Hyderabad: The lack of job opportunities is forcing even well-qualified persons among the differently?abled to sit at home. Apart from social barriers and lack of reservation at different workplaces, they face difficulty in moving around due to the lack of infrastructure that caters to their needs.
“This can only be blamed on bureaucratic inaction,” said K. Amruta Reddy, a differently abled person who works at the Cyberabad police?commissionerate. “There are no clear instructions regarding employment, promotions or reservations (of the differently abled). The process is not delineated, nor are the laws understood clearly,” Reddy, who is the president of the Differently Abled Employees Welfare Association, AP, said.
He wanted effective implementation of Government Orders No. 42, which provides for reservation in promotions to the differently abled employees. Reddy said that transport and conveyance allowances that are given as per the Pay Revision Commission of 2010 need to be hiked.
“We have represented to the Centre to provide us 10 days of special casual leave, because we need regular medication and procedures that need some days off. Differently abled women who have kids have to put in extra effort,” he said, adding that the government should provide them Rs 2,000 as childcare allowance.
Consisting over 14,000 members, the Association has submitted a list of 13 demands to the CM. These include increasing reservations in promotions, relaxation on transfers and increase in pension amount.
“In Puducherry, it has been increased to Rs 1,500,” Reddy said. C. Lakshmaiah, president of the Association’s Nalgonda chapter, said, “None of the offices have proper infrastructure. It is not comfortable to walk everywhere with crutches.”
Next: Fellowship money held, disabled left penniless
Fellowship money held, disabled left penniless
Hyderabad: Many physically challenged candidates awarded fellowships under the Rajiv Gandhi National Fellowship for Differently Abled scheme are not receiving their fellowship amounts.
This includes a 31-year-old visually-impaired person who quit his job at a corporate firm to pursue his PhD in “management skills on work-life balance” at the Osmania University.
However, even though he is a beneficiary of the Fellowship and it has been two months since the awarded students’ list has been released, there has been no intimation on the programme nor has any amount been disbursed.
“The applicants who were cleared have still not received any information. We have missed out on a year and it was too late to even apply for another course. We tried contacting the concerned officials, but no action has been taken so far,” he said.
“I am a married man and quit my job with a hope to get money through my fellowship. Now with no financial aid, how will I take care of my family?” he said. There are many others from the National Platform For the Protection of Rights of Disabilities who are facing a similar problem.
As per the programme, 200 fellowships are given every year to disabled Junior Research Fellows. The scheme covers all universities and institutions that are recognised by the University Grants Commission and students with disabilities, who are covered under The Persons with Disabilities Act 1995 are eligible.
According to an official release published by the UGC, a total of 354 students were finalised for financial years 2012-13 and 2013-14 across India for the fellowship. Of them, there are over 36 from AP for 2012-13 and 45 for 2013-14.
“As per the Supreme Court order, there needs to be three per cent reservation for the disabled in all government offices. So far, there is no clarity on the number of vacant posts, what the backlog is and what the requirements and the actual status of recruitment is,” said Rajashekar, a differently-abled student from OU and convener, Vikalangula Hakkula Jaatiya Vedika.
Experts are also stressing on the need for setting up more schools for differently-abled children. Srinivas Rao, principal of Sweekar Upkaar Junior College said, “There are just five government schools across AP to cater to disabled children, whereas there are 200 private schools by various NGOs. There is just one Deaf and Dumb Government College in Bapatla and one ITI centre across AP.”...