Kendrapara, Jan.15 ( Odisha.in) Making chairs and sofas with plastic ropes regularly is a huge task, especially when you are a visually impaired person and on your job in competition with others in the similar
But, two blind youths , Alekha Chandra Jena (21) of village Indupur and Golakha Chandra Nayak (22) of village Pradhanpatikira of Kendrapada district eke out their livings by gutting plastic ropes in the chairs, sofas and other furnitures. They had just learnt the art of gutting the furnitures in the Vocational Training Center of Utkal Blind Persons' Association in Bhubenswar.
With their dexterous hands, both blind youths gut the furniture swiftly in the workshops.
Now a days both the blind youths remain the busiest rope-binders in Kendrapada town and its nearby areas as many persons prefer to provide works to them.
"Many carpenters and furniture makers of the district give them works. Both the blind youths walk with their white-sticks to reach the houses of persons who prefer them give rope- binding works in their houses. Both have done an amazing turn around with us by repairing and making furniture", said Ashok Sahoo a furniture shop owner of Kendrapada.
"When I provided rope-binding works to both blind youths, many persons complained before me not to give rope-binding works to visually impaired persons. But within a month, they prove themselves as the most sincere and good rope-binders.", added Sahoo.
"My work as a plastic rope binder is a dream come true. Since childhood I had a dream to eke out my livings by doing some works . At last I managed to fulfill my long cherished dream thanks to the confidence imposed upon on me by many customers and furniture –shop owners", said Alekha Chandra Jena.
"We could not believe it when we were told that our son Alekha got work as a rope-binder ", said Sankar Jena (56) the father of Alekha.
Both the blind persons have read up to class VII in Kendrapada Blind School. But, later they left their study and came to their villages.
" I had been running from pillar to post to get any odd job but my disability was an impediment for me to get any job. Only six months back, I got work as a rope-binder in a furniture shop in Kendrapada", said Golakha Chandra Nayak.
"I have two younger sisters. My father is a daily labourer for which it is difficult on his part to maintain us . I do not want to be a burden on my parents for which I decided to work as a rope-binder. I earns about two thousand monthly by doing rope-binding work. ", Alekha told Odisha.in.
"Ten years after enactment of the Disabilities Act, which promised three percent reservation (One percent to blind) in government jobs, the disabled are yet to taste the fruits of this landmark law. Though the act has far reaching provisions , not much has been done about its implementation , thus the solution to the problem lies in educating the blind about their rights", said Sanyasi Behera the secretary of state's blind persons association.
"The very fact that one had to wait almost fifty years after independence to get the Disabilities Act passed is clearly an indicator of the lack of concern in the society for disabled and further delay in implementation will serve as a death knell for us", added Behera.