Today, there are millions of people living with one or multiple disabilities. The population of Indians who are differently-abled is around 26.8 million, constituting 2.21% of the total population, if one goes by the 2011 population census data.
Disability rights activists and academicians working on disability issues, however, say that these numbers in the census are a very small percentage of the actual numbers. World Bank data on the total number of persons with disabilities in India suggests the number is between 40 and 80 million.
Despite constituting such a significant proportion of the total population, persons with disabilities live a very challenging life. Their ‘disability’ is often seen as their ‘inability’ by many and people, in general, have preconceived notions about their capabilities.
Who Is Considered Disabled?
According to the United Nations Conventions on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, disability results from the interaction between persons with impairments and attitudinal and environmental barriers that hinders their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others.
Persons with disabilities include those who have long-term physical, mental, intellectual, or sensory impairments which in interaction with various barriers may hinder their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others.
Disability is generally classified into two types. One is when a person is born with a disability while the other is when a person acquires a disability during his/her life.
However challenging the scenario, it does not deter many people from their goals and gives them a greater purpose to do good for society.
Disability makes a person’s life even more difficult than it normally is. But still, there are people who do not allow their disabling conditions to become a roadblock in their lives. These disabled people have self-confidence as their biggest strength and their courage gets them success and fame.
“Disability need not be an obstacle to success.” – Stephen Hawking.
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