The second edition of North East Regional Parents Meet organized by the Arunachal Pradesh Parents’ Association for Disabled (APPAD) in collaboration with the National Institute for the Empowerment of Persons with Intellectual Disabilities (NIEPID) and ‘Parivaar’, an organization of NGOs working in the field of neurological disabilities got underway at the Gumin Kin here on Friday.
Around 700 parents from various parts of the West Siang district participated in the two-day long meet.
Attending the meet as chief guest, Tax and Excise Minister Jarkar Gamlin expressed his happiness over the fact that the regional meet was brought to Aalo to give awareness and new direction to the differently abled people who have been reeling under pain and tremendous pressure.
He exhorted all stakeholders involved in the campaign to intensify the movement and urged parents of the differently-abled to reap every drop of benefit from the two-day long camp. Responding to memorandum submitted by APPAD general secretary Simal Raje, the minister assured to take up all issues that need the State Government’s intervention.
Speaking as the guest of honour, Shakuntala D Gamlin, Secretary for Department for Empowerment of Person with Disabilities, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India said Composite Regional Institute should come up to give training to the differently-abled so as to develop appropriate models of care, habitation and consultancy services.
“Our people should rise above social stigma, taboos and prejudice to work in a cohesive manner with stakeholders to give differently-abled people their constitutional rights and to link them with the mainstream section,” she said.
“We have been able to produce gold medalists and world cup winning players and teams by nurturing and giving right direction to the differently-abled people,” she said.
In her keynote address, Dolly Chakravarty, Joint Secretary, MSJE, Government of India, highlighted the issues of social inclusion, multiple approaches and activities to enhance the quality of life of Persons with intellectual disability.
“We need to make a spirited effort to make it a peoples’ movement in this region so that deprived section too are taken along with us,” added Chakravarty.
Commissioner Gamli Padu revealed that 2 per cent of the Arunachal population constitutes differently-abled people as per 2011 census and as per law, the disabled have Right to Access in all institutions and public places.
He said that funds for pensions are kept unspent in spite of directive by governments and asked the ICDS Department to reach out to the people on such issues through Sarkar Aap ke Dwaar programme.
Major B V Ram Kumar, from the NIEPID in his address disclosed that the organization has completed 82 parents meet so far in the country.
West Siang Deputy Commissioner Swetika Sachan also spoke on the occasion.