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Children with disabilities entitled to basic facilities like computer fee waiver: HC

Children with disabilities entitled to basic facilities: HC

December 15, 2022

Taking note of the problems faced by a student with visual impairment, the Delhi High Court has said children with disabilities should be provided free uniforms and computer and transportation fee waiver to ensure they are not deprived of proper education at government-run Kendriya Vidyalayas.

The court ordered these benefits to be extended to the child studying in class 6 at Kendriya Vidyalaya in Noida, observing these are “basic facilities” for such children covered under the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016.

The court passed the directions on the petition by the child who suffers more than 75 per cent visual impairment. His petition said his father being a daily wager cannot afford to fund his education.

“Facilities such as uniform, computer fee and transportation cost are all covered under the statute. In the opinion of this court these constitute basic facilities for a child such as the petitioner,” said Justice Prathiba M Singh in an order passed on December 12.

“Considering the recognition given to the rights of persons with disabilities, there can be no doubt that these facilities ought to be provided especially at Kendriya Vidyalaya schools which are government schools present all over the country, in order to ensure that children with disabilities are not deprived of proper education,” the judge said.

The petitioner informed the court that he required learning material, assistive devices, laptop designed for the visually handicapped, uniform, transportation cost waiver, computer fee waiver etc. under the Act but the same were not being granted by the school.

The court directed the school to provide uniform to the child free of cost within two weeks and said any expense incurred in that respect shall be reimbursed by the Centre.

It also ordered a waiver of the computer fee of Rs 100 and asked the petitioner to later make his submissions with regard to the transportation cost incurred for travelling from his residence to school and back since the school does not provide any transportation facility.

The court asked the Centre to file a status report giving details of the measures that are to be taken with regard to the transportation cost and other facilities which are directed in terms of Sections 16 and 17 of the Act. It also sought a status report on the petitioner’s requirement for an assistive device.

The school said it was extending various facilities to the petitioner and that a scribe/reader was also provided to him during offline exams for the session 2021-22 and the same shall be done in future as well.

The matter will be heard next on March 22.

Read: 5 Tips for parents with children having learning disabilities

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