Report by India Education bureau, New Delhi: To provide barrier-free environment to physically and visually handicapped students, a wheelchair accessible bus was flagged off at Jawaharlal Lal Nehru University (JNU) today with much fanfare by noted scientist and Professor S K Sopory, Vice Chancellor of JNU. This bus was purchased by Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) with financial assistance provided by the maha ratna PSU – BHEL. On this occasion senior officials from BHEL and officials of the Equal Opportunity Office (EOO) of JNU, staffs and students including students with disabilities were present.
Taking into account the gargantuan dimension and complexity of the problems and barriers faced by the students with disabilities not only in JNU but also in all higher education institutions, speakers at the event stressed that what was required more than anything else was changing the mind-set of the society.
Delivering his remarks while setting the tone for flagging off the disabled-friendly bus, JNU VC Professor Sopory highlighted the need for taking this movement for creation of a barrier-free environment for differently abled students at JNU to its logical conclusion with active involvement and concerted effort on the part of all sections of stakeholders including students, faculty and officials.
Professor Manu Mittal (Chief Advisor, EOO JNU) described the bus as a necessity that would make distances as well as opportunities more accessible for its students.
The programme began with felicitation of officials from BHEL by JNU Registrar Professor Bhupinder Zutshi with presentation of bouquets. The welcome address on the occasion was delivered by Dr G. N. Karna (Advisor, EOO JNU) who briefly encapsulated the background for launching the movement for creating barrier-free environment at JNU.
Professor Sopory expressed gratitude on behalf of the University to BHEL for their support to JNU in its ongoing efforts to make its campus barrier-free. Speaking on the occasion, the three BHEL General Managers assured of extending all possible support to JNU in future for facilitating higher education of students with disabilities