Taking the lead in facilitating educational material for the blind right from the elementary to secondary school stages, the Cuttack district administration is set to release the Odia language primer ‘Madhu Barnabodha’ in Braille soon.
The first-of-its-kind initiative to ease the visually impaired into Odia language education is in its advanced stage of production and will be launched on the occasion of Madhu Jayanti, the birthday of Utkal Gourav Madhusudan Das, on April 28.
The book of alphabets and words scripted by Bhaktakabi Madhusudan Rao is the basic text book in elementary education in Odia language. While it is being universally used by students in general schools, the visually impaired students have been deprived of it.
“The cut print of the important primer into Braille is being done at the Braille Press, Berhampur. It will be ready within the next fortnight and officially launched on April 28. The books would not only be distributed among the visually challenged students of the districts, but would also be sent to all the special schools in the State”, Collector Cuttack Girish SN said.
There are around 180 visually challenged students in the districts along with 52 special schools in the State. Two books each would be supplied to the special schools through the SSA, Cuttack. The administration, earlier, has also brought out Braille versions of the UN Declaration on Rights of Disabled in Odia along with the Public Service Delivery Act, which was released by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik last year.
The SSA, Cuttack, has also brought out a set of talking books covering 12 subjects from Classes V to VIII for aiding the visually challenged students. The text books have been meticulously converted into audio format using the DAISY format by a team of experts. The CDs of the talking books have been provided to the blind students of the district as well as special schools in other districts of the State.
“Work is in progress to complete conversion of the remaining 16 subject books into audio format. The talking books would be ready within two months”, Girish said.