ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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​A Disability Dilemma

The Story of My Disability Certificate

Who decides whether one is disabled “enough” and how does it affect one’s sense of self?

It has been a little over a year since the government hospital in my district issued a disability certificate to me. According to it, I have locomotive disability, permanent, 40%, with a case of spastic cerebral palsy diplegia GMFS (gross motor function classification system)—one of the most common types of cerebral palsy (CP) diagnosed in children. Those that have spastic CP have a “scissor walk” (also known as scissoring gait) where their knees turn inward, because they have increased muscle stiffness in their hips and legs. When a child is diagnosed with CP, it is from brain damage that happens either before or right after birth.

I was born in 1992 into a Buddhist family. My father was a farmer. We had four acres of land and our own house (not pucca). My father was educated, having finished school. Following the path shown by Babasaheb Ambedkar, he advocated the embracing of Buddhism to his family, and despite initial resistance from his parents, he was able to bring about a change of heart in the family. He and his younger brother removed idols and pictures of Hindu gods and goddesses from their home with respect. My mother, on the other hand, had to quit her studies after Class 7 and got married. She too was a knowledgeable farmer who worked alongside my father. My social background has shaped, influenced, and affected my life. The sense of knowing that my ancestors were “Untouchables” has been present throughout my journey. Caste—this unnatural, inhuman division of people—based on the varna system, is the primary reason for inequality in our society, and makes life that much more difficult for people like myself.

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Updated On : 1st Dec, 2020
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