Public Transport in Mumbai: Challenges Faced by the Disabled Community

Ava Gilder
Symbiosis School for Liberal Arts


People with Disabilities (PwDs) are an extremely marginalised community in India. Although they have access to concessions and reservations for travel amongst other things, physica accessibility is still lacking. Scholarship concerning disability (and accessibility) in India is limited, and general awareness regarding PwDs and disabilities is lacking. Therefore, it is difficult to take the necessary steps that will provide PwDs with a better standard of living and quality of life. The objective of this study is to understand how people with cerebral palsy use public transport for their daily travels in Mumbai. It employs in-depth interviews and the interviewees are people with cerebral palsy or their care-givers. The study provides recommendations for provisions to improve social and physical accessibility for PwDs, which can lead to more inclusion.


Adjusting to life with a disability, especially if that disability has been a part of someone since birth, becomes exponentially harder in a world that does not accommodate different needs of individuals. The potential risks that a person with a disability faces each day can seem insurmountable. Even simple tasks, like wearing a shirt, can be challenging. In an ideal world, adaptability would be easy, because the external, physical environment would accommodate such needs.  

This paper aims to understand how people with cerebral palsy use public transport for their daily travels in Mumbai. According to the 2011 census (Ministry of Home Affairs, 2011), people with disabilities account for 2.21% of the Indian population which amounts to 2.68 crore people. Of these, 31%, i.e. 0.81 crore people, live in urban areas- a large number, even considering India’s total population of 121 crore. Ignoring the needs of this group of people is unethical on the part of the government, whose job it is to protect and provide for each citizen in the country. Instead, people with disabilities are ostracised in the society and are looked down as second-class citizens. Though certain steps have been taken to help PwDs have a better standard of living, accessibility is a large factor that prevents them from living productive lives. They should be able to travel and do basic things independently without depending on anyone else for support.

Cerebral palsy (CP) is a common neurodevelopmental condition that occurs at the prenatal, natal, and postnatal stages, due to injury to the developing brain (Indian Institute of Cerebral Palsy, 2020). Difficulties include movement and walking, learning disabilities, speech difficulties, epilepsy, joint problems and spinal deformities. It is a disability that has been highly stigmatised and consistently been ignored in India. There are 4 four different types of CP, each characterised by muscle tone- hypotonia, i.e. low muscle tone, causing a loss of strength and firmness, and hypertonia, i.e. high muscle tone, causing rigidity and spasmodic movement. The four types of CP are- spastic, athetoid, ataxic, and mixed (Sankar & Mundkur, 2005). 

Two guiding principles of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) are ‘equality of opportunity’ and ‘accessibility’. Article 9 of the CRPD (‘accessibility’) states that “…States, Parties shall take appropriate measures to ensure to persons with disabilities access, on an equal basis with others, to the physical environment, to transportation.” This includes the identification and elimination of obstacles that may hinder accessibility and also applies to transportation. Article 20 of the CRPD states that the government should “take effective measures to ensure personal mobility of the PwD, with the greatest possible independence.” This includes providing adequate methods of personal mobility at an affordable cost and convenience, as well as training in personal mobility to the person and skills training to staff working with PwDs. Along with this, Article 28 states that PwDs “have the right to an adequate standard of living, and continuous improvement of living conditions and the government will take steps to ensure that no discrimination on the basis of disability is caused.” Though these provisions do not explicitly mention travel, the phrase “adequate standard of living” can be understood to include the use of public transport that is widely available in the city of Mumbai.  

For a typical Mumbaikar, using the public transport system is easy, fast, inexpensive, and convenient. The local train and bus systems are extensive. Some parts of the city also have auto-rickshaws for short commutes. In addition to these, the iconic ‘kaali-peeli’ (black and yellow) cabs are used by everyone. Private transport companies like OlaCabs and Uber, launched in 2010 and 2013 respectively, are also used for daily travel within the city. The local trains in Mumbai run for almost 24 hours every day, and are available at 2-3-minute intervals, and both first- and second-class compartments are available. There are also separate compartments for women, people suffering from terminal illnesses, and PwDs. The public bus system in Mumbai, managed by the Bombay Electric Supply and Transport Company (BEST), is one of the most well-connected bus systems in India. The tickets are cheap, and there are reserved seats for women and PwDs. Taxis are available throughout the city while auto-rickshaws are only available in the suburbs. Both taxis and auto-rickshaws charge the customer based on distance travelled and are more expensive than the bus and train. OlaCabs and Uber, although new in the market, are doing extremely well in Mumbai. Both firms have launched an auto-rickshaw service as well, and in the case of Uber, even motorbike rides in some parts of the country, like Jaipur and Delhi. These are the most expensive modes of travel in Mumbai, excepting using privately owned vehicles. 

