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Thursday, Dec 12, 2019

Only 264 unique IDs issued to the differently abled

cities Updated: Dec 03, 2019 21:33 IST
Archana Mishra
Archana Mishra
Hindustantimes
         

Gurugram Of the 4,600 differently-abled beneficiaries registered under the Haryana disability scheme in the district, only 264 have received the Unique Disability ID (UDID) Card, an umbrella document to help persons with disabilities (PwDs) get easy access to benefits under government schemes.

In the last year, since the project had started, the social welfare department at the Mini Secretariat has received 1,805 applications from the registered beneficiaries, of which 264 received UDID cards, while 318 applications were rejected due to incomplete online submission of documents. The rest are yet to be approved.

“Registered beneficiaries already have the disability certificate, which has to be replaced with UDID as per the project run by the department of empowerment of persons with disabilities, under the union ministry of social justice and empowerment, which is aiming to create a national database of PwDs,” said Sarfaraz Khan, district social welfare officer.

According to the official, an extensive drive was conducted last year to promote UDID in the district but due to general and state elections this year, as well as lack of staff, no awareness campaign has been conducted.

“Last year, we conducted campaigns in each village to apprise people about the UDID and filled their online forms. Being in the initial stage, we are trying to reach out to those who are covered under the state disability scheme with a minimum of 60% disability, are 18 years of age and above, and with an annual income less than ₹2 lakh,” said Khan, mentioning that due to election year, nothing much could be done in reaching out to the PwDs with UDID.

Notably, PwDs get a monthly allowance of ₹1,800.

Under the UDID, which will be a single document for identification and verification, one need not carry multiple documents to avail of benefits under different schemes. “The card is valid all across the country. So, it will help in tracking the physical and social progress of the disabled, based on the schemes availed of,” said Khan.

Experts say the current process of applying for a disability certificate requires multiple visits for registration, assessment and certificate collection. “There is a challenge to plan any scheme for the beneficiaries due to the lack of information. The purpose of the UDID is to track the physical and social progress of the disabled, so that people can easily apply online and get services at their doorstep. Ironically, this is not happening,” said Arman Ali, executive director, National Centre for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People (NCPEDP).

“Although the project has been launched by the Central government, states are yet to implement it in its true spirit. The UDID is still a mystery for the disabled. The application process has to be streamlined as people are not getting the UDID timely,” said Ali.

For Navin Gulia, a city-based social worker with 100% disability, who was unaware of the UDID, said the card can make the life of the differently-abled easier. “We are struggling to avail of basic services, such as easy access to public areas or getting the benefits announced by political leaders. Even getting a disability certificate is equally challenging. The UDID is a welcome move if it solves our problems.”