Government Concessions and Benefits

As a welfare State the Government of India as well as the State governments offer wide variety of concessions and benefits to persons with mentally challenged. For each category of concessions apart from eligibility requirements, magnitude of the assistance, definition of the handicap, clear guidelines regarding application form, procedure of availing the benefit etc. are clearly enunciated and elaborated by Government orders issued from time to time.


75 per cent concession in the basic fare in the first and second class is allowed to Mentally Challenged persons accompanied by an escort. These concessions are admissible to Mentally Challenged pupils traveling between (a) their homes and schools/institutes; (b) place of vocation; and, (c) place of examination centres in India. The pupils should be student of government recognised schools and institutions. Travel is also permitted by two tier AC on payment of concessional first class fare and full surcharge for two tier AC. The concession can be availed if an individual with disability or school or institution make an application to the Station Master of the local railway station in the prescribed application form and concession certificate.

Fifty percent concessions in the first and second class monthly/quarterly season fares both for the individual with disability and his/her escort over suburban and non suburban section of Indian railways is allowed. The concessional tickets are issued directly by the Station Master on production of the prescribed attested/photostat certificate from a government doctor/hospital. In addition other conditions regarding the issue of MSTs and QSTs as applicable to general public may also apply. The certificate issued by the Government doctor is valid for three years from the date of issue.


Most State Governments having state owned and operated transport undertakings or corporations allow subsidised/free bus travel in the city and rural routes. Persons with mentally challenged are allowed to travel with an escort. For this purpose a medical practitioner in government service or an institution/school must issue a certificate. For example, in Andhra Pradesh city bus travel is free for a person with disability and an escort is charged fifty percent of the fare.


Public telephone with or without STD facility is allotted by the Department of Telephones to enable the public to make telephone calls at prescribed charges. Mentally handicapped persons are being given preference in allotment of telephone booths as means of sustenance, vocational rehabilitation and income generation.


The Union Ministry of Welfare since 1955 has been operating through the state Governments and Union territories a scheme of scholarships awarded to challenged person for pursuing education in special schools being run by non-government organisations. The scholarships are awarded to mentally handicapped students subject to their being certified by clinical psychologists/psychiatrist. The Rate of scholarships is Rs.1000/- per annum for cases hailing from the lower socio-economic status and is renewable from year to year. In case of severely challenged persons who require special arrangements for transportation, an additional monthly allowance of Rs.50/- or actual expenses, whichever is less is sanctioned.


This centrally sponsored scheme was launched by the Department of Social Welfare in 1974 and has been transferred to the Department of Education since 1982. The handicapped children have the benefit of receiving education in the regular school system. The following allowances and facilities are provided under this scheme.

Books and Stationary allowance of Rs.400/- per annum

Uniform allowance of Rs. 50/- per annum

Transport allowance of Rs.50/- per month (if a challenged child admitted under the scheme resides in a hostel of the school within the school premises, no transportation charges would be admissible)

Reader allowance of Rs.50/- per month in case of blind children after class V

Escort allowance for severely handicapped children with lower extremity disabilities at the rate of Rs.75/- per month.

Annual cost of equipment subject to a maximum of Rs.2000/- per student for a period of five years.


A Government servant is eligible to draw Childrens Educational Allowance when he/she is compelled to send his/her child to a school away from the station of his/her posting. The tuition payable and actually paid by the Government servant is reimbursable subject to Rs.50/- per month per child in the case of Mentally Challenged children.


The Union Ministry of Welfare operates a scheme under which assistance is given to challenged persons for purchase and fitting of aids and appliances. This scheme is available to all employed, self employed and pensioner whose average monthly income from all sources does not exceed Rs.2,500/-. The quantum of assistance ranges from Rs. 25/- to Rs. 3600/-. The full cost of the aid is reimbursed if the income of the challenged persons is up to Rs.1200/- per month while fifty per cent of the cost of the aid is reimbursed if the income is between Rs.1,202/- and Rs.2500/-


Most housing boards and urban development authorities have schemes of preferential allotment of plots and housing sites to individuals with disability. In case of allotment of built up houses preference is given to people with handicap.


The Government of India, Department of personnel and Training vide O.M-No AB-14017/41/90-Estt(RR) DT 15TH February 1991, makes a provision for a choice in the place of posting of parents in Government service having a child with mentally challenged. Government departments and Ministries have been requested to take a sympathetic view on the merits of each case and accommodate such requests for posting to the extent possible.

Schemes for the Disabled, Government of India, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment

1. Scholarships for student of standard IX and above. This is forwarded by the State Government.

2. Assistive Devices e.g orthotic and prosthetic appliances, hearing aid through the government approved institutions. This included travelling and residence up to fifteen days as per the rules, i.e. totally free to those whose family income is below Rs.5000/- p.m and at 50% cost for those whose income is between Rs.5000/- to Rs.8000/- p.m

3. Grant -in-aid to voluntary organizations To encourage NGOs , grant-in-aid to those institutions :

which are registered under Societys Registration Act.

