United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act 2006

United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act 2006

The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act or the RPWD Act, 2016 was introduced in December, 2016. The Act was enacted by the Parliament in the year 2016. It was the replacement of the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995 to comply with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) is an

international human rights treaty to support the rights and dignity of persons with disability(PWD). It was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in December 2006 and came into force in May 2008 at the headquarters of the United Nations, New York. Currently, the convention has received ratifications from 177 states.

The main aim of RPWD Act 2016 is to promote and defend the rights and dignity of individuals with disabilities in all areas of life, including education, social, legal, economic, cultural, and political factors. The government must look after that persons with disabilities have the same right to equality, dignity, and respect for their integrity as others.

UNCRPD and India

India ratified the UNCRPD in October 2007. The Parliament of India established the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 for fulfilling the obligations under the UNCRPD. 

Principles of United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act

The principles of UNCRPD are the following: 

1). To make education accessible and more inclusive for people with disability. 

2). To enable persons with disability in living a dignified and respectful life. 

3). To end all sort of discrimination faced by disabled people. 

4). It works on protecting the rights and dignity of people with disability. 

5). To give persons with disability equal rights and opportunities in every field.  

6). To allow persons with disability for full and active participate in the society. 

7). UNCRPD is a legally binding international document by the United Nations. 

8). To accept people with disability as a part of human diversity and humanity. 

9). To respect the right of persons with disabilities to preserve their identities. 

10). To enable people with a disability in living freely and independently. 

Rights of Persons with Disabilities 

The rights of persons with disabilities in the constitution are: 

• Equality before the law without discrimination (Article 5)

• Right to life, liberty and security of the person (Articles 10 & 14)

• Equal recognition before the law and legal capacity (Article 12)

• Freedom from torture (Article 15)

• Freedom from exploitation, violence and abuse (Article 16)

• Right to respect physical and mental integrity (Article 17)

• Freedom of movement and nationality (Article 18)

• Right to live in the community (Article 19)

• Freedom of expression and opinion (Article 21)

• Respect for privacy (Article 22)

• Respect for home and the family (Article 23)

• Right to education (Article 24)

• Right to health (Article 25)

• Right to work (Article 27)

• Right to adequate standard of living (Article 28)

• Right to participate in political and public life (Article 29)

• Right to participation in cultural life (Article 30)


Hence, the persons with disabilities have equal rights and social justice as any other people for them to live a dignified life. They should be provided with equal opportunities and have full participation in the society. Most importantly the persons with disability should be allowed to access all public places such as buildings, schools, transports, toilets, etc.

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