VIEWS, OAB observe International Day of Persons with Disabilities

Politicians, CSR representatives and civil society leaders talk about rights and betterment of persons with disabilities on the occasion

Bhubaneswar : VIEWS NGO and Odisha Association for the Blind (OAB), in collaboration with Deutsches Katholisches Blindenwerk (DKBW), Germany, observed the International Day of Persons with Disabilities at OAB conference hall in Bhubaneswar on 3rd December 2022 (Saturday).

The theme of International Day of Persons with Disabilities, this year, was “Transformative solutions for inclusive development: the role of innovation in fuelling an accessible and equitable world“. The 2022 celebration focused on the need for innovative solutions to help create an inclusive developmental model to aid people with disabilities.

Of the one billion population of persons with disabilities in the world, 80% live in developing countries only. An estimated 46% of older people aged 60 years and over are people with disabilities. One in every five women is likely to experience disability in her life, while one in every ten children is a child with a disability. Also, persons with disabilities in the world are among the hardest hit by COVID-19.

Shri Pritiranjan Gharai, Minister of State in the Ministry of Rural Development (Independent Charge) of Odisha, was the chief guest for the programme. Visually impaired persons, government officials, CSR representatives of many corporate houses and civil society leaders from across the state attended the programme.

Speaking on the occasion, Sri Pritiranjan Gharai, Minister of State in the Ministry of Rural Development (Independent Charge) of Odisha, said, “I am very grateful to be part of the celebration of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities here at the Odisha Association of for the Blind (OAB). Persons with disabilities are not to live with sympathy from others but it is their right to get equal opportunities in every field. It is our responsibility to provide you all the opportunities. Technology is playing a very important role in taking persons with disabilities forward. We need to think and take all possible steps for providing the benefits of technology to persons with disabilities in our state. Sanyasi sir is an inspiration for all of us. I will discuss with him and take suggestions for taking required steps for the betterment of the persons with disabilities.”

Mr, Sanyasi Behera, President, Odisha Association for the Blind, said, “Access to basic services is essential for PWDs like other common citizens. In this regard, corporate houses and public sector undertakings should allocate budgets for projects for empowerment and employability of persons with disabilities under their corporate social responsibility.”

The other dignitaries who spoke on the occasion included Mr. Sarat Kumar Das, General Secretary, OAB, Mr. Durga Charan Mishra, Director, MSME, Mr. Priyadarshi Mishra, former MLA Bhubaneswar North Zone, Ms. Priya S. Mahapatra, GM, Corporate Social Responsibility at TCS, Mr. Rashmi Ranjan Mohanty from Tech Mahindra, Mr. Siba Prasad Sahu from Sightsavers India, Odisha state Lead, Mr. Manoj Behera from JSW Cement and Ms. Madhumita from SELCO Foundation.