‘Set up infrastructure in offices for specially-abled’

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SRINAGAR: Secretary Social Welfare Department (SWD), Dr Farooq Ahmad Lone Thursday urged all District Development Commissioners to set up disabled-friendly infrastructure in their offices for easy access to disabled persons.
Lone said this during a high-level meeting convened by him to review the facilities being provided to disabled persons of the state.
The Secretary Social Welfare told Public Works Department that they shall issue instructions to all concerned departments to ensure that clearance for construction of any new government building shall not be issued unless the building design has provision for ramps etc for disabled persons.
Lone also directed officers of his department that a helpline should be set up which would listen and address grievances of the disabled population.
The Secretary Social Welfare suggested Director Health Kashmir, Jammu to issue genuinely disabled certificates to disabled persons in a time-bound manner.
The Secretary said that society needs to understand that children with disabilities have great potential and if given an opportunity can contribute remarkably in all fields.
He said that massive awareness about the rights and concerns of the disabled persons is also the need of the hour besides establishing a friendly atmosphere for the disabled at homes, schools and public places.
Lone said that government seeks to empower the people with disabilities besides sensitizing the society for which the common people have to come forward and supplement the efforts of the government in this regard.
During the meeting, detailed discussions were held regarding issues relating to the entire range of problems being faced by Persons with Disabilities.
The Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities, Mohammad Iqbal, briefed the Secretary Social Welfare Department about the various steps which had been taken for physically challenged persons.
For creating the necessary infrastructure for easy access of disabled persons in Government buildings, the Commissioner said Rs 21 Lakh have been utilized in four government buildings and 122 buildings have been identified for the same.
He said that department is taking all such necessary measures to safeguard the rights of disabled people. He said the department has disposed of around 320 cases after received complaints from disabled persons.