Accessible India Campaign which is also known as Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan. This Campaign was launched to serve the differently able community of our country. The Campaign was launched on 3rd December 2015, which is also the International Day of People with Disabilities by our Honorable Prime Minister, Narendra Modi & Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD). It is a nationwide campaign to achieve universal accessibility for Persons with Disability (PwD). This Campaign will empower the disabled persons so that they do not feel inferior from others. They should get equal opportunity & live independently & participate in all aspects and be part of society.
CENTRAL THEME OF THE CAMPAIGN
The Central theme of Accessible India Campaign or the Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan is to make public friendly space for disabled persons and also to make a barrier-free environment for Divyangjans. They should get equal opportunity to live independently and participate in all aspects and to be a part of society so that they do not feel inferior from others. The campaign target is to enhance the accessibility to build a suitable environment for them in the transportation system, information & communication.
To fulfil the objectives various mass awareness programs will be launched, workshops will be held for building their capacity etc.
Under this Campaign:
- 50% national & state govt. capital will be made accessible to disabled persons
- All the International & Domestic Airport will be converted into fully accessible.
- 50% of Railway Stations will be converted into fully accessible
- 25% of Public transport will be converted into fully accessible
- 50% of Public Documents of central & State Government will meet these accessibility standards
LINK WITH PREVIOUS ACT
- Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunity Protection of Rights & Full Participation Act, 1995: Under Sec 44, 45,46 of this Act there should be no discrimination of disabled persons in transport & built environment
According to Sec 46 of the PwD Act State Government should provide:
- Adaption of the toilet with wheelchair
- Ramp in hospital, health centres or other medical institution
- Ramp in public premises
- Braille symbols & auditory signals in elevators
As per Sec 44 & 45 of this Act, it is the responsibility of the State to provide transport accessible for disabled persons and provide slope in pavements or engraving surface at a zebra crossing.
PWD Act, 1995 was replaced by The Rights of Persons with Disabilities, 2016
United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD)Under Article 9, Government should ensure PW D's accessibility to information, transportation, physical environment, communication, technology & accessibility to emergency services.
CONSEQUENCE OF THIS CAMPAIGN
The consequence of this Act was that even after so many years of the launch of the Accessible India Campaign, many States had not shown good response. The State has been slow in partnering with the Centre Government to make a website for differently-abled persons. The response of three states, i.e. Chhattisgarh, Meghalaya, & Haryana were good. Facilities at the railway stations for Pw D's had not been maintained. 211 CPWD buildings were made accessible. Due to inadequate response of this Campaign, a Bill was passed, i.e. Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill, 2016. This Bill will deal with the issues of accessibility to infrastructure, technology & information. Due to the slow progress, the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment has extended the deadline to March 2020.
REMARKS & SUGGESTIONS
This Campaign is for the people with disabilities so that they get equal opportunity and accessibility of transport, infrastructure, and commu8nication etc. so that they do not feel inferior from others. The Government should not only make Campaign but should also look for its implication in the real aspect. The Government should take steps to see that everyone should follow this. Strict actions shall be taken against those who do not follow the policies by the Government. The public should also support the Government as it's for their benefit only. 354.45 rupees has been spent on this Campaign by the Government to make buildings accessible to disabled persons but are they provided to the disabled persons? This is a matter of concern and the Government should look after it.