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Insensitivity of officials makes it hard for students with disabilities in Assam

Students with disabilities in Assam say they face many barriers when it comes to pursuing their dreams of a higher education.

This is because many university authorities do not give these students the benefits offered to students with disabilities. Students' say these issues have been raised from time to time, but there has been no change on the ground.

For instance, the guidelines of the University Grants Commission (UGC) say, there should be a 5% relaxation in marks for candidates belonging to certain groups, which include people with disabilities. But university officials do not give these facilities.

Many exam candidates have also complained that they were denied proper facilities and extra time as per the guidelines that have emerged in recent years.

This causes disaapointment among disabled students, as well as poor academic performance. In 2017, four blind candidates from Jorhat Blind School had a rude shock when they were told they would not get the extra four hours to write their exams. At another center, blind students were given only 20 minutes of extra time.

Disability rights groups say there is a need to change the attitude of education board officials from the top down.

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