In a remarkable trip after 4 years, dedicated to the cause of inclusivity and empowerment, Voice of Specially Abled People (VOSAP) Founder, Shri Pranav Desai, embarked on a transformative visit to India in January 2024. This trip was not just a routine tour, but a strategic advocacy mission aimed at presenting and fostering support for Vision 2047 for Divyangjan – a visionary initiative to empower 15% of India’s specially-abled population to actively contribute to the nation’s economic growth, ultimately achieving a $1 trillion contribution of the disability sector by 2047 in Viksit Bharat.
VOSAP Founder Shri Pranav Desai visited to India in January 2024 and here are some highlights, key takeaways of the visit:
1) Advocacy with compassionate Leaders in India – Delhi, Ahmedabad, Goa
2) Enablement of Specially Abled People in Ahmedabad and Goa
3) Volunteers Meet – Ahmedabad, Delhi and Goa
- Advocacy with Compassionate Leaders in India:
VOSAP Founder in a three day visit to Delhi engaged with compassionate leaders such as JP Nadda ji, key cabinet ministers of Government of India reporting to PM Shri Narendra Modiji like Nirmala Sitharaman ji, AT innovators and winners of VOSAP Hackathon, lead volunteers, VOSAP Advisors, and IAS officers at NITI Aayog and ministry of social justice and empowerment.
- Honorable Finance Minister of India, Nirmala Sitharaman ji: Pranav Desai had the privilege of presenting comprehensive Tax Incentives Package for empowering Divyangjan to the Finance Minister. This package is designed to support the achievement of the $1 trillion goal by 2047 by jump starting economic activities, and direct/indirect hiring for the disability sector.
- Hon. Member of Parliament and President of BJP, Shri J. P. Nadda ji: Pranav Desai presented Vision 2047 for Divyangjan to Shri J. P. Nadda, seeking his support for BJP manifesto to include proposed points. Mr Desai also explained strategic importance for the economic argument to transform disability sector instead traditional view point of looking at disability sector from welfare perspective only. He requested to promote awareness about ABILITY of Specially Abled People for EVERYONE to start seeing them for their ABILITY
- Hon. Union Cabinet Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Dr. Virendra Kumar ji: Pranav Desai engaged with Dr. Virendra Kumar to explore collaborative initiatives between VOSAP and DEPwD that can enhance the social justice and empowerment of specially-abled individuals, aligned to Vision 2047
- Minister of Road Transport and Highways of India Hon. Shri Nitin Gadkari ji: The meeting with Shri Nitin Gadkari focused on discussing accessibility and transportation issues faced by individuals with disabilities, aiming to improve mobility and ensure their active participation with “Accessibility Everywhere” In transportation. Mr Desai also proposed mandating /recommended level of hiring of Divyangjan by the ministry and outsourced vendors.
Notable meetings included discussions with the Chairman Managing Director of NDFDC (National Divyangjan Finance and Development Corporation), Shri Naveen Shah, focusing on how lending can be increased, data around NPA and channelizing state agencies and ways VOSAP can help in subsidized interest rate etc. for supporting self-employment for specially-abled individuals.
VOSAP Founder also met with Shri Rajesh Aggarwal, Secretary, Department of Persons with Disabilities (DePwD), Govt. of India to establish a cooperative framework between DEPwD and Voice of SAP for the implementation and enhancement of the following schemes:
- ADIP Scheme
- NDFDC Schemes
- National DEPwD Scheme
- Accessible India Campaign (Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan)
VOSAP founder met with Dr. Shantanu (Chief Of Staff) to Cabinet Minister of Social Justice & Empowerment and IAS Officers at NITI Aayog during his visit at Delhi and shared Vision 2047 for $1 trillion economic goal by 2047.
