Rajkot: The biggest ever ‘Samajik Adhikarita Shivir for Distribution of Aids & Assistive Devices to Divyangjan’ was organised at Rajkot (Gujarat) today by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (Divyangjan), Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India through ALIMCO, Kanpur, a CPSU under the Department in association with District Administration, Rajkot. The camp was held at Race Course Ground, Rajkot, Gujarat where Assistive Aids and Appliances were distributed under ADIP scheme of Government of India to Divyangjan in the august presence of the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. The Governor of Gujarat Shri O.P Kohli, the Chief Minister of Gujarat Shri Vijay Rupani Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Shri Thaawarchand Gehlot, Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment Shri Krishan Pal Gurjar, Minister of State for Road Transport & Highways Shri Mansukh Mandaviya, Minister of State for Agriculture Shri Parshottam Rupala, Deputy Chief Minister of Gujarat Shri Nitinbhai Patel, Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment & Women and Child Development of Gujarat Shri Atmaram Parmar and Member of Parliament Shri Mohanbhai Kundariya graced the occasion.
Shri N.S. Kang, Secretary, Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, Shri J.N. Dixit, Chief Secretary, Gujarat, Shri Mukesh Jain, Joint Secretary Department of Empowerment Persons with Disabilities, Shri D.R. Sarin, CMD, ALIMCO and other senior State/District dignitaries were also present during the event.
During the event while addressing the large gathering, the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi said that the Government is sensitive to the cause of persons with disabilities and is dedicatedly working for the upliftment of the poor including persons with disabilities. He pointed out that he considers himself as part of the family of the persons with disabilities and is committed to work for their cause. He highlighted important initiatives taken by the Government for empowerment of persons with disabilities such as development of a standard uniform sign language for persons with hearing impairment across the country and Accessible India Campaign. He urged the persons with disabilities to get enrolled under the insurance schemes of the Government of India which provides for insurance benefit up to Rs. 2.00 lakh and more with a nominal premium of Rs 1.00 per month and Rs.1.00 per day to take care of difficult situation. He also urged youth to become self reliant under the Start up programme of the Government and consider developing innovative technology for improving their daily life of PwDs. He said that he is emotionally attached to the issues concerning PwDs and always gives priority to attend the events involving them. He lauded the activities being undertaken and the efforts of the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities in empowering and mainstreaming the persons with disabilities. He also thanked the Government of Gujarat for their cooperation in empowering PwDs.
Union Minister for Social Justice & Empowerment Shri Thaawarchand Gehlot in his speech said that his Ministry considers the persons with disabilities as valuable human resource and assured the Prime Minister that under his leadership the Ministry will continue its work tirelessly in the direction of achieving the goal to have a truely inclusive society which is in the spirit of the theme of the Government “ Sabka Sath Sabka Vikas”.
In his speech, Chief Minister of Gujarat Sh. Vijay Rupani said that a civilised society inclusive of persons with disabilities can truly represent any society. He assured that the State Government will work in tandem with the Government of India for the betterment and empowerment of PwDs.
The Government of India has been implementing this scheme since 1981 which was revised with effect from 1st April 2014. The main objective of the scheme is to provide latest and modern aids through Artificial Limbs Manufacturing Corporation of India (ALIMCO), National Institutes, District Disability Rehabilitation Centres, State Handicapped Development Corporations, other local bodies and NGOs etc. to promote physical, social and psychological rehabilitation of Divyangjan.
At Rajkot Camp aids and appliance to the tune of Rs.11.19 Crore were distributed among 17589 divyang beneficiaries including 3000 beneficiaries who have received aids and appliances from the State Government amounting to Rs.1.53 Cr. So far it is the biggest camp in the history of the country in terms of the number of beneficiaries in a single camp for distribution of aids and appliances. Earlier similar mega camps involving the Prime Minister were conducted by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities at Varanasi, Navsari & Vadodara in the year 2016 benefiting about 10000, 11,000 and 10,500 beneficiaries respectively.
During the event 90 motorized tricycles, 1960 tricycles, 1541 wheel chairs, 77 Cerebral Palsy (CP) chairs, 2896 crutches, 3095 walking sticks, 529 Braille cane, 112 rolators, 162 Braille kits, 732 smart canes, 214 smart phone with screen reader, 68 daisy players, 20 ADL kits for leprosy cured, 2206 digital hearing aid, 1101 artificial limbs and callipers, 4416 TML kits and 73 laptops for person with intellectual disability were distributed among various class of Divyangjan as per their need. The State Government on their own also distributed devices for rehabilitation and empowerment of persons with disabilities to 3000 divyangjan.
Two Guinness World Records were created in connection with the event. On 28th June 2017 a Guinness Book of World Record was created in the category of highest ever participation of 1442 persons with hearing impairment in a sign language lesson at a single venue while performing our National Anthem. Previously, such a record was hold by Taiwan (China) with participation of 978 persons with hearing impairment. The participants of this historic record repeated their performance in front of the Hon’ble Prime Minister today. Second Guinness World Record was created in the category of highest number of Orthosis (Calipers) fitted to 781 mobility impaired persons on a single day.
In addition to the above two Guinness Book of World records, another new ‘World Book Record’ has also been created in the category of World’s Largest Disbursement of Aids and Appliances for Persons with Disabilities (Divyangjan) at a single venue in one day involving 17589 persons with disabilities (Divyangjan).