Under Public Trust Act.

Should be running the activities for a minimum period of two years.

Should not be running for profit.

Government of India: Ministry of Labour

Runs Vocational Rehabilitation Centres for the Challenged in various states of the country.

Runs Special Employment exchange for the Challenged to help find jobs.

Government of India: Ministry of Education

Scheme for integrated education for the Challenged implemented through the state government

The scheme provides one resource teacher for eight challenged students in regular school. In addition, there is also a provision for books and stationary, uniform, transport, reader, escort allowance and actual cost of equipment such as brace/crutches/braille/ hearing aid etc.

Government of India: Ministry of Health

Runs District Rehabilitation centres (DRC) for integrated rehabilitation of the challenged particularly in the rural areas.


1. The National Trust is a statutory body under Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India set up under the National Trust for the welfare of persons with Autism Cerebral Palsy, Mentally Challenged and Multiple Disabilities Act (Act 44 of 1999)

2. The basic objectives of the National trust are :

To enable and empower persons with disability to live as independently and as fully as possible within and as close to the community to which they belong.

To strengthen facilities to provide support to persons with disability to live within their own families.

To extend support to registered organizations to provide need based services during period of crisis in the family of persons with disability.

To deal with problems of persons with disability who do not have the family support.

To promote measures for the care and protection of persons with disability in the event of death of their parent or guardian.

To evolve procedures for the appointment of guardians and trustees for persons with disability requiring such protection.

To facilitate the realization of equal opportunities, protection of rights and full participation of persons with disability.

To do any other act which is incidental to the aforesaid objects.

3. The organizational structure of the board is :

4. Formulation of Schemes

The two schemes of the National Trust under the broad relief and reach programme for the welfare of persons with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Mentally Challenged and Multiple Disabilities are Establishment of Relief Institutions for providing institutional care and Training of the caregivers. Both the schemes have got the Administrative approval from the Ministry recently.

5. Income Tax Exemption

The National trust has got 100% exemption from Income Tax.


The Local Level committee (or LLC) is the instrumentality of the National Trust Act and herein lies the unique character and substance of this Act.

The primary role of the Local Level committees is in coordinating, initiating, protecting the rights and promoting the interests of persons with Autism, Cerebral palsy, Mentally Challenged and Multiple Disabilities as per the National Act its rules and regulations and as per directions given by the National Trust of the National Act from time to time. This includes :

a. Awareness Generation and Interactions on :

The National Trust Act.

The rights of persons with these four disabilities.

The needs, problems and preferred solutions of the local population of persons with these four disabilities and their families.

Schemes and programmes of the National Trust that are formulated from time to time

b. Guardianship of persons with these four disabilities

Receipt of applications

Processing of applications

Appointment of guardians

Monitoring and evaluation of guardianship

Removal if necessary of guardianship as per the rules and regulations

Reporting to the National Trust

c. Implementation, Monitoring and Coordination of

Schemes/programmes/initiatives of the National Trust as per the directions of the National Trust given from time to time

d. Promoting the interests of persons with four disabilities through facilitation of CONVERGENCE in

Existing schemes of various Departments of the Government and Non- Government organizations

Any schemes or programmes being planned for the future under different Departments

Ensuring the inclusion of persons with these four disabilities in all general disability related programmes of the government and non-government organizations.

e. Taking proactive initiatives and measures that concern the local problems/needs of persons with these four disabilities and their families

f. Liaisoning with local leaders panchayat members, Government Personnel, Representatives of NGOs, Family and community Members for the furtherance of the objectives of the National Trust


A. local level committee shall consist of

a. An officer of the civil service of the Union or of the State, not below the rank of a District Magistrate or a District Commissioner of a district.

b. A representative of a registered organization, and

c. A person with disability as defined in clause (t) of section 2 of the Persons with Disabilities Act 1995

d. The registered organization should mandatory be working in the disabilities sector and preferably in the four specific disability groups of the National Trust, it should be working within the same district

e. The challenged person should normally be residing in the same district


The scope of the Local level committees may include a range of activities starting with primary awareness creation, campaign on causes of disability, service needs and provisions, inclusive education, promotion of positive health, skill development, job training, rehabilitation services, marriage and social inclusion, rights awareness, family support, guardianship and any other issue/concern/activity/interest which helps to translate the objectives of the National Trust into action at the Local level with the permission of the National Trust.


The National Trust for Welfare of Persons with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Mentally Challenged and Multiple Disabilities Act 1999 is now a Law in India. It is a law that responds to one of the most important concerns of the parents and family members of people with disabilities in India, concerns of what kind of provisions are to be made for these persons during their lives and when parents are no longer there to look after them.

