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Accessibility Status of Central Government Universities in India

We always believe that any learning should come from education and educational institutions. In India, if not more, at least we are talking about digital accessibility since 2008 (I’m saying it as that is the year when Government of India has published Guidelines for Indian Government Websites). There are about 46 universities run by Central Government of India. We have conducted a quick accessibility audit of websites of all these central universities with two parameters in mind:

  • Total number of accessibility violations
  • Number of color contrast issues

We have not conducted a full audit of each home page; but have done a quick audit using automated testing tool aXe by Deque Systems Inc.

There is only “Hemvati Nandan Bahuguna Garhwal University meets the closest requirement of WCAG 2.0 AA compliance.

There found one website that has 300 WCAG 2.0 violations just on the home page. Below is a quick snapshot of how these websites are doing from WCAG 2.0 prospective.

There found one website that hos more than 200 color contrast issues. Below is a snapshot of how these portals are doing from color contrast prospective. Many sites have more color contrast issues than other violations; this clearly indicates importance of why accessibility needs to be considered at the design stage itself.

Below table shows list of WCAG 2.0 violations and number of color contrast issues against each website.

University Name No. of WCAG 2.0 issues Color Contrast issues
Rajiv Gandhi University, Arunachal Pradesh 103 84
Assam University, Assam 33 15
Tezpur University, Assam 16 0
Central University of South Bihar 16 3
Mahatma Gandhi Central University, Bihar 34 1
Nalanda University, Bihar 9 4
Guru Ghasidas University 300 1
Indira Gandhi National Open University 29 17
Jamia Milia Islamia 128 56
Jawaharlal Nehru University 28 2
South Asian University, Delhi 9 4
University of Delhi 8 7
Central University of Gujarat 127 6
Central University of Haryana 21 6
Central University of Himachal Pradesh 36 9
Central University of Jammu 229 218
Central University of Kashmir 128 17
Central University of Jharkhand 49 0
Central University of Karnataka 28 25
Central University of Kerala 24 14
Dr. Hari Singh Gaur University 93 6
Indira Gandhi National Tribal University 124 17
Mahatma Gandhi Antarrashtriya Hindi VishwaVidyalaya,Wardha 83 2
Central Agricultural University 19 15
Manipur University 13 0
North Eastern Hill University 27 10
Mizoram University 12 2
Nagaland University 18 0
Central University of Orissa 57 12
Pondicherry University 18 6
Central University of Punjab 83 14
Central University of Rajasthan 26 0
Sikkim University 31 4
Central University of Tamil Nadu 41 7
Indian Maritime University 27 0
English and Foreign Languages University 54 2
Maulana Azad National Urdu University 35 0
Univeristy of Hyderabad 20 10
Tripura University 40 19
Aligarh Muslim University 43 7
University of Allahabad 21 9
Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University 48 11
Banaras Hindu University 66 5
The Rani Lakshmi Bai Central Agricultural University 51 3
HEMVATI NANDAN BAHUGUNA GARHWAL UNIVERSITY 1 0

If we can get these institutions educated on accessibility and make these websites accessible would lead journey of inclusion to a long way. Let’s spread the word!

Overview – The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act 2016

During the winter session of Rajya Sabha and Loksabha (houses in Indian parliament) has passed long pending Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill and named it as The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act 2016 [PDF].

This Act of the parliament received assent of the President on The 27th December, 2016.

This is an Act to give effect to United Nations Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities [PDF] which was adopted by the United Nations on 13th December, 2006. India happened to be one of the first signatories of this convention but not signed the optional protocol. India has ratified the convention on 1st October, 2007.

The UN Convention has laid down the following principles:

  • Respect for inherent dignity
  • Non-discrimination
  • Full and effective participation in the society
  • Respect for difference and acceptance of persons with disabilities as part of diversity and humanity
  • Equality of opportunity
  • Accessibility
  • Equality between men and women
  • Respect for evolving capacities for children with disabilities

Through series of posts, I’ll be writing my interpretation of this Act and my personal opinions how this would benefit people with disabilities and at some instances, I’ll also be discussing the areas of improvements.

Stay tuned!

Twitter Campaign to support #PasstheRPDBill

Thanks to NCPEDP and Mr. Javed Abidi for putting this together. It’s important that The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill gets passed soon to make lives of people with disabilities more independent and make India more inclusive. Here are the details:

Please join the Twitter Campaign on Monday, 12th December from 3 to 6 pm
for the passage of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill (RPWD Bill)

Here’s what you need to do –

1. Get online on Twitter on Monday, 12th December from 3 to 6 pm. The idea is to tweet about the Bill widely and make #PassRPWDBill trend. Whenever anything trends on Twitter, the media automatically picks it up.

2. A few tweets have been created already (given below). Use these or create your own. Keep the message short but don’t forget to use #PassRPWDBill in your messaging.

