Visually challenged thrilled by drive on Madurai roads

The visually challenged girl navigating a sighted driver at the ‘Insight Car Rally’ held in Madurai on Sunday.

The visually challenged girl navigating a sighted driver at the ‘Insight Car Rally’ held in Madurai on Sunday.   | Photo Credit: G_Moorthy

They navigate sighted drivers for around 25 km using Braille route map


It was an exciting Sunday for M. Nithya, a visually challenged Class 9 student of the Indian Association for the Blind (IAB) here, as she navigated a visually abled person to drive a car across the city. “I had always felt disheartened that I could never drive a car. But, after successfully navigating a person for around three hours, I feel empowered,” she said.

Nithya, along with other visually challenged persons, participated in the sixth edition of ‘Insight Car Rally’ organised by Madurai Ladies Circle 8, in association with the IAB. It was a unique rally, where the visually challenged persons navigated sighted drivers using a Braille route map. A total of 42 cars participated in the event. Each car started at Fortune Pandiyan Hotel, travelled around 25 kilometres criss-crossing the city, and returned to the hotel.

“The route map had clues which had to be cracked to cross different checkpoints. It was an interesting experience as I had a chance to explore many places in the city,” said M. Srikanth, a visually challenged college student.

Explaining the purpose of organising the event, chairman of Madurai Ladies Circle 8 Sukanya Raghuram said that the funds raised from the event would be used for building classrooms, libraries, toilets and anganwadis. A part of the funds raised would be given to the IAB.

“In addition, this year we are concentrating on projects for the upliftment of transgenders and acid attack victims,” she said.

Director (Projects) of the IAB N. Sivaram said that the rally acted as a great platform to encourage the visually challenged to use the Braille system regularly. “Irrespective of technological developments, learning Braille is essential. Usually, there is some resistance among them to use the Braille system. But, when participants shared their exciting experience, it will motivate them to learn the system,” he said.

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Printable version | Jul 7, 2020 9:30:28 PM |

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