People with disabilities in Province 1 find ways to be independentCurrently, there are 300,000 people with disabilities across the country. Among them, 94,640 are in Province 1.
Durganath Yogi, a local of Sudarharaicha Municipality Ward No. 11, is blind by birth. Despite his impediment, however, he has been feeding his family of five all his life.
Visually impaired Yogi builds mudas, a traditional wicker stool, brooms and incense sticks to earn a living. He, along with his wife, have been making these traditional stools to make a living for the past decade or so, he says.
Every month, Yogi says he prepares 60 stools, brooms and incense sticks (as per the demand) and makes around Rs 20,000.
Like Yogi, Juna Ghimire, who is also a physically challenged woman, of Dhankuta, also creates various handicrafts made up of salla (pine) needles.
“We prepare tea mat, plate mat, basket, pen holder, tea box, among other items, from pine,” said Ghimire, adding that the handicrafts are sent to be sold in Thamel, Kupondole and Chabahil of Kathmandu. “The demand for these items is high in Kathmandu,” said Ghimire.
For her hard work, she earns more than Rs 30,000 every month. This income has helped her become financially independent for the last three years.
At a recent Disable Trade Fair, organised by the Ministry of Social Development and the National Federation of the Disabled in Biratnagar, various items prepared by disabled people such as Yogi and Ghimire were displayed. There were 15 stalls in the trade fair.
At the fair, many other items—such as shoes, toys, pickles, toilet cleaners and crystals among other decorative items—all produced by disabled people were on display.
Mitralal Sharma, chairman of the National Federation of Disabled, said that the state should promote jobs that help disabled people become financially independent. “The issues of disables have been sidelined in the constitution. We demand the government to create opportunities for disabled people,” said Sharma.
Currently, there are 300,000 disabled people across the country. Among them, 94,640 are in Province-1, as per the National Census of 2011.