VOSAP Founder received blessings from Acharya Lokesh Muni ji : VOSAP Founder received blessings from Jain Guru Acharya Lokesh Muni ji at his Ashram in Karol Bag, Delhi for the VOSAP mission, for promoting economic argument on disability with our Vision 2047 for Divyangjan. Pujya Acharya ji liked the vision and approach and agreed to encourage, share this with his followers and leaders so that top-down transformation with NEW way of looking at Divyangjan becomes driver for their economic prosperity.
The visit to Goa included a powerful presence at the International Purple Fest. VOSAP was an international partner for the event. The highlight of this leg was the historic signing of an Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Government of Goa, making it the first state committed to Vision 2047 for Divyangjan. The MOU, exchanged between Founder Pranav Desai and Chief Minister Dr. Pramod Sawant, symbolized a robust commitment to creating an inclusive and accessible Goa with clear focus on economic activities to be supported in next 24 years to harness ABILITY of Specially Abled People.
Meeting with Dr. Priti Adani, Chairperson of Adani Foundation: VOSAP Founder had a high impact meeting with Dr. Priti Adani, Chairperson of Adani Foundation and her team of 6 leaders, to explore and create opportunities for employment of persons with disabilities across various business units. This strategic collaboration through MoU (under works) aims to leverage the strengths and resources of Adani Foundation to hire up to 10,000 PwD (example like deaf people for solar installation jobs) at large scale for selected jobs, create roadmap and execute the strategy with VOSAP as strategic adviser
Collaboration with Chief Minister of Gujarat, Shri Bhupendrabhai Patel: Shri Pranav Desai met with the Chief Minister of Gujarat, Shri Bhupendrabhai Patel, to share the ambitious Vision 2047 for Divyangjan. The discussion focused on creating an inclusive and accessible Gujarat, empowering specially-abled people, and harnessing their potential to contribute towards the $1 trillion economic goal of the Disability sector in Viksit Bharat by 2047. The commitment to this vision is so strong that VOSAP is actively working towards drafting a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to solidify this collaboration.
VOSAP Founder’s Address at Ahmedabad Management Association (AMA): Adding another dimension to the outreach efforts, Shri Pranav Desai spoke at the Ahmedabad Management Association, addressing a diverse business leaders. This platform provided an opportunity to spread awareness about VOSAP’s Vision 2047, fostering understanding and support from a broader spectrum of the management and business community.
VOSAP Founder advocating for accessibility at every polling booth : VOSAP Founder was invited as a guest during an Accessible Voting workshop at the Blind People’s Association. This event was a critical platform for discussions on making the voting process more accessible and inclusive. Shri Pranav Desai engaged with Mrs. P. Bharati, CEO of the Election Commission of Gujarat, to explore ways of incorporating accessible and inclusive voting practices. The focus was not only on making the physical voting booths more accessible but also on integrating a rating system for voting booths on the VOSAP mobile app.
VOSAP Founder received blessings of Jeje shri in Ahmedabad:
VOSAP Founder received blessings of Jeje Shri Shri Dwarkeshlalji Maharajshree in Ahmedabad. Param Pujya Jejeshri agreed for a follow up zoom meeting wherein Voice of SAP and Vaishnav Innerfaith Pushtimargiya Organisation (VIPO) to plan the details of working together to promote Volunteering and sensitivity among Vaishnav Youth, globally regarding Divyangjan and their inclusion.
2) Enablement of Specially Abled People in Ahmedabad and Goa
VOSAP demonstrated its commitment to practical empowerment by providing specially abled individuals with innovative assistive devices such as the Kibo XS Device, Kibo App, innovative crutches, and Smartcane. Dignitaries such as Minister of IT and Tourism, Government of Goa Shri Rohan Khaunte ji, Minister of Social Welfare, Goa Shri Subhash Phal Desai ji, State Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities Shri Guruprasad Pawaskar ji, Secretary of State Commission for Persons with Disabilities Shri Taha Haaziq ji were present at the event.
These cutting-edge technologies, not covered under the Assistive Devices for Persons with Disabilities (ADIP) Scheme, showcase VOSAP’s dedication to enhancing the capabilities of the specially abled community.
