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The dilemma of disabled people in Pakistan

Outcry over the government's decision to abolish an employment quota for persons living with disabilities

Kamran Chaudhry, Lahore

Kamran Chaudhry, Lahore

Updated: June 30, 2020 06:19 AM GMT
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The dilemma of disabled people in Pakistan

Students of Annanias Rehabilitation Center for Visually Impaired Females celebrate the 21st anniversary of the center with a drama performance. (Photo: Kamran Chaudhry)

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Despite her blindness, Saba Younas topped the qualifying examination for recruitment of a lecturer at a college in Lahore. Now she fears for the future of her students.

“The recent presidential ordinance is more dreadful than the virus. Government jobs were a major source of support for persons living with disabilities (PLWDs). Both public and government officials still need awareness about our challenges,” Younas, 28, told UCA News.

The professor at the Government Degree College of Special Education was referring to the Pakistan government’s decision to abolish the 2 percent public and private company employment quota for PLWDs through a presidential ordinance in May. President Arif Alvi deleted section 459 of the Companies Act 2017 that ensured employment opportunities for disabled people.

Media reports say only 10 percent out of the 33 million PLWDs in the country enroll in special education institutes and only 1 percent study in universities.

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