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Looking at the Bright Side of Life

Looking at the Bright Side of Life

The world is full of people who’ve achieved the unthinkable by beating all odds. Looking at the bright side of life, they have inspired thousands to dream on and punch above their weight.

In a world that isn’t very kind to even an able-bodied person trying to achieve their dreams, one can only imagine what a specially abled person might have to go through. When faced with such cynicism, finding a silver living and egging on is all one can really do.

Learn the lesson with these incredible stories of people who didn’t let disability dictate their life.

Nick Vujicic

“God can use a life without limbs to show the world how to live a life without limits!”

Nick Vujicic was born without arms or legs. Despite the many challenges this created for him growing up, he was able to overcome them all. A motivational speaker, best-selling author, Christian evangelist and leader of a nonprofit organisation named Life Without Limbs, he credits his family’s love, his faith in God and his positive attitude for his success.

Nick Vujicic

He’s been an inspiration to many around the world, encouraging people to overcome their problems and follow their dreams.

Aaron Fotheringham

“It’s pretty sweet to be able to help people look at their wheelchair as something besides just a medical device. It can actually be something really fun.”

Aaron Fotheringham

From the moment he entered the world, Aaron Fotheringham, known popularly as Wheelz, has taken a completely different path than what was expected of him.

Girish Sharma

“When I was a child, I used to play cricket, football, and badminton with normal children. My disability was not in my mind.”

Girish Sharma

Preethi Srinivasan

“I think the greatest blessing and gift in life is the ability to see the light, opportunity and challenge in adversity.”

Preethi Srinivasan

Preethi Srinivasan was involved in a life-altering accident that left her paralysed from the neck down. While still recovering from the trauma, she set up Soulfree, a rehabilitation centre where the specially abled could live permanently and find strength, hope and a sense of community. With vocational trainings for the specially abled, the organisation aims in providing an active and productive life to everyone.

Kartik Verma

The youngest kung-fu instructor in India, Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan student Kartik Verma is a champion in karate, taekwondo, dancing and sports. He has turned his weaknesses into strengths, surpassing the expectations of many along the way. Kartik is determined and strong, and we are extremely proud of him.

Kartik Verma

He lost his hearing abilities but did not lose his hopes and dreams to reach the heights.

Jatin Kanojia

Jatin KanojiaJatin Kanojia is a 25-year-old boy from Ghazipur with cerebral palsy, but he hasn’t let his disability define him. Jatin worked hard as a child, completed his education and joined the Wave Group in 2016 as a computer operator. Despite the odds working against him, Jatin has remained focused towards building a career.

If we look intently, we’ll find plenty of people around us who’ll make us want to do more. Inspirations for everyone, these achievers prove to us that nothing can stop us from achieving our goals. Time and again, they overcome near-impossible obstacles to show us just how much can be accomplished despite limitations.

Also Read: Aditya and Happy: Defeating Autism and Inspiring Life at MBCN

Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan: A Paradise for Special Children

Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan: A Paradise for Special Children

A boon for specially abled students, Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan aims to provide world class education to those who need it most.

Schools are like second homes for children, accounting for nearly 8 hours of their day. Hence, it is necessary that we enrol our kids in fully functional, infrastructurally sound schools.

It is an undeniable fact that quality education is a must for both specially abled and able bodied children. Sending them to a school where buildings look run-down and playgrounds need work can never be a good idea.

Schools should create an environment that not only ensures learning, but also pays special attention to the mental and physical well-being of its students. Many studies suggest that students in schools with poor infrastructure tend to achieve lesser as compared to the ones studying in schools that have better infrastructure and facilities.

Contrary to popular belief, children with special needs must be enrolled in primary schools. To place them in appropriate educational settings, parents need to get them assessed by doctors, psychologists and special educators. While children with mild and moderate disabilities may be integrated in normal schools, those with severe disabilities can opt for special/remedial schools and dropouts who have problems in availing benefits of normal schools can join open schools. All the children with learning disabilities alone are first managed in the normal schools.

Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan, a charitable school for the specially abled run by Ponty Chadha Foundation is fully committed to the rehabilitation of children with mental retardation, cerebral palsy, autism and other disabilities. It is one of the very few private rehabilitation institutions that don’t charge any money for services provided to its students. Presently, the institution provides rehabilitation services to about 1000 beneficiaries.

MBCN School

Designed to be disabled-friendly, Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan has 35 classrooms, 1 physiotherapy hall, 4 speech therapy departments, 1 seminar hall and various other amenities, including a ramp and sensor-operated doors at the entrance for wheelchair users. It also has a bigger ramp inside the school building for easy movement.

therapies for the specially abled

The special school also offers multiple therapies for the specially abled, such as:

  • Early Intervention
  • Special Education
  • Speech Therapy
  • Play & Recreation
  • Vocational Training
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Physiotherapy
  • Extra Curricular Activities


Education for All: Inclusive Education for Children with Special Needs

Education for All: Inclusive Education for Children with Special Needs

However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at.

  • Stephen Hawking

At the onset of each school session, it’s always fun to unwrap each child’s personality. Children too are excited to participate in discussions in their new classrooms, but have you ever thought what goes in the mind of a child with special needs? Are we, as teachers and academicians, welcoming the differently abled with open arms?

education for disabled child in india

People tend to forget that a person with disabilities is just another human being with desires, talents, skills – like everyone else. Everybody, regardless of their ability, has something to give to the world. We should never forget that!

Sometimes a little help from peers and families works the best. While education is recognized as a pathway of moving out of poverty, there is very little focus on how children with disabilities can be effectively included in the education system. Every parent wants their child to be happy and accepted by their peers, have a healthy life and education. Allowing a child with special needs to interact and learn with other students in school improves their academic performance, their personality, and they tend to exceed expectations.

education for physically handicapped

Education is every child’s right, not a privilege. As a society, we should embrace inclusive education, and encourage children with disabilities to participate in everyday activities, build friendships and get access to opportunities. Once specially abled children receive proper opportunities, they can get involved in shaping the society and achieving laurels for the country, and their families can escape or avoid the trap of poverty. Inclusive education is one of the fundamental ways to welcome diversity amongst all learners. It promotes the idea that “having a disability of any kind should never stop anybody from conquering the world.”

When the specially abled are accepted and educated the way others are, they can turn their life around and achieve true, tangible success.

Although progress has been made in the education sector, India still faces challenges in addressing the educational needs of children with disabilities. Together with governments, educators, donors and other partners, we can help to close gap and achieve education for all.

Specially Abled Yet Hugely Capable The Role of a Parent in the Life of a Child with Special Needs

Specially Abled Yet Hugely Capable The Role of a Parent in the Life of a Child with Special Needs

What can we as a people do to make every differently-abled child feel self-sufficient and independent? While it is important to advocate and create inclusivity, and to envision a world of equal opportunities, it is also widely agreed upon that only with the support of their parents can children truly understand their self worth.

No one is as interested and motivated to see a child succeed than his/her own parents. However, to play their role as parents responsibly, mothers and fathers of children with special needs should realise that their child, like every other child, is a ‘gift of God’. Instead of trying to ‘fix’ them, parents must accept them with love.

Below are some things to do as a parent of a specially abled child:

  • Specially abled children need the right support, timely help and intervention to grow up as confident men and women. When the seeds of love are sown, children start overcoming their limitations and it starts to reflect in their behaviour. All they require is to be assured that someone is always by their side.
  • Push them towards their passions, be it music, art, literature, or sports. As long as your child is happy, he/she will be motivated.
  • Acceptance is what matters ultimately. Rather than viewing children with special needs as ‘different’, embrace them as they are and give them a sense of identity.
  • As a society, we need to wake up to the reality of special needs. It’s important that we promote the idea that differently abled children stand to achieve just as much as any other children. They do need assistance and a lot of support, but they definitely do not need pity.

Many organisations have come up with unique ways to make a difference in the lives of these children, working tirelessly towards making them self-sufficient. At PCF’s Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan, for instance, trainings are not only limited to children; their parents are equally involved. The school is dedicated to providing its specially-abled students their rightful place in a society that not only accepts them, but also respects them for their abilities.

Ayush Chamoli is one such MBCN student with multiple disabilities. Watch how his mother’s immense strength, and the complete support of his family and school helped Ayush achieve great heights.

