The Delhi High Court has directed a lawyer, assigned to aid in a case, to visit the Campus Law Centre (CLC) at Delhi University, ensuring accessibility for individuals with disabilities, and submit a thorough report on the premises.
In response to a plea by Jayant Singh Raghav, a visually impaired student at Delhi University (DU), the Delhi High Court (HC) has instructed the University to submit a comprehensive affidavit detailing the physical infrastructure and accessibility provisions for persons with disabilities at the Campus Law Centre (CLC). The plea raised concerns about the provision of assistive devices for disabled students during examinations.
Justice Purushaindra Kumar Kaurav emphasised that the affidavit should address the implementation of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016, and consider suggestions from amicus curiae Advocate Kamal Gupta. The court granted a last indulgence, allowing seven days for the university to file the affidavit.
The amicus curiae had previously submitted a report recommending improvements in physical infrastructure and accessibility at CLC. The report urged the immediate implementation of the Accessibility Guidelines and Standards for Higher Education Institutions and Universities, 2022, set by the University Grants Commission (UGC).
Among the recommendations, the report called for an access audit of the CLC and the installation of at least 10 ramps with tactile features at various locations. It also highlighted the absence of a mandatory lift in the current CLC building, emphasising the need for disabled-accessible washrooms on each floor.
The University’s counsel claimed that repairs and facility provision, according to the amicus curiae’s report, are complete. However, the court pointed out that the university must adhere to various other requirements outlined by the Disability Act and the amicus curiae’s recommendations.
The case is scheduled to be heard again on December 7, when the court expects the University to provide a comprehensive overview of its compliance with accessibility measures for differently-abled students at CLC.
Featured Image Credits: DU Beat Photo Archive