Dear India, We Need More Teachers & Interpreters for the Deaf

Love, a deaf Indian.

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Dear India,

I love you all!

I was born in Bombay. My parents used to be farmers in Gujarat. When my father moved to Bombay to start a business, he first worked under a chaiwallah (tea seller). He used to sleep on the footpath back then. Soon, he set up a stall of his own, where he would sell chapati and sabzi. Over the years, that stall grew into a chain of restaurants and my father became rich.

At first, my father did not want a daughter. Why? Because he witnessed that in India, daughters were treated badly. They were oppressed and shackled with restrictions. But when I was born, he fell in love. It was only two years later that he realised I was deaf. He panicked and cried. My parents were worried about my future.

My parents were uneducated, but they chose to enroll me in an English medium school for the deaf, instead of a Gujarati or Hindi medium one, because they wanted the world to find out about me.

That is why I am here. Thank you, mom and dad.

A few things I want to tell India: For starters, please don’t use plastic. There are a lot of us, and using plastic is going to irreversibly harm the environment.

Second, I want to highlight the state of deaf people in India. It saddens me that schools for the deaf and the hearing-impaired lack good teachers. It is very sad! The government should keep a close watch on the quality of teaching in these schools. The government should also spread awareness about deaf Indians. We may not be able to hear you, but there is nothing that we cannot do.

Third and most important, I want India to have interpreters and subtitles for all TV shows and movies. This helps us understand them better. The government must also provide interpreters in every village and city so as to help us independently communicate with doctors, courts, employers, and so on.

Thank you all for seeing me as the daughter of India!

Yours,
Sangeeta Gala

Dear India, We Need More Teachers & Interpreters for the Deaf
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