New accessibility guidelines to use universal design approach
11th Apr, 2022
Notification of guidelines, to be issued in the near future, by the Central Government that will make access to buildings more universal.
What are the guidelines about?
- The Union Government will very soon notify the Harmonised Guidelines and Standards for Universal Accessibility, 2021.
- This guidelines will help make the entry and movement in a building accessible to all.
- This framework will help with the swift implementation of the guidelines in all new and retrofitting construction work so that the problem of non-accessibility becomes the thing of past.
- These guidelines will be shared with the State governments and city administrations for being implemented.
- Ramps, grab rails and other facilities for persons with disabilities (PwD) would be built under the above guidelines.
- Attention would also be paid to cleanliness of the building premises as the same also becomes a reason for people not accessing the compound.
- The abovementioned guidelines have been prepared by a team of Indian Institute of Technology-Roorkee and National Institute of Urban Affairs.
|National Institute of Urban Affairs: It is an institute for research, training and information dissemination in urban development and management. It works as a think tank for Union Ministry of Urban Affairs.
Why are these guidelines needed?
- Equality to access of premises falls under the broader realm of Right to Equality mentioned in Article 15 and Right to live with dignity as mentioned in Article 21 of the Indian Constitution.
- It is important to remember that accessibility is not an option, it is a necessity and should be mandatory to transcend all forms for age, ability and gender.
- Buildings that are accessible are important because it allows for more equal, and hopefully equitable, access for people with various abilities.
- By not providing equal access to a premises a person’s true potential in academics, corporate world etc. may not be achieved which ultimately would affect the whole of society.
- Hence it is imperative that the built environment is inherently accessible to all.