Navigating the city on a wheelchair

Disabled citizens urge the government to ensure special attention to their needs.

September 18, 2010

ISLAMABAD: Disgruntled with the facilities provided to them for navigating around the city, disabled citizens urged the government to ensure special attention to their needs.

A group of them spoke to this news agency and said that they had to face a variety of problems every day. Some of these include the nonexistence of specific seats in local transport as well as sidewalks that are inaccessible by wheelchairs, scooters and other mobility aids.

“Mobility around the city and access to public transport is the first step,” said Ashfaq, a disabled graduate.

Rahim Khan, another disabled person, said the government could at the least provide a ramp at every corner of pedestrian sidewalks.

“Without the required facilities, most of the areas are dangerous for us,” he added.

They also appealed that transporters should accommodate them with reserved seats.

Wanting to reach their potential and contribute to society, they urged for the government to support them and provide necessary facilities to them.

An official of the Ministry of Social Welfare said that special quota for studying in all educational institutions should be given to the disabled.

He added that  special toilets and ramps should be made compulsory in all new buildings.

The Capital Development Authority (CDA) often does not erect necessary facilities to ensure that persons with disabilities can move throughout the city in a safe and convenient manner.

An official of CDA talking to APP said that most of the newly erected government buildings had considered access for the disabled.  He said disabled section of society should also be facilitated on roads, markets and parks.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 18th, 2010.

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