Opinion » Columns

Updated: July 23, 2012 15:40 IST

The Aamir Khan Column: One simple step to increase our GDP

  • Aamir Khan
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Aamir Khan.
Aamir Khan.

With education, the disabled can contribute to the growth and wealth of our nation

In America, 12 per cent of the population is counted as disabled, the corresponding percentage in England is 18 and in Germany, nine. In India, government statistics claim it is two per cent. Javed Abidi of the National Centre for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People has a very poignant question with regard to the above numbers: what is so amazing about the Indian environment or climate or gene pool that we have only a tenth or a fifth of the number of persons with disabilities when compared to other countries? Or is it that something is wrong with our counting?

Until the year 2000 — 53 years after Independence — the Census did not record a single disabled person in India! In other words, in the minds of the people making policy, taking decisions and allocating funds, the disabled did not exist. And if they did not exist, obviously we did not do much for them. So in the first 53 years of Independence, while we were building the infrastructure of our country, we did little or nothing to include them in our thoughts and actions. Therefore, the bulk of our infrastructure is not disabled-friendly, leaving them further marginalised, and disabling them further.

How we behave with the disabled among us tells us what kind of a people we are.

Ketan Kothari, another expert, explains how, by and large, we have two kinds of reactions to disabled people: one, that they must have done something wrong in their previous birth and therefore deserve what they got; two, let us use them as a ticket to heaven — make a donation to an organisation working for the disabled, or give money to a disabled person asking for alms, and score some brownie points with God. If this is how many of us behave towards the disabled, it is a sorry picture that we paint of ourselves.

Time to change, guys.

So where and how should this change begin? Education.

The Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan programme and the Right to Education Act say that every child in India is guaranteed an education. Despite that, most regular schools in India deny admission to children with disabilities. They cite lack of infrastructure and trained special educators. They are probably right. But what stops so many schools across India from becoming inclusive and disabled-friendly? Who is putting a gun to their heads, not allowing them to do this? I'm afraid it is our own lack of thought, application of mind, and maybe of heart. Let's change that. If we start today, each school (if it really wants to) can become a truly integrated school within a period of two, or at most three, years. Let each school make this its target.

Currently, an alarmingly low percentage of children with disabilities are educated. Without the foundation of a strong education, no child can reach his or her potential in life. By denying children with disabilities admission in regular schools, we are denying them their right to education and, therefore, their right to make their lives productive.We are also denying other children the right to intermingle with, learn from, and grow up with friends with disabilities, and vice versa. With education for our persons with disabilities, we can prepare them to be productive, look after themselves, and their families.

The government says two per cent of our population is disabled. Various experts and NGOs say it is six per cent. I think it is safe to assume that the number is somewhere between six and 10 per cent — let's say eight. Now eight per cent of 1.2 billion is 96 million. That is more than the population of England (51 million), France (65 million) and Germany (80 million). As Mr. Abidi puts it, what we as society need to decide is, do we want 96 million of our population to be uneducated, unemployed, unproductive and left with no choice but to be a weight that the rest of us carry? Or do we want them to be educated, employed, productive, able to look after themselves and their families, contributing to the growth and wealth of our nation? If we want the latter then we simply cannot achieve that without including them in our mainstream education system.

That's the bottom line.

Jai Hind. Satyamev Jayate.

(Aamir Khan is an actor. His column will be published in The Hindu every Monday.)

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For the Mental Disability:-
Regular schools are no good for special children, as teachers are in no way educated to deal with them; this in turn is followed by lampooning of special children and thus draining their confidence. These behaviors when encountered at that early age, the child starts building his own cocoon and rejects to come out.

In this country where we are surrounded with profligates, I am sure the money subsidized for them is eaten away with wrong stats. We have no mainstream industry to induct them. With this over population, our respect towards human life itself is depreciating. All we care about is me!

ONLY if, we were not on corrupt hands!

Lastly, with such great population, we can’t lack ability but only intention. If population is our weak point, it’s out strength too!
Thanks Amir.

from:  Vandana Iyer
Posted on: Jun 15, 2012 at 08:55 IST

Very good article Aamir. I have lived in the US for six years and I
was quite amazed when I realized how every public place in the country
is designed with wheel-chair accessibility. All footpaths, bus stops,
shopping malls, offices etc all are so well designed so that a
disabled person can independently move around in these places. I am
surprised that even today when the private sector is building fancy
shopping malls and multiplexes or the government is renovating
footpaths, bus-stops and public parks they don't give any thought to
make it accessible to the disabled.

from:  Nitin Singh
Posted on: Jun 14, 2012 at 15:56 IST

Well said. But, Amir have you ever projected disabled persons, in a
good light, such as in lead roles, holding positions of
responsibility, and authority, etc., in your movies?
In most movies, the disabled are given roles of a beggar, etc. The
only exception is perhaps, the film Dosti, in which one of the leads,
was a disabled boy.
Please do something concrete on the ground, rather than just aiming to
corner some National award, like Padma, etc., simply by raising such
sensitive issues.
Please also name & indicate particular people/communities, responsible
for population explosion in India. Which are the communities who do
not recognize women's rights, and practice polygamy, and denounce
family planning measures, and a common civil code? These are some
genuine issues which Amir Khan chooses to avoid. But why?

from:  Dr. Kartikay Pandey
Posted on: Jun 14, 2012 at 13:45 IST

Yes, we should not be missing a single chance to give an opportunity to
the disabled. In fact it should be done in such a way that this label
disabled mean nothing to them except a mere word. They should be
involved in the mainstream education system and this time with no
reservations! No reserved seats but they have to prove themselves that
they can make it up without any prerogatives! And I am sure India will
shine as a nation where every kid,every person studies and contributes
to the GDP.

from:  Hina Fatima Khan
Posted on: Jun 14, 2012 at 11:43 IST

Aamir Khan you are doing good social service to the common man by
highlighting serios deficiencies in govt policy.
notices at bus stops urge people to give priority to diasabled while
entering or alighting buses and trains. India should make an effort to help the disabled in every way. all the desabled should be treated like a simple person like we. we salute you....
satyamev jayete
sumit baluni a simple accountant

Posted on: Jun 14, 2012 at 09:35 IST

great job by aamir khan.i gained my confidence that india will develop no sooner[only if every person understands and follows aamir and his shows]he is spending many crores only to gain incredible india.have faith and just follow him.dont abuse him that he gets profit or popularity by these shows lets support him for a great cause.jai hind.mera bharat mahaan

from:  sneha
Posted on: Jun 14, 2012 at 08:26 IST

After 15 minutes research on the internet, I learned that the following statement (from this article) is misleading and woefully inaccurate:"Until the year 2000..the Census did not record a single disabled person in the minds of the people making policy..and allocating funds,the disabled did not exist." It has inexplicably escaped Khan's attention that collection of data regarding handicapped was stopped during the 1941 census,and no attempt was made to collect disability data in census of '51, '61, or '71! Khan makes no mention of the National Sample Survey, another method by which handicapped data has been collected since 1959! And Khan makes no mention of the Persons with Disabilities Act (1995) that guarantees free school for handicapped children until age of 18! Khan should thus be asking why the government has not provided services guaranteed by law! It is amazing how Khan provides information lacking authenticity/veracity while stressing the importance of education!

