Call to mainstream edn for disabled peopleStaff Correspondent
Politicians, rights activists and academicians on Tuesday said education facilities for people with disabilities should be under the direct supervision of the education ministry.
They demanded 10 per cent of the total budgetary allocation for people with disabilities.
Addressing a roundtable discussion on ‘disability inclusive national budget 2012-13’, they said disabled people, now entitled to different facilities under the social welfare ministry, were being deprived of these facilities because various irregularities.
The Action on Disability and Development International and the Daily Star jointly organised the programme in the Daily Star conference room, where social welfare minister Enamul Haque Mostafa Shahid was present.
Palli Karma Sahayak Foundation chairman Qazi Kholiquzzaman Ahmad said people with disabilities should get the mainstream education.
He demanded immediate enactment of a law to ensure the rights of peoples with disabilities.
He said enactment of the education law was equally important to ensure education for the marginalised people.
‘We made the draft of education law three months ago, but do not know where it is now. The draft included education rights of the people with disabilities, national minorities and poor children,’ he said.
Chairman of the parliamentary standing committee on the ministry of education Rashed Khan Menon stressed separate allocation for people with disabilities in the education budget.
‘All schools should build infrastructural facilities for the disabled students and every educational institution should have quota for these students,’ he said.
He also expressed frustration over social welfare and education ministries’ work for people with disabilities.
Manusher Jonno Foundation executive director Shaheen Anam said empowerment was imperative to ensure the rights of disabled people.
Campaign for Popular Education director Rasheda K Chowdhury vented her frustration that people with disabilities were not even included in the national census.
Information commissioner Sadeka Halim said the Awami League-led government’s election manifesto had pledged to ensure rights of disabled peoples, but no effected step was taken yet in this regard.
SEID Trust director Dilara Sattar Mitu said social welfare ministry did not monitor if the disabled people were getting their facilities properly.
Keynote presenter ADD International country director Mosharraf Hossain said the country had a total of 1.45 lakh disabled people.
‘Among them, 7 lakh are totally disabled, 35 lakh partially and 1.3lakh self-reliant,’ he said and demanded that the government should set aside 10 per cent of the total budget for people with disabilities.
Fourteen-year-old Anila, having physical disability, said she had passed standard five, but now no school wanted to admit her.
Asked about the ministry’s initiatives for people with disabilities, social welfare minister Enamul Haque Mostafa Shahid said his ministry was facing difficulties in its efforts to better society.
He urged NGOs to come forward to help government efforts.
Among others, the Daily Star editor Mahfuz Anam, social welfare ministry secretary Ranjit Kumar, parliament member Zunaid Ahmed, Jatiya Pratibandhi Foundation managing director Nurul Kabir, ATN Bangla programme head Nawazish Ali Khan, Child Sight Foundation executive director MA Muhith, SUPRO secretary MA Quader, Tauri Foundation ED Ashfaque Ul Kabir and DRRA ED Farida Yesmin spoke at the programme.
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