National Institutes and Composite Regional Centers in India

Persons with blindness at the Training Centre for the Adult Blind at Dehradun play Tug-of-War, 1951

Source: National Institute of Visually Handicapped, Wikipedia

Military Orphan (Lower) School, Howrah, Calcutta, India, 1782 (Adopted Lucas System in 1840)

Military Orphan (Upper) School, Kidderpore, Calutta, India, 1790 (Adopted Lucas System in 1840)

National Institutes

Since 18th century several international organizations have been setup for people with blindness. Here we list a few notable ones in this page.

Such schools were being established in the same periods in India too. The Bengal Military Orphan Asylum, Calcutta, having blind orphans in its school, was founded in 1782. It adopted the Lucas reading system by 1840, although this system was overtaken by Moon's embossed type for blind readers in several Indian languages during the 1850s. These children seem to have been the first in South Asian history to be educated in a school with a formal system designed for their needs, with supplies largely provided by colonial authorities. The first special school for the blind in India was set up at Amritsar in 1887 - the Sharp Memorial School for the Blind, named after its founder, Annie Sharp. In subsequent decades, several special schools came up in different parts of the country, such as the Calcutta School for the Blind founded by Lal Bihari Shah in Calcutta in 1897, the American Marathi Mission School for the Blind in Mumbai in the year 1900, which came to be known as The Dadar School for the Blind. Here, blind children received education along with some elementary trades that later led them to some kind of vocational rehabilitation.


Further reading

Sharp Memorial School for the Blind (Founded in Amritsar, India in 1887)

Calcutta School for the Blind (Founded in Calcutta, India in 1897)

National Institute for the Empowerment of Persons with Visual Disabilities (NIEPVD)

NIEPVD (formerly National Institute for the Visually Handicapped or NIVH), is a premier Institute in the field of visual disability working under the administrative control of Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India. The Institute is committed to promote rights and dignity of persons with visual impairments. In order to achieve this laudable objective, the Institute produces trained manpower for providing quality education, vocational training and rehabilitation services to the visually impaired persons. It also undertakes research and developmental activities ensuring emergence of disability inclusive policies, programmes and practices. Its R&D activities have contributed a number of useful tools and enabling technologies for equal participation by the visually impaired persons in different walks of life. The Institute is largest producer and distributor of Braille literature and devices in the country including talking books.


National Programme for Control of Blindness & Visual Impairment (NPCBVI)

National Programme for Control of Blindness & Visual Impairment (NPCBVI) was launched in the year 1976 as a 100% Centrally Sponsored scheme with the goal to reduce the prevalence of blindness


  • To reduce the backlog of blindness through identification and treatment of blind at primary, secondary and tertiary levels based on assessment of the overall burden of visual impairment in the country.

  • Develop and strengthen the strategy of NPCBVI for “Eye Health” and prevention of visual impairment; through provision of comprehensive eye care services and quality service delivery.

  • Strengthening and upgradation of RIOs to become centre of excellence in various sub-specialties of ophthalmology

  • Strengthening the existing and developing additional human resources and infrastructure facilities for providing high quality comprehensive Eye Care in all Districts of the country;

  • To enhance community awareness on eye care and lay stress on preventive measures;

  • Increase and expand research for prevention of blindness and visual impairment

  • To secure participation of Voluntary Organizations/Private Practitioners in eye Care

Department of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of Haryana, India

The Social Justice & Empowerment Department is working independently since the bifurcation of Social Welfare Department in the year 1992. The Department is implementing a number of schemes for the care, protection and rehabilitation of socially under privileged. the Department is implementing a number of schemes for the welfare of senior citizens, orphan/destitute children, Widows & destitute women, mentally retarded children, the blind, deaf & dumb, kashmiri migrants, dwarfs & eunuchs minority communities 22 District Social Welfare Officers are monitoring schemes of the department at district level and 3 Government residential institutions functioning in various districts for the welfare and rehabilitation of persons with various physical disabilities such as visually impaired, speech and hearing impaired, orthopedically challenged

Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, Government of Uttar Pradesh, India

Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities Department was established on 20 September, 1995 by Government of Uttar Pradesh The department in-keeping with its goals has established a network of schools catering to different categories of disability and age-group/literacy levels , residential hostels for students , establishment and operation of Braille Press as well as establishment of Dr. Shakuntala Mishra National University for Rehabilitation has been done to provide educational assistance to students affected from various kinds of disabilities .

Department has implemented various welfare measures such as : shelter houses -cum-training centers for Persons With Disabilities ,Skill Development Centers along with provisions of grants ,pension, aids and auxiliary devices/assistive devices

Objectives of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) Department

  • Implementation of National Policy with respect to the PWDs.

  • To ensure social, educational and economic development of PWDs through various planned and non-planned schemes.

  • Implementation of policies and programs of the Government of India related to development of PWDs.

  • Coordination with National Institution working in the field of PWD-welfare.

  • Interdepartmental coordination for developmental work related to PWDs.

  • Reservation of PWDs in services and supervision of their employment status.

  • Arrangement of assistive devices for PWDs.

  • Special and vocational training for PWDs.

  • Important Training to NGOs/parents/ government officials and staff.

  • Aid and support to NGOs for PWD welfare related works.

  • To obtain aid from State and Central public sector enterprises and Private sector enterprises/organizations/Trusts.

  • Plans budget estimates and other administrative matters related to PWDs.

  • To explore new avenues in light of global policy and initiative/exchange-programmes/technical support etc.

Rehabilitation Council of India

The Rehabilitation Council of India(RCI).On September,1992 the RCI Act was enacted by Parliament and it became a Statutory Body on 22 June 1993.The Act was amended by Parliament. The mandate given to RCI is to regulate and monitor services given to persons with disability, to standardise syllabi and to maintain a Central Rehabilitation Register of all qualified professionals and personnel working in the field of Rehabilitation and Special Education. The Act also prescribes punitive action against unqualified persons delivering services to persons with disability.


