Special Facilities At IIT B Ensures PWD Student Ashraf's Style Is Not Cramped

Special Facilities At IIT B Ensures PWD Student Ashraf's Style Is Not Cramped

My hostel in IIT Bombay has far more facilities than what I had at home! I am very happy and comfortable to be on my own here. My hostel manager takes care of all of my requirements."

Pushpita ChatterjeeUpdated: Wednesday, August 09, 2023, 02:37 PM IST
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(L-R) Sabuddin Joya, Ashraf, Zareena and Daulat Bano at IIT B hostel 17. | Official

Mumbai: Losing both his lower limbs did not stop 22-year-old Nagpur resident Ashraf Joya from marching successfully into IIT Bombay with a proud score of AIR 214 in IIT-JAM after his graduation in BSc.

A near fatal accident six years ago in Nagpur, multiple surgeries and setbacks followed by a rehab of nearly a year, cut short his dreams of pursuing engineering.

His IIT-JAM score enabled him to bag a seat in the Person With Disability (PWD) quota at the Masters program of IIT Bombay this year.

Ashraf had never stepped out of his home alone, let alone lived alone until now. “My hostel in IIT Bombay has far more facilities than what I had at home! I am very happy and comfortable to be on my own here. My hostel manager takes care of all of my requirements."

Modified amenities

Hostel 17 at IIT Bombay, has PWD rooms right opposite the elevators along with separate washrooms within a few feet. Other inmates steer clear of the PWD washrooms which are kept dry at all times to ensure safety of specially abled students. The washrooms are also designed specifically for such students with handles at multiple places, washbasin at a reasonable height and more space to maneuver.

The dining halls are also easily accessible, the hostel in-charge Nitin Pege explained and added, “The students only have to come and sit at their designated area and specify their choice of food and quantity, the mess staff will serve food accordingly and also clear their plates after their meals.”

Sister's concern

Having ferried her brother to all his classes back home, Ashraf’s elder sister, Zareena was now reluctant to let him live all by himself in a hostel. She said, “We were pleasantly surprised at all the amenities IIT Bombay has to accommodate special students like my brother. I visited all the areas of the college that my brother is likely to go to and found them PWD friendly.”

“The happiness of my brother scoring such good marks has taken a back seat to him living an independent life now,” she added with tears in her eyes.

The PWD cell at IIT Bombay ensured the campus hospital is just a call away. An electric wheelchair has been provided to Ashraf to commute to the academic block where his classes and laboratory practicals will be conducted. The height of his mess chair was reduced by 2 inches so that his prosthetic legs could reach the ground and not cause him pain or make him lose his balance while getting up.

Parents happy with PWD-friendly facilities

The hostel authorities told Ashraf that IIT has special funds allocated to cater to the requirements of special students. Ashraf’s parents, reserved in nature, were reluctant to let their son move into IIT Bombay all by himself; but Zareena convinced them he was safe.

They said, “He has always been a brilliant student and it was his dream to come to IIT Bombay, much like every other child. We didn't want our child’s dream to go unrealised, and we supported him with all our might. It helps that this college is accommodating him with his special needs.”

The academic block has two entrances, one with an easy ramp access to all floors along with elevators. The institute has assured that the only ramp without side handle bars near the physics lab will be installed before Ashraf''s classes begin.

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