The Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment Shri Krishan Pal Gurjar has promised that the centre would provide financial assistance worth Rs 6 Lakh for cochlear implant of all children with hearing impairment hailing from the economically weak sections of the Sikkimese society. He made the announcement after a group of hearing impaired and specially-abled school children gave a heart-warming performance in the opening ceremony of the 'Samajik Adhikarita Shivir' organised at Chintan Bhawan, Gangtok today. He took a group photograph with the children and presented them with tokens of appreciation.Shri Gurjar directed the state officials present in the event to draw an inclusive list of children suffering hearing impairment and submit it to his ministry at the earliest.The camp was organised by the Artificial Limbs Manufacturing Corporation of India in collaboration with the district administration and the Ministry of Social Welfare, Government of Sikkim with the main intent of distributing free-of cost ‘assisted living devices’ (ALD) to pre-identified beneficiaries of East Sikkim under the Rashtriya Vayoshri Yojana (RBY).A total of 794 beneficiaries were presented with ALDs ranging from wheelchairs, walking sticks, digital hearing aids, walking sticks ect. More than 200 beneficiaries were physically present in the function to receive the devices from the hands of the honourable MoS. The BDO offices will distribute the remaining devices within a week to their respective beneficiaries who could not make it to the camp.Speaking on the occasion, Shri Gurjar appreciated Sikkim for making tremendous efforts in implementing the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act adopted by the centre in 2016. “Earlier, the centre recognised only seven types of disabilities.
Under the new law, people with 21 types of disabilities can avail benefits of government schemes meant for the disabled. Under the able leadership of our Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, the Sugamya Bharat Abhiyaan has been successfully launched all over the country. Since December 2015, when the campaign was launched, at least 100 buildings in 50 cities have been made disabled-friendly and Sikkim has pitched in considerably to make the effort fruitful.”Shri Gurjar also stressed on the need for providing normal life facilitating assistance to the senior citizens whose age-related problems go unnoticed and uncared for. He urged the government of Sikkim to draw another list of senior citizens of poor background in need of assisted living devises while promising to conduct such free distribution camp in the near future as well. “Not a single beneficiary should be left out. It is our duty to take care of the senior citizens of this country and the government will leave no stone unturned to help them in every capacity,” the MoS said.He proudly announced that the government has ensured local manufacture of advanced artificial limbs in collaboration with German and British manufacturers at the various manufacturing facilities of ALIMCO.camp held at the Chintan Bhawan, Gangtok, was graced by Smt Tulsi Devi Rai, Minister for Social Justice, Empowerment and Welfare Department, Government of Sikkim. In her address, the minister underscored the schemes undertaken by the government of Sikkim for the specially-abled and senior citizens. She informed that the state has been making concerted efforts to make buildings and public places barrier-free and that the centre’s help in the initiatives will go a long way in making the entire state of Sikkim disabled-friendly. “People with disabilities need our support, not sympathy,.The camp was attended by Shri AK Shrivastava, Chief Secretary, Government of Sikkim, Smt Dhan Jyoti Mukhia, Special Secretary, Government of Sikkim, Shri Surendra Singh Meena, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Social Welfare and Justice, Government of India, officials and staff members of ALIMCO, and advisors of Government of Sikkim and other dignitaries.