from:  Sujoy
Posted on: Jun 14, 2012 at 07:53 IST

I read heaps of praises about the article.. But i beg to differ. The
analysis done by Amir khan seems to be very uninformed and
incomplete. As he has reported the figures of number of people who
are disabled ... i would want to know .. how much these people
contribute to the GDP of those nations. While i total support
promoting the facilities for the disabled for various social ground
and Humanitarian grounds , linking these to GDP growth seems some
what out of bounds. To make the article more credible to its cause
1. change the headline which says doing something for disable would
increase GDP or 2. substantiate the article with numbers that provide info on how these people contribute in increase of industrial production. If we have to provide sufficient funds to support this expenditure.. we have to stop the leakages in form of corruption. My advise to amir khan is to put up a show in satyamev jayate against our craziness to buy more and more gold(biggest import after crude oil)

from:  Aman Goel
Posted on: Jun 13, 2012 at 18:19 IST

The purpose of this article is appreciative. But the word "disable"
should have avoided. As we all know they are not disabled, they are
"Physically Challenged"

Already, the government companies & most of the private companies
have allocated some quota for physically challenged people. Also, the
government has already reserved some seats in colleges for physically
challenged people.

But what about schools????

We cannot climb a ladder without stepping at bottom...Isn't it?

The same way as first step, the government has to reserve minimum
number seats in schools for physically challenged people. Then based on
this, government should increase or decrease the no. of seats in

from:  Mohan Kumar T
Posted on: Jun 13, 2012 at 07:21 IST

Pondicherry University, A central University provides 100% free
education for the disabled students and research scholars. The disabled
need not pay any fees even for food and lodging in hostel. The
university is designed keeping in mind the disabled. The credit goes to
its Vice Chancellor Prof. J. A. K. Tareen. The University has also
bagged to its credit the prize of disabled friendly university from the
President of India.

from:  Arijit
Posted on: Jun 13, 2012 at 01:54 IST

Great article from Aamir! I live in US, and I can see how much importance they give to care for the disabled. For simple example, you
can see that there are dedicated parking spots on every parking lot,
ramp access everywhere. We in India does not care to understand that the
disabled have special needs.

from:  Vineeth
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 23:21 IST

Disability can hit even at later part of one's life due to arthritis,
paralysis stroke, Parkinson disease or other debilitating diseases. Or
even simply because of old age. Government has to make necessary changes
to already existing public buildings. And going forward wheelchair
access has to become a construction code when approvals are given to
build public places like malls, doctor's offices, schools, cinema
theaters, apartments etc.

from:  Neeraja
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 18:13 IST

A good job my Amir and Satyamevajaythe team. The statistics and facts shown here tells how much bad we are behaving towards the physically disabled people. Yes, education defienatly helps a lot to remove this from the root. But people mentality should get change. We will cricticize the people if they are short than usual one or if they are abnormal then how about the physically challenged people. Instead of showing the concern try to accept the person as they are. Change occurs by single thought and a single step.

from:  Vini
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 15:47 IST

I live in Sydney and find the Govt. Society and family are very supportive of Disable making sure that they live free and dignified life. I have friend whose young brother is suffering with Down syndrome. The Govt paid for the electric chair stair for him which was worth $11000. Also my office infrastructure like entrance,kitchen etc. was changed just because the Co. employed a person on wheelchair.
In our society we try to hide our family members who has disability. This should change and the phenomenon of "Bechara" should go.

from:  ajay punj
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 15:44 IST

I am not surprised reading about the injustice done to the disabled
people.We have never been a just and equal society.We are stuck with a
notion that only a certain person having certain characteristics and
abilities deserves better than someone else.Its a bit like the caste
system ,only that we have changed the stereotype from castes to money
and abilities of a person.We believe in karma.So if a person gets
killed due to drunk driving,we unconsciously blame the person for his
death and deserves it.A prisoner is never provided the basic human
right as we consider it is his karma and he deserves it.Just look at
the roads to see that we are not a democratic society.We build roads
without taking to consideration about pedestrians and cyclists which
ironically make up the bigger percentage of users.Whenever we make
policies we fail to take into consideration people of all ages.At all
stages we stereotype people and usually unconsciously on their
looks,gender,status in society,caste.

from:  Chi
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 14:59 IST

This really can be helpful to both government and
"special people" ...they can contribute a lot to is
right of every citizen of our country irrespective of any must be inclusive to increase the bonding of these
special people with mainstream.

from:  kapil godara
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 12:29 IST

We should consider the need of infrastructure for differently abled people really seriously. 2% or even 8% is a joke because you are not including the large pool of senior citizens whose physical abilities are not like an average person and they need convenient infrastructure. These people remain home bound and since the infrastructure is so poor that they need to be accompanied by someone 'able' most of the times making difficult for families to support them. Apart of infrastructure even the tools/ apparatus/ goods to make life easier should be available in the market at reasonable price. e.g. trolley bags with light weight can help old people buy the necessary items conveniently without asking anyone to pick up the bags .... such bags should not cost more than Rs.300-400. We must reduce the labor of such people and help them become independent.

from:  Jayesh
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 11:52 IST

Aamir! I am hoping and praying that your show on special need people will be an eye opener for Government of India and its population. Here are some stats from Australia, my country of choice. Four million people in Australia (18.5%) have a disability. The Australian Government supports people with disabilities through a range of programs, services and benefits and payments. Further support is provided through grants and funding for organisations delivering services for people with disabilities. Here in Australia the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) provides protection for everyone against discrimination based on disability. The DDA makes it unlawful to discriminate in the provision of goods, services or facilities against people on the basis that they have, have had, or may have, a disability. The Act also makes it unlawful to discriminate against a person on the basis that one of her or his associates may have a disability. Salute to Aamir for bringing the issue to Indian masses.

from:  Nadeem
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 11:12 IST

It's good to see that Aamir khan has brought up a nice issue through his program but, Will it be good if both children study in the same school ? It will be a type of discrimination on the children those who are normal and their progress would also be slow. Sometimes the differently able children may be bullied by the normals if he success in the exams by good marks. In the present world the competition is in such a high position that if a normal child scores less marks that the differently able child he\she may get pressurized from their parents and in such a condition the young minds may distract and lead to suicide.

from:  Akhil Bhushan
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 10:51 IST

Welcome to Quota/Control/Regulation/Corruption/Politics in education Utopia Raj

from:  Jay
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 10:37 IST

Aamir Khan has been doing good social service to the common man by highlighting serios deficiencies in govt policy.i have lived in Hong Kong for over 20 years. The facilities done for the disabled in this city are commendable. The following facilities are now available; buses have foldable steps which can be lowered for wheelchair users.
seats are reserved for positioning wheelchair users.
trains have special lifts for disabled to reach platforms.
Every public facility has toilets specially designed with grips.
blind people can easily know where the escalators and lifts are as there are brail inscriptions all over public places.
notices at bus stops urge people to give priority to diasabled while entering or alighting buses and trains.