While initiatives like the CRPD, travel concessions, and seat reservations for PwDs are positive steps, there needs to be radical transformation in society’s attitude towards PwDs. There are many accessibility issues when it comes to using wheelchairs, a personal mobility device used by most people with cerebral palsy, on public transport. The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016, which replaced the Persons with Disabilities Act, 1995, was passed to fulfil India’s obligation to UNCRPD. The act allows the government two years to ensure that PwDs get ‘barrier-free access’ to all physical infrastructures and transport systems (“The Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act,” 2016). However, it is still unclear whether these changes have been made, especially with regards to public transport in Mumbai. Though fare concessions are given to PwDs, this is not enough to assure physical accessibility. Most train stations in Mumbai lack ramps and elevators, and accessibility has been ignored even in the newly built metro stations, even though India has signed and ratified the UNCRPD in 2007 and has also updated the act, which caters to people with disabilities. 

The Accessible India Campaign, launched in 2015 by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, is a three-part program for achieving universal accessibility for PwDs (Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, 2015). The second component of the campaign addresses accessibility of the transportation system. It addresses the need for accessible airports, train stations, and government-owned public transport carriers. The goal was to make all A1, A and B categories of railway stations to be completely accessible by July 2016, and to have 50% of stations in the country be fully accessible by March 2018. Additionally, by March 2018, 25% of government-owned public transport carriers were meant to be converted into fully accessible carriers (Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, 2015). 

Literature Review

Scholarship on disability in India is limited. Studies relating to accessibility issues are based on experiences in western countries, where most PwDs have access to their own means of transportation, or at the least, better accessibility when it comes to public transport like subways and buses. Further, in India, as we have seen previously, the societal attitude towards people with disabilities is one of ignorance and fear. A 2005 study found that it would be easier to change societal attitudes rather than personal attitudes; and actual interaction with a PwD helps more than just giving the person information about the disability (Daruwalla & Darcy, 2005). 

Another study by Yau et al. (2004) used a qualitative method of study to explore the tourism experiences of people with disabilities. They suggested that there were five stages of becoming ‘travel active’. These stages are personal, re-connection, tourism analysis, physical journey, and experimentation and reflection. They argue that without family’s financial, physical, and psychological support, it is difficult for the PwD to go on tours and vacation, despite personal acceptance of the disability. PwDs are expected to become passive and not live full, independent lives. However, this does not have to be true. If the physical and social environments accommodate different types and stages of abilities, PwDs can live fully and independently. This study is focused on PwDs in Chinese culture and argues that “A prevailing social attitude exists that those with disabilities are not worthy of having or wanting anything but the sheer basics of life. They are expected to be sad, feel like a burden on their families, and be inactive” (Yau et al., 2004, p. 7). Unfortunately, this is true even in Indian society, and we need to make the effort to be more inclusive in our everyday lives. The tourism analysis stage states that PwDs must do more research than their abled counterparts, to make sure that routes, hotels, restaurants, etc. are accessible; they may have to call ahead and check the validity of information, as what is published on the internet may not be true. Substantial pre-planning is necessary for a successful commute. In the physical journey stage, the authors say that PwDs must compromise, possibly in terms of uncomfortable hotel accommodation, physical and ecological barriers, inaccessible tour attractions, or forsaking certain activities. Of course, these compromises are not always by choice. Additionally, often, flight crews are not properly trained to handle personal mobility devices like wheelchairs, leading to damaged property, missing batteries, and even lost luggage. 

