04 December 2012

City with Disability

It hurts to hear that there are over 25,000 Bhutanese living with disabilities, it hurts because though supposedly a compassionate society Bhutan is also superstitious and has lot of stigma. Many spend their lives in hiding either by choice or by force from the family. Those choosing to come out in open and live normal lives are confronted with countless challenges of which one is the structural unfriendliness, which is easily avoidable.
Friendly office
There are hardly any toilets, any building, stairs, street or buses friendly enough for a disabled person to comfortably use in Bhutan. Even the streets in Capital city has no provision for even a wheelchair and therefore it's as good as Thimphu banning disabled people from coming out on street. Disability happens without a choice, but when it comes to building structures we have choices. 
Friendly Transport
We speak thousand good words and print thousand touching pictures of disabled people to awaken the society and remove stigma, and the result could be as theoretical as the process is. One wheelchair friendly street could speak more than those thousand words, one bus with seat for disabled persons could show more than thousand pictures, because words and pictures won't quite practically help people with disability move on street and travel in buses.

Friendly Shopping places

Friendly streets
For now our able-society with able-planners and able-engineers could only come up with cities with disability; city that are absolutely unfriendly to our disabled fellow. 
I join the world to celebrate the International Day of People with Disability with all my heart!


  1. I have my friends who are disabled, but they are the most successful persons living with disability in Bhutan. All time, I hear from them that when it comes to disabled-friendly services and facilities, our society is ill-informed. And this itself is failing. Through their own experience/story, they have been trying to create awareness amongst general public on disability crisis in Bhutan. It's ignorance amongst general public that we disregard facilitating services and infrastructures for disabled persons. For example, keep aside, private buildings/space, even the govt. buildings/offices are not disabled-friendly. Every newly constructed public space like footpath, motor road, school, park, and station are not at all disabled-friendly. And this ignorance amongst general public and government is depriving the rights of about 25,000 people. Now, it's high time that our government be implementing the stringent rule making the all services and facilities disabled-friendly in Bhutan.Let disabled person be trained and walk and cook themselves on their own. Let them use computers and phones with necessary assistance and supports. Let's empower them so that they can visit hospitals/offices/bus stations on their own. After all, empowering them would not only rescue those disabled persons, but it also helps making them independent and breadwinner; thus, reducing their dependency on their family members and govt.

  2. So True!!! We do need such facilities for the disabilities in Bhutan.
    Nice post Passu Sir!

  3. A post with wonderful insight for the Bhutanese. Hope our country will soon realize the needs of special facility for special group of society, the disabled ones.


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