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Rakhis to cheer the visually-impaired

Rakshabandhan this time will be a unique one for visually-impaired in Pune as the girls with good eyesight will be tying rakhis to the visually-impaired boys at a programme called Runanubandha to mark the 200th birth anniversary of Braille on August 1.

Written by SiddharthKelkar | Pune |
August 1, 2009 12:33:01 am

Rakshabandhan this time will be a unique one for visually-impaired in Pune as the girls with good eyesight will be tying rakhis to the visually-impaired boys at a programme called Runanubandha to mark the 200th birth anniversary of Braille on August 1. The specially made rakhis carrying the message of need for eye donation in Braille as well as Devnagari script will also be the highlight of the occasion.

Satish Navale,a teacher and an activist working for visually-impaired,who himself is a blind,has taken this initiative. As many as 10 girl students of Modern High School (English medium) will tie rakhis to 10 blind students of Koregaon Park Blind School. “It is an attempt to integrate the people with good eye sight with the blind people,” said Navale.

“Many a times the people with good eye sight don’t know what practical difficulties the visually-impaired people have to face in day-to-day life. In spite of so many hurdles,around 650 blind students are getting education in five schools for visually-impaired in the city. The number of such students in the state is over 10,000,” he said.

Navale said the programme would be an attempt to spread awareness about the issues of blind students. “Around 100 normal school students will be attending the programme. If the students are made aware of the issues of blind at this stage only,they will keep it in mind forever and can help blind people at various stages of their career,” he said.

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He also said that the association would be helpful in future projects. “We are planning to create audio CDs of some books,radio programmes for blind and converting study material of MPSC into Braille script.

Parag Konkrule of Shree Mahavir Rakhi in Pimpri who has made the special rakhis with a message of eye donation on it said,“I am working for spreading the message of eye donation for last two years. There is not a single eye bank in Pimpri- Chinchwad where I live. When I came to know this I thought I should do something for blind people while doing my business. So I started campaigning for eye donation. The specially made rakhis are part of that campaign,” he said.

Neeta Ghorpade,a teacher in Modern High School (English Medium) has taken the initiative on behalf of the school to involve the school students in the programme. “As a school,we have been working on issues affecting the visually-impaired. Many school students work as writers for blind students. We are also thinking of helping the visually-impaired students by making audio CDs of books,” she said

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