3. Tweet to all the MPs (list is attached). Do not limit yourself it to your State. The message should go out to everyone. Example:

Just 60 seconds to change the lives of 10 crore people. Pass the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill @Siva_Chiranjivi #PassRPWDBill (This same message can be done for all the MPs)

Other tweets:

70 million lives could change with the passage of the disability bill #PassRPWDBill

60 second of #RajyaSabha to change the destiny of 70 million persons with #disability #PassRPWDBill

Appeal to #RajyaSabha. Spare a few minutes to #passRPWDBill

Appeal to #Parliament Don’t leave the disabled behind. Please #passRPWDBill to give them their rights

Call to all national parties of India to help #PassRPWDBill in #RajyaSabha – it will change the lives of millions

Rights of disabled citizen can’t be ignored by Parliament. #RajyaSabha please #PassRPWDbill

The new law will help millions of disabled to get more employment and education opportunities #PassRPWDBill

The new law will give better rights and accessible environment to #disabled citizens. #PassRPWDBill

New disability law will finally recognize #Autism #PassRPWDBill

Accessibility status of state government websites in India

Today, it’s heartening to see there is so much momentum going on to make India inclusive, I thought, it’s important that websites of all state governments are accessible. As I am a believer that inclusion happens when there is awareness created among the stakeholders. So I have done a quick accessibility test using aXe extension for Mozilla Firefox. This test was run only on Home pages of each state government website and below are the results both in the form of a chart and a table. Data is made available in the form of table as well to make sure that results are available in case chart is not accessible to assistive technologies.

Gujarat Government’s website is found hosted on .com domain instead of .gov.in and reason is unknown.

Results as a Chart

Results as a Table

State Accessibility Failures
Andhra Pradesh 41
Arunachal Pradesh 59
Assam 27
Bihar 2
Chattisgarh 1
Goa 37
Gujarat 23
Haryana 131
Himachal Pradesh 19
Jammu and Kashmir 27
Jharkhand 24
Karnataka 2
Kerala 26
Madhya Pradesh 8
Maharastra 6
Manipur 44
Meghalaya 1
Mizoram 14
Nagaland 43
Odisha 76
Punjab 35
Rajasthan 52
Sikkim 23
Tamil Nadu 7
Telangana 79
Tripura 23
Uttar Pradesh 37
Uttarakhand 12
West Bengal Unavailable

Website of West Bengal state did not get loaded.

Future posts may talk about frequently seen issues across these websites.

Accessibility Review: Jobs for People with Disabilities portal by Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India

Noticed that Department of Disability Affairs, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India has launched Job Portal for people with disabilities; which would aim to become a great portal for job seekers with disabilities, employers and training institutes. This is certainly a great initiative although I personally prefer to embed people with disabilities with mainstream job portal but this initiative certainly helps.

As an accessibility enthusiast, I wanted to look up the portal from accessibility prospective and below are my findings. Though I’m disturbed to see claim that this website is complied with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA; while it’s actually not. That said, I hope department will work with their developers and get the issues fixed.

Disclaimer:

  1. This post is not to criticize the Government but to help ministry and developer know the problem and help them fix issues thus to make portal fully accessible.
  2. This is not a complete accessibility report; this review can be used only as a reference
  3. If visitors of this website notice any other issues related to accessibility or usability may please add them in the comments section or write directly to the ministry

Accessibility Assessment Findigns

  1. Page title is inappropriate. Home page has “Index” as page title
  2. Buttons provided for “small text, medium text and large text” does not convey it’s purpose
  3. Color scheme buttons does not have accessibel name; also visual indication is not clear to identify expected color scheme.
  4. When navigating through color schemes, screen reader reads for one tab stop as “www.disabilityjobs.gov.in “> and next next tab stop says “button link”
  5. Login button does not have an accessible name
  6. Login button does not have visible focus indicator
  7. Placeholder text is provided as labels for “Enter email ID to register” and “Type password”; it’s not recommended to use placeholder as label for form elements.
  8. Full “I agree to the terms and conditions” needs to be associated with check box.
  9. Check box “I agree to the terms and conditions” does not have visible focus indicator.
  10. Register button does not have accessible name
  11. Register button does not have visible focus indicator
  12. All form fields in Search jobs widget have placeholder as form labels and thus label goes away when user inserts data.
  13. Search button does not have accessible name
  14. Deprecated mark-up of marque is used for “No Payment to be made by applicant to any agency or employee.If someone ask for registration fee or any other cost please immediately bring to NHFDC notice”
  15. Tab panel for Search jobs, Recruiter and Training institutes is not operable using keyboard
  16. Location field (in all tabs) brings up a list of locations with checkboxes but not notified to screen reader and operable only after using a tab key from location field; futher there is no mechanism to dismiss this list before navigating through all location options. Notice Andaman and Nicobar has given as two seperate states!
  17. Image link “Accessible India Campaign” (located between Create a job account and Join our employer” is not accessible using keyboard.
  18. There is a button available to show / hide social media links (Facebook and Twitter) and same does not have an accessible name.
  19. Photo gallery is not accessible using keyboard
  20. There is no mechanism to pause / stop news scrolling.

For any further questions or clarifications of this post, please write to me at srinivasu.c(at)sgaccessibility(dot)com