Disability arises not from the impairment, but comes from obstacles present in the environment says Shri Mukesh Jain, Joint Secretary (Department of Empowerment of Persons With Disabilities,
Ministry of Social Justice Empowerment,) during the launch of Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan the accessible India campaign.
Explaining the mission of Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan Shri Mukesh stressed the importance of having obstacle free environment both physical and virtual. Under the Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan, the central government has put forth the three following areas as high priority.
- Infrastructure accessibility
- Public Transport accessibility
- Information and Communication Technology accessibility
Making public buildings accessible is very important to have lives of people with disabilities comfortable. Providing only steps to get on to a government office means denying access to a wheelchair user. Situations like this deny access to many public buildings like schools, hospitals, colleges, courts, police stations etc. Through Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan Government of India want to identify 50 cities to make 50 public spaces accessible in each city by end of July 2016. By end of 2018 GOI want to make rest of the public spaces accessible. Constructing ramps, accessible lifts, tactile or Braille signage’s and accessible railings etc for the public buildings will be taken place under this sector.
Public Transport Accessibility
Public transport has become a real challenge for people with disabilities to lead their day to day life. Keeping that in mind GOI through Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan will be making all international airports friendly for people with disabilities by July 2016 and all other domestic airports by end of 2018. In parallel to this all A1 railway stations will be made accessible by July 2016 and rest by end of 2018. Making the entry points wheel chair friendly, providing audio announcements, Braille boards etc will be taken as priority under this initiative.
Information communication Technology accessibility
The world is becoming more virtual. We cannot imagine our lives without web in the modern era. Internet has become integral part of our day to day life. Considering this fact GOI through Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan identified 3000 state and central government websites and want to make them accessible by end of 2017. Under this initiative GOI also want the television programs accessible to everyone by end of 2018. 200 sign language interpreters will be trained under this program in the initial phase.
Other highlights of Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan
Under the Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan) Government of India wants to take help from institutes such as IITs to develop technological solutions for the problems of people with disabilities.
Through this scheme GOI want to use science fairs and other similar programs in schools to develop culture of accessibility. Cultivating the culture of accessibility helps children to develop inclusive products in the future.
The Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan aims to give accessibility index for the organizations that makes the infrastructure, web and related programs accessible and have inclusive policies for people with disabilities.
Watch the launch of Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan On youtube.
Maxability wants to see an inclusive society in India soon through the efforts of Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan.