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What is the Meaning of Benchmark Disability?

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Samyak Lalit
Samyak Lalit | August 2, 2018 (Last update: November 12, 2021)

Samyak Lalit is an author and disability rights activist. He is a polio survivor and the founder of projects like Kavita Kosh, Gadya Kosh, TechWelkin, WeCapable, Dashamlav and Viklangta Dot Com. Website: www.lalitkumar.in

Government of India uses the term benchmark disability quite often in the official communications regarding persons with disabilities. Often you come across question like “are you a person with benchmark disability?”. For example, in the Rights of Persons with disabilities Act 2016 (RPWD Act 2016), this term is used at many places. Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) also uses it often in their job vacancy ads where certain seats are reserved for the disabled people. Then you also find mention of this term in context of examinations like UPSC, Bank Services, NET Exams etc.

But most people do not understand what exactly is this benchmark disability. Well, here is the answer!

Benchmark disability refers to having at least 40% disability of any type recognized under the RPWD Act 2016. The new Act recognizes 21 types of disabilities.

So, to be in the category of having benchmark disability, a person has to have at least 40% disability as mentioned on her disability certificate or UDID Card.

This leaves out a lot of people who have a disability condition but the percentage is not 40% or above. We know that the disability percentage is not an absolute figure. Different hospitals, medical boards and doctors will give different percentages to the same person! So, it depends quite a bit on the personal judgement of the certifying authority.

And then there is corruption. I have known cases where people say that doctors ask for money to give certificate with higher percentage of disability.

There is, of course, the other side of the coin too. Some people tend to play tricks and get disability certificate even for a minuscule problem. They just want to grab the rights and facilities provided to the disabled people by the government.

Nevertheless, this benchmarking of disability at 40% has both pros and cons to it. I hope that this information was useful for you. Please feel free to ask any questions on this subject, if you have any. Thank you for connecting with WeCapable!

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14 responses to “What is the Meaning of Benchmark Disability?”

  1. Avatar Sourav Sachin says:

    I have a locomotor temporary disability of 40%. Can I get age relaxation on the basis of this disability certificate.

  2. Avatar Mr S Gupta says:

    In sec 2(r) of the RPWD Act 2016 it has been stated that ” person with benchmark disability”means a person with not less than forty percent of a disability where specified disability has not been defined in measurable terms and includes a person with disability where specified disability has been defined in measurable trerms, as certified by the certifying authority. The confusion arises with the words “where specified disability has not been defined in measurable terms”,because the very words ‘forty percent’ indicate a measurement, and if so, then can it be concluded that eye estimation or apparent appearence is depended upon to calculate ‘forty percent’?Then why not the words “apparently disabled” can be used?

  3. Avatar raj says:

    hii, how is the percentage calculated. any guidelines for that or just doctor dependent.

  4. Avatar Renu says:

    I am visually Impaired having reading problem and a govt employee in Rajasthan. Can I get any relaxation or grant under the act?

  5. Avatar PREMANAND says:

    MY WIFE IS A PHYSICALLY HANDICAPPED AND SHE HAS THE CERTIFICATE OF 50% MODERATE. SHE IS A GOVT SERVANT AND SHE IS BEING TRANSFERRED TO FAR AWAY PLACES (HILLY AREAS). THE GOVT HAS PASSED TRANSFER NORMS THAT ONLY 60% MODERATE OR MORE THAN 60% MODERATE PH PEOPLE WILL BE PROTECTED AT THEIR HOMESTATION. THIS IS A CRUEL AND INJUSTICE ACT . ISN”T THERE A SOLUTION TO SOLVE THIS ISSUE….?

  6. Avatar Ankush tomar says:

    Is colour blindness is also in this list?

  7. Avatar XYZ says:

    What are the disadvantages of bench-marking the disability at 40% or 35% as mentioned at the end of this article?

    • Lalit Kumar Lalit Kumar says:

      Disadvantage is that any bench-marking will tend to leave out some of the eligible people. Sometimes, it may so happen that a disabling condition causes huge impact on person’s life. Buut that condition may not fulfill the criteria of benchmark disability. Consequently, the person will not be able to take benefits from the government.

  8. Avatar Gopabandhu Biswal says:

    Who are authorised to certify persons with Specific learning disabilities, Speech & language disability?

  9. Avatar Dharmendra Singh says:

    My Treatment of mind is going on last 6 years, doctor told me that I’ve Mental disease PHYCOSIS, Can we should apply for mental illness disability certificate .

  10. Avatar Aashaq Hussain says:

    I have had surgery in my right foot. Since childhood my foot was not in normal shape. My foot fingers were bent backward. It was completely reversed condition. Then I got surgery and now it looks somewhat normal, but problem still exists. I can’t lift weight, can’t walk more than one hour etc. etc.

  11. Avatar R.Mondal says:

    I have a disability certificate with 40%. My Nature of Disability – Task specific dystonia, muscular weakness. Will I be considered in benchmark disability?

  12. Avatar Sukumaran M says:

    Please clarify whether UDID card is issued to all persons with disabilities or only to persons with benchmark disabilities

  13. Avatar S Kumar says:

    I am an ESM and have 75% disability, decision made by Armed forces tribunal on my medical board conducted by IAF.
    Diseases are hypertension 30%
    Dyslipidimea 5%
    NASH. 30%
    Consolidated by AFT Court 75%

    So what relaxation I can get in govt job with my 75% disability.

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