India Emerges as Leading Hub for Assistive Device Manufacturing


India Emerges as Leading Hub for Assistive Device Manufacturing
India is fast becoming a pivotal manufacturing hub for assistive devices, according to Rajesh Aggarwal, Secretary of the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD) under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment. Speaking at the ASSOCHAM's 6th Conference on Empowering Persons with Disabilities in New Delhi, he highlighted India's emergence in producing assistive technologies such as braille displays, speech-to-text software, and adapted learning tools.
Aggarwal emphasized the importance of integrating persons with disabilities (PwD) into the workforce through designated job profiles rather than mere quotas. He underscored the need for accessible infrastructure, employment opportunities, and enhanced educational tools tailored to the needs of PwDs.
The conference, aligned with India's 'Viksit Bharat' vision, aims to establish the country as a global hub for assistive technology. Aggarwal credited India's competitive manufacturing costs and supportive policies like Make in India for its potential to lead in the global assistive technology market.
Anil Rajput, Chairperson of the ASSOCHAM National CSR Council, urged Indian automobile manufacturers to adopt advanced technologies from around the world to enhance mobility options for disabled individuals in India. Stressing the critical role of mobility in the lives of PwDs, Rajput referenced data from the World Health Organization (WHO), revealing that over a billion people globally, or 16% of the world's population, experience some form of disability, with 80% residing in developing countries.
The event served as a platform to discuss the transformative impact of technology in improving the lives of persons with disabilities, advocating for inclusive policies and innovations to foster greater accessibility and integration in society.