Srinagar: The J&K High Court has issued notice to state government after a letter received from Humanity Welfare Organization Helpline complained that the benefits available under Rights under Disabilities Act are not being provided to the disabled persons of J&K state.
The Division Bench of Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Dhiraj Singh Thakur impleaded State of J&K through Secretary, GAD, Civil Secretariat, Srinagar and State of J&K through Secretary, Social Welfare Department, Civil Secretariat, Srinagar as party respondents and issued notice to show cause why petition may not be admitted for hearing returnable on 15 October 2018.
The letter dated 18 August 2018 was addressed to the Chief Justice’s secretariat from the office of Humanity Welfare Organization Helpline complaining that rights of disabled persons in J&K state are not in tune with the Disabilities Act. It was pointed out in the letter that no legislation akin to the Central National Trust Act 1999 has been passed and as result, persons with disabilities are deprived of welfare, care and protection schemes under Central Legislation.
It added that that though ordinances were passed twice during Governor’s rule, one in 2016 and in 2018 also under Jammu and Kashmir State Trust Welfare of Persons with Autism, Mental Retardation and Multiple Disabilities Bill, however till date no rules have been framed.
The letter says that disabled persons are facing lack of accessibility, no benefits of promotions or integrated social security. Reference has been made to the government order regarding conveyance allowance made in the year 2012 which has not been increased since then.
The court observed that the issues flagged are of seminal importance and every step needs to be taken to ensure inclusivity and equality to the disabled.