Blind protest – Demand filling up 1% reservation quota

The National Federation of the Blind has alleged that the Himachal government is discriminating in providing jobs to be the blind and asked it to approve the list of jobs identified by central government where blind can be employed.

Convener of the federation, Jage Ram told the media that Persons With Disability Act provided 3 percent job reservations for the disabled and 1 percent job reservation for the blind. The Himachal government since 1976 has given jobs to 1420 disabled persons but only 110 blind persons have given government jobs, he said.

The central government about five years ago has identified 1901 jobs where the blind can be employed and where as the Haryana government has approved this list, the Himachal government still has to do so, said Ram.

The blind will be forced to agitate unless their just demands are not met, he said adding that recently the government gave daily wage and contract employment to 100 blind persons but that is not a regular employment. He demanded that the government convert these jobs into regular ones.

Lamenting the lack of educational or vocational institutions for the blind, the convener said the government needed to set up more institutions so that the blind could find gainful employment. He said that despite the blind going to far off places to avail educational facilities, the government was unable to provide them employment. “We demand an unemployment allowance for the blind as well as filling up 1 percent reservation quota for the blind since 1995,” said Ram.

About the total number of blind persons, he said that there were about 155,000 disabled persons in Himachal Pradesh of which 64,122 were blind. On the occasion the convener announced that DK Aggarwal’s appointment as president of the state unit, KS Thakur as the vice president, Karm Chand as general secretary and Mukesh as the secretary.

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