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HomeIndiaBengaluru commute a daily ordeal for the differently abled | Bengaluru News

Bengaluru commute a daily ordeal for the differently abled | Bengaluru News



BENGALURU: Accessibility is among the primary problems faced by the physically challenged in Namma Bengaluru. Despite buses and Metro trains having designated spaces, reaching stations remains challenging, a cross-section of Persons with Disabilities (PwDs)

TOI

spoke with said on Sunday, the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.
The visually impaired struggle in the absence of station announcements, while broken footpaths impede their journey.
Dinesh Mehta Jain, 48, a Chickpet resident who’s physically challenged since birth, said: “People easily take advantage of us, so we constantly need someone while going out. Buses and Metro coaches have seats designated for people like us, but most of the time we don’t get those seats and none is there to address such concerns. The other task is reaching these modes of transport. The footpaths are broken and there are high chances of falling while walking on them. The bus stops don’t even have ramps.”
Shreyas, 29, a visually impaired advocate, said that BMTC buses earlier had the system of announcements about the next stop and other details, but it has stopped now and nobody knows why. “As per the Right to Life enshrined in Article 21 of the Constitution, everybody has the right to travel wherever they want, but people like us are denied that right. The transport sector is not at all supportive of us. The problem lies in awareness and the process of implementation. We don’t need sympathy, just empathy along with cooperation from the government will do,” he said.
Chandra Shekar, 48, who is partially deaf and autistic, has been working at Hatti Kaapi for 10 years. “The biggest trouble I face is while crossing the road. Traffic doesn’t stop and and I need someone to help me get to the other side. I have faced this problem all through these years.”
Mahendra US, CEO of Hatti Kaapi, whose outlets have employed many PwDs, confirmed: “Commuting is the biggest problem for them. My visually impaired staffers say it’s tough for them to find the right bus stop. Those with physical disabilities say it’s a struggle to get on and off buses.”
Vidhya Ramasubban, founder of KickStart, a disabled-friendly cab service in Karnataka, said that ideas and solution to make public spaces disabled-friendly are available in plenty and there are several resources for the same. “The need is to implement these systematically,” she said. “Accessibility features need to take into account all disabilities and not just wheelchair users. Things like signages and tactile flooring are also important and should be taken into consideration.”

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