R.W Smith delineates barriers that could “undermine the freedom” of tourists with disabilities. He categorizes them as intrinsic barriers, environmental barriers, and interactive barriers (Smith, 1987). The combined effect of all these barriers lessens the leisure and satisfaction derived from tourism for PwDs, thereby discouraging them from travelling again. Intrinsic barriers are caused by an individual’s own cognitive, psychological, and physical functioning level. It also includes factors that are secondary to their medical diagnoses, like parental over-protection, lack of knowledge, and dependency. Environmental barriers are those which are external to the PwD. These are imposed on the tourist by physical or social forces and can include peoples’ attitudes, the architecture of an area, transportation, ecology, and differing rules and regulations. Interactive barriers come from the interaction between the PwD and the existing environmental surroundings. The two major interactive barriers are language, and skill-challenge, i.e. lack of skill or ability. Malini Chib (2003) narrates in a humorous manner her experiences and impressions of each city she has been to. The stories are funny, but upon reading between the lines, they highlight issues of physical wheelchair access, and sometimes the difficulties of social barriers (Chib, 2003). In the essay on her experiences in London, for example, she highlights the difficulties of finding a flat to rent due to accommodation issues including movement of wheelchair. At the age of 28, she was finally allowed to use her wheelchair alone, and this could be done because the pavements were smooth and conducive to a powered wheelchair. She also uses the Stationlink, a bus that is specially engineered keeping in mind PwDs and their wheelchairs. She also makes an effort to do things like any other 28-year-old, like going to clubs and bars, regardless of the strange looks she gets. She also talks about using her Lightwriter, a speech-generating device made by Toby Churchill in 1969, as people are unable to understand her speaking voice. Additionally, she has written about her own life experiences of living with cerebral palsy (Chib, 2009). She is fortunate enough to have been born into an upper middle class family. Her family was incredibly proactive in helping her deal with disability, with her mother, Dr. Mithu Alur, even starting one of India’s best special schools and NGO – ADAPT (Able Disabled All People Together). She was able to spend most of her formative years in London and receive good education. She highlights the problems they faced in 1970s India with regards to a severe lack of information and medical assistance. She explores her experiences further in her autobiographical book, One Little Finger (Chib, 2011). The book is a personal account of her life and her struggles with CP. 

As mentioned before, her mother, Dr. Mithu Alur was an extremely illustrious woman. She is credited with bringing the disability rights movement to India at a time where there was little to no information and social awareness about disabilities. She also brought a method of care and rehabilitation for PwDs. Further, she initiated a model of education that integrated health and learning for children with disabilities (CwDs), which is now being used across 24 states in India, as well as a widely used model of teacher training. For her doctorate research, she studied the policy and the status of people with disabilities in India. Internalising change individually is something she stresses through this study (Alur, 2001). She argues that most national policies, even when created with India’s diverse population in mind, tend to ignore PwDs. Education needs to be culture- and context-specific, and small steps can be taken toward inclusion and improvement, even though there is a lack of systemic change. Though she is very focused on education and policy, rather than public transportation, she is one of the few academics writing about disability issues in India, and her work is extremely valuable in understanding the challenges that PwDs face. 

Davies et al. studied the use of PDA (Personal Digital Assistant) based software, with integrated GPS technology to help intellectually disabled people navigate the bus system in the United Kingdom. In the study, 73% of the participants reported that they were able to use it to navigate successfully on a new bus route (Davies et al., 2010). Currie and Stanley explore the use of poor public transport by marginalised communities in Australia. They also study the disabled community and outline the relationship between transport disadvantage and social exclusion (Currie et al., 2007). 

Research Methods

Each participant PwD was administered the same questionnaire, which had been validated by two experts from the field. The study is qualitative and uses primary data (from personal interviews) to ascertain the use of public transport by PwDs. It also seeks to determine why people with cerebral palsy use, or as the case may be, do not use public transport in Mumbai. The study has a very descriptive research design, which makes use of primary data to understand the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of the situation. The study has used the method of in-depth, semi-structured interviews to understand the use of public transport by people with CP. The interviews were conducted with people between the ages of 6-60 and affected by cerebral palsy. In case of severe disability, the caregiver of the PwD provided the answers on their behalf. 

The pilot study looked at five PwDs across the CP spectrum. However, it was found that gathering more primary data might be prudent for this study considering that the pilot study consisted of people from a lower socio-economic background. The total number of participants is nine. The research studied public transport, i.e. auto rickshaws, cabs, local trains, buses, and private cab companies like Ola and Uber. These were selected because these are the transport facilities most commonly used by people in Mumbai. Mumbai’s local train system is one of the most convenient in the country and is used by 7.5 million people a day (Rao, 2017). Cerebral palsy was chosen to be the focus of the study due to previous experience of the researcher in working with children with CP at the aforementioned special school in Mumbai, Able Disabled All People Together (ADAPT). Additionally, cerebral palsy is a disability that, in its most severe cases, affects the motor capabilities of an individual, causing the person to need assistance with physical movements, and additional technology.

 The questions have been structured according to the Kirkpatrick model of training evaluation (Kurt, 2018). The four levels in the Kirkpatrick model are reaction, learning, behavior, and results. As such, the questionnaire for the study has been divided into four sections pre-travel, during travel, post-travel, and general questions. Most of the questions were open-ended, i.e., open to further elaboration from participants. A similar method of semi-structured, in-depth interviews is used by Simon Darcy (2012).  

