• The literacy rate among disabled has increased to 54.5% in 2011. It was 49.3% in 2001
  • The number of PWDs in India are 26.8 million or 2.2% of the population. However, the World Bank estimates it is 4 to 8% of the population.
  • Movement disability accounted for the largest number of PWDs in India. It was followed by hearing disability and visual impairment
Barriers for disabled in government service:
  • Supreme Court has asked the government to investigate the “barriers” preventing disabled persons from entering government service, especially into the higher ranks
  • It has observed that there is hardly any representation of disabled persons in higher governmental hierarchy despite certain posts having been identified as suitable for them
Steps taken in recent times:
  1. Government has started National Job Portal for differently abled. It provides them with single window info about loans, scholarship, jobs etc.
  2. Accessibility India Campaign 
  3. “Inclusiveness and Accessibility Index” has recently been launched for private firms to evaluate the disabled friendliness of their firm and take corrective measures.
  4. Right of Persons with Disability Bill, 2014 is still pending in parliament. Need to be passed soon.
  5. Government launched E-Library ‘Sugamya Pustakalaya’. In this online library books will available in accessible formats for people with visual impairment and other print disabilities
Laws regarding disabled:
  • The Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995 was enacted to fulfil India’s obligations under the ‘Proclamation on the Full Participation and Equality of the People with Disabilities in the Asia and Pacific Region’.
  • Under the act,  the state’s obligation is to provide them at least three per cent reservation in public sector jobs.
Why in news?
SC quashed the central government’s orders on restricting reservation for the differently-abled in promotion to Group A and Group B posts, the Supreme Court has ruled that 3% reservation shall be provided to them in all posts and services under the Government of India
What government has to say?
  • Government cited Indira Sawhney judgement in which SC directed that there should be no reservation in promotion in Group A and B jobs
  • However, the court has now ruled that Indira Sawhney verdict was only applicable to backward communities and not the disabled
What is the impact of GST on disabled?
  • The GST on aids and appliances for persons with disabilities uses such as Crutches, callipers, hearing aids, walking frames, etc. would attract a GST of 5 per cent.
  • Aids and appliances are essential items for persons with disabilities for their daily routine, access opportunities of education or employment or enjoyment of other rights or the discharge of duties as a responsible citizen.
  • Earlier, all these items were exempted from taxation.



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