Visually challenged students face shortage of braille books, reading assistants

The visually impaired students have urged the Odisha government to provide them textbooks in Braille as in the case with high school students

By: PTI | Berhampur | Updated: January 6, 2016 9:56 am
braille759 A reading assistant reads out chapters to the blind students, who either write them down in Braille or try to remember the content. (Photo: AP)

Even as the country observed ‘World Braille Day’ on January 4, visually-impaired students pursuing higher studies in the state rued a lack of textbooks in Braille for them.

“We are facing problems in the absence of Braille textbooks. A reading assistant too is difficult to get,” said Lipika Rani Pati, a Plus III (first year) of Khallikote Cluster University here.

A reading assistant reads out chapters to the blind students, who either write them down in Braille or try to remember the content. “It is difficult to grasp all subjects by just listening to the chapters,” said Rebati Patra, a Plus II (first year) student of SBR Women’ s College here.

They urged the state government to provide them textbooks in Braille as in the case with high school students.

“The government provides Braille textbooks for free till Class X,” said Principal of Red Cross Blind School N C Satapathy.

He said students face problems on entering college. Around 200 blind students are studying in different colleges in the state, he added.

There is only one Braille press in the state. It publishes books in Braille for school children up to Class VIII through the Odisha Primary Education Programme Authority (OPEPA)