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ATMS REMAIN UNREACHABLE FOR DISABLED

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Trichy: After attending a slew of programmes in connection with International Day of Persons With Disabilities that annually falls on December 3, P Maarikannan was disappointed on finding a majority of ATMs in the city not having a ramp to access the automated machine. Pointing out that people with disabilities are forced to depend on others even for drawing money from their own bank accounts, differently-abled people have urged the district administration to ensure the presence of proper infrastructure such as ramps in the ATM centres.

A majority of the 61,061 differently-abled people identified by the district differently-abled welfare department here fall under locomotor disability category who have restrictions in moving their limbs. Since the Persons With Disabilities availing of welfare schemes have established shops in multiple parts of the city, they said that visiting ATMs to carry out transactions was mandatory for them at least twice a week. However, a majority of the ATM centres, be they of public or private sector banks, except for the ATM machines near main branches, do not have proper ramps for disabled people to get in.

“Visiting ATMs without the help of others has become an impossible task for us considering the lack of provision for differently-abled persons to access ATM rooms. However, we have been paying the same service charge and user fee like other customers,” B Abdul Salam, Trichy-based differently-abled welfare activist, said.

Though a very limited number of ATM centres attached to the main branches have ramps, people with disability said that even in these there were no supporting bars to climb the ramp. “We have already informed the nationalised banks through lead district bank manager to provide ramp facilities in ATM rooms,” R Ravichandran, district differently-abled welfare officer, told .

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