Minister for PHE, Irrigation & Flood Control, Sham Lal Sharma has stressed for more initiatives for the welfare and rehabilitation of physically challenged people so that they can also lead a dignified life.Maintaining that only Government efforts are not adequate to address the issues of disabled persons, the Minister said that entire society has to contribute and work for the upliftment of this under privileged class. They have equal right to live and progress in the society and this can be possible with the support of all sections, said the Minister.
The Minister was speaking at a function organized by the J&K Disabled Welfare Association to mark the World Disability Day at Akhnoor today.The Minister said that Government has taken several measures for the welfare of the disabled persons from time to time, including financial assistance in the shape of pension, free education, free medical treatment, free travel, vocational programmes and other sops. A large number of disabled persons are availing these benefits.
He asked the handicapped people to maintain close liaison with the Social Welfare Department to avail the benefits meant for them. He also called upon the NGOs to show liberty in extending necessary help to this under privileged lot. He said by only observing the day once in a year will hardly serve any purpose but need of the hour is to do something concrete for the upliftment of disabled persons with collective efforts, he asserted.Responding to the issues of the disabled people of Akhnoor tehsil, the Minister issued instructions to the officers of various departments to attend their problems on priority. He directed them to ensure that all welfare schemes meant for this special lot are implemented in letter and spirit so that the benefits should percolate to the needy.Chairman, J&K Disabled Welfare Association, Akhnoor, Mr. Sushil Sharma highlighted the problems of the disabled people and requested the Minister for his personal attention to address these on priority.Prominent among those present on the occasion included, Satpal Saraf, Subash Langer, sectoral officers of various departments and a large number of disabled persons hailing from Akhnoor tehsil.