Members of various disabled organizations held a protest on Sunday before the main gate of ARAM GHAR Old Age home in Hyderabad after the Rangareddy district’s administration closed it down. A banner at the closed facility states that it failed to follow the provisions laid down under Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007.
The Aram Ghar was established in 1962 by an organization led by renowned social activist and former Rajya Sabha member Roda Mistry to champion the cause of mentally challenged people in the State. The facility sheltered disabled persons, especially the mentally retarded people who were disowned by their families in their senility.
However, as per reports, a team of officials from the District Rural Development Agency (DRDA), and Disabled Welfare Hyderabad visited the facility on June 1 and shifted all the 76 inmates to other old age homes without giving a reason. Sources say it was found that the private management body appointed by the government was not at all serving properly and, failed to maintain health hygiene, thus putting life of the inmates at risk.
Gorenkala Narsimha, State Honorary President National Platform for Rights of Disabled (NPRD), told The Hans India that the decision to wind up the facility has miraculously planned to allot the sprawling government land to corporate agencies. He said this had been going on for years, was executed last week to suit the intentions.
“In its pursuit to fill the coffers, the government is not even sparing the facilities meant for disabled people despite the fact that very few of such institutions have left in the outskirts while the city was completely bereft of these centres,” Narsimha said. “If the facilities are lacking, the government may have arranged it instead of winding up the centre. It is not wise enough to burn down the house to smoke out a rat.”
Mahboob Basha, president Rajendranagar Pattana Vikalangula Samakya, highlighted that the government has shifted the inmates by accepting that not enough facilities have been provided at the centre putting the health and life of the inmates in jeopardy. “If the government was sensitive enough towards the welfare of the disabled people, it would have had provided the required facilities at Aram Ghar Centre to benefit the inmates instead of shifting them to already overwhelmed old age homes.”