Driver's Licence for the Deaf sign now

Miscarriage of Justice for the Deaf Community

The Central Government - Ministry of Transport has rejected the proposal of National Association of the Deaf, for issue of DRIVIND LICENSE to the Deaf on the ground of congested and poor Indian road conditions. This is quite unfortunate, unacceptable, and tantamount to violation of human rights. This is not our defeat, but miscarriage of justice. According to the Universal Declaration of Fundamental Freedoms and human Rights that apply to everyone regardless of sex, national or ethnic origin, color, religion, language, or any other status such as disability or deafness. The People with Disabilities are equal in the eyes of law. The Deaf people are no exception. Disability or deafness is an evolving concept and it does not rest with themselves, but results from their interaction with the attitudinal and environmental barriers that hinder their full participation in life and society on an equal basis with others. Likewise, the disqualification for drivers license does not rest with the deaf people themselves, but with the attitude of the Indian authority and the environmental barriers which the authority is unwilling to adapt to the deaf people for driving. The law is above everything. The Supreme Court is above the Legislature and Executive and its verdict is final and binding on the government. The denial contradicts our right to free movement through the mode of private transport. The Transport ministry has set benchmarks for hearing loss to qualify for driving license in consultation with medical experts which is discriminatory in nature depriving the totally deaf people. The rest of the world except relatively 26 countries have allowed drivers license to the deaf regardless of the degree of hearing loss. The government must create the necessary infrastructure and environment conducive to driving by the deaf individuals to facilitate the issue of driving license on the lines of the developed countries. Alternately the government must make provisions through Motor Vehicle Act. Use of additional rearview mirrors and special signal Labels/Stickers on vehicles of deaf individuals and legal adaptations incorporating in Traffic Rules and creating public awareness are sufficient to create an inclusive environment for safe driving for the deaf people in general. We cannot change an inclement environment, but we can adapt to the environment by changing our attitude. This saying holds true for us. Although the deaf people cannot get driving license due to inclement Indian road conditions, yet the situation can be reversed by making special provision through legislation. The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities states that the state parties(national governments) are obliged to consult with the People with Disabilities through their representative organizations when developing and implementing legislation and policies to effectuate their rights.

Deafness doesnt render one incapable of driving safely. There is no reason why deaf people should not be allowed to drive. They can drive with the use of additional rearview mirrors.

Delhi Police

A deaf person with an international drivers license is able to drive in India, then why should an Indian deaf national be denied this right. This is a clear violation of article 14 of the constitution.

Colin Gonslaves, Senior Lawyer & Human Rights Activist

Those who can hear sound up to 60 decibels with the use of hearing aid can be permitted to hold a drivers license.

Medical Experts influencing the government to justify its stand.

But this version is nothing but a myth as it does not hold true with a deaf driver in action.

Issued in community interest by:
Deaf Empowerment & Advocacy Foundation

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Mae ParsonsBy:
Petition target:
Un and Govt of India


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