The announcement by Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi on Wednesday on provision of special coaches for the differently abled people has not found favour with a section of them.

“We expect the government to have a universal design for coaches, which would be accessible for all with furnished washrooms, considering the needs of the differently abled people,” said Sminu Jindal, managing director of Jindal Saw and the chairperson of Svayam, a charitable trust for differently abled people. Ms. Jindal is herself a differently abled person.

Discrimination

“We have been working hard to provide equality and dignity to all, including the elderly and the disabled, and this step goes in the opposite direction discriminating the disabled from the rest. This renders the community more vulnerable, as it does not allow [their] joining the mainstream and restricts them from travelling on general coaches,” she said

Further, the plan to build escalators would not help the differently abled, she said and requested the Minister to provide for ramps and elevators which would help everyone.

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