The State Government is committed to the further growth of National Institute of Speech and Hearing (NISH) and development of its infrastructure and facilities, said Minister for Cooperation, Tourism, and Devaswoms, Kadakampally Surendran on Wednesday.
The Minister was speaking during the inauguration of the valedictory function of the observance of the International Week of the Deaf at NISH campus, Akkulam, here.
“It’s highly appreciable that deaf students from other SAARC countries are turning up in large numbers to this institution and that NISH has taken new footsteps into different areas of disability including autism and cerebral palsy,” he noted.
The Minister also inaugurated NISH’s initiative on ISL Literacy Classes in which staff members from organisations as wide as Social Justice Department, Thiruvananthapuram Corporation, Pattom Girls School, Mar Baselios College and Alliance from Technopark took part.
Sign language classes will be conducted on September 27 (Thursday) for 40 officials from the Election Department in the Kerala Legislative Assembly Complex to be followed by more classes for specific groups.
While the United Nations declared September 23 as the International Day of Sign Languages in 2017, for the last 60 years the last week of September has been observed as the International Week of the Deaf by the World Federation of the Deaf.
Speaking on the occasion, Biju Prabhakar, Special Secretary (Social Justice, Government of Kerala), said that steps will be taken to set up off-campus centres in various parts of the State under the aegis of NISH. Biju Prabhakar also gave away prizes to the winners of the various competitions organized as part of the event.
Dr. KG Satheesh Kumar, Executive Director, NISH, said: “The Government of India constituted the Indian Sign Language Research and Training Centre (ISLRTC), which is responsible for standardizing the language and developing vocabulary. NISH has been contributing to a great extent in developing vocabulary in ISL in many areas.” Dr Satheesh Kumar said that NISH offers a Diploma course in Indian Sign Language Interpretation (DISLI).
NISH conducted a range of activities, literary competitions and classes in Indian Sign Language as part of the Deaf Week.
Sivadutt, Corporation Councillor; Romi Jose, Joint Secretary, All Kerala Association of the Deaf; and Raji Gopal, Coordinator, Degree Programme (Hearing Impaired), NISH were also present. Sandeep Krishnan, Indian Sign Language teacher, proposed a vote of thanks.
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