Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Notice served to DU after protests

The office of deputy chief commissioner for persons with disabilities has asked Delhi University to look into the demands raised by disabled students, teachers and non-teaching staff and submit an action taken report within a month.

The differently abled students and teachers of the university have protested twice this month (see previous post). These demonstrations were led by teachers and students forum sambhavana. The protesters have some grievances, which they want to be addressed by the university authorities, said the January 16 letter by deputy chief commissioner S S Sinha.

They have been demanding to constitute an empowered committee for drafting a time-bound action plan to resolve the issues. Also, a date to organise a “disability summit” where the differently abled can voice their concerns.

Sinha said the demonstrators alleged that DU authorities have been intimidating those who have been part in protests.

Sinha added that the United Nations convention on the rights of persons with disabilities includes non-discrimination, respect for inherent dignity and individual autonomy. Also, the freedom to make one’s own choices and equal opportunity.

“The chief commissioner for persons with disabilities (PWD) has advised that the matter be looked into with a sense of urgency in order to ensure that rights of persons with disabilities are not infringed or violated in any manner,” the letter said. Bipin Tiwari, in-charge of equal opportunity cell (EOC) of the university said constant measures are being taken by authorities to provide facilities to the disabled.

“What the protesters are demanding is not something which could be done overnight. In the recent summit organised by EOC, the vice chancellor took the pain of meeting each PWD student,” said Tiwari. 

“We have waived off tuition fees and hostel fees, increased reserved seats, took PWD students for the Gyanoday educational train trip.” “We have distributed Aakash tablets and the VC has also announced a foreign visit for 100 PWD students,” added Tiwari.

A senior official said members from sambhavana have to contest the upcoming academic and executive council elections and are thus trying to create issues.“It is very disheartening to know despite constructive measures taken in a holistic way to empower PWD students such actions (protests) are been taken which badly disrupts our measures. For motives and reasons best known to them (protesters),” said Tiwari.
Source-Deccan Herald

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