World Health Organisation defines ‘Disability’ as an umbrella term, covering impairments, activity limitations, and participation restrictions. An impairment is a problem in body function or structure; an activity limitation is a difficulty encountered by an individual in executing a task or action; while a participation restriction is a problem experienced by an individual in involvement in life situations.
With the aim of making sure that the disabled community also contribute to the progress of the nation, The persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full participation) Act, 1995 was framed. his Act was a result of the Proclamation on the full participation and equality of the People with disabilities in the Asian and Pacific Region. The 1995 Act provides equal status for the disabled persons. India having signed UNCRPD in 2007 there was an emerging need for an Act in compliance with the convention. The draft bill was made ready in 2011 but it took 5 more years and finally RPWD Act, 2016 came into effect on 30-12-2016. The aim and objective of the 2016 Act, made inconsonance with the UNCRPD Convention, is to uphold the dignity of every Person with Disability in the society and prevent any form of discrimination. The Act also facilitates full acceptance of people with disability and ensures full participation and inclusion of such persons in the society.
The actual and real challenge lies in implementation. Implementation takes a big deal in most of the welfare measures initiated by the Government. It is indeed difficult to put principles from book to practice. Here not only the appropriate Government but also there is a need to partner with other agencies, voluntary organisations, NGOs and other agencies who help in actual implementation of the initiatives and schemes. Achieving the objective of 2016 Act is a long road but definitely towards success.
The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 is a rights-based legislation, the success of the statute will largely depend on the proactive measures taken by the respective state governments on its implementation.
Keywords: Persons with Disability, Implementation