SRINAGAR: The J&K High Court on Friday directed state government to undertake disability audit of public buildings in view of the problems faced by persons with disabilites.
The Division Bench of Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Tashi Rabstan sought audit of all public buildings after observing that disabled persons cannot move in buildings freely in the absence of facilities.
“The respondents will also place before this court an action plan with regard to undertaking disability audits of public buildings which would include hospitals, bus stands, transport system, railway stations, airports, all Government buildings, pavements, parks, etc.”
The court remarked that deficiency in facilities for persons with disabilities render the employment reservations for them inconsequential.
Earlier court had also called for a report from GoI’s Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment about the grants and schemes provided for the persons with disabilities in J&K.
The present litigation was admitted on the basis of a letter in August 2018 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 were not in tune with the Disabilities Act. It was pointed out 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.