This law envisages the setting up of a trust, which will be managed by a Board of Trustees. This board will be the body that decides matters relating to the implementation of the law. The board will consist of :

a. One chairperson (this person will be an expert in the areas of cerebral palsy, mentally challenged and autism)

b. Nine members from association of parents

c. Three members from voluntary organizations

d. Three members from associations of persons with disability.

e. Eight persons not below the rank of joint secretary to the Govt. of India from various ministries

f. Three persons representing associations of trade, commerce and industry.

Under this act people are defined as:

Autism means condition of uneven skill development primarily, affecting the communication and social abilities of a person, marked by repetitive and ritualistic behaviour.

Cerebral Palsy means a group of a non-progressive conditions of a person characterised by abnormal motor control posture resulting from brain insult or injuries occurring in the prenatal, perinatal or infant period of development.

mentally challenged means a condition of arrested or incomplete development of mind of a person, which is specially charaterised by sub normality of intelligence.

Multiple Disability means a combination of two or more disabilities as defined in clause 1 of section 2 of the persons with disability Act 1995.

The different conditions that are included under clause 1 of section 2 are


Hearing Impaired

Mental Illness

Low vision

Locomotor disability

Leprosy cured

mentally challenged

Person with disability means a person suffering from not less than forty percent of any disability as certified by a medical authority.

The Act is for the benefit of:

Families of persons with disability

Persons with disability

It has a dual focus of enabling people with disability as well as their families

For persons with disabilities it aims

To enable and empower persons with disability to live as independently and as fully as possible within and as close to the community to which they belong.

To strengthen facilities to provide support to persons with disability to live within their own families.

To deal with problems of persons with disability who do not have family support.

To promote measures for the care and protection of persons with disability in the event of death of their parents or guardian.

Amongst persons with disabilities the trust will give preference to programs for

Persons with severe disabilities,(persons with 80% or more disability)

Women with disabilities

Senior citizen with disabilities (Above 65 years)

This is an extremely important decision since for the first time there is a formal recognition of the fact that these are people whose needs require special attention. Till recently the growth of services and attention in this field has been focussed on children.

For families it aims at

Facilities that would enable families during crisis periods.

Strengthening of families to enable them to include and care for their challenged family member.

Promoting measures for the care and protection of families.

Laying down the procedure for the appointment to guardians and trustees for persons who require this protection.

This is a provision, which addresses a very urgent need of parents of children with mental disabilities, as well as severe multiple disabilities. Till this law there was no provision for guardianship for people with disabilities after they had reached the age of 18, except in very special circumstances. The National Trust Act, for the first time gives this right to parents or relatives or registered organizations to ask for the appointment of a guardian for the person with disabilities

Rights of a Special Child

UNICEFputs down the rights of all children, which are accepted universally. According to the declaration

All children without any exception whatsoever shall be entitled to these rights without distinction or discrimination

Every child has the right-from birth-to a name and nationality

The right to adequate pre-natal and post-natal care

The right to adequate nutrition

The right to adequate housing

The right to adequate medical care

The right to special care for the child who is handicapped

The right to parental affection, love and understanding

The right to education

The right to learn to be a useful member of the society

The right to develop abilities

Right to be among the first to receive in times of disaster

Right to enjoy full opportunity for play & recreation

Further protection to the Handicapped through Acts in India

The persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act 1995, No.1 of 1996 chapter V, VI, VII & VIII expects appropriate governments & local authorities.

To take certain steps for the prevention of occurrence of disability.

To provide children with disability free education.

To make schemes and programmes for non-formal education.

Research for designing and developing new assistive devices, teaching aids.

To set up teachers training institution to develop trained manpower for schools for children with disabilities.

To prepare a comprehensive education scheme, providing for transport facilities, supply of books etc.

Educational institutions to provide amanuensis to students with visual handicap.

Regarding Employment

Identification of posts, which can be reserved for persons with disabilities.

To reserve posts through special employment exchange.

Gives power to inspect records or documents in possession of any establishment.

To allow vacancies not filed up, to be carried forward.

Employers to maintain records of challenged employees.

To encourage schemes which ensure employment of challenged such as training requirements, upper age limit etc.

All educational institutions to reserve the seats for disabled.

All poverty alleviation schemes will also reserve seats for disabled.

Will give incentives to employers who have five percent of the work force as disabled persons.

Will take Affirmative Action

To provide aids and appliances to persons with disabilities.

All will give preferential allotment of land.

To provide non-discrimination in

1. Transport

2. On the road

3. Environment

4. And government employment

Work towards Research & Manpower development through the appointment of Commissioner at Central and State level and appointment of committees

The Rehabilitation Council of India Act 1992 (No.34of 1992)

This Act provides for the constitution of Rehabilitation Council of India for regulating the training of rehabilitation professionals and the

maintenance of a Central Registry and for matters connected with or incidental thereto.

In other words, this Act ensures quality of personnel and through them the quality of services to the Disabled.