(Mr. Javed Ahmad Tak, 38, was born in Bijbehara in the Anantnag district. He received his schooling from Government schools in Bijbehara, and his B.Sc. degree from the Government Degree College in Anantnag. Unfortunately, at the age of 21 he became a victim of a terrorist bullet which hit his spine and disabled him for the rest of his life. However, he overcome mental and physical odds to complete his Master's degree in Social Work from the University of Kashmir, and also completed certificate courses in Human Rights and Computers from the Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU). Although wheel-chair bound, Mr. Tak is recognized as a leader who has relentlessly and with extreme passion taken up the cause of disabled people in J&K, seeking full citizen rights guaranteed under the J&K Disability Act but never implemented in the past. He is a founder-member of numerous NGO's dealing with issues and sensitizing public about challenges faces by physically handicapped people in Kashmir. He has received numerous awards and citations for his selfless work and has attended numerous workshops on disability rights around the country.)
Fake Disability Certificates Mar Rights of Disabled
Sana Altaf (Kashmir Times)
Srinagar: Disabled persons are entitled to three percent reservation in fields of employment and education, but their right is being hampered by the issuance of fake disability certificates.
Disabled persons alleged that the certificates are used to grab government jobs (both under SSRB and PSC), and even admission in the university. Some applicants of the government jobs use approach to get disability certificate from the medical board. This directly affects the jobs prospects of disabled persons who are left in lurch.
“Fake disability certificates are used to get high profile jobs and admissions at different levels. The reservation quota meant for us benefits others,” said Javaid Ahmad Tak, Chairman Humanity Welfare Organization, Helpline NGO. He says people use high approach to get the disability certificate which is issued by the medical board and signed by specialist. But many a times, the signature of a general physician is used instead of a specialist. “The most common disability shown in fake certificates is that of hearing and speech impairment,” Tak adds.
Hilal Ahmad who works as an engineer says the loophole in the issuance of disability certificate mars the rights of disabled persons. A BDS student who has one leg amputated could not get a job because his competitor, who had a broken thumb, had managed to get disability certificate showing him as severely disabled, says Hilal. “Someone who struggled with his disability gets nothings,” says Hilal who suffers from visual imparity. Abdul Rashid, secretary Handicapped Association, says repeated complains about the fake certificates fetched no results.
“There are so many cases of fake certificates and government is doing nothing to address the issue. We people are suffering and no one is bothered,” Rashid said. Mohammad Shaheel, coordinator of Special Cell meant for disabled persons at the University of Kashmir, said 16 cases of fake disability certificates were reported in two years in SSRB. Special Cell was established at the University of Kashmir for the welfare of disabled persons in 2009.
“Since the inception of Cell, we have come across many cases but we ensured they are verified and declined from the list,” said Shaheel. He however regrets no such check is facilitated at other levels. Chief Medical Officer, Srinagar, Dr Farooq Ahmad said the concerned board follows strict guidelines to grant disability certificate. “We have a centre set of guidelines to follow for giving fake disability certificates. We verify the details.”