2018: A Step Towards Inclusion

2018: A Step Towards Inclusion

Inclusion is a belief. It is not a project or a programme but a philosophy. Inclusion means respect for you, for me and everyone. Inclusion sees us as a person; sees that we exist.

A socially inclusive environment is one where everyone is welcome to establish their identity and express their feelings openly. Social inclusion assures that one’s opinions and experiences are honoured just like everyone’s.

Today differently abled are viewed as part of an inclusion cohort. Due to physical or mental impairments, they all feel like outsiders. Consequently, despite the many successful programmes in our education system and in our society, there is an epidemic of low self-esteem that inhibits real progress.

This year has seen a tremendous change in the society, where several initiatives have been taken by individuals and brands to move towards a more inclusive society. One famous brand, Savlon India, created the first-of-its-kind braille-inscribed antiseptic bottles to help the visually impaired to identify and access the product easily. This proactive initiative exemplifies the brands commitment towards an equitable and inclusive society.

Starbucks has opened a signing store in Washington DC, with all employees who work there fluent in American sign language. The store, which is the first-of-its-kind in the US, has opened close to Gallaudet University, an institution that caters for students who are deaf or have partial hearing loss. The branch of the coffee chain has been designed with a mural inspired by sign language, adorning a large wall in the store and a “DeafSpace” environment that’s been built specifically with customers who are deaf or hard of hearing in mind.

Also Read: Communication Milestones That Can Help Identify Early Signs of Hearing Loss

Apart from these big brands taking a step towards inclusion, there have been individuals like Pranav Desai, who decided to use his experience – personal and corporate – to empower the specially abled through his organisation, the Voice of Specially Abled People (VoSAP). Born in Ahmedabad to a middle-class family in the year 1969, Pranav was affected by polio at the age of four. By the time he recovered, both his legs were crippled; he needed braces and a cane to walk. The VoSAP mobile app he launched allows volunteers to capture building accessibility with a photograph. The app updates that information using GPS on the map. This helps people in wheelchairs find places they can visit based on accessibility, ratings and comments.

In 2004, Dr. Jitender Aggarwal, a dentist, was robbed of his vision due to macular degeneration. After losing his sight, he came to realise the hardships differently abled people struggle with, especially in an environment characterized by limited resources and opportunities. He dreamed of a center where people with disabilities can be equipped with the skills to find good jobs. And this is how Sarthak Educational Trust came into being. What started as one centre in Delhi, is now operational in 21 states with 12 centres throughout India.

Our school for students with special needs, Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan, strives to make the society inclusive by educating and empowering our students. We encourage them to pursue their dreams, guiding them in every step of the way.

2018 is nearing an end, let’s pledge to resolve in the New Year to take up new steps to achieve milestones in making our society inclusive, regardless of one’s abilities or lack thereof.

7 Things You Should Stop Saying and Doing to Disabled People

7 Things You Should Stop Saying and Doing to Disabled People


“You are so brave!” “I feel sorry for you.” “It must be really tough for you.”

These are just a few of the many patronising things the specially abled are told repeatedly in their everyday lives. Statements like these stem from the widely held perception that if you’re differently abled, you must need someone’s help to perform your daily tasks.


Here are the seven things you should never say or do to people who are specially abled:

1. Don’t call them ‘brave’.

There is a common perception in this world that persons with disabilities have to be brave to survive their ordeal. In the minds of those who believe so, disability is ugly and unattractive. As a result, these people marvel at the differently abled for the wrong reasons, calling them “brave” or “inspiring” – just because they went out shopping on their own.

2. Don’t belittle them with your words.

Some people talk to the specially abled as if they’re children. For instance, when you spot a person with hearing aids, don’t immediately revert to speaking slowly, or worse, like a baby. The struggle is with their hearing, not their comprehension. If need be, they will ask you to speak louder of their accord.

3. Don’t assume that all disabled people look the same.

The society tends to paint people who have things in common with the same brush. This is a problematic mindset. A visually impaired person is not just a cane wielder; a paraplegic is more than just a person on wheels. They don’t all look the same – just as able-bodied people don’t.

