Polls for societies put on hold

Disability rights activists had protested

April 02, 2018 01:07 am | Updated 01:07 am IST - CHENNAI

Following the fifth consecutive day of protests by the Joint Action Committee of the Association of Disabled, the Tamil Nadu State Co-operative Societies Election Commission put on hold the election process for the post to which a visually impaired candidate had filed his nomination in Dharmapuri. The process has been postponed until clarity is obtained, said a communication on behalf of the Co-operative Societies Election Commissioner M. Rajendran.

In this case, the nomination of a visually impaired candidate for the post of director of the Dharmapuri District Public Library Employees Cooperative Thrift Society was rejected on the grounds that he could not ‘read and write’ as required by the Tamil Nadu Cooperative Societies Act. Disability rights activists stated that the candidate was literate and could read Braille, and that the rejection of his nomination went against the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016.

The polls for the Tamil Nadu Government Printing and Stationery Department Employees Cooperative Society in Mint were also put on hold, foreseeing law and order problems. The elections were to be held on Monday.

T.M.N. Deepak, a disability rights activists, said another visually impaired candidate had filed his nomination on Saturday for the post of director of the society. “This is a significant victory. We have called off our protest as of now,” he said. S. Nambu Rajan, an activist, said they were waiting for the government's legal opinion, and would take the matter to court if necessary.

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