Frame guidelines for access to students with disabilities in colleges within 8 weeks: SC tells UGC 

The Supreme Court on Monday ordered the University Grants Commission to ensure that guidelines are put in place within eight weeks for easy access for students with disabilities to universities and colleges across the country.

A bench of Judges DY Chandrachud and AS Bopanna took note of UGC counsel’s submission that a commission has been constituted at the direction of the court. It would consider the formulation of guidelines for the accessibility of students with disabilities at universities and colleges.

Appearing before the UGC, attorney Manoj Ranjan Sinha said at the outset that an updated status report had been submitted and that it would take another eight weeks to formulate the guidelines, given the current Covid situation.

The bank then placed the case on March 14 for further consideration. In 2017, the highest court had said that the UGC for “Guidelines for Accessibility for Students with Disabilities in Universities/Colleges” will consider the feasibility of setting up a committee.

“In this committee, the UGC would be free to include persons from the Central Advisory Council, State Advisory Councils, Chief Commissioner or State Commissioners appointed under the Disability Act. This commission will carry out a detailed study to make provisions related to accessibility and pedagogy and would also propose the modalities for the implementation of those suggestions, their funding and supervision, etc.”, the highest court had said.

He added that the committee also sets the deadline for such suggestions to be implemented. The committee of experts may also consider the feasibility of establishing an internal body in each educational institution (of teachers, staff, pupils and parents) for the day-to-day needs of disabled people and for the implementation of the schedules it has established.

The highest court heard a petition filed in the Disabled Right Group subpoena.

Sajal Jain
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