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Disabilities Bill expected to be passed in RS next week: Gehlot

Disabilities Bill expected to be passed in RS next week: Gehlot

The amended the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill, 2014, which proposes a jail term up to two years and a fine of maximum Rs 5 lakh for discriminating against disabled persons is expected to be passed in the Rajya Sabha next week. 

"I am hopeful the Disabilities Bill will be passed in the Rajya Sabha either on December 14 or 15, and then move to the Lok Sabha on December 16," Union Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Thaawar Chand Gehlot said at a seminar, titled 'Disability Inclusion across ALL 17 Sustainable Development Goals,' here today.

Asserting that in the bill disability has been defined based on an evolving and dynamic concept, he said, "Passing of this bill will increase the types of disabilities from existing seven to 21 and the Centre will have the power to add more types to it." 

The types of disabilities include mental illness, autism spectrum disorder, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, chronic neurological conditions, and others.

"I can assure you Prime Minister Narendra Modi is fully committed to the inclusion of persons with disabilities (to the mainstream)," Gehlot said. 

"The bill proposes to increase reservation for those with benchmark disabilities in government jobs from current three percent to four percent, and in higher educational institutes from the existing three percent to five percent," the Union Minister said. 

The Bill proposes strengthening the office of chief commissioner and state commissioners for Persons with Disabilities which will act as regulatory bodies. 

On November 30, the Union Cabinet approved the proposed amendments to the Bill, that seeks to replace the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995. 

The seminar was organized by National Centre for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People in partnership with American India Foundation to emphasize that disability is a significant subsection of all developmental work undertaken by the government, corporates and non-profit organizations. 

It also highlighted that disability is an issue that must not be seen in isolation. So when the NITI Aayog is entrusted with the role to draft the document on 'Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development', it is imperative that disability is not left out of the agenda.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Source: Business Standards

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