Maharashtra Government's Push for Accessible Education Faces Fund Crunch

The Bombay High Court inquired about Maharashtra's efforts to implement its initiative to enhance education for disabled persons through programs with sign language interpreters. Despite decisions taken in 2021 to use Doordarshan and Aakashvani, budget constraints have hindered progress. The court directed the state and Central governments to submit detailed affidavits within six weeks.


Devdiscourse News Desk | Mumbai | Updated: 09-07-2024 18:10 IST | Created: 09-07-2024 18:10 IST
Maharashtra Government's Push for Accessible Education Faces Fund Crunch
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The Bombay High Court on Tuesday queried the Maharashtra government regarding the steps taken to implement its initiative to bolster education for disabled individuals via sign language interpreter broadcasts.

A division bench, comprising Chief Justice D K Upadhyaya and Justice Amit Borkar, asked the Centre how the state government's decision could be enacted.

In 2021, Maharashtra resolved to enhance education for disabled students by reserving time slots for educational broadcasts on Doordarshan and Aakashvani, facilitated by sign language interpreters. However, the state reported in a 2022 affidavit that a required budget of Rs 4 crore was unavailable.

The government also noted that television broadcasts posed accessibility issues for students who missed the live programs, suggesting YouTube uploads as a better alternative, but claimed a lack of funds to produce such content.

The court has asked the state to file a fresh affidavit outlining steps taken for implementation, and the Centre to explain how it can support the initiative. The responses are due in six weeks.

This directive emerged from a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by NGO 'Anamprem', highlighting challenges faced by disabled students during the COVID-19 pandemic and seeking enforcement of the Right to Persons with Disabilities Act of 2016.

(Disclaimer: With inputs from agencies.)

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