On the occasion of teachers' day, a 50 year old Latika Maiti was one of many teachers who were at Vigyan Bhavan to receive awards for their services in the field of teaching but, for Latika, the moment of pride was not as joyful because she has to cross the hurdle of climbing the stairs.
Latika is differently abled and use crutches to walk and in the absence of ramp she had to climb the stairs in order to reach the stage.
Maiti hails from Purba Midnapore in West Bengal and had to seek the support from others in order to get on the stage.
.”I did not see ramps anywhere but there was someone who constantly helped me get on and off the stairs,” said Maiti
One of the other awardees, who wished not to be named, said "when you are taking an award and have to seek help from others, it doesn't feel nice”.
This is second time when such an issue has been raised by the teachers. Last time, two years ago the same issue was raised by two teachers namely Satendra Singh, a teacher with the University College of Medical Sciences, and Abha Khetrapal, founder of Cross Hurdles.
“We had complained and a closure report was filed. The report by the Department of Empowerment for People with Disability had said that retrofitting will be done to make the space fully accessible,” said Singh.
An official from the ministry said that they are not responsible for looking into the arrangements for the ramps.