Disability Rights Activist: Madhu Singhal

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Madhu Singhal

Ms. Madhu Singhal is the founder of Mitra Jyothi which is a Trust serving people with disabilities in general and those with vision impairment in particular. She established Mitra Jyothi in the year 1990 with the intention of helping other women with vision impairment with the life experiences gained in her own life as she is visually impaired since birth. What started as a small organization in Jeevan Bhima Nagar is now an
organization that has helped thousands of people with disabilities and continues to help thousands more. She has held various positions like Chairperson of Women’s Committee of Asian Blind Union, Joint Secretary of the Daisy Forum of India, General Secretary for National Federation of the Blind, Karnataka Branch, Member of World Blind Union to name a few. She has represented the visually challenged the world over at
Fifth General Assembly under World Blind Union at Melbourne, Australia in 2000, Employment Seminar for The Blind at Brunei, Darussalam in 2000, General Assembly of Asian Blind Union at Bangkok, Thailand in 1998, Young Adult Leadership Exchange Programme conducted by Mobility International, USA at Oregon, Eugene, USA in 1997, A Seminar on “Information of the visually impaired” organized by Hong Kong Society
for the blind, Hong Kong in 1996 to name a few. Her literary works include Compilation of a collection of short stories and articles to inspire change in people with disability – ‘Badlav’ and Compi lation, Editing and Publishing of the First Visually Impaired Persons Directory to help bring together all visually impaired persons into one forum in 1991. She has also completed a research study on Domestic Violence and Emotional Abuse
of Blind Women in 5 countries in 2010 through Asian Blind Union. She has done a training in trekking for the visually impaired from the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute, Darjeeling. Ms Madhu has received numerous awards like the IBN7 Bajaj Allianz Super Idols Award
in recognition of the extraordinary work in the field of education for persons with visual impairment in 2010.
To name a few, Zee Astitva Award by Zee Telefilms Ltd and Archana Trust Suburban in 2005, State Award by Directorate of Disabled Welfare and Senior Citizens in 2004, Shell Helen Keller award by National Center for Promotion of Employment for Disabled People (NCPEDP), at New Delhi in 2001, Lalchand Milapchand Dadha award in 2001 in Chennai by Mukti Foundation and the Neelam Khurshid Kang award by National Association for The Blind in 1996 at Mumbai. The most significant of them is the National Award for Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities
that she was honored twice (2008 as Best Individual and 2018 as Role Model) . She also received the honorary Degree of Doctor of Literature by Karnataka State Women’s University, Vijayapura, on 3rd March 2015 in recognition of her significant contributions for the welfare of persons with disabilities by designing various programs.
Ms Madhu Singhal has brought light and life to thousands of people through Mitra Jyothi in the past
29 years by quietly carrying her vision of assisting the visually impaired and the differently abled to lead independent, dignified lives through education, counseling and technology – throughout India.