4. Don’t ask if there’s something wrong with them.

You wouldn’t ask a stranger their medical history, would you? Why should you then be any different when it comes to the differently abled? It’s an intrusive and unnecessary question; you only need to know what their needs are, not why they have those needs. Besides, if they want you to know, they’ll tell you.

5. Don’t assume that they need your help.

The one thing people should stop doing immediately is assuming that people with special needs are forever in need of their assistance. Be it helping someone alight the metro or serving them food that’s already cut up, such actions are grossly patronising, and can further isolate the afflicted.

6. Don’t give any unsolicited advice.

With a skewed view of things, it is easy to compartmentalise people in a box and offer solutions that are tainted by your perspective. Think twice before dishing out misplaced advice about their health. After all, intentions don’t matter, actions do.

7. Do not define them by their disability.

Perspectives that stem from a lack of understanding or empathy are at best avoidable. When disabilities don’t define the motivations, ambitions and identity of the specially abled amongst us, why should anyone else have this preconception?

A Guide to Guardianship of the Specially Abled

A Guide to Guardianship of the Specially Abled

Parenting is wonderful, but exhausting. As a result, parents need a little encouragement at times to help them get through their days. Being a parent of a special needs child is no exception!

Children with disabilities are just like any other children. They need love, affection and attention from their parents, friends and other people. The best gift one can give a child with special needs is accepting him or her, regardless of the nature or extent of the disability.

MBCN organised a crowdsourced Q&A campaign where you could ask questions relating to disability in children, and get them answered by Vandana Sharma, the Director of MBCN and a renowned special educator loved by all. Here are a few of those questions:

Q1. I know a family who is struggling from depression and stress because of their kid’s disability. What advice can I give them or what can I do to help them in this tough time. @PCFIndia

Parenting isn’t easy at the best of times and having a child with a disability creates new challenges that the majority of parents could never imagine facing.

Parents can feel stressed out and depressed at times. They must seek support from family, friends and mental health professionals. It helps to develop effective coping skills and ability to handle the situations.

Q2. Hi @PCFIndia
I’m gladdened to see this initiative.
Can you give us some tricks to calm ourselves when it gets too much to control our emotions?
Thank you.

Love your child, promote strengths, do the best you can, think “outside the box”, and don’t be too hard on yourself.

Q3. @PCFIndia What are the symptoms one should look out for?

Symptoms for disability? Well generally you can monitor developmental milestones. If you notice any delay in them like… social smile, neck control, sitting or standing, vocalization etc. you should go to the doctor for early diagnosis.

Q4. @PCFIndia How do I console my child when I myself am not able to console myself. I have been under immense stress as I don’t want to let him down. What can I do to make him and myself feel better?

As parents we all dream of a perfect child .having a child with disability can be heart breaking and acceptance may be hard. However once you accept is simpler. It impacts the child and his progress. Empower yourself to deal with the given challenges.Attend workshops that can benefit your child and connect with other parents. Join support groups and share your experiences.

Q5. There is a child in our family who is suffering from autism and my aunt is usually stressed and worried about his future. All the time she is after him and since the child is very small it’s difficult to handle him. So what would you suggest in this situation?

Overthinking can have negative consequences for those who are chronic worriers. Focusing on future uncertainties makes us anxious when we feel a lack of control. Overthinking can also keep us from enjoying the present moment.

She needs to be reminded that When every activity becomes ‘a therapy session,’ a lot of pleasure can be lost that would otherwise be shared by you and our child.

Q6. Of course, when a child is not capable enough to do their day-to-day task and is having some kind of disability, it’s obvious that parents will be stressed and try to find several ways to overcome that.

I appreciate The Ponty Chadha Foundation for such an initiative.

Thanks for the appreciation. It’s very important to empower parents so that they can cope with the challenge and deal with it effectively.

Q7. One of my close friend’s younger brother is suffering from cerebral palsy and due to that she and her parents are always stressed and worried about his future. They have visited all most all good doctors in different cities but of no use. Recently my friend’s mother has started taking sleeping pills. So please suggest something so that I can help my friend and her family.

Parents are known to get impacted in many ways because of having a mentally challenged child. These include, parents feeling sad, depressed at various stages of child’s life and experiencing other emotional reactions. Their social life may get affected with recreational and leisure activities getting reduced. Interpersonal relationships with the family members, friends and others also get affected.

