In an effort to take better care of the visually and physically challenged students as well as students from marginalised sections of the society, the Jawaharlal Nehru University has created a special cell within its Equal Opportunity Office (EOO), the first of its kind among Indian universities.
“JNU is providing all possible facilities to disabled students by providing them opportunities and empowering them, and for this purpose a special cell has been created within Equal opportunity Office (EOO) of the university to oversee the challenges faced by them. The university is proud of those disabled students who have excelled in studies and sports,” said Prof Sudhir K Sopory, university vice-chancellor at a seminar organised by the Visually Challenged Students’ Forum and EOO to celebrate the International Day of Persons with Disability 2015.
Besides carrying out a drive to make the entire JNU campus barrier free for differently abled, JNU follows the 3% reservation policy in its admission and provides hostel facilities to disabled students on the same day of admission. JNU also provides laptops with assistive software, voice recorders etc to its researchers with visual disabilities.
“All educational institutions should have an EOO and JNU is ready to share its experience and challenges with establishing such an office for effective implementation of policies for disabled and marginalised section students, which is very important for social justice at institutions of higher education and society,” said professor Manu Mittal, chief advisor, EOO.
Recently, Akshansh Gupta, a student of the university’s School of Computer and System Sciences who has 95% disability due to cerebral palsy, completed his Ph.D and a special felicitation program was organised to acknowledge his hard work and achievement on the occasion of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities. The university patrons hope that many more students like him could be facilitated to complete their education.