India

This page features the news on disability from India in the Debrief Library. See also news from other countries.

Contents

Accessibility and Design

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Uncertainty over Accessible India Campaign deadline seven years of work to increase accessibility of government buildings, public transport and websites. (Jun, The Hindu)

Mumbai: Living with a disability in the megacity (Mar, Aljazeera)

Ageing

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Delhi Police to visit homes of senior citizens every evening (Jul, Devdiscourse)

Assistive Technology

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Food Delivery Service With A Difference: This Motorised Wheelchair “Gives Wings To People With Disabilities” (Jun, NDTV)

COVID-19

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Living with COVID

Climate Crisis

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Interview with Alice Abraham, a young woman from Kerala “regarding the impact of climate change on her life and her disability.” (Jul, The Sangyan)

An ICT4 Inclusion Challenge on mitigating the impact of climate change on people with disabilities (May, ICT 4 Inclusion Challenge)

Culture, Entertainment and Media

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TV and Film

Will ‘Jalsa’ Improve Disability Representation in Indian Popular Culture? (Mar, BBC) See more on Surya Kasibhatla, the actor with cerebral palsy that stars in the thriller.

Data and Research

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Data Gaps: Undercounting Disability In India Explores issues with surveys, disability certification and the unique disability id scheme. (Jul, IndiaSpend)

Factsheet: Disability In Jharkhand results from the National Family Health Survey showing less than 1% of the population having a disability. (Jun, The Sangyan)

Digital Accessibility and Technology

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State of digital accessibility in India (Dec, Financial Express)

Disaster Risk Reduction and Crisis Response

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Status of Disability Inclusion in Disaster Risk Management (Jun, The Sangyan)

Economics and Social Protection

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Social Protection

In Tamil Nadu, Unique Disability Identity Cards go missing (Jun, DT Next)

Tangled In Red Tape, The Disability ID Card Process Is Steeped With Gender Barriers. As well as some of the expected implementation issues, this in-depth article discusses how "these problems multiply for women and transgender persons with disabilities." This includes a striking gap in disability card holder percentage of men and women. (Feb, Behan Box)

Education and Childhood

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Around 71% of govt schools across country made "disabled friendly" according to Ministry data (Jun, Times of India)

For kids with disabilities, the pandemic may have been a reprieve “If not going to school has given them their first taste of learning in a safe and happy place, then schools have to be made safer and happier now that they are heading back” (Mar, Indian Express) I'm sure this doesn't generalize, but great to see cases of people who had a better time.

Employment, Business and Work

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Enabling Inclusive: Best Practices in Disability Inclusion in Manufacturing Sector (link to pdf, Mar, IBDN)

The Supreme Court bats for disabled people in police force. “Experiment it for a while and if it does not work then you may not continue with it.” (May, Times of India)

Gender Equality and Women with Disabilities

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Trans Persons With Disabilities Lack Enabling Social Systems and Healthcare Support: “the medical fraternity is patronising and insensitive towards their healthcare needs. It does not help that families, already struggling to cope with their disability, find it hard to come to terms with their gender identity.” (Jun, BehanBox)

Women With Disabilities Have To Constantly Negotiate Between Isolation And Intrusion

“We noted in our conversations with women with disabilities that they experience social isolation and the invasion of privacy simultaneously. Their body becomes available to other people — parents, doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, groups of medical students doing the round of wards, for example.”
(Mar)

Health

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Can a Blind Doctor Become a Psychiatrist? discussion of a case that has reached the Supreme Court. (Feb, The Wire)

Lived Experience and Opinion

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Mental Health

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The Long-Run Effects of Psychotherapy on Depression, Beliefs and Economic Outcomes:

“We revisit two clinical trials that randomized depressed adults in India (n=775) to a brief course of psychotherapy or a control condition. Four to five years later, the treatment group was 11 percentage points less likely to be depressed than the control group. The more effective intervention averted 9 months of depression on average over five years and cost only $66 per recipient.” (link to pdf, May, Bhat et al)

Mobility, Travel, Transport and Tourism

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Passengers with special needs: “A wheelchair is not what my sister needs at an airport” (Jul, The Indian Express)

Anger after India airline IndiGo removes disabled teenager “India's aviation minister has said he is investigating a domestic airline after it allegedly refused to let a disabled teenager board its flight.” (May, BBC)

Representation to West Bengal Transport Authorities on procurement of accessible, low floor buses. (Mar, Freedom of Movement Coalition)

Policy and Rights

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New Policy for disabled paves way for early intervention centres employment portal & national database (Jun, Times of India) Concerns raised that the draft was not accessible (The Hindu)

Government advisory board on disability not re-constituted since November 2020 (Jun, The Hindu)

Relationships, Sex and Reproductive Rights

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Desire, Sexuality And Choice: Disabled Indian Women And Queer Persons On Their Experiences. “I never stopped to think whether I liked them or not. I was just glad that someone liked me. I didn’t feel I had the right to say no. I thought ‘I will figure out how to like them too,’” (Mar, BehanBox)

Why It Is Hard For Disabled Women, Queer Persons To Leave Abusive Partners (Jun, BehanBox)

An impressive series of collaborations for Cripplentines Week 2022 "Cripplentines is rooted in the belief that all kinds of love should be celebrated". I particularly enjoyed picking out my favorite lipstick for you: "We deserve rough sex, slow sex, sex that makes us forget the ableist world for a while, sex that is loving, sex that values our disabled bodies." And the article on the space to dream of disability affirmative love:

"As single disabled young adults navigating (or trying to navigate) dating during a pandemic, there is so much despair and frustration. Yes, there are plenty of fish in the sea, but most of the fish are ableist and would rather not wear a mask because 'the omicron wave is mild, ya'."

See further in the collaborations with Feminism India and Gaysi. Featured on New India Express and Mid-Day. (Feb, Revival Disability Mag)

Violence and Harassment

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Disability, Gender, Violence, Home and the City 'Nidhi Goyal takes us beyond keywords' with interesting reflections on a range of subjects, illustrated with concrete examples, from her experience of the city, the relations between access and safety, and the home itself:

  • "To access a city space, I invite someone in my physical space, and allow them to touch me. [...] I disconnect my arms from my body, because I have to offer my arm to every stranger I meet."
  • How disability shows us new forms of exclusion and violence, whether a family not speaking in sign language, or "for a disabled women, domestic violence is not giving her medications on time, putting away her assistive device where she cannot reach by herself, without asking her."
  • Whether this is about getting dressed, whether to go out: "We don't consider that taking consent from a disabled woman is required at all." (Dec, Third Eye Portal)