Several organisations in Kolkata have joined hands to make visits to Durga puja pandals more friendly for specially-abled people and senior citizens while maintaining COVID-19 protocols.
An NGO that has collaborated with the apex body of community Durga Pujas, a private hospital and the Rotary club in the city, announced an award for creating a conducive environment in a pandal for specially-abled and senior citizens.
The secretary of NIP, the NGO which has initiated it, informed that over 350 puja committees have enrolled their names to participate.
Partha Ghosh, working as an executive committee member of Forum for Durgotsab, which is the apex platform of around 600 community pujas, said that every member has been requested to comply with the COVID protocols as well as follow accessibility guidelines for free and easy movement of persons with disabilities and senior citizens.
Making Pandals Accessible For Specially-Abled People
For the contest, the jury team will include medical personnel, and they will visit the pandals.
"There will be a separate entrance and exit gates for the differently-abled people and a ramp to reach the pandal. Wheelchairs will also be available. Besides, a specially designed braille facility will be there for the visually impaired people to feel the interiors," said Arijit Moitra from Samajsebi Sangha which is taking part in the initiative, reported The New Indian Express.
He also informed that there will be oxygen cylinders, pulse oximeters and ambulance in the pandal, apart from a 24x7 help desk manned to treat any emergency.
The NIP secretary added that many puja committees follow the required guidelines now.