Disabled People’s International (DPI), a network of disability rights organisations, will now include people with leprosy in their disability rights movement to ensure better protection of their rights and their integration in the mainstream.Leper colonies are a blot on India. We have to get rid of the social stigma and exclusion faced by these people. We don’t want them to suffer silently without any social protection.
Leprosy needs to be tackled like other disabilities and not neglected,” said Javed Abidi, Global Chair of Disabled People’s International. Even though India has achieved its goal of eliminating leprosy in 2005 (0.95/10,000 population), it still records one of the highest occurrences of leprosy, constituting more than 50 per cent of people affected by the chronic infection round the globe.