Nagaland needs to do more for PwDs: Pandey

Nagaland needs to do more for PwDs: Pandey
Dr Kamlesh Kumar Pandey
Correspondent KOHIMA, JUL 9 (NPN) | Publish Date: 7/10/2018 12:31:09 AM IST
 Chief Commissioner for persons with disability (PwD), Dr Kamlesh Kumar Pandey said Nagaland government lacked awareness on the Persons with Disabilities Act, 1995 and stressed that the government needed to work more for PwD in the State. 
Briefing media persons at Hotel Vivor here on Monday afternoon after a review meeting with disability department and NGOs, Pandey said PwD was a State subject and rights enshrined in PwD Act must be implemented. 
He added that NGOs too were not much aware of the Act and neither were these registered with government regulatory bodies or national institutes that work for PwD. Stating that the Centre had released Rs 4 crore in 2017 for PWDs in the North-eastern States, he added that the fund was, however, not utilised since the Act was not implemented properly in the region. 
He informed the media that the State government had issued certificates to about 7,000 out of the 29,361 PWDs, even as he underlined the need for proper implementation of the PWD Act as soon as possible. Pandey claimed that to reach out to PwD and hear their grievances regarding availability of benefits meant for them, the chief commissionerate office had organised mobile courts in different parts of the country along with PWD commissionerates of the States. 
He also proposed to organise similar mobile courts in remote areas of Nagaland to ascertain the facilities available for the differently-abled. 
State PwD commissioner Dr Atha Visol, who too was present at the press meet, said the cabinet had approved draft rules and that the final draft would be released after the next cabinet meeting scheduled on July 18. He said as there was no budget for PwD, the number of student beneficiaries of government welfare schemes could not be increased from the existing 2,000. 
Deputy chief commissioner Sanjay Kant Prasad and officials of allied department were also present at the press briefing. 
Meanwhile, it has been learnt five years after the appointment of a commissioner for PwD, the State government has still not established an office for the commissioner to discharge his duties. The issue came to light during an interaction with the PwD commissioner, who said he had no office or any staff either. 
Currently, Visol who works from his home office, exuded confidence that with the installation of a new government in the State he would finally have a proper office. 
He also said that though the Central government had sanctioned fund for constructing 16 government office buildings having access for PwD, not a single such structure had come up in the State.

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