India should make an effort to help the disabled in every way

from:  mythilyraghavan
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 09:01 IST

Every Indian is proud of what Amir is doing for the nation. His conscious level is more than many other actors who are pursuing wealth and power relentlessly.You have all our support and keep doing this exemplary work.

from:  Nasar
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 07:48 IST

Sorry, too much publicity and hype is being made out of such programs; some aired without proper clear investigation . Even many "debate" shows are made up with "concocted" views to gain public support; Time the viewers learn to know the truth and avoid such gimmicks !

from:  Radhik Hairam
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 06:02 IST

It's nice to know that people are concerned and it is a small step forward. First of all, let's not brand them disabled.. They can be addressed as differently abled.

from:  Somsundar V.M
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 03:43 IST

Developed countries like America have fought many wars resulting many disabled people. We can not compare with them.In general Indian people carry natural sympathy to help them and give suitable job. Though Aamir's point has merits.

from:  Ashok
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 03:35 IST

Great article. May this article be inspire all others. But Sir, of course we should try and develop the infrastructure and for that we need the govts help. However, I also believe we should put ourselves in their shoes and think what else they need for help. As far as I'm concerned it might be more than just the infrastructure and education but we should also make sure that empathy is developed in the souls of the narrow minded people so that they can help out more and change these pointless ideals in the society. There should also be more ideas given to help out the differently abled people as they are gems of our society. Lastly, thank you for creating a wonderful show 'Satyamev Jayate'. Me and my family believe that you have made a wonderful contribution to our country.

from:  Namrata
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 02:25 IST

The concept is attractive but superficial and head line grabbing. Are there no disabled people in medical, law and engineering colleges. The numbers are few and could be improved. In a country with over a billion people the opportunities for everyone is few and highly competitive. Before we compare with a country of 50-60 million people let us remind ourselves about our population and put that in the right perspective.

from:  Srini
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 01:33 IST

The Central and State Govts should formulate measures to identify the disabled or differently-abled persons and provide them free education and help them in securing jobs suitably. Not only the Govt, but the private organisations like industries/companies/corporations etc may come forward to adopt such children and provide them education and help to secure them suitable jobs. It is not to say that they are not doing it at all, but it is not enough. Every such child is to be searched out and helped in all respects.

from:  D.Ramakrishnan
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 01:29 IST

As a person who has lived in both India and the US, I completely agree with the article in terms of how our infrastructure is not suited for the disabled. You don't need to get into research or statistics to notice the vast difference in front of your eyes. Once again, kudos to THE HINDU for dedicating a column towards this. As some people pointed out, the analysis maybe be superficial, but it is doing its job of making people discuss these issues instead of acting as if nothing is wrong.

from:  Akshay R
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 01:27 IST

Not only we have not taken care of disabled, but also we have not taken care of ourselves. Just because 'abled' people can hang on to the gates of buses and trains does not mean that this is the right way for transportation. The real issue that need to be solved before we can approach to accommodate disabled persons facilities is to have proper drainage system in our towns, cities and villages. Drainage affects the height of footpath provided.

from:  Hitesh
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 00:55 IST

Thank you, Mr. Amir Khan for using your fame power to change the society. You are a brave son of India. Kudos to you to take issues head on like this.

from:  Haridas Ramakrishnan
Posted on: Jun 12, 2012 at 00:22 IST

Very nice article, Aamir thanks for taking your time out and thinking about the nation and its policies. We need people like you in Indian politics instead of Digvijay Singh, Kapil Sibal, Salman Khurshid.

from:  shakti
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 23:59 IST

Although I agree with Aamir Khan's assertion about disabled being neglected but let us face the reality. We are still in the infancy stages of democracy where we are figuring out things. Our democracy being of socialistic form, it becomes government responsibility to provide the very basis necessities ROTI, KAPADA, and MAKAAN. We still have millions of poor people who go to sleep without food. Its not that they are lazy but they cannot find a job and even if do find it, it doesn't pay them enough. Sad part is that people are moving to big cities from villages or small towns for livelihood. Women are still treated third class, girl child is still considered a taboo in majority India.

from:  Vivek Chaudhary
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 23:36 IST

thanks for such a good article. i am now working in plymouth, united kingdom. before coming here i never thought about the differently abled people living in our society and they can do anything for the society other than begging on our streets. i know its cruel. but when i came here i was astonished to see how much the government and the public are doing for the disabled. here every footpath, shops and malls are designed in such a way that it provides equal access to disabled people. every offices, banks and such places have hearing aids, brochures in braille for the blind and toilets in public places designed for them. then only i realized that in our country how much we are avoiding them, marginilizing them and discriminating them. true, our society is not open minded or developed to be compared with the one existing here, but we must change, and should give equal priority for those differently abled people.

from:  rajeev raveendran
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 23:32 IST

This is a thought provoking article. I think many of us do not think much about disabled people as we are born 'abled'. Its only when we or a close family becomes diabled that we know how important it is for such people to interact normally with society. These children can achieve what every other"normal" counterpart can achieve if they have the facilities and they are "gems' in these people. It is not just for GDP, but also for self respect and self dependence that they should integrate normally with society. We as a society should expand facilities to nurture them to achieve their potential.
Lastly wonderful topic. Congrats Aamir

from:  Siddhartha Gaddamanugu
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 23:17 IST

The malaise is quite deep. One of my classmates during my B.Tech in Anna University was physically challenged. The first year we joined we asked for a ramp to be installed so that we did not have to carry him up the four stairs to the ground floor of the building. We kept pestering through our four years there but a ramp was not installed. All the people involved did try. They forwarded it to higher authorities but an approval never came through.

More than just superficial thought, a deeper systemic change where people are naturally empathetic to the physical challenged/ differently abled at all times is required. Schools should at the very least teach that.

from:  Bharat
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 21:59 IST

we have lot of people to agree and disagree with this show. I have to say to those people who are disagree with this:

Atleast Amir is doing something for nation. what u are doing.. just passing comments that it should be like this.. not this.. not hapens everytime... like that.. it is nothing but just a first step.. agreed not all 100% will recover but atleast 1% is also recovered then its fine/.. no one knows that first step can lead to anything... just be positive guys..

from:  SHrikant
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 21:37 IST

i will appreciate for creating the awareness in the society by writing the valuable article in the hindu..thanks to the both (the hindu and amir khan). but you are concentrated mainly on disabilities in the society.but there are many more problem in the society like(corruption,caste,black money)if we get the black money to our country .the problems which we are facing right now is get plz concentrate on corruption...once again thanks to the amir khan jiii................

from:  ramu
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 21:15 IST

If only we change - one of the participants in your show was talking about throwing the banana peel on the road and how it could cause a blind person slip.How important a point it is for us to teach our kids against important it is to teach our kids to treat disabled equally.I think the show hit the right button...change has to come within.If we accept the disabled every where, things will change.I was always looking for a solution from govt " Govt is not doing enough /System is corrupt", when started looking the issues seriously, part of the problem is me/us...our attitude.
Great show and great eye opener.

from:  Sunil Tirur
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 20:58 IST

I completely not agree this because number of scheme conducted by the
government of India for disable all government organisation
some reserve seat for disable people.i have seen in many government
organisation many seat are vacant due to disable candidate not available with desirable ability.when we talk about fundamental
education of disable people they face many problem comparison to
another this case we can say that government has not taken
any another case is people behavior to the disable
person is not good.they did not want to help and communicate.

