Provide facilities for voters with disabilities at polling centres: High Court

Asia-Pacific, February 10 2017

NAGPUR, INDIA:  Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court, on Thursday, directed the State Election Commission (SEC) to provide facilities like ramps and handrails at the polling centres for voters with disabilities, to enable them to exercise their franchisee.

A division bench comprising justice Bhushan Gavai and justice Indira Jain warned the SEC of stern action, if it failed to comply with its directives.

Earlier, the petitioner through counsel Anup Gilda pointed out that post offices failed to erect all these facilities on their premises despite court’s specific directives. The judges then adjourned the hearing till Friday, asking the centre to reply.

The court’s stern directives came while hearing PIL filed by NGO Indradhanu through president PN Andhare, who is himself disabled, and secretary Prakash Sohoni, praying for directives to the local authorities, including Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC), to make efforts to implement by-laws, guidelines and measures to ensure a barrier-free built environment and non-discrimination in transport for people with disabilities and senior citizens.

During last hearing, the court had told assistant government pleader to take instructions on providing facilities at 37 buildings in the city, the proposal of which was already dispatched to the Government of India. The central government through counsel AM Joshi was asked to take instructions on progress regarding similar facilities at various post office buildings in the city.

Source: Times of India

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