December 30, Apang Manav Mandal: Empowering Mobility with Handicare Devices
On December 30, VOSAP made a meaningful impact at Apang Manav Mandal in Ahmedabad by enabling specially-abled individuals with Handicare devices. These assistive devices are designed to provide respectful and dignified mobility to individuals facing mobility challenges. The initiative aimed not just at physical support but also at promoting the autonomy and self-esteem of those receiving the devices.
January 2, 2024: Providing Self-Employment Kits for Economic Empowerment
On January 2, 2024, VOSAP took a step further by empowering specially-abled individuals with self-employment kits. These kits included a variety of tools and resources tailored to different skill sets, such as beauty parlour kits, physiotherapy kits, sewing machines, electrical kits, and more. The objective was clear: to equip individuals with the means to generate income and contribute actively to society.
Shri Pranav Desai addressed the gathering, urging Divyangjan to work towards independence and contribute to the ambitious Vision 2047. The goal is to establish a $1 trillion economy driven by the efforts of specially abled individuals, thereby creating a more inclusive and developed India.
3) Volunteers Meet – Ahmedabad, Delhi and Goa
VOSAP founder, team and volunteers (including 15 from the US and local) engaged in transformative experience ‘Vision in the dark’ at BPA
This unique experience aimed to deepen the understanding of the challenges faced by the visually impaired, fostering empathy and awareness. The visit to the Blind People’s Association allowed the VOSAP team to witness firsthand the resilience, capabilities, and unique perspectives of individuals living with visual impairments.
VOSAP organized a meet and greet session on January 2, celebrating the commitment of volunteers, partners, and the mission team. This session highlighted the collaborative spirit that propels VOSAP’s initiatives, acknowledging the pivotal role each volunteer plays in driving positive change.
- VOSAP Founder, Ambassador Dr Karen Darke, the mission team, volunteers, and assistive technology partners shared their commitment during a meet and greet session. This gathering reinforced the collective dedication of 30 VOSAPians at Goa Purple Fest to the cause of empowering specially abled individuals. VOSAPians were honored to have Secretary, Govt of India Shri Rajesh Agrawal and other Govt of India officers joining the meet and greet dinner on Jan 12.
- VOSAP Founder and team met with Dr. Mallika Nadda, Chairperson of Special Olympics, Shri Naveen Shah, CMD of National Divyangjan Finance and Development Corporation, Mr. Victor Vaz, National Sports Director, Special Olympics bharat and shared possible strategies to empower specially abled people
VOSAP volunteers meet in Delhi included people of all ages including university level AT innovators, winners of VOSAP AT Hackathon. People from various backgrounds – Varija ji from fashion, Deepa ji from Paralympic sports, Dileep ji and Sonia ji from media, Neeraj ji from AT Manufacturing, Sridhar ji from Telecom, Rakesh ji from Govt of India and others from civil services, investment sector, etc. Everyone exchanged ideas and shared about their passion as VOSAPians and how they are connected with with VOSAP over the years.
VOSAP’s founder, Pranav Desai, and the entire team embarked on a journey that goes beyond advocacy—it is a mission of transformation, empowerment, and inclusivity.
The commitment of compassionate leaders, the historic MOU with Goa, and the practical empowerment initiatives in Goa and Ahmedabad all contribute to the grand vision of a Viksit Bharat, where every individual, regardless of ability, has the opportunity to thrive. As the journey continues, VOSAP stands as a beacon of hope, inspiring communities to join hands in building a future where everyone can contribute to the nation’s growth.
Overall, VOSAP founder Shri Pranav Desai had more than 30 strategic meetings with corporate, political, government, elected, disability and Assistive Tech leaders and met over 500 VOSAPians, Divyangjan in Delhi, Gujarat and Goa to mobilize, inspire for doing their part to achieve Vision 2047 goal of $1 Trillion from disability sector.