Your friend can support her parents, share some responsibilities and give them assurance that she is there to take care whenever they need her.

Parents are placed in a position of caring for others nearly constantly. However, they still need and deserve to be cared for. That entails asking friends or family to support them to have their own time without the challenged kid once in a while.

Q8. My friend’s son is having Cerebral palsy and despite going through several medications and therapies, there are no positive recoveries. Due to this problem my friend left his job, he’s depressed all the time and started taking sleeping pills. Can you please provide a better therapy solution or any reference to a good doctor for the same.

They need to be reminded that As parent  that You know your child better than anyone else .You know what works and what doesn’t; you have the big picture and history of your child and can utilize this in any situation. Support personnel come and go but you are the expert with the experience and first-hand knowledge of your child. Professionals do not live the consequences of their decisions, so while you want their opinions, remember that they are only ‘informed’ opinions and not facts.

And parents need to empower themselves with knowledge and skills to help their child. Things will change when they get control of their life. For further guidance they can always come to us.

Q9. I have seen my friend who is into depression because of the disability of his child. He behaves normally with everyone but his activities and overprotectiveness towards his child show that he is in stress.

I want to help him. Can you please share some easy tips on reducing mental stress due to the disability of the kids?

Everyone has to cope in their own way. For some, acceptance comes quickly; for others, it is a lengthy process. There is no right or wrong way to do this. My Tip for parents to handle mental stress is to Connect with Family and Friends – There will always be people who care, we just need to reach out and connect when you want to vent feelings or just unwind and have some fun. .join some parent support group, meet other parents and share their experiences and emotions. They should not hide their feelings in front of everyone.

Q10. Hi, my parents are really worried about my little sister who is suffering from ADHD. I don’t like seeing my parents stressed. I’m worried that their stress levels are taking a toll on their mental health. So, what do you suggest in this situation?

I can understand your concerns about your parent’s stress. You can encourage them to take professional help and seek support from their family and friends to deal with it.

MBCN Wins National Award for Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities

MBCN Wins National Award for Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities

Established in 1999 in the fond memory of the late Smt. Bhagwanti Devi Chadha, mother of the late Shri Kulwant Singh Chadha, Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan aims to educate and prepare specially abled children to live within the community and achieve threefold (physical, social and financial) independence.

It is fully committed and dedicated to the rehabilitation of children with intellectual disability, cerebral palsy, autism and multiple other disabilities. Presently, MBCN provides rehabilitation services to about 1000 beneficiaries. One of the very few private institutions that doesn’t charge any money for services provided to its students, MBCN was honoured with a National Award for the empowerment of persons with disabilities on World Disability Day.

National Award for Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities

With 35 class rooms, 1 physiotherapy hall, 5 speech therapy departments, 1 seminar hall and many other necessary amenities, MBCN is designed to be disabled-friendly. It has a ramp and sensor-operated doors at the entrance for wheelchair users, and ramps for easy movement inside the school building.

Apart from infrastructural amenities, the school also provides different therapies to help these kids excel in life. Some of the therapy services provided include:

  • Early Intervention
  • Special Education
  • Speech Therapy
  • Play & Recreation
  • Vocational Training
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Physiotherapy
  • Extra Curricular Activities

Best Institution Working for Cause of Persons with Disabilities

To acknowledge the efforts of Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan in providing support and services to the differently abled for nearly 20 years, the school was awarded a National Award by the Vice President of India, Mr. Venkaiah Naidu on the occasion of International Day of Persons with Disabilities.

The institution got the award under the category ‘Best Institution Working for Cause of Persons with Disabilities’ in a function organised by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment.

National Award by the Vice President of India

MBCN strives to work towards creating a better society for these special children, and is thankful for all the support received from teachers, students and parents who have tirelessly worked towards the betterment of this school.

The institution’s ambitious mission to educate, train and rehabilitate children with special needs stems from a belief that caring is indeed the greatest virtue – a belief that the differently abled deserve a life worth living.

Awards like these only strengthen that belief.

