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Significant step in establishing dyslexia as 'disability'

DNIS Network News - Nearly four months after a petition seeking reservation for dyslexic students was moved before the Delhi High Court, comes a welcome development in establishing dyslexia as a disability.

The court has taken note of the fact that the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) already recognises dyslexia as an impairment and provides for certain concessions to the candidates. The court (which had not passed any directions in an interim order earlier) has directed university authorities to provisionally process the applications of dyslexic students.

This decision, taken by a division bench comprising Chief Justice B.C. Patel and Justice B.D. Ahmed, has come as a welcome relief for thousands of dyslexic students.

The division bench has directed the respondents to complete the pleadings on the issue. Following this, the Court has posted the matter for the last hearing on January 10 next year.

The petition, moved by Disabled Rights Group (DRG) seeks inclusion of dyslexia as an established disability under Section 2 (1) of the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act 1995. DRG is asking for reservation for dyslexic students in Delhi University undergraduate courses. The petition, which was treated as public interest litigation, contends that dyslexia is a neurological disorder; students with dyslexia should thus be given benefits, relaxation and concessions available under Section 39 of the Act.

A petition in this regard was filed in June this year, asking the court to give direction to Delhi University to grant admission to candidates (with dyslexia) in different courses.