from:  suresh
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 20:55 IST

can Amir highlight the issue of Indians not giving respect to Queues
also. Everywhere people jump queues in India (from temples to
even toll plazas in highways). Gives a very nasty feeling. thanks

from:  hari
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 20:31 IST

Root cuase for all problems in our country(INDIA) is Population and education.
I request Aamir sir to concentrate on these issue before we jump on to others problems. China is in the process of controlling their population, why we are not at least planning, are we making necessary steps towars that?

from:  Prem
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 20:30 IST

I admire Aamir Khan's willingness to write about very basic things in
India. To know about the actual percentage of disabled people, we need
to focus on the definition used in India, US, Europe etc. Indian Govt
(irrespective of the ruling coalition) always tries to paint rosy
pictures about very basic data: For example Poverty line, Educational
attainment, Black money, Illegal "Benami" Operations etc. Yes, we must
worry about the disabled people in India. Then how about the
percentage of girls passing high schools, and then going to college?
It is reported that literacy level and educational attainment of girls
in India is very deplorable. Even in Tamil Nadu, one of the few First
Tier, advanced States in the Union, hardly 30% of people pass the high
school education, and the national data is less than 10%. Of this,
data on girls is insulting. Yes, Aamir should write about all the woes
of the Indian Society. Then, where's the Solution? Who would provide

from:  Yamaka
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 20:28 IST

Amir you have really made people to think, being a public figure these shows have a lot of impact.I would just question how many of our public transportation buses are disable friendly. Are we preparing a such buses at all!!!

from:  D p Naidu
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 20:25 IST

I have been in the construction industry the last 20 years and mostly out of India. The construction that I did out of India, Its manadatory or by default that provisons are made for the "differently abled" in all aspects starting from,

1. Separate car parking facility
2. Acess Ramps
3. Elevators
4. Toilets etc

Mind you, the above have to be done exactly as specified or as per codes and a building completion certifcate / utilities are not approved / connected if not adhered to.

How I wish the same happens in MERA BHARAT ...

from:  Sunilkumar
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 20:00 IST

Revolution 2020 had begun with Amir as the leader.

from:  Arjun TIwari
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 19:40 IST

Salaam Aamir Sir, ..
GDP does matter's for Government only when it want to showcase its
achievements but it does not look at it seriously that how it is spent
for Inclusive Growth which is real Growth of a Nation. Inclusive
Growth is same as you have pointed out Inclusive Institutions in last
episode. The Inclusive Growth covers all neglected areas for the
development. But it needs a strong political will which is rare in
India. The Politicians feel handicapped if they follow the policy of
Inclusive Growth because they are deprived of their VESTED INTERESTS.

Any how let's hope for better. Thanks Aamir Sir

from:  muhammad sanaullah
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 19:35 IST

In response to a question as to why there're parked cars, boxes,
scooters, in front of the ramp (clearly meant for wheel chair users
and perhaps those who can't use the steps), the security guard of a
company (foreign entity) in Bangalore was quoted as saying - in 10
years of his life as a security guard, he has not seen one
differently-abled person entering the building!

Whereas if you did that in the many other nations would invite hefty
fines (not the usual chalo yaar story). As an eye-opener, even in a
so-called 'developing nation' such as South Africa, you would not see
places reserved for 'differently abled' used by others. Clearly the
Indian constitution is flawed, toothless and to add salt to the wound,
government agencies responsible for census believe in their 'non-
existence' (that in a land that's famed for amazing feats of maths!) wonders if the people who do the census ever look in the
mirror to see how well they do their job.

from:  Sriram
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 19:22 IST

I can't seem to get one innocent child out of my mind, a little girl
who had
lost both of her hands in an earlier terror attack, innocently asking
mother when they will grow again. It is sad or bad enough that we have
natural causes for mental or physical disabilities, so it pains more
to see
man-made atrocities that permanently maim innocent civilians,
helpless children. Education can help reduce violence, prevent
accidents and
incidents that cause disabilites. Social awareness via Aamir Khan is a
show, we need more to grow.

from:  Rajan Mahadevan
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 18:48 IST

It is a sad truth that resistance by the able educated class is the primary reason for this sorry state of affairs.Educating the differently abled would ensure what each disabled himself wants.To be in the mainstream and be a tax payer rather than being a liability to the government.A little effort,be it taking some time to educate the differently abled or as Aamir very well points out,by making schools truly integrated,putting the disabled into mainstream is definitely achievable in two to three years.

from:  Shijoy Varughese
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 18:43 IST

A great job by Aamir Khan .Really you are doing such great job that's very necessary in the current context of time where every one is busy in own job to full filling one's desires.It's not only the duty of a single person to spread the awareness about any social issues . It's duty of every one and we have to understand that without the co-operation and support of every one the situation will not be going to improve . So please spread the message so that every can wake for the nation ,for the humankind ,for the nature.

from:  pawan singh
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 18:32 IST

Dear Amir, You surprise us every time since you started "Satyamev Jayate"We salute you every time since your first show.We all are with you to make your DREAMS come true.We all hope and sure that your efforts will definitely bring some changes in the hearts of Capitalists,
Vice Chancellors and Principals of various institutions.There is a little hope from Government under present circumstances to take any decision.Your show is an inspiration and lesson for all of us.We thank you and "The Hindu"for including us in your efforts.

from:  Ravindra Raizada
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 18:05 IST

I really appreciate the move and the issues raised by Aamir Khan.
As it is said that 'Better late than never' I think government should come up with new protocol for all the existing educational institutes to make sure that they fulfill all the required facilities in there infrastructure for such citizens so that they can also give there participation to make INDIA shine and we should not neglect the fact that they are not Disable people they are just Differently able and without there support India can never stand in its own feet.

from:  aayush sthapak
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 18:06 IST

Powerful nations like USA and UK has accepted the fact that they have "differently abled" people and are working together to bring them at par by modifying their surroundings to accomodate them. I salute to the broadness of their mind.
And at the same time I feel ashamed to be an Indian.

from:  Gaurav Goyal
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 18:06 IST

Please donot address them as "Disable". We are simply discouraging them by saying them disabled before even they try to or think of doing something. They are also capable of doing what we can do but in a different way, so they are "Differently abled" people.

from:  Peace
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 17:41 IST

I find this show as something which can bring the changes needed for
prosperity, merrier life only if people and government works towards
it in a right manner with good intentions. The fact that poor as well
as disabled people are merely given a chance in the private schools
is a slap on the face of the current government who have passed the
RTE bill but not trying its best to apply it in every corner of the
society. I have read everywhere that the sole purpose of doing
business is to make profit, then why do the people expect only the
private schools to make a contribution towards the help of disabled
people. Why can't we join the campaign and make a good enough
contribution which will go to the needy and will help them in a proper
manner? Equal opportunity can only be given if the planning about the
needy is good and each and every individual is identified based on the
tiniest bit of details. That's when the census will fulfill its

from:  chandan Mishra
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 16:45 IST

