Sunday, December 24, 2017

Disabled Rights -Supreme Court Directions

S.C issues directions on three issues relating to disabled rights   :


DISABLED RIGHTS GROUP & ANR.                            .....PETITIONER(S)


UNION OF INDIA & ORS.                                              .....RESPONDENT(S)

Three issues are raised in this petition which is filed in public interest, for the benefit of persons suffering from ‘disability ’ as per the definition contained in the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities,Protection of Rights and Full Participation Act) 1995 (hereinafter referredto as the ‘Disabilities Act, 1995’) which now stands repealed and is replaced by the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 (hereinafter referred to as the ‘Disabilities Act, 2016’). 

The first issue related to the non-implementation of 3% reservation of seats in educational institutions as provided in Section 39 of the Disabilities Act, 1995 and Section 32 of the Disabilities Act, 2016.
Second equally important issue raised in this petition, which is intimately connected with the first issue, is to provide proper access to orthopedic  disabled persons so that they are able to freely move in the educational institution and access the facilities.  

Third issue pertains to pedagogy i.e. making adequate provisions and facilities of teaching for disabled persons, depending upon the nature of their disability, to enable them to undertake their studies effectively. 

S.C's  Directions issued: 

[i]While dealing with the issue of reservation of seats in the educational institutions, we have already given directions in para 8 above that the provisions of Section 32 of the Disabilities Act, 2016 shall be complied with by all concerned educational institutions. In addition to the directions mentioned therein, we also direct that insofar as law colleges are concerned, intimation in this behalf shall be sent by those institutions to the Bar Council of India (BCI) as well. Other educational institutions will notify the compliance, each year, to the UGC. It will be within the discretion of the BCI and/or UGC to carry out inspections of such educational institutions to verify as to whether the provisions are complied with or not.
(ii) Insofar as suggestions given by the petitioner in the form of “Guidelines for Accessibility for Students with Disabilities in Universities/Colleges” are concerned, the UGC  shall consider the feasibility thereof by constituting a  Committee in this behalf. In this Committee, the UGC would be free to include persons from amongst Central Advisory Board, State Advisory Boards, Chief Commissioner of State Commissioners appointed under the Disabilities Act. This Committee shall undertake a detailed study for making provisions in respect of accessibility as well as pedagogy and would also suggest the modalities for implementing those suggestions, their funding and monitoring, etc. The Committee shall also lay down the time limits within which such suggestions could be implemented. The Expert Committee may also consider feasibility of constituting an in-house body in each educational institution (of teachers, staff, students and parents) for taking care of day to day needs of differently abled persons as well as for implementation of the Schemes that would be devised by the Expert Committee. This exercise shall be completed by June 30, 2018.
(iii) Report in this behalf, as well as the Action Taken Report, shall be submitted to this Court in July, 2018. On receipt of the report, the matter shall be placed before the Court.

15th December ,2017
Supreme Court of India

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