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Can’t disability be verified online, Kerala high court asks Centre (Law & Justice) dtd 8.10.2021

KOCHI: The high court has asked the Union government to inform whether disability of a Malayali who suffered injuries in a vehicle accident while in the US can be ascertained online through the diplomatic mission abroad so as to issue a disability certificate in India.

Justice Devan Ramachandran sought the views from the department of empowerment of persons with disabilities under the Union social justice ministry after considering a petition by the father of a 34-year-old software engineer through advocate Santhosh Mathew.
The petitioner’s son had met with an accident in Michigan in December 2016, resulting in severe physiological and neurological disabilities. He needs the assistance of a guardian for day-to-day activities.
As there has not been any significant change in his son’s medical condition, the petitioner wishes to bring him home.

In order to do so, the petitioner and his wife had to establish before a US court that they were the guardians. However, a Unique Disability ID or ‘PWD Aadhaar Card’ is required for the purpose and the application for it has been declined by the concerned department citing inability to verify the disability of the petitioner’s son, the court was told.
In the order, Justice Devan said, “Prima facie, I am of the view that on account of the advent of technology, the patient’s condition and medical history can be discovered by the competent authority without insisting on his physical presence taking advantage of the innovations and progress in the field of Information Technology.”