Dear Aamir, it does not matter if 2% or 10% are physically disabled,
but what matter most is the countless numbers of mentally disabled
who have by and large are having powers rule over the rest both in
legislators and in civil service. With these retarded people are
around deciding the fate of the country there is no hope at all, not
only for the disabled for the abled too. Your well-meaning
suggestions on reinforcing the foundation of educational structure
to improve the lot of disabled is like pouring water in the sandy
desert, as long as the enablers, the politicians in tandem with
civil servants continue to suffer from people phobic mental

from:  N.G. Krishnan
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 16:03 IST

I salute the effort made by Satyameva Jayate team but I think the statement made here is exaggerated. As we all know that many physically challenged citizens are given quotas for the employment. We see a lot of them work in the Government, Manufacturing sectors. This is possible only when they get formal education. I accept the point that every school should have facilities to train Physically challenged citizens.

from:  Divya Govindraj
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 15:39 IST

I study in Germany and the public transport system here has to be
really appreciated for the convenience of the disabled people. the
buses are provided with special places for them where they could halt
their wheel chairs with proper support. in order to get the wheel
chair inside, the driver himself gets out of his seat to open up a
platform at the door-floor for easy gliding. (In most cases passengers
travelling help). apart there are provisions for the bus to tilt on
the door side so as to allow easy access for people with difficulties
in walking. Whether its a bus or train, the facilities and thereby the
efforts are commendable.
The efforts put forward by a small country towards this issue indeed
sets an example for every other country...of what can be done, what
should be done, and are you willing to do it.
the final question is still the same ' whether do you care for your
every citizen?'
Thaks aamir for your contribution in enlightening the masses.

from:  Bhavin Shah
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 15:29 IST

Very interesting article. We need to change our attitude towards differently-abled people, infact I would like to call them special people. They don't need our sorry or sympathy. They just need a chance, a right for everything just like all of us. After all no one can deny the power of humans, they too can reach great heights..

from:  Kshitija Chavan
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 14:53 IST

India cannot become great with a previleged few, there has to be equal opportunity. The differently-abled children are not included because of luck, they were born that way and rest were born normal. If the tables were turned would we have ignored them?

from:  Arjun Nair
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 13:50 IST

Let us get the facts right. Census tried to count the disabled in 1981. The figures were published then. It was tried again in 2001 and 2011 censuses. In other censuses, if no disabled were reported, it was because there was no effort to collect data.
It should also be recognized that collecting data on disabled is very difficult as respondents, unless they are themselves disabled, generally do not want to talk about those disabled in their households. However well they are trained, it is too much to expect that the 2 million or so census enumerators would spend enough time with each household with probing questions to identify the disabled.
Our insensitivity to the problems of others, not all of them physically challenged, is to be blamed for many of the problems. Just look at the way city planners are pushing out pedestrians into the road or encroachments in the sidewalk that make it difficult for even able bodied, let alone disabled, to use it

from:  K N Unni
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 13:25 IST

Great insights and thoroughly researched article for a deserving cause. Let this coloumn be a wake up call for the govt to act.

from:  Sathya
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 13:17 IST

I have a point to make with regard to Amir take on comparing ourselves with America or Britain. Comparison should be done among the developing countries and it would have produced more plausible logic. Please spare our effort in comparing every nut and bolt with America. We must have seen many other societies, mostly from neighbouring sides as well.

from:  Sushil Kumar
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 12:48 IST

Very insightful article by Amir Khan!But all said and done how many of us will actually try to bring about a change.We always criticise goverment for not doing enough on the infrastructures. But it is equally true that we have to change our mindset first. How many of us actually see a physically disabled person crossing a road and help him/her cross the road? While there is a need to develop infrastructure to enable physically challenged people to move/work freely we need to change our attitude towards them and treat them respectfully!

from:  Debraj Maity
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 12:48 IST

Very interesting article.
May I request all those getting involved with this issue to remember some others who are physically challened like the dwarfs, midgets, hijiras or eunichs and many others. I've noticed how such people are completely marginalised in the employment scene and left to beg for a living.
The common man has enough burdens trying to make ends meet in India, and people like Amir Khan should be encouraged and morally supported to bring about rapid change in these areas - like offering to make banners and badges, sell arm bands, sponsor ads etc just about anything that can support this initiative.

from:  PETER
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 12:45 IST

I really appreciate the move and the issues raised by Aamir Khan.With increased knowledge and power you have a greater responsibility to share and help the book of philosophy it is quoted as " the man is a selfish animal" and it is somehow right but at the same time we are human being also and, it is the humanity which picks the pen and paper and writes something about society and our responsibility.We will definately see change in our sciety if such great personalities come forward and raise the real social issues.If article written is implemented then surely our GDP will change but if read heartly then it will change our atttitude towards the disabled which is more important than our GDP.Thanks Aamir..God bless you.

from:  shadab khan
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 12:44 IST

I am a physically handicapped man preparing for IAS in RAUS IAS STUDY CIRCLE,New Delhi.
I think disabled persons have the same talent and capacities as common persons have.They need some special opportunities to realize their potential and use them in social service.They are more honest, labourious, progressive and responsible than common people.They have strong desire for social service and we should exploit this precious resource in nation-building.There should be social initiatives through different channels involving all sections of society to change negative social attitude towards them.Satyamev Jayate is pioneering this campaign which must be continued both individually and collectively.

from:  saba alam
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 12:40 IST

The point is well made, although I wasn't aware that the government was able to
carry on till 2000 claiming that there were no officially disabled people in India! Astonishing, considering their presence in TV and movies.We also ought to address an equally important question, namely the acceptance of
disabled people within their own families. Many children that are born with disabilities, or those that acquire these later on, risk being shunned, neglected and treated inhumanly by their own family members. These may be afraid of the stigma that disability brings in our society, particularly in case of mental disability, or even epilepsy which can actually be treated in many cases. Or else, they are ignorant of what disabled people can manage if given the necessary support. Then of course, there are others who simply lack the will or power to manage the challenge of caring for disabled family members. Let awareness also begin at home.

from:  Vivek
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 12:40 IST

excellent write up Mr.Khan. I am totally agree with you without
disabled communities a nation can't progress in any step.what i
believe that we need to educate the parents of the disabled. i have
seen in village if a disabled is born by default his/her right to
education is stop there with the mind sets of parents that what will
he do in near future even he is educated. so woman in generally pray
to god to have healthy baby and they thought that healthy baby once
grown up will help his dad doing cultivation, earn money for them.i am
witnessed of another story if a woman gives a birth of disabled baby
she will be tortured by rest of family members and this things are
mostly happened in rural what we need is to increase the
awareness of the people. we need to send this message to every citizen
of India. Aamir i have one request to you and your team and Star Plus
please start conducting this show in every state in their own local

from:  sanjoy
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 12:40 IST

No one else could have told this better and strong than Aamir Khan... It
is time for the Govt. and Private sectors to change their attitude
toward our differently abled friends who are no less than us..
Thank you Aamir for such a sensible and truly important topic.

from:  Priya
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 12:33 IST

Let us make it mandatory for every corporate to have disability access
toilets and entrances. Let us make it mandatory for every hotel and mall
to be disabled friendly. These guys have the money - and they can set a
good example. Dilli Haat spent a lot of money and time making their
market disability friendly - they should be set up as an example.

from:  Milly Murgai
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 12:21 IST

