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Bombay High Court strikes down retrospective EWS quota for Maratha candidates

HC asks Maharashtra government about broadcasting educational programs for disabled students

July 10, 2024

The Bombay High Court has requested the Maharashtra government to provide an update on its efforts to enhance educational opportunities for disabled individuals through the broadcasting of programs featuring sign language interpreters. Chief Justice D K Upadhyaya and Justice Amit Borkar sought clarification on how the state intends to implement this initiative.

In 2021, Maharashtra allocated specific time slots on Doordarshan and Aakashvani for educational broadcasts aimed at disabled students. These programs, coordinated by the school education and sports department, were scheduled to air on DD Sahyadri for two hours each morning and evening, featuring video clips with sign language interpreters.

In a February 2022 affidavit, the state indicated a lack of the necessary Rs 4 crore budget for television broadcasts and suggested uploading educational videos on YouTube as an alternative due to financial constraints. However, funding for these YouTube programs was reportedly unavailable.

The High Court directed the state government to submit a detailed affidavit outlining the steps taken so far to implement these initiatives. Additionally, the court instructed the Central government to provide insights into how it can support Maharashtra in achieving its goals.

These affidavits are expected to be filed within six weeks, as the court addressed concerns raised by NGO ‘Anamprem’ in a PIL regarding the challenges faced by disabled students during the COVID-19 pandemic. The NGO has urged both the Central and state governments to enforce the 2016 Right to Persons with Disabilities Act, ensuring equitable access to educational resources for all.

Source: PTI

Also read: Maharashtra: Free higher education for girls from EWS, SEBC, and OBC segments

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