Insulting, Intimidating, Assaulting the ‘Disabled’ can land one in Jail.
The Ministry of Law and Justice has notified the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016, in the Official Gazette and it has come into force. The Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunity Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995, now stands repealed.
Both the Houses of Parliament had passed the Bill in the winter session of the Parliament. Salient features of the Act, can be read in this Live Law report.
The Act has categorised Persons with Disabilities into three categories:
While “person with disability” is defined as “a person with long term physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairment which, in interaction with barriers, hinders his full and effective participation in society equally with others”; “person with benchmark disability” means “a person with not less than forty per cent of a specified disability where specified disability has not been defined in measurable terms and includes a person with disability where specified disability has been defined in measurable terms, as certified by the certifying authority.”
Further, the Act also defines “person with disability having high support needs” means a person with benchmark disability certified under clause (a) of sub-section (2) of section 58 who needs high support”.
Special Courts will be designated in each district for providing speedy trial. The Act also makes the following acts punishable with imprisonment for a term, which shall not be less than six months but which may extend to five years and with fine:
performs, conducts or directs any medical procedure to be performed on a woman with disability which leads to or is likely to lead to termination of pregnancy without her express consent, except in cases where medical procedure for termination of pregnancy is done in severe cases of disability and with the opinion of a registered medical practitioner and also with the consent of the guardian of the woman with disability.
Read the Act here.