Inspiring motives! A topic that has even Good for the start to wake
people up! Hopefully this is followed with some developments further.
Governments must answer this, courts should be involved to get this
answered on national priority!
I am true believer of actions than just words and I appreciate few
people above even admitting the same. However, I am very tempted to
give another point of view which may be taken just a question. In same
line of the figures of the country's diabled groups manhandled, was
that also for the reason that the extra reservations will be needed
and might choke the general category further? I am a guy belonging to
General category and i am not very convinced why such figures where
suppressed. I mean is that just because the policy makers assumed
disabled are of no use as they can even cast votes. Feeling of shame
inside me and struggle back of my mind on what could be done best here
by the country. May we all stay happy and uncorrupted! Thanks

from:  Abhishek Kumar
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 12:03 IST

Absolutely right Aamir! Education is the key and the right beginning. Every school
public and private should make appropriate facilities for the alternatively enabled
people, at least the private school, which in deed make big profits should come
forward to accept and train disabled. Alternatively enabled people, who often are
very sharp and tend to have special abilities/talents, will actually emerge as creative
people, who can then drive economy with a vision.
Thanks Aamir for bringing up this issue and looking forward to more like this.

from:  Sankar
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 11:44 IST

Before anything, before we blame our politicians, our country etc, we
should look into ourselves and think how we feel towards the
differently abled people. Do we not shudder when we see them, do we
not pity them. Let alone such feelings, some in the the society feel
it apt to curse them and misbehave with them as shown in the
yesterday's program! Shocking isn't it. So shouldn't we first learn to
accept the differently abled? Shouldn't we first learn to treat them
as our equals and not make them realise that because of your
disability, I am treating you as special! They require to be treated
as normal human beings! The day we realise this fact, we will build
schools which will be disabled friendly, we will have infrastructure
for them. Why so? Because the Architect who plans a school building is
one of us. The financing party is one of us. It is all about how we
think and perceive. Its time we change our thinking. Every one of us
counts. Its time as Aamir rightly says, to change.

from:  Parul Ghosh Dastidar
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 11:36 IST

well, the program was extremely good.As some of the friends mentioned earlier; the facility for disable in every school is impossible so, few of the schools can be made for disabled and abled ones in each locality.

from:  Abishkar
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 11:32 IST

Thank you for bring a vital issue to the fore. Each one of us should be ashamed of our insensitivity and callousness toward people who are disabled in their physical abilities. In a country, where even the "abled" ones are not strong enough to be in the race of "survival of the fittest', the lot of the disabled people are just misery and humiliation. They have to fight against the stigma of the society and also a brazen wall of apathy on the part of the Government and other social institutions. Their contribution to the economy, as mentioned rightly, goes without even a cursory recognition. It is high time, their rights are emphasized and participatory empowerment policies are implemented to alleviate such a huge chunk of this marginalized population group.

from:  David Muthukumar S
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 11:33 IST

All sensible people will agree with Mr. Khan. However, irrespective of the impact on us and the undoubted power of the TV episode of June 10, we must recognise that he could not have covered the needs of the myriad variations of disability. Each requires different types of support. E.g. Wheelchair bound people need ramps, blind people need help during studies and examinations, and dyslexic kids (remember Mr. Khan's movie?) need specialists for remedies and adjustments. So no matter what Mr. Khan asked for - we do NOT just need schools ready for 'inclusive education' but to force architects, builders and municipalities to insist on support for the disabled in the housing societies we see coming up daily; public transport (buses and trains) for ease of access, local authorities to hasten grants of disability certificates, and so on across all segments of society

from:  P K Sengupta
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 11:27 IST

Good write up Aamir!..We should not only say disabled people as differently abled. We should make them that way. It is not only in the hands of Politicians, Government and NGO’s. Each individual in their life can fine tune the time of their busy schedule, and help the disabled people. How many of us really help blind people by involving our self for scribe activity. Scribing is writing Examination for a blind people as they say the response. We can spend some time with them this way, give them a good motivation on facing the life and Make them feel as one among us.

from:  Sudha
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 11:19 IST

I appreciate the efforts of Amir Khan and Satyameva Jayate team for their splendid effort to help the disabled. It is really alarming to note that we have a very huge number who are facing many problems physically, mentally and socially. In my purview, I think that disabled people should be made psychologically strong(I am talking not tallking about the heros who rode against odds) than before to enter into the educational institutions on par with normal people. We should treat them with effection rather than showing sympathy. As mentioned in the previous comments, it takes years for making the infrastructure to become disabled friendly. But, I think if we start with the basic necessities like ramps, walkways so to help the disabled. Improve the code of construction of educational institutions and public places, by the government will pace up things to be done.

from:  Krishna Teja
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 11:12 IST

I do have serious objection in using the word "Disabled", one can definitely use differently-abled why deteriorate ones capability on the basis of his deformity.
Why blame the govt only, its also on the moral responsibility of the huge public mass. If you fail to respect with deformities and people who are weak , you would probably need a therapy rather asking the people with deformities to form another society exclusively made for them.

from:  padmalaya
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 11:12 IST

Aamir doing a very good job towards the disable persons in our country disable persons life is more critical as compare to other country .there is need to give better services,also our community act with such persons in more convenient manner by giving social and financial support.

from:  ravikant ahire
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 11:02 IST

I believe India is a little too far when it comes to decision making
being equal for everybody. Many Indians haven't been able to cast
aside differences in caste (let's not even talk about religion).
Disability is something else entirely. Most private schools work for profit and most government schools are simply inadequate. I know this because I have studied in both. It is easier said than done that they take up the initiative about making sure that the Right to Education is respected, be it for disabled or
simply poor children. What I believe is required at this hour is a law by the government which gives special rights to the disabled. This DOES NOT mean
This means that it be enforced that all schools accommodate poor and disabled children according to their own capacity. And there has to be a minimum capacity in place depending on the annual revenue of said school. Such bars must be made for the institutes themselves. The government must take a responsible stand.

from:  Abhishek Sikdar
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 11:02 IST

I respect & agree the views presented by Aamir in the article and he surly has more thought about this topic than those presented here in this article. But there is a conspicuous emotional dryness to this article. This is because it does not say anything about the treatment that the disabled people get from the society.
Anyways I support your cause and the action has to start from the people, not only schools, as every parent must understand that their child must know the reality and must live in the diversity that the society actually has. So every kind of child must enjoy the same environment and (according to constitution) equal chance to excel in the competition.
It would be interesting to listen to the views of Dr. Amartya Sen on this topic.

from:  Varad
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 11:01 IST

Generally Teacher ask questions and Students Blink. But yesterday, Teachers/Priniples blinked when Aamir asked why disabled students are not allowed in their schools. It was both funny and disturbing. Yesterday's was a great show. Hats off to Aamir.

from:  Kalimuthu
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 11:01 IST

Very good article aamir... please keep the fire burning... am sure this wud make a difference some day

