Vol. XLIII No. 09 March 04, 2019

NPRD Condemns Brutal Lathi-charge on Disabled Protesters in Pune

THE National Platform for the Rights of the Disabled (NPRD) has condemned the brutal lathi charge on disabled protesters in Pune, Maharashtra, on February 25.
The protesters mainly belonging to the deaf community were demanding the implementation of the provisions of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act with regard to education and employment. They sought to highlight the fact that an overwhelming majority of educational institutions continue to be inaccessible. There is a huge backlog of vacancies which the government refuses to fill.
The agitators were attacked when they sought to take out a peaceful march from the office of the Commissioner of Social Welfare as the government refused to listen to their long pending demands.
The lackadaisical approach of the Maharashtra government towards concerns of one of the most marginalised sections of our society, is revealed by the fact that nearly two years since the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 came into force, it has failed to frame rules for its implementation. This despite the RPD Act mandating that rules have to be framed within six months of the Act coming into force. The various agencies and bodies that are to be set up under the Act are yet to be put in place.
The NPRD expresses its wholehearted solidarity and unflinching support to the agitators. It calls upon the Devendra Fadnavis government to immediately engage in talks with the protesters, concede their legitimate demands and implement them within a time bound framework.