sulabh swatchh bharat

Saturday, 16-February-2019

Delhi HC Directs Authorities to be Disabled-Friendly

The Delhi High Court on Tuesday directed the Central and Delhi governments and local bodies to be more sensitive towards the needs of disabled persons

New Delhi:  A division bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C. Hari Shankar said that it would "not tolerate exclusion" of any section of society from accessing public facilities. It asked whether Tihar Jail was disabled-friendly and if lock-ups in new police stations had disabled-friendly toilets for the complainant and the accused.

Juvenile homes, observation homes for the aged and women and other such establishments should have facilities that can be accessed by the disabled persons without any difficulties, it said. The court observed that there is lack of sensitivity among government official towards issues related to disabilities and pointed out various lapses like narrow entry points which is barrier for disable people to access such a facility.

It directed the local authorities to make their officials sensitive towards the needs of the disabled and make buildings disabled-friendly. The observation came after advocate Naushad Ahmed Khan said all the 22 new police stations are disabled-friendly.

The court -- which was hearing a PIL filed by 29-year-old Nipun Malhotra seeking directions to make Delhi's roads, government offices and public transport friendly for the disabled -- listed the matter for March 21 for further hearing. It asked the authorities to identify the shortcomings and come up with an action plan, including a timeline, to rectify the deficiencies.