The National Institute for the Visually Impaired, the Daisy Forum of India and the Centre for Internet and Society organised a meeting on “Right to read for persons with print impairments and copyright challenges” here on Wednesday.

The meeting was organised in honour of the visit of the World Intellectual Property Organisation Director-General, Dr. Francis Gurry. The agenda was to discuss the treaty for the blind, visually impaired and other reading disabled, which is presently tabled before the World Intellectual Property Organisation and proposed by Brazil, Ecuador and Paraguay.

The visually impaired community of India represented at the meeting by leading blindness organisations made a presentation on India’s current position with regard to availability of books in accessible formats for blind persons and the need for developing countries including India to push for the treaty.

“The objective of the meeting was to seek convergence in the national efforts to provide solutions for the visually impaired community with the international efforts going on at World Intellectual Property Organisation,’’ said Daisy Forum of India president Dipendra Manocha.

“The Indian Copyrights Act, 1957, does not make any provision for conversion and distribution of books in accessible formats for print-impaired persons,’’ he added.

In was felt that in the interests of the large print-impaired community in India a clear position in the law with regard to converting materials into accessible formats for print-challenged persons was needed.