No Labels – Moving Towards an Inclusive Society

No Labels – Moving Towards an Inclusive Society

We live in a society where we have names for everyone. Insensitive or not, these names can at times hurt the intended. We should understand that no one is really disabled, they’re just differently abled. Their abilities should not be discouraged because they are not like others.

It is the 21st century; no barriers should stop us from achieving our dreams. To enable that, however, we need to first change our perception of the differently abled section of society. After all, there is no greater disability in this world than the inability to see a person as more.

The 3rd of December, or the International Day for Persons with Disabilities has always been a very special day for us. We at Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan (MBCN) have made it our mission to promote the rights and well-being of persons with disabilities in all spheres of society. Our prime concern has always been giving a warm, nurturing environment to specially abled students – one that gives them plenty of scope to grow in terms of academics, communications, social skills, basic application sciences and self-care skills.

This year, we have been witness to many tremendous achievements towards making the world more inclusive. From introducing Braille-inscribed antiseptic bottles to opening the first sign language friendly store in the US, companies like Savlon India and Starbucks have stepped up to show that we all are indeed one and the same.

To mark the day as a stepping stone towards inclusivity, MBCN is organising a workshop on legal guardianship for the parents of special children and issues related to sexuality in young adults at our premises on December 1 from 10 AM to 12:30 PM. The workshop will be conducted by various eminent personalities who have selflessly made their services available to this section of the society, along with the Local Level Committee (Gautam Budh Nagar) for the differently abled.

Also Read: Celebrating Unique Talent: Ability Trumps ‘Disability’

Celebrating Unique Talent: Ability Trumps ‘Disability’

Celebrating Unique Talent: Ability Trumps ‘Disability’

All of us have remarkable talents that are unique, and there needs to be a day to celebrate such talent – not just for the world, but for ourselves. Celebrate Your Unique Talent Day is a day to embrace your special talent and flaunt it in front of your friends and family. It could involve writing, painting, dancing, singing and playing sports, to name a few.

Children have a lot to offer to the world. On a day like this, all children, especially the differently abled, should embrace their quirky abilities and show them off to everyone else.

Differently abled children are not just sources of inspiration for us at MBCN. They are also a highly motivating force for thousands of people in our country. They have the grit and will power to rise against all odds and achieve the unthinkable. Such children motivate us beyond what words can ever express.

Today, we would like to share success stories of some of our special students, which make us realise that disability after all is just a word; it can’t stop anyone from achieving their goals.


Kartik, a hearing impaired child with delayed speech yet an unwavering passion. He is a fighter who beat unimaginable disabilities with remarkable ease. Thanks to his hunger for success, today he is well versed in karate, jujutsu, kung fu and taekwondo. He is also a dancer and a sportsman. Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan is proud to have such students.


Arushi is an MBCN student with down syndrome. Life is all about overcoming obstacles, and kids like Arushi have been fighting them since childhood. She has been a class topper with excellent cooking and dancing skills – a prodigy who has grown by leaps and bounds with the help of her parents, teachers and friends. Here’s a glimpse of her fighting spirit.

Shrey Kadian

People often complain about their needs and trivial issues, but kids like Shrey Kadian prove that nothing is impossible – even for people with disabilities. Shrey, an MBCN student, is a superstar athlete with countless medals in softball, and a proud member of the Special Olympics Asia Pacific Athlete Input Council.

Gauri Kishore

Born with down syndrome, Gauri Kishore was sent to Mata Bhagwanti Chadha Niketan to realise her talents. She not only got to explore her abilities, but was also able to overcome her limitations. Watch this beautiful dance performance by her at the #MBCN annual day.

Most of us take our lives for granted. Despite being physically fit, we keep complaining and making excuses. On the other hand, these kids prove that you don’t need to be physically fit and strong to succeed. All you need is willpower and determination.

Also Read: Nothing Is Impossible: Five Heroes Who Beat All Odds – MBCN

Indian Railways: On their way to being 100% differently-abled friendly

Indian Railways: On their way to being 100% differently-abled friendly

Celebrated physicist, the late Stephen Hawking once said, “People with disabilities are vulnerable because of the many barriers they face: attitudinal, physical, and financial. Addressing these barriers is within our reach… But most important, addressing these barriers will unlock the potential of so many people with so much to contribute to the world.”


