A child holds up a placard during a rally on world disability day in Dhanbad on Monday. (Gautam Dey)
It was all work for adults and all play for children on International Day of Persons with Disabilities in Ranchi.
Representatives of Jharkhand Viklang Manch on Monday requested the government to set up a disability commission on the lines of women’s or minority bodies and speed up the appointment of state disability commissioner, a post vacant for three months.
Holding a rally and a signature campaign on International Day of Persons with Disabilities, the differently abled also demanded three per cent reservation in panchayati raj system and in jobs such as parateachers and anganvadi workers.
“The post of disability commissioner is vacant for the past three months but the government isn’t filling it up. A person who has worked for the differently abled should get the job,” said Arun Kumar, Manch president.
Disability commissioner Satish Chandra retired in September 2012.
At Albert Ekka Chowk, members asked passers-by to endorse their cause with signatures on posters. While their key demand was a new disability commissioner, they also asked people to treat them and any special member at home or in their area with respect.
Kumar later said posters with signatures would be given to social welfare minister Vimla Pradhan.
Contacted, Pradhan said: “The disability commissioner is appointed by the chief minister. Matters will move fast.”
While adults crusaded, around 200 differently abled children from cradles Deepshikha, St Michael’s School for the Blind, Prakash Kunj, Cheshire Home, among others, trooped to Birsa football stadium for a sports day organised by social welfare department.
Events included 24 and 50 metre races and football.
“The day fun for special children. Winners got applause and awards,” said Rajesh Emanuel Patro, officer on special duty, state social welfare department.
Deepshikha’s executive director Sudha Lilha, accompanying students of her institute, said the event was conducted well.
“It was a good show. The differently abled children were categorised into different groups based on age and disability type. That is why everyone had fun,” she said.