New Delhi: Observing that there is no right- based law in the country to address disabilities arising out of ageing, a parliamentary panel has suggested that a legislation for providing special assistance to citizens who are above the age of 80.
A report presented in Parliament by the Standing Committee on Social Justice and Empowerment panel said that with ageing especially after 80 years, most people are afflicted with an assortment of disabilities like low vision, hearing impairment and others to a varying disability.
“The committee therefore recommends that a law be enacted for the 80 plus people recognising their general disability, which would be quite distinct from mere health care, which in any case, the state is bound to provide, for providing special assistance, facilities to them so that they can conduct their daily chores in a dignified manner in a barrier free environment,” the panel said.
It also called for an early enactment of the new proposed legislation — the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill, 2014 in harmony with the UN Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).
It asked the Centre to exhort states to draw up comprehensive action plans for the welfare of persons who suffered from various disabilities.
The committee also expressed apprehension of undercounting with the figures of people with disability, which are at present 2 per cent of the population according to Census 2011. It said that more awareness should be spread so that all cases are reported.
The committee further asked the government to provide more assistance to the various national institutes that are working in the field of disability. It also suggested that more schemes for scholarships for persons with disabilities should be introduced by the government. It added that the disability pension provided by the government should be increased to Rs 1,500 per month with no age ceiling.