A quota for the disabled makes sense
As protests continue against the abolition of quotas in government recruitment for the third consecutive day in Shahbagh, causing much suffering to citizens of Dhaka, it has become imperative that the crisis be resolved as soon as possible.
The right to peaceful protest remains enshrined in any functioning democracy, and we commend the government for going down to the site and talking to the people to further gauge their demands.
While there may be debate and discourse with regards to each individual category of quotas, the quota for people suffering from disabilities is one that remains beyond criticism, and should, in fact, be reinstated.
Due to the stigma surrounding them, those who are physically and mentally handicapped remain some of the most marginalized in our society. The situation is further worsened by the fact that facilities for people with disabilities -- such as special needs schools and specific forms of treatment such as psychotherapy and physiotherapy -- remain either unavailable or too expensive.
While there should be an overall push from the government to ensure that both the private and public sectors work towards further improving the quality of life for the disabled, education remains a crucial stepping stone towards this goal, and a quota for the disabled makes sense in this context.
This sort of equity was, and continues to, play an important role in encouraging them, and ensuring that they contribute to our economy and our society in general.
However, if and when such a quota is reinstated, the authorities must also make sure that the quota is not taken advantage of, and that candidates are rigorously verified for authenticity.
We hope the government and the protestors resolve the issue post-haste in an amicable and constructive fashion.