Access audit for public buildings.
IN A bid to make public buildings easily accessible to the disabled, the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment is going to conduct accessibility audit of 100 most important government buildings in seven cities, including Delhi. Railway stations and airports too will be audited.
The audit is being done under the Accessible India Campaign ( Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan), a nationwide flagship campaign that envisages to achieve universal accessibility for all citizens, including persons with disabilities.
" The campaign will initially be implemented on pilot basis in seven states - Delhi, Assam, Gujarat, Haryana, Maharashtra, Rajasthan and Tamil Nadu,"said a senior official with the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities.
" We want to achieve universal accessibility that will enable persons with disabilities to gain access for equal opportunity and live independently and participate fully in all aspects of life in an inclusive society,"the official said. The Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities under the ministry will conduct the audit.
Buildings that do not comply with accessibility requirements for the disabled will be made fully accessible by July 2016. The department aims to make 50 per cent of all the government buildings of national Capital and all the state capitals fully accessible.
" We have asked for suggestions, ideas, proposals from individuals, NGOs, associations and civic bodies to identify 100 public buildings frequently used by persons with disabilities in the above cities to be made fully accessible. This will create a barrier- free environment that allows free and safe movement for all, without obstacles, with dignity and with as much independence as possible,"the official said.
Not only government buildings but the Centre also has a plan to make airports and railway stations accessible to the disabled. Accessibility audits will also be conducted at international airports and they are required to be made fully accessible by July 2016. The deadline for the domestic airports to make themselves fully accessible is July 2017.
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