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Protecting women with disabilities from violence

By Swagata Raha

Violence against women with disabilities can range from neglect to physical abuse to denying them even the traditional roles of marriage and childbearing. The Indian legal framework has to be strengthened to bring it in line with international legislations on the rights of disabled women

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Disabilities : Background & Perspective

By Rubina Lal

Between 5 and 10% of Indians have some impairment or disabling condition. This means that India has a huge population of disabled people. At the policy level, progressive legislation, schemes and provisions exist for them. But at the ground level, the disabled continue to be neglected and marginalised, with the onus of care on the family rather than the community. India needs to mark a shift from the medical model of intervention to community-based rehabilitation of the disabled

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Towards a new disability policy

By Muralidharan

Census 2011 figures are likely to throw up more accurate figures for disabled population at around 9 crore. But the social justice ministry allocates only 10% of its budget to disability, and there are no moves to review the 2006 national policy

Persons with Disabilities Act

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Not a ‘safe’ issue: Disabled women and sexual violence

By Shampa Sengupta & Saptarshi Mandal

Disability groups have not been part of the heated debates on making sexual offences gender-neutral or gender-specific. But making sexual assault gender-neutral for both perpetrator and victim has consequences for disabled women

sexual assault

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Sexual assault of disabled women: Getting the law right

Simply increasing the punishment or shifting the burden of proof to the accused, without making sure that the testimony of the prosecutrix is taken seriously, will not bring justice to disabled victims of sexual assault, says Saptarshi Mandal in this critique of the Criminal Law Amendment Bill 2012

disabled women

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Getting grounded on the disability issue

Disabled activists being humiliated on domestic flights make headline news. But the daily travails of the disabled who attempt to travel by bus, rail or tram never get any attention. Isn't it more important to ensure that the poor and disabled are brought into the arena of rights, asks Shampa Sengupta

People with disabilities

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India needs new legislation on Disability Rights

By Swagata Raha

The government has proposed 108 amendments to the Persons with Disabilities Act, the overarching disability legislation in India. Disabled rights groups are demanding a new law instead that would guarantee civil and political rights to disabled people and expand the definition of disability

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The women's movement must do more for disabled women

Disabled women are crowded out in both the disability movement and the women’s movement, says Anita Ghai. Feminists, she says, have failed to recognise the different experiences of disabled women in a sexist and able society

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No rights for the mentally disabled

By Shampa Sengupta

At a Kolkata mental hospital recently female patients were found left stark naked in the ward. Mental illness is included in the Persons with Disabilities Act 1995, but the mentally disabled are denied even the rights and reservations available to the physically disabled

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Disabled on an equal footing this election

By Shampa Sengupta

If Supreme Court guidelines are obeyed, the forthcoming Lok Sabha election will be a historic one. For the first time the poll process will be disabled-friendly, with ramps, separate queues and Braille-enabled voting machines that will allow disabled voters to enjoy the same rights as everyone else

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Disabled insured for good health

By Amitava Banerjee

The government-funded Niramaya scheme extends health insurance cover of Rs 100,000 to persons with autism, cerebral palsy, mental retardation and multiple disabilities, bringing a large section of disabled people into the healthcare system

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The disabled protest government inaction

It is over a year since India ratified the United Nations Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and there is no move to provide education, health and employment to people with disability, says Rajashri Dasgupta as a dharna and night-long vigil are staged in Delhi this World Disability Day

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Out of sight, out of mind

By Shampa Sengupta

Even as the country acknowledges that the disabled must be integrated into the mainstream educational system, a study in Kolkata reveals that 50% of government schools and 36% of private schools in the city are not even aware of the 3% reservation for disabled children guaranteed under the Persons with Disabilities Act

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Ability Unlimited

By Neeta Lal

Their wheelchairs spinning faster than a kathak dancer, the artistes of the unique Ability Unlimited dance troupe hold audiences spellbound all over the world. Through dance, members of this 150-strong troupe of mentally/physically challenged people find a voice in a not very inclusive society

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Interactive approaches for special children

By Rupa Chinai

Sangath Society, a Goa-based CSO working with mental health issues, has come up with the concept of 'resource rooms' for children with learning disabilities, within their normal schools, where they can be given special attention. The concept is currently being pilot-tested in three schools in the state

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National Policy for the Disabled: No clear roadmap for action

By Deepanjali Bhas

Does the National Policy for Persons with Disability announced in February 2006 indicate a withdrawal of the State from its responsibility towards the disabled and a tendency to thrust that responsibility on civil society and communities?

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The fate of my CV: Job encounters of the disabled kind

Wheelchair-bound Sounak Banerjee writes about his frustrating - and futile - attempts to get himself a job

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Government discriminates against the disabled in IAS recruitment

By Lalitha Sridhar

Despite qualifying for the Indian Administrative Services, disabled candidates are being refused the deserved government placements. A national campaign is addressing this discrimination

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Shaken to the core

By Ammu Joseph

The residents of Sastur in Maharashtra, where 1,400 people were killed in the Latur quake a decade ago, continue to suffer alarming levels of psychological distress. A recent study emphasises the need to integrate psycho-social care into post-disaster reconstruction initiatives

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Incentives for inclusion

By Lalitha Sridhar

At least 7 million disabled Indians are waiting for a job. But only 0.4% of employees in India's top 100 corporate houses are disabled. India's first Draft Incentives Policy for the Disabled has just been presented to the government. It demands serious attention from the public and private sectors to the question of incentives and subsidies for the support and employment of the disabled

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