In a country that has the world’s second largest population, out of which about 80 million people are specially-abled, what is the average quality of life that the country provides to this section of the society?  India’s disabled are made further socially vulnerable by attitudinal barriers, and lack of quality education and women’s safety, as they continue to grapple with the challenges of access, acceptance, and inclusion.


As far as travel is concerned, our airports and metros are disabled-friendly, but what about the most mass-friendly means of transport for greater distances – the railways?


The present railway system is not equipped with enough facilities to support specially abled people. However, efforts are now being made to do the same. Indian railways is planning to introduce many facilities for differently-abled passengers at stations.


Here are some changes that are being planned:


  • Standard ramp for barrier free entry.
  • Earmarking at least two parking lots.
  • Non-slippery walkway from parking lot to building.
  • Signages of appropriate visibility.
  • At least one toilet (on the ground floor).
  • At least one drinking water tap suitable for use by persons with disabilities (divyangjan).
  • At least one ‘May I Help You’ booth.
  • Provision of facility for inter-platform transfer.
  • Engraving on edges of platform.


Apart from these changes (in the pipeline) to make train travel more convenient for the specially abled people of the country, Indian railways also provide a reservation quota. The reservation quota of two sleeper class berths is earmarked in all trains running on non-suburban sections for persons with disabilities performing their journey on a ‘handicapped concession’ ticket.


Also Read: Specially-abled Friendly Heritage Sites – Because It’s Their Heritage Too


Orthopedically handicapped or paraplegic people who cannot travel without an escort, blind persons traveling alone or with an escort for any purpose, and mentally challenged individuals who cannot travel without escorts can avail up to 75% concession in second class, sleeper, first class, 3AC and AC chair car, and 50% concession in 1AC and 2AC. 25% concession is also available for specially abled passengers in 3AC and AC chair car of Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains. Deaf and dumb persons travelling alone or with an escort can avail up to 50% concession in 2nd class, sleeper and 1st class. The person accompanying the handicapped person as escort is also allotted a berth out of this very quota. There are separate counters at each Passenger Reservation System (PRS) centre for such bookings. For more information on the amount of concession for different categories, one can visit the IRCTC website.

Despite Our Booming Economy, India’s Public Healthcare System Is Still Poor

Despite Our Booming Economy, India’s Public Healthcare System Is Still Poor

Over the past few decades, rapid economic growth has allowed millions of Indians to lift themselves out of poverty. For the extremely diverse population set, Indian healthcare system has its strengths, as well as its challenges. The lack of quality and affordable medical care has meant that millions continue to be deeply vulnerable to health shocks. Despite recording several gains in health in recent years, India continues to lag in several health indicators, such as mortality rates and malnutrition.  The system is fairly broken. Fewer doctors than what should be. Fewer clinics, hospital beds, and accredited facilities – In fact, far lower than what is required in India.  India also has an unusually high rate of illiteracy and poverty in both urban and rural areas, both of which contribute to low rates of health literacy.

Health is wealth. For any nation to progress it is necessary that proper health care facilities are made available for its citizens. No country ever achieved their universal health goals overnight. There are various ways to improve such systems.

  • Government should take measures to make regular health checkups affordable as well as accessible for the people. The basic purpose of health camps is to bring awareness amongst the deprived population of the country who have no access to basic healthcare services or knowledge about the diseases they are suffering from.These camps make sure people are getting the healthcare at the right time.
  • Literacy is also a contributing factor to improve the failing health in India. Improving literacy has many benefits and good healthcare is one of them. By educating we are indirectly improving healthcare problems like maternal mortality rate and educating rural health workers to assist in emergency times.
  • Healthcare should be made affordable for the poor which will further motivate them to get frequent checkups before their issues start deteriorating.

There is a dire need of a positive change in the healthcare industry in India. The time has come to begin the development of our medical facilities and services to help the country progress faster.

To ensure a healthy community, organisations like the Ponty Chadha Foundation actively organise free diagnostic health camps for village communities across India, for those at the bottom of the pyramid. With these camps held in villages and construction sites in Noida and Ghaziabad, PCF has touched the lives of thousands of people.