Pakistan introduces award with focus on Apps for disabled people

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ISLAMABAD (APP) – The 2016 edition of Pakistan Mobile App Awards has been launched with focus on development of ready-to-use mobile applications addressing needs of Persons with Disabilities (PWDs).

The theme for this year awards is “Embracing Mobile Accessibility for Persons with Disabilities in Pakistan.” Experts on Friday said around 10 % of Pakistan’s population face some form of disability.

In his comments, Chairman Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), Dr. Syed Ismail Shah hoped there would be support for this cause from all across Pakistan as work on accessibility does not stop with mobile applications.

There is so much more that can be done in this field and it all begins with an understanding of needs of Persons with disabilities, he said.

Regarding details of the Awards, Muhammad Shabbir from ICT Accessibility Group said Mobile App Awards would allow to harness power of technology to promote inclusion and accessibility in order to help realize full and equal participation of persons with disabilities in the society.

Director General Human Rights, Ministry of Law and Justice,Hassan Mangi remarked all UN conventions talk about Human Rights but there is no national body in Pakistan that takes into consideration matters revolving around people with disabilities. This initiative is, therefore, timely and crucial.
Member IT, Ministry of Information Technology, Syed Raza Shah emphasized to include matter in upcoming IT policy on instruction of Minister while appreciating support provided by ICT Accessibility Group.

He said efforts were already underway to make Ministry’s website more accessible and inclusive.
Director, Special Talent Exchange Programme (STEP), Muhammad Atif said ICT is the most important ingredient in making a society accessible in all fields of life.

Pakistan is one of the leading countries working in area of ICT accessibility and “We hope this initiative will act as a benchmark for further projects in the country.

Asia-Pacific Bureau Director, Rajnesh Singh appreciated the support provided by local organizations to ISOC in Pakistan. On the 2016 Mobile Awards, he said the support and interest from various stakeholders make these awards unique in nature and probably first of their kind in region.

Recently, there is a lot of energy being diverted towards ICT Accessibility in Pakistan but to ensure success, we have to make sure that this work continues and brings results.

PTA together with Internet Society (ISOC) Bureau, Telenor Pakistan, National ICT R&D Fund, Ministry of Information Technology, Special Talent Exchange Programme, Pakistan Foundation Fighting Blindness, Pakistan Blind Cricket Council and Pakistan Youth Foundation of Deaf and Hard of Hearing has launched the 2016 edition of Pakistan Mobile App Awards.

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