2016 PwD Act: HP High Court ruling enforces quota to specially-abled

HP High Court delivered a sharp rejoinder to HP University and the State Govt ruling that it is the responsibility of the state government to ensure complete and proper implementation of the statuary provisions of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (PwD) Act, 2016 which mandates a 5% reservation quota for specially-abled students. This situation arose in the context of Indu Kumari (who is blind) and several other disabled students being denied admission by HP University that motivated Indu to directly inform the Chief Justice of HPU’s non-adherence to the PwD Bill of 2016. https://himachalwatcher.com/2017/08/27/hp-high-court-pulls-up-govt-hpu-over-denial-of-5-quota-to-disabled-students/

Delhi, with a 5% reservation for the specially-abled, aims at benefiting over 2,500 students, and this year, DU  received a record  70% spike in applications under the PwD category resulting in a remarkable 34% rise in registrants! Most importantly, the spike was from students under the newly mandated categories, like intellectual disability, neurological conditions, and even blood disorders! This clearly demonstrates that since the ambit of the category was expanded from 7 to 14 in the PwD Bill of 2016, it has unlocked new doors to countless others, long overlooked and forgotten. https://www.pressreader.com/india/the-times-of-india-new-delhi-edition/20170615/281676844896536    http://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/34-rise-in-registrations-under-pwd-category-at-du/article19097920.ece

Given the relative infancy of the expanded 2016 PwD Act, teething problems are inevitable; even in the US, until recently, there was a one size fits all mass education enterprise http://www.chronicle.com/article/Where-s-the-Outrage-When/231799 However, with cases such as the Court’s orders coupled with the increasing public awareness and spotlight on the specially-abled, this community now seems to have a motivated voice to actively pursue-and is hopeful than ever before of better opportunities in the future.  By working further on improving awareness among educators and universities, this law should be implemented to its fullest  potential.