D.N.I.S. News Network, India: Teams of the coalition drafting the Parallel Report on C.R.P.D. implementation in India and Philippines met in Bangkok on March 17 and 18 to share experiences on the processes in their respective countries. This technical exchange was facilitated by the International Disability Alliance (I.D.A.) and Disabled People’s International (D.P.I.).
Dr. Shanti Auluck, Bhargavi Davar and Meenakshi Balasubramaniam represented India’s National Disability Network (N.D.N.) and Disabled Rights Group (D.R.G.). The Philippines delegation comprised of Liza Martinez, Lauro Purcil, Abner Manlapaz, Ranilo Sorongon and Alvic Padilla.
The Parallel Reporting processes in both countries are case studies as for the first time any country will be attempting a Disability Rights Budget Analysis (D.R.B.A.) and a Legal Review as part of the Parallel Report on C.R.P.D. implementation.
Meenakshi Balasubramaniam, who is spearheading the D.R.B.A. process in India, shared her experiences with the participants. She is currently working with National Centre for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People (N.C.P.E.D.P.) and undergoing orientation at Centre for Budget and Governance Accountability (C.B.G.A.).
Bhargavi Davar, who is a part of the Legal Review team, spoke on the preliminary analysis of the 2000 odd national laws of India. She shared some of the eye opening findings of this review which showed that around 150 laws across various subjects from defence to law and order to public services to family laws, discriminated against not only people with psychosocial, intellectual and cognitive disabilities but also against blind, deaf and leprosy cured people among others.
Delegates from both countries found many points of convergence in their experiences and said that there were many lessons to be learnt from each other.
Alexandre Cote, Capacity Building Project Coordinator of I.D.A. facilitated the exchange and also spoke on the need for the disability sector to be involved with the larger policy and social development arena.
Besides the delegations of both countries, Javed Abidi, Convenor, N.D.N; Dorodi Sharma, Programme Manager, N.C.P.E.D.P., and representatives of C.B.M. and Handicap International also attended this exchange.