Legal Services Society and Equal Opportunity Cell of Law Centre-1 organised an Orientation Programme on Issues of Equal Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities on 19th September 2013 in the Conference Hall of LC-1. This Orientation Programme was focused on the National Trust Act for Persons with Autism, Mental Retardation, Cerebral Palsy and Multiple Disabilities. The primary aims of the programme were:
To get educated and sensitized on issues surrounding equal opportunities
To find ways in which students of LC-1 can work with National Trust to promote its objectives
The speakers for the programme included Ms. Poonam Natarajan, Chairperson, National Trust; Mr. U.K. Shukla, Assistant Legal Advisor, National Trust, Ms. Ummul Khair, member, Local Level Committee under the National Trust Act; and Mr. Nilesh Singit, Researcher on Local Level Committee. Ms. Natarajan raised the issue of neglect by parents when the doctors say that nothing can be done about the disability suffered by the child and the biggest hurdle in recognising the evolving capacities of the child with these disabilities. Mr. Shukla apprised the students about various scheme being run by the National Trust. Dr. Gireesh, Assistant Professor, LC-1 familiarised the audience with the UN Convention on Persons with Disabilities.
Ms. Ummul Khair and Mr. Nilesh Singit both are also persons with Cerebral Palsy. Ms. Ummul Khair’s presence was very inspiring as she is a person with cerebral palsy and has just completed her LL.B., having started her education at the age of 20! Mr. Nilesh Singit, an internationally renowned activist for rights of persons with disability and a person with cerebral palsy himself, emphasized that the group of persons with disabilities covered by the National Trust Act are the most marginalized among the disabled and there is urgent need to mainstream them in institutions of higher education.