Satyameva jayate

from:  jeeva
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 10:57 IST

Completely agree with Aamir.Since independence we are trying to
develop our infrastructure henceforth Indian economy by many ways.But
we are ignoring them who makes our GDP weak.We need to care all the
factors which are crucial to our economy and humanity.The disabled
persons are among those.Just by providing alms or showing pity on them
is not the solution.We have to make the education essential and birth
right for all those so that they could realize their right and
existence. To build up our nation there is need to build up the base
and make them able to compete.For this even a single citizen of our
country needs to pay attention and work harder.Just by providing them
reservation in education field is not the required solution,we need to
make them aware.Awareness is to be spread every where among disabled
and able. If we ignore them them they become mentally and socially
disable with physically disabled.

from:  Alok Nandan
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 10:55 IST

I agree with Aamir. We Indians are really good at wearing blindfolds and
just ignoring the disabled people in our society. That attitude must
change for sure.

from:  Shaival
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 10:53 IST

In extension to Aamir's show, people should show respect to the people who are challenged by some disease, mainly skin diseases. Differently able people don't need any special treatment including sympathy, they just need the same treatment as anybody else gets. This show should make do some introspection to those people who do not behave well with people with some disability. Hopefully, the society will take care of its own part without any discrimination.

from:  Tapish
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 10:51 IST

Hi Amir,
I certainly agree with you that special people should be treated equally and there should be no discrimination between the one who is physcially normal and the other who has some physical disability and the legal action should be taken against those people from the education sector who try to discriminate between the two.
But there is an another side of this coin too.
Special people have their seats reserved in colleges and jobs. In that case won't we say that they are given a special treatment when somewhen who is normal and was more deserving couldn't get the seat in his/her dream college or job. Don't you think that is also a discrimination. If we want to look at everyone with the same eye then the changes are needed from both the sides. I hope you are reading this.

from:  Ankur
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 10:37 IST

True, the solution does lie in education. But that is only on part of the answer. As we grapple with an education system, which starkly discriminates between the average, the poor, the excellent and the outstnading category student,is it equipped to make the disabled feel specially-abled? The first step in making education every-child's treasure-trove, is broadening its spectrum of handling various levels of intelligences, and abilities. And, above all parents,elders who assess education only to make their children a part of the rat-race, need to reorient their mindset, in view of the larger benefit for them, their children, and for the country's future as well. The tectonic shift in the mindset of the society, the surging societal consciousness, will helpt to identify the potential of every individual of the country - and create the channel for purposeful living through proper education. The change initiated in every human mind can make a difference for the differently-abled!

from:  Uma
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 10:14 IST

Your show on this was a real eye opener and I had tears in my eyes while watching it. It is really shame that we have been so ignorant about the state of our own disable people. It is high time we change our attitude and start including these people in Main Stream. Salute to Satyamev Jayathe team and Aamir Khan for this..

from:  Murali
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 10:12 IST

I fully agree with Aamir on this issue.Everyone has an equal right to a respected life.The disabled people are not treated with dignity in our country.They are looked down at,sometimes made fun of as if these people are cursed by god.These people find it very difficult to make a good life for themselves.They are segregated from the society,education is denied to them on foolish grounds,and if,by luck,some of them do get education then jobs are not given to them.This is the condition of our pathetic,so gloomy.
Why we don't understand that, if given proper support and encouragement,these so called"disabled" people can also do that we all can do sometimes better than us.We have so many people who need some support..that doesn't mean they need our mercy.They just need love and respect from us.We need to change our perspective towards them.If we traet them equally then our country will grow more as these people ,too, shall be able to contribute towards economic growth.

from:  himanshu khandelwal
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 10:13 IST

The explanation by Ketan Kothari is really true in our society. The cheap mentality person think that disabled person must have done something wrong in their previous birth till now.
I heartily thanks to Aamir khan for making this show.

from:  shachindra pandey
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 09:46 IST

Good piece of writing Amir !!

Its time to "NOT" look down on "the disables".. coz only then we can be much more productive society, and a prosperous nation as a whole.

Every child is special :)

from:  Ravinder Pundir
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 09:47 IST

I agree with Aamir, but I urge politicians not to take this as a
scoring point and simply offer an increase in reservation or quotas
for the disabled. That will not serve the purpose. Reserving seats
itself means that the reserved people have been marginalized from the
main-stream, it means that since they cannot compete with the main-
stream quotas are in place for them. Instead let us all make a
collective effort to make a disabled feel like a normal person (after
all even normal people need extra attention at some or the other
juncture of their life, if not physically then mentally). I request
all educational institutions, offices and public places to open the
gates for disabled people as they are normal, neither look down upon
then nor show pity, treat them as equals, take rigorous tests if a job
requires it, do not pass a disabled student in his/her examination
based on the fact that he/she is disabled. That is all we should ask

from:  Anshul Malik
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 09:42 IST

Every single statement is true. Many countries have their infrastructure
where they give special attention to physically challenged by providing
ramp, lift, sound signalling. But in our country even platform is not
friendly for those people. One cannot walk from Madiwala to Sony World
signal of Bangalore through platform even with their open eyes. In
countries like India physically challenged people are further challenged
mentally and also socially.

from:  Baskar
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 09:21 IST

With the advancement of mass immunisation , the incidents of congenial defects have come down , however there is now an increasing trend of new defects in new born babies owing to environmental degradation and toxin accumulation in food chain . As a result , India and elsewhere will have more and more people with disability . Ironic isn't, we are developing new ways to curtail reduce indicendents of birth defects . So many of us will still day dream in Dox Quixotic world that this will not happen to our new born babies . The sad fact is the probability has increased . Hence Aamir's programme on Disability and equality is timely as well as good time to reflect on our attitude towards disability

from:  Biswajit Mishra
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 08:57 IST

Well Amir! I pay a very good attention to your programs & write ups. By
talking of disabled and presenting solutions to their problems you've
done a great job. At least now we will talk about this. But I don't think
that the problems are going to be solved in two or three years. The simple reason is that we can't equip all our educational institution with Lui brel's technique and teachers trained to teach the disabled. And the erection of infrastructure for disabled would require dismantling the already existing infrastructure and erecting new one which will require huge money and bound to consume
hell lot of time. Another simple answer could be to, for now erection
of primary schools for disabled, which can be done in two or three
years &letting the disabled get education till class six there. And
then allowing them to come to the general schools. This may go for few
years say 10 & within that time the general schools will be asked to
follow the suit.

from:  Ajeet Tiwari
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 08:47 IST

In India any one with a disability is a non- entity. No one will care.
There is no awareness hence we care a damn about the issue. The victims
are bound to suffer.

from:  Ramsy
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 08:14 IST

Thanks, Aamir for enlightening us on this thought provoking issue.A lot
is talked about inclusive growth by our politician and economists but
same cannot be achieved unless we bring the marginalized and downtrodden
sectioned of our society into mainstream graph of growth.Though NGOs are
working towards empowerment of disabled. We as a citizen of our country
too have some responsibility to contribute towards their betterment.

from:  Gajendra Sahu
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 07:39 IST

Bravo Amir !! Another subject that surely needs attention. In US, they have atleast 2 parking slots reserved for disabled in all parking spaces which indicates that they accept disabled in mainstream society and make space for them. In India, we are just blind to the fact that this can be reality. Thanks again picking this topic and your solutions as always are simple and practical that we can start off with.

