Cabinet approves National Policy on universal electronic accessibility

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Friday, October 04, 2013: The Union Cabinet today has accepted the National Policy on Universal Electronic Accessibility that acknowledges the need to abolish discrimination on the basis of disabilities as well as to provide equal access to electronics and Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs).

This policy has been planned after taking into consideration the comments and suggestions from different stakeholders, as per an official press release.

The policy will make it possible to provide equal and unimpeded access to electronics and ICT products and services by disable persons (both physically and mentally challenged) and to ease out local language support for them.

This will be attained with universal access to electronics and ICT products and services to match with hindrance free environment and preferably usable without adaptation. The release specified that differently abled persons from across the country will benefit with this policy.

As per this, the strategies listed below are seen for the execution of the policy:
– Generating awareness on universal electronics accessibility and universal design.
– Capacity building and infrastructure development
– Establishment of model electronics and ICTs centres for offering training and demonstration to special educators and physically and mentally challenged persons.
– Carrying out research and development, use of innovation, ideas, technology etc.
– Development of programme and schemes for differently abled women/children.
– Developing procurement guidelines for electronics and ICTs for accessibility and assistive needs.

India approved the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) in 2007 which, along with other things, indicates that “State Parties shall take appropriate measures to ensure to persons with disabilities, access on an equal basis with others, to the physical environment, to transportation, to information and communications, including ICTs and systems and to other facilities and services open or provided to the public.”

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