steering the Department with immense vigour under the overall leadership of the Prime Minister to realize the goal of inclusion of PwDs in the mainstream development process under the “Sabke Saath Sabka Vikas” mission of the Government.

It is estimated that  there are one billion people with disabilities worldwide who face many barriers in order to participate in  all aspects of society and the population of PwDs in India as per Census 2011  is  around 2.68 crore (2.2% of total population).  The result is that People with Disabilities do not enjoy access to society on an equal basis with others, including transportation, employment, education, justice and political participation.  The right to participate in public life is essential to create democracies and citizenship.  Yet, this fundamental right is very often denied to Persons with Disabilities.  The United Nations Convention on the rights of Persons with Disabilities requires all states parties to promote and protect the political rights of all Persons with Disabilities.

Realizing the need for empowerment, both social and economic, of PwDs, the Department has adopted a multi-pronged strategy to take forward and step up the Rehabilitation and Development related   issues for PwDs.

Education of PwDs is one of the recent initiatives undertaken - Literacy and higher education level of PwDs is very low. Several schemes have been approved for enabling Students with Disabilities to acquire education and further their employability potential.

New schemes

“Pre-Matric Scholarship and Post-Matric Scholarship for Students with  Disabilities (SwD)” was launched. Under the Pre-Matric Scholarship, 46,000 students studying in class IX and X will be awarded scholarship every year (@ Rs.10000/- per SwD p.a.). Under the Post-Matric Scholarship 16,650 disabled students studying in class XI, XII onwards will be provided scholarship annually (@Rs.15000/- per SwD p.a.).

National Overseas Scholarship Scheme for SwDs at a total outlay of Rs.10.00   crores benefitting 60 students per annum @ Rs.13.00 lakh per annum to enable SwD to pursue higher education at the level of Masters Degree or Ph.D abroad has been implemented from the current financial year 2014-15. Applications have been invited.

Under the “Rajiv Gandhi National Fellowship for Students with disabilities”, applications have been invited for the year 2014-15. Selection is being done by University Grants Commission. UGC is in the process of selecting 300 candidates for the fellowship.

Flagship scheme of the Department

Deendayal Disabled Rehabilitation Scheme (DDRS) and ADIP, the Department has introduced a centralized on-line application system developed by NIC on the website www.ngograntsje.gov.in in the month of July 2014.

The revised ADIP Scheme has been operationalised. The salient features of the schemes are- Enhancement of cost ceiling; revised from Rs.6000/- to Rs.10000/- for single disability and from Rs.8000/- to Rs.12000/- for SwDs; Enhancement of income eligibility ceiling for 100% concession from Rs.6500/- per month to Rs, 15000/- per month and for a 50% concession from Rs.15000/- to Rs.20000/- per month.

Under the Scheme of Assistance to Disabled persons for purchase / fitting of aids & appliances (ADIP), the Department has introduced a centralized on-line application system developed by NIC on the website www.ngograntsje.gov.in in the month of July 2014.  Revised ADIP Scheme contains a provision to provide Cochlear Implant to 500 children per year, with a ceiling of  Rs. 6.00 lakh per unit to be borne by the  Government. The Minister of Social Justice & Empowerment has announced the commencement of First Cochlear Implant by AYJNIHH, Mumbai on International Day for the Persons with Disability on 3rd December 2014.

The Department in collaboration with TIFAC, an autonomous body of the Dept of Science & Technology, has launched a dedicated web portal for meeting the accessible needs relating to aids & appliances for persons with disabilities. The web portal was launched by the President of India on International Day for the Persons with Disability on 3rd December 2014.   Swavlamban Composite camps – 200 Composite 'ABILITY- SWAWLAMBAN'.  Camps are being organized all over the Country.

The first batch of "motorized tricycles" has been distributed to 20 beneficiaries on 25.09.2014 at Shajapur, Ujjain, Madhya Pradesh.

The Prime Minister of India and the Union Minister of SJ&E felicitated the  winners of Blind Cricket World Cup and   announced a cash Award of Rs. two Lakhs to  each player of the winning Team  representing India.

The Ministry is establishing Centres for Disabilities Sports to develop and encourage disabled sports persons.

A new “Scheme on Awareness Generations and Publicity” has been launched in the current financial year 2014-15 for creating enabling environment for social inclusion of the  PwDs in all fields of life by promoting awareness, encouraging volunteer action, financially supporting national/international events and accomplishments, etc. for the realization of the aspirations of PwDs.

Future Plans and New Initiatives on Good Governance:

"Accessible India campaign (Sugamya  Bharat Abhiyan)" is proposed to be  launched for the empowerment of persons  with disabilities through universal  accessibility for creating an enabling  environment for the PwDs to live an  independent life with dignity and equal  opportunity.

In order to facilitate PwDs, process of   equipping them with Universal ID has been  initiated and the detailed project report  (DPR) has been prepared. These will be smart cards containing information  regarding the disabilities etc. and will be  valid across the country.

A “Job portal for the PwDs” for facilitating employment of PwDs is being developed for the sector through National  Handicapped Finance Development  Corporation (NHFDC). This will aggregate  various jobs availability for PwDs in  Government/PSUs and private sector and  facilitate placement and employment of unemployed, skilled and semi-skilled PwDs.

A toll-free “Help Desk/Help Centre” is  being developed by the Department  through Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) for dissemination of information  relating to PwDs, tracking and handling of grievances, facilitating the aspirations and needs of PwDs such as skilling/  employment, etc.

The Department in collaboration with  Ministry of Skill and Entrepreneurship Development and National Skill  Development Council (NSDC) is preparing a comprehensive Strategy and Action Plan  for upscaling the skilling needs of the PwDs and their placement/employment with active involvement of various stakeholders  and different Departments mandated with skilling and employment generation.

An exclusive “National Level Mega Fair” for exhibition and sale of various products/goods being manufactured by PwDs and their organizations from all over the country will be organized in Delhi to provide enhanced exposure and market linkage/access for their products.

The Department is formulating  a scheme of “Scholarship for Top Class Education for Students with Disabilities” for Post Graduate Degree/Diploma in specified premier Institutions of Excellence in India

Scheme for “Free Coaching for Students  with Disabilities” for competitive  Examinations in Government Jobs or for Admission in Professional and Technical Courses” is also being formulated.

First ever National Para –games are  scheduled to be organized in New Delhi in  association with the Paralympic Committee  of India, in the month of March 2015.

Skill development for 15000 PwDs has  been targeted under vocational training to  be conducted by NHFDC and National Institutes.

A new interactive, informative and  disability friendly dedicated website of the Department is being developed and will be launched in the current financial year.

*With inputs for Department of Disability Affairs, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment



 

Add comment


Security code
Refresh