CHENNAI: As a step towards inclusivity and introducing 12 adaptive sports and games for Persons with Disabilities (PwDs), the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT Madras) held a one-of-kind sport carnival at the institute on Sunday.
Nearly 214 PwDs participated in the sports carnival titled ‘sports 4 all’.
Besides Tamil Nadu, participants from Maharashtra, Karnataka and New Delhi also took part. For the support of PwDs, about 255 caregivers, good Samaritans and 111 volunteers and students were part of the event.
This event by TTK Center for Rehabilitation Research and Device Development (R2D2) under IIT-M was held through the new ICMR - National Centre for Assistive Health Technology (NCAHT) in line with the International Day for Persons with Disabilities (IDPD), observed annually on 3rd December.
Addressing the participants at the event, V Kamakoti, Director, IIT Madras, said, “Inclusion is one of the fundamental agendas of the 2030 sustainable development goals. PwDs are excluded and left behind worldwide due to lack of accessibility to innovative solutions. Inclusive gross motor activities and sports, provide opportunities for PwDs to participate in fitness activities which will help improve physical and mental health.”
30-year-old Nethravathi from Bengaluru who participated in the event said, “This is the first time I am playing a sport with my condition. With hardly any sports opportunities in the community for PwDs, we seldom get the chance to indulge in this experience, until now.”
Likewise, G Poornachandran (32) from Ranipet said, “As a wheelchair basketball player myself, I feel this is a wonderful opportunity to be introduced to other sports. Especially, wheelchair racing and rifle shooting that are otherwise very expensive and you never get an opportunity to try”
The event was held with the objective of introducing sports and games along with innovative assistive devices for PwDs, spread awareness for sports and games in maintaining the health and well-being of PwDs, create a common platform for conducting sports for PwDs and lastly to achieve community participation through inclusive sports and game.