[AI] New draft bill for the disabled in rough waters

Pankaj Kwatra Pankaj.Kwatra at tecnovate.co.in
Fri Jan 7 02:05:01 EST 2011

Hello All,

We appreciate industrious and credible effort put by each committee
members. I am of a view that it is indispensable to give more time to
law   and thought process as law gives guidelines which in turn leads to
policy framework and implementation.

The present law of 1995 is to be analyzed in line to shortfalls in
implementation and communication which is interpreted differently by
various agencies.

The new law should cover complete life span fowls which in turn divides
into various stages starting from education, right from primary to
professional and I believe a group of qualified and experienced members
should be assigned for each stage .The members have to be meticulous
about each detail gathered by primary and secondary data.

The next stage would be employment, I believe PWD with lot of hardships
get professionally qualified to know no job exist for them or various
hurdles are put in employment.

The last stage covers all benefits to Pads.

I would like to sum up that as a citizen of India  ,I should not be left
behind in any aspect of life.

Please spare me for any pedestrian comments.

Thank you,

Pankaj Kwatra

           .   .               

-----Original Message-----
From: accessindia-bounces at accessindia.org.in
[mailto:accessindia-bounces at accessindia.org.in] On Behalf Of ram
Sent: Friday, January 07, 2011 12:23 AM
To: accessindia at accessindia.org.in
Subject: Re: [AI] New draft bill for the disabled in rough waters

Dear Harish and other friends of AI family,

Since, I am a member of this family and have learnt a lot from you all
cherished lot of good moments and thoughts and since I am a member of
Committee constituted by the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment
(MSJ & 
E) to draft a new act to replace the PWD act, in consonance and harmony
the provisions of UNCRPD, I felt that I should share the happenings in
above committee.  I don't want to enter in to any controversy and I
belong to any group, except being the Secretary General of NAB (India)
myself, visually challenged.

The committee was constituted by the ministry in April with the above 
mandate, but was expanded with more disabled members, as many persons
NGOs insisted that the committee should have more representation
members. For example, Mr. Kaul of AICB met the minister and requested
him to 
have at least one of the chiefs of the three national level blindness 
institutions, to be included. He, in fact,strongly suggested my name. A 
common letter from NFB, AICB and NAB (India), signed by Mr. Santosh
Mr. J. L. Kaul and myself, in this regard was submitted to the ministry
I was included accordingly in June 2010. I wish to clarify this, as some

others were trying to take credit for this, as if they had done me some 
favor. You all know that I am least interested in any position and
but will do anything possible to benefit Visually challenged.

The committee was decomposed in to many smaller groups to focus on
topics and later, the entire committee will look at all the provisions
various groups. I was involved in employment, Social security and now in


The groups met among themselves in July and August, met the legal
in turn, to discuss the legality of various suggestions and finished
work, sometime in September 2010 and this was discussed at NALSAR in 

Please note that, when the committee met the civil society for the first

time, the members of various groups, actually had not gone through the 
entire act and therefore, couldn't explain or defend the same. While, I 
strongly felt that the committee should finish its mandate and then the 
entire act should be discussed in the full committee and then we should
the civil society, though some other members felt that the civil society

should be asked to give its comments. In anycase, we went to the civil 
society consultations.

During the consultations, many members made very concrete suggestions,
but I 
felt that we should have taken a little more time in studying and 
understanding the entire act and then interact with the civil society,
that the interaction would have been more meaningful and some of the
of the civil society wouldn't have got the feeling that the committee is
unanimous on its views.

It was agreed that the legal consultants will work on the draft and the
would be discussed in the full committee meeting on 26 and 27 November,
and it will be notified in the end of November, which will followed by
society consultations on 7 and 8 of December and then the state level 
consultations. At least, when I went through the draft of December, I
that some provisions have not come, the way we had discussed and
I was of the feeling that the changes will have to be discussed with the

legal consultants.

We are fully aware that an attempt is being made to replace the PWD act,
line with the provisions of UNCRPD and you all will agree that this is a
work. Even if the committee takes few more months to finish its work,
is going to have a long term effect, should we have so much objection
this? Haven't we suffered the infructuous PWD act for 15 years? All the 
members, realizing that a noble mandate has been given to them, in
a new act to replace the PWD act, did a lot of work and made significant

contributions to the work of the committee and how can we undermine
Wouldn't it be a good idea that we appreciate and support the members
encourage them in their mission?

During the last six months, have I not consulted many of you in NAB
and can you all recall, how many times, we had met in NAB. Like myself,
other members in the committee also had detailed consultations with the 
members of civil society. So, how can we say that the committee is not 
transparent and doesn't consult the civil society? In anycase, the
will have to consult the civil society, before finishing this work. I am

therefore pained to see that some of us feel that the committee is
and doesn't care for the views of the civil society.

It is unfortunate that some of us believe that the legal consultants are

forcing the disability code on the committee. Sorry, this is not right.
the discussions about one and four acts were going on in the committee
many of us strongly feel that the mandate of this committee is  to draw
comprehensive act and not suggest repealing NT, RCI, etc. disability
was looked only as an option. Many of us didn't agree with the code
and requested for more time to study the implications.

Another justification for disability code was the legal provision
the Disability Rights Authority (DRA) can be made in to an act under the

code and the present act needn't be made unwieldy. The code, at this
has not been agreed by the committee. Without getting in to any politics
personality issues, let me state that it is very unfortunate that some 
members, who have substantially contributed to the committee, have
to resign.

Let me reiterate my stand. In the 1% reservation, 0.5% each for the
and low vision. Reservation in recruitment and promotion in all cadre.
inclusion is the ultimate goal, all other models of education, viz. 
integration, special schools, home based, distant education should be 
available and the choice will be with the candidate or the care giver.
of participation of the disabled shouldn't be the criterion for
any NGO as DPO. DRA has to be the integral part of the act, extension of

rights have to be backed up with regulatory framework and grievance 
redressal and so on. So, friends, look at the positive work done by the 

Finally, if some of you want to clarify anything, please ask me
and I shall try my best to answer. It is fine, if some of you don't
with me, but, I shall not take any unprofessional and unethical

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Kotian, H P" <hpkotian at rbi.org.in>
To: <AccessIndia at accessindia.org.in>
Sent: Wednesday, January 05, 2011 9:23 PM
Subject: [AI] New draft bill for the disabled in rough waters

> Hello All
> Members are kept up to date regarding developments on the committee
set to 
> crystallise the draft legislation for the disabled by postings in the
> by members time to time.
> There is presently a crises with many members resigning and more
> to follow suit. This is a matter of deep concern as this is going to 
> result in more delays.
> It is imperative we do our bit by putting forth our views clearly
> 1 There is a move of "Disability Code" which will have multiple laws
> single comprehensive law.
> In my opinion, we should insist on single comprehensive law. We are
> of the practical problems in the present regime and the new law should
> again carry the dead weight.
> 2. The law should be comprehensive in substance. Meaning, that even
> chapters which are covered should be properly covered.
> 3 The committee members should necessarily take advantage of
> and listen to the voice and suggestion offered by civil society.
> 4 The committee chairperson should be suggested to offer a statement 
> regarding the time-table of events regarding the functioning of the 
> committee, target dates for all the draft chapters, regional and
> consultation etc.
>  Any other suggestions, comments welcome.
> Harish Kotian
> Moderator
> AccessIndia.
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> Celebrating Louis Braille's birthday, Jan. 4th.
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Celebrating Louis Braille's birthday, Jan. 4th.

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