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Republic Day 2014 parade telecast may include sign language

Delhi,Immigration/Law/Rights, Fri, 10 Jan 2014 IANS

New Delhi, Jan 10 (IANS) The live telecast of the Jan 26 Republic Day parade may include sign language interpretation this time around, a disabled rights group said Friday.

The announcement came following a meeting between disabled rights groups and Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari.

"The minister was very positive and has given his assurance on the issue of sign language interpretation of the telecast on Doordarshan," said Javed Abidi, convenor of Disabled Rights Group (DRG).

"India has ratified the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CPD) and as such is obligated to make all information accessible to everyone irrespective of disability. To keep millions of viewers bereft of this is blatant discrimination," he added.

According to the National Association of the Deaf (NAD), over 18 million people will benefit from the interpretation.

"Although, several countries have closed captioning of television programming and sign language interpretation of all important broadcasts such as statements by heads of state, parliamentarians, and others, India has still to take it up," said A.S. Narayanan, secretary of NAD.

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