Recognize Indian Sign Language (ISL) as the 23rd Official Language of India

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India has a population of about 18 million Deaf citizens. 18 million people who are being deprived of their basic fundamental rights which must be provided to them equally as mentioned in the Constitution of India. For India’s Deaf community, this is one step closer towards having their only method of real-time communication officially recognised by the Indian state.
A PIL has been filed by 31-year-old disability rights activist Nipun Malhotra, seeking the official recognition of Indian Sign Language (ISL), for hearing.The Deaf community has been fighting for official recognition of ISL for 30 years. Every year on World Disability Day, they hope sign language is recognised as an official language. When Parliament passed the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016, there was hope within the community that they would give sign language official recognition, but alas nothing of that sort has happened. They have even held protests for the same, but unfortunately, no one has listened.
This PIL seeks not just the recognition of ISL as India’s 23rd official language under the VIII Schedule of the Indian Constitution, but also stir public debate on the issue.

The Firefly Community along with the Drama Association of the Deaf and Ms. Teesta Setalvad and would like to humbly request the citizens to support us and sign the petition.