‘Specially abled’ friendly infrastructure

The routine daily life of a normal person is full of struggles, catching public transport to the office or school, standing in queue for bills and other utilities. We normally get annoyed with these situations, can we imagine the needs of a specially able person? A peek around leaves us aghast at how a blind person will cross a congested road or how a person in a wheelchair will get into a particular office without a ramp or how a such person will use washrooms without proper arrangements for them. Leave alone the private institutions and buildings, even our Government buildings lack these basic facilities for these persons. The requirements of them are not reaching the sky but a few useful modifications in the existing infrastructure to accommodate them a bit. J&K administration has rightly given reminder to all Government offices of UT about our duties towards them. GoI had already planned and approved the Scheme for Implementing of Persons with Disabilities Act (SIPDA) Scheme to provide a barrier-free environment for persons with disabilities which includes access to the built environment in schools, colleges, academic and training institutions, offices and public buildings, health centres/ hospitals, facilities like ramps, rails, lifts, the adaptation of toilets for wheelchair users, brail signage and auditory signals, tactile flooring for the easy access of wheelchair users. Special provisions have to be incorporated in all Government websites to make them accessible to these special persons as per guidelines. Our society as a whole and Government offices particularly are insensitive and somehow turning a blind eye towards these serious issues. The time has come to upgrade our infra as per requirements.