A new draft law for disabled suggests reservation for them in legislative bodies, up to seven percent reservation in government jobs and a right based approach for different groups but still falls short of expectations.
The committee constituted to frame the Rights of the Persons with Disabilities, 2011, has also told the government that a new ministry to look into issue of disabled should be set up and all ministries should have a cell for disabled people. It also wants some reservation in elected bodies for disabled so that they can be heard.
"It is a progressive step but full of shortcomings," said Javed Abidi of Disabled Rights Group, an NGO that campaigns for rights of disabled people. "They want special schools for disabled to be continued instead of mainstreaming their education with other children. It may be because some of the members of the committee run special school for disabled".
In a major change proposed, the committee wants that there should be one percent reservation in jobs for seven different categories of disabled people, meaning that an increased from three to seven percent.
But, in 15 years of existing law the government has not been able to provide more than one percent of total jobs to the people suffering from different disabilities.
For the first time the law provides for right based approach covering education, health, social security and specific needs of women and children.
The draft law prescribes disabled women's right to home, family, justice and disabled children right to health, sports, leisure and government facilities. It also wants the government to ensure right to life and living, basic minimum facilities and guardianship.
A new controversial provision has also been added which says the disabled people will have a right to protect their fertility. "No person with disability should be subjected to medical procedure which leads to infertility without consent," the draft law says.
The new draft also seeks to set up a district level authority to look into complaints of disabled people against violation of the law and act as a monitoring body for its implementation.
The bill also seeks to make changes in different central government laws to make them sensitive to specific needs of disabled people.