from:  Raghu
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 07:10 IST

Mr. Ajit kumar, ranked 208 in civil services exam denied the seat as he ia visually challenged. He fought for 3 years to get his right. If our govt. Doesnt think that phyaically challenged and visually challenged people are worth fetting to these post, how can we expect to get response from private players. Private companies look for high profit by employing limited manpower. Govt. Need to put an example by giving chance to these people in education and employment. A constitutional amendment in regard to education and employment is must to ensure full rights to physically challenged people.

from:  nitin mittal
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 06:54 IST

Even though Aamir is an actor (yes, I am being judgmental here), his
willingness to consult and learn from the real experts and bring
solutions after identifying the problems, again, obviously after
thorough consultation with people in the field in question, is very
I also appreciate his referral of the source of his knowledge. He
does not claim that he knows more than others and cites names of
experts that he learns from - a pointer to his honesty.
Apart from the message of the column, I wish people learn from him
about proposing theories and arriving at solutions after consultation
with the people knowledgeable in the field, and not throw around
half-baked hypotheses and useless solutions.

from:  Hemachander
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 06:52 IST

I did my graduation, medical college and post graduation all in
government institutes and i realized every thing in my country is fraud,
but it is very interesting to know the statistics. When it comes to
physically challenged people, its not statistics, humanity should play
key role and unfortunately culturally we are poor even in that. Great

from:  kiran maddu
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 06:05 IST

Currently i work in Seoul in south Korea. I am really surprised at the level to which disabled are cared here. There are more than 400 metro stations inside seoul metropolitan area and each of them has separate facilities for use of disabled. Either separate elevators or separate paths to get to station. In addition, all paths from footpath to zebra crossing are given a slope for convinience of persons using a wheelchair. Even though India is not in a position to provide such facilities now, at least we can provide education to these differently abled people to make then part of mainstream.

from:  Harish Anand
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 06:01 IST

There is no denying the apathy towards providing vocational training to the differently abled children in our country. True in our hearts we need to treat them as equals showering the same affection shown to able children. But putting them in the main stream education system does not solve the problem as the differently abled children are unlikely to get the special attention they require and would remain also rans barring those with special talent. Literacy is one issue while normal education is another. The country requires vocational training for such children so that they can engage themselves in employable jobs and make a mark with their skill for repetitive tasks.
Attitudes do need to change towards such children with prenatal handicaps and all acts of philanthropy should be undertaken without much fanfare as silent gestures and not to catch headlines utilizing surplus funds to avoid taxation. It is the moral duty of society to provide means of livelihood for such children.

from:  R.Vijaykumar
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 05:50 IST

I am living in Montreal, Canada. Here bus schedule has listed the
disabled friendly services. Between the regular buses, few disabled
friendly buses will run. When a person with a wheel chair wants to
get in the disabled friendly bus, the driver presses a button, and
from the foot board of the bus a slope rolls out to the platform of
the bus and the person with the wheel chair can easily get in. Inside
the bus there are few seats are foldable and these wheel chair bound
passengers can position themselves there. first thing here the buses
do not have steps and they are almost at the same level of platform.
so rolling out a slope for the wheel chair is easily achieved. fr our
country to make it friendly for disabled and senior citizen who have
arthritis pain following points to be done. We do not know which
state government has political will to do these points.
(1) Buses should have low platforms and no steps.
(2) Bus drivers should stop the bus at the designated place only.

from:  Seshadri
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 04:33 IST

I wanted to say this for a while but did not, lest it should be seen as an adulation of the messenger, while messenger wanted rest of the world to focus on the message.
But I got to say this, only for selfish reasons, that it makes my heart lighter - I love you and the work you are doing and how you have been handling stuff in the shows. This one reason will reignite my hope in Indian nation, hope in collective conscience of our culture.
This gives me pride, here and now, which to me is invaluable compared to all that I have been told in books or have known through folk history of this country.
I'm not sure if, as a society, we will take cue from you and start demystifying and dismantling certain attitudes built over generations, but I will be hopeful. I'm hopeful that I'll do my part and also hope this nation will continue to give pride to next generation, to my son and daughter, here and now, when they grow up.

from:  Gautham
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 03:24 IST

Very good job, Amir.
Though there are certainly roadblocks in including the persons with
special abilities into our mainstream education system but those are not
so big to conquer. It can demand for money for making our infrastructure
be it physical, social etc inclusive but the results will be very much
beneficial for the society.

from:  Sunil Sharma
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 02:53 IST

Mr.Khan has pointed out a very vital point for Handicapped and disabled children, Especially with representing the census, he has pointed out its major impacts.Currently, In our country there is separate educational policy that is applicable with disabled one,which has really equipped a wide minds among disabled and Normal ones.In fact, Flawed Educational policies alarms a discrimination where Normal one often set a corner with disabled One because they never shared mutual understanding and learning ,nevertheless Disabled get underestimated and en-devour to brush underprivileged hole mark, lifetime.Education never distinguishes any discrimination among the innocent child ,than why this unnecessary gap is voiding our mentality.Now ,The challenge is how we can support in lack of infrastructure and faculty competence to deal with such anomaly, because our schools are the first steppingstone that every child experience in his life first,only Improved Educational system can bring pride back

from:  A Awasthi
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 02:41 IST

I do not know if the approved budgets so far had a disability related
infrastructure included. If yes, why do we not find those (ramps,
elevators, reserved parking spaces etc..). In fact, our commercial
complexes (restaurants, shopping malls etc) do not have any such
arrangements for people with special needs. This shows one of the two
things: (1) we believe in the benevolence of our society and people
and assume able people will 'always' lend a helping hand; or (2) we
just ignore the disabled people completely. But, there is a need to
investigate if money was allocated for creation of infrastructure for
the disabled, but never used and money went to the corrupt
contractors. Second of all, a perfectly able person can also become
disabled (permanently or temporarily) anytime in their life. For
example, we all become completely immobile when one of the legs is
fractured. We need to realize that, at times there may be no one to
help and we really need to build those ramps, escalators etc

from:  Sudarshan Ramenahalli
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 02:26 IST

Aamir's observation and analysis seems to be too superficial and naive. Aamir did not touch the core issue. Education is of course a right - irrespective of their physical (dis)abilities. The issue is the present policies of government restricts the state spending in education and promotes intervention of private parties (with profit and not social motive) in educational field - both fundamental and higher education. This makes education too expensive for 'an average Indian'. So, even if there are (better) infrastructure available, it is still inaccessible for the common woman. The lack of government spending in education is in effect denial of the right for education. It is indeed surprising for me that a socially-concerned person like Aamir did not touch this burning issue.

from:  Anwar Hussain
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 02:17 IST

That may not be so true.... I had seen a census report dating back to 2004 or 2000 on the number of disabled in India including mentally disabled based on a census conducted during that time. I counted the numbers and found that i didn't had enough money to protect them so i left it!!. There is a law saying that the government should protect the disabled.
I will suggest come to Bangalore Majestic bus stand flyover and start helping the disabled people from their.
If Gandhiji was succesful it is because he really meant what he wrote and he did what he "Could". He was not like us.

from:  Prakash Mathews
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 01:52 IST

This is the most incisive article I have read, about our attitude
towards the disabled. My impression of the 'cinema stars' is changing
these articles by Amir Khan.

from:  barani
Posted on: Jun 11, 2012 at 00:45 IST
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