  • To regulate the training policies and programmes in the field of rehabilitation of persons with disabilities

  • To bring about standardization of training courses for professionals dealing with persons with disabilities

  • To prescribe minimum standards of education and training of various categories of professionals/ personnel dealing with people with disabilities

  • To regulate these standards in all training institutions uniformly throughout the country

  • To recognize institutions/ organizations/ universities running master's degree/ bachelor's degree/ P.G.Diploma/ Diploma/ Certificate courses in the field of rehabilitation of persons with disabilities

  • To recognize degree/diploma/certificate awarded by foreign universities/ institutions on reciprocal basis

  • To promote research in Rehabilitation and Special Education

  • To maintain Central Rehabilitation Register for registration of professionals/ personnel

  • To collect information on a regular basis on education and training in the field of rehabilitation of people with disabilities from institutions in India and abroad

  • To encourage continuing education in the field of rehabilitation and special education by way of collaboration with organizations working in the field of disability.

  • To recognize Vocational Rehabilitation Centres as manpower development centres

  • To register vocational instructors and other personnel working in the Vocational Rehabilitation Centres

  • To recognize the national institutes and apex institutions on disability as manpower development centres

  • To register personnel working in national institutes and apex institutions on disability under the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment

Regional Centers

Composite Regional Centre

Regional Centre Chennai

522, Trunk Road, Poonamallee,

Chennai - 600 056.


NIEPVD Regional Centre, Chennai

National Institute for the Empowerment of Persons with Visual Disabilities (Divyangjan), Regional Centre, Chennai came into existence on October 9, 1988 by the then Union Minister for Welfare, Government of India. This Regional Centre, Chennai, serves as an extended arm of the National Institute for the Empowerment of Persons with Visual Disabilities (Divyangjan), Dehradun, Uttarakhand, an apex body, governed by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India, devoted to the welfare of the visually impaired throughout the country.

The National Institute for the Empowerment of Persons with Visual Disabilities (Divyangjan), Regional Centre, Chennai, has been established with a goal to function as an institution to work for the benefit of the visually impaired, their family members and professionals working with them in the Southern States including the Union Territory of Puducherry. This Centre seeks to open up new vistas of opportunities for the visually impaired adults, including men and women, literate and illiterate, by conducting innovative training programmes and also to facilitate empowerment of the visually impaired through employment and other rehabilitation services.

Activities: Vocational Training, Regional Braille Press, Research and Development, Orientation of Personnel through Short Term Training Programmes, Placement, Library Science, Composite Rehabilitation, Camps, Equipment Bank, Broadcast of reading Material, Modern Resource Centre For Disabled.

Mohaan Road, Near Mohaan Road Police Chowki, Lucknow ,UP-226017
For P&O and ADIP Scheme related query

CRC, Lucknow (UP)

The Composite Regional Center (CRC).The center has been providing comprehensive rehabilitation services like Behavior therapy,Cognitive Behavior Therapy for various psychiatric Disorders and assessment of IQ ,ADHD,Autism etc.Occupational therapy, Physiotherapy, Speech therapy, and Special Education for Mentally Retarded, Visually Impaired, and Hearing Impaired, besides providing Prosthesis & Orthosis ,Mobility Aids and Hearing Aids, Vocational Guidance & Counseling, to persons with disabilities in and around the city. The institute also conducts out-reach Camp services to the persons with Disabilities population of Uttar Pradesh state and organizes skill training programs.


Physiotherapy,Occupational therapy,Speech & hearing assessment & intervention,Clinical psychology,Special education,Orientation & mobility training,Prosthetic & orthotics,Medical consultation for general persons persons with disabilities,Vocational training for person with disabilities

CRC, Sunder Nagar
Near Maha Maya Temple, Sunder Nagar, Mandi, Himachal Pradesh 174401
+91 1907-267638/267338+91-9816269638/ incharge@crcsnr.org

CRC, Sunder Nagar (Haryana)

The Composite Regional Centre, Sunder Nagar is an extension of the National Institute for the Empowerment of Persons with Visual Disabilities (NIEPVD ). The primary objective of CRC is to create the requisite infrastructure for training, manpower development, research and to provide services to persons with disabilities. CRC functions as the outreach centre of the National Institute for the Empowerment of Persons with Visual Disabilities and facilitates the process of capacity building at local levels, in the region.


  • To serve as the Composite Regional Centre for rehabilitation and special education of persons with disabilities.

  • To establish linkages with existing medical, educational, and employment services following the principles of community-based rehabilitation, and offer extension services in the rural areas.

  • To stimulate growth of services by encouraging and supporting voluntary organizations, parent groups and self- help groups.

  • To undertake human resource development by training rehabilitation professionals, village level workers, multi-rehabilitation workers and other functionaries in the government and non-government sector required for providing services to persons with disabilities.

  • To develop strategies for delivery of rehabilitation services suitable to the socio-cultural background of the region.

  • To undertake research and development with specific reference to the needs of diverse groups of people with disability, keeping in view the nature and severity of disability in the region.

  • To undertake public education programme for the creation of awareness among parents and the community.

  • To undertake designing, fabrication & fitment of aids and appliances.

  • To undertake services of education and skill development, leading to enhancement of opportunities for employment, rehabilitation, mobility, communication, recreation and integration in society.

CRC, Ahmedabad (Gujarat)

Divyangsathi is a platform to provide the 360 degree solutions for Divyangjan. Er. Pankaj Maru who is founder of SNEH Nagda (MP), center for Learning & Empowerment of PwIDs, has taken this initiative