The pre-travel questions include understanding how a PwD and their caregiver plan the daily trips, whether these are pre-booked or spontaneous, and how they ensure the safety of the PwD before the travel. For people with access to private transportation, this would not be much of a problem, but for those who are less financially able, public transport is something that they should be able to rely on for daily travel. The difficulties that can be anticipated are the cumbersome nature of the wheelchair and the lack of help from the ticket collectors in the train and the bus conductors. There is also a lack of awareness among the staff at the train station and on the bus. The ‘during travel’ questions seek to understand how PwDs deal with issues like lack of physical accessibility, large crowds if they are travelling during rush hour and the attitude of other commuters.  The ‘post-travel’ questions focus on the necessary re-orientation for the PwDs to avoid any possible triggers for epileptic, anxiety, or panic attacks. The general questions are more conversational and try to understand issues like what PwDs do in case of a public transport strike, or whether they receive any concessions for travel either from the government or from their school. 

Scope and Limitations of the Study

The scope of this study is to find out how people with cerebral palsy use public transport in the city of Mumbai. Most researchers focus on tourism-based travel, instead of daily travel. Additionally, not many researchers focus on one kind of disability as this paper does. However, every disability is different, making tourism-based papers too general. Each person with a disability might struggle with a different verbal, motor, or cerebral difficulty which makes it harder to find a common solution to benefit everyone. A limitation of this study is the small sample size. Due to a small sample size, as well as limited diversity within the sample, these interviews do not convey the extent to which people with cerebral palsy struggle to have physical mobility in Mumbai. Mumbai is a tier-one city and understanding the nature of problems in that city may help with understanding issues around people dealing with similar issues in other tier-one cities. These cities could make the necessary improvements that are needed to create a more accessible environment, leading to easier movement for PwDs.  There is also a lack of previous research to refer to, especially in the Indian context. The hypothesis for this study is that it is almost impossible to use public transport in Mumbai as a person with severe cerebral palsy unless one is financially privileged enough to own a wheelchair or a car, or even to hire an auto rickshaw or a cab. 

Findings of the Study

The results of the study have proven the hypothesis correct. The answers given by the participants have remained largely consistent, the differences lying mainly with age and socio-economic status. However, since the study has a small sample, these results may also be inconclusive. A total of nine participants took part in the study. Only two participants were able to directly respond, while the rest depended on their caregivers to provide answers, as they were either non-verbal or too young to understand what was happening. The ratio of women to men participants was 5:4. Out of the nine respondents, only four went to school. One participant is still in school, while the rest have either not yet joined or graduated. The three people who have graduated are working. One is a teacher, one is a hair salon manager, and one works as a consultant and auditor for businesses to make them more disabled-friendly. Only the teacher is both verbal and mobile, while the manager is non-mobile, and can speak with assistance, and the consultant is verbal, but not mobile. None of the participants are married. 

Five out of nine participants are residents of Dharavi, which is Asia’s biggest slum area. Most of the residents there are second generation residents; they had migrated from rural areas to urban Mumbai to make a better life for themselves, but have struggled to do so. These five participants do not have access to schools, or wheelchairs, which are necessary for non-mobile PwDs. They also spent less than INR 100 in a month on transport, whereas the others’ monthly expenditure ranged between INR 1000, and INR 10,000. Out of these five, four of them needed wheelchairs for movement. These four participants did not have permanent access to a wheelchair, as opposed to two other participants who were privileged enough to own two wheelchairs, one for everyday use and another for backup. 

Three out of nine participants had family cars that they were able to use instead of public transport. Only one participant was mobile enough to use trains and buses. However, this participant was the oldest participant, and said that they currently use only auto rickshaws and cabs for fear of being pushed, or falling down, which has happened earlier. Four participants from Dharavi said that they neither had any outside help, nor support from their extended families, while the last one had the help of many family members. The other four participants had help from their families, as well as outside help when needed. Outside help, in this context, means the people who are hired specially to help the PwD, or the drivers of the cars they take. None of the participants had been offered any reduction in school fees, any financial aid from the government, or any other kind of assistance like donations or disability certificates. 

None of the participants used private cab companies like Ola or Uber unless in an emergency. Two participants in wheelchairs said that when they did try to avail the service, the drivers were not adequately trained on how to handle the wheelchair, and thus just stood by and waited for them to embark and disembark with the help of only one other person, which is an extremely difficult task for only one person to handle, especially when the PwD is a full-grown adult.     

One participant was a 6-year-old daughter of a rickshawala, who said that his daughter could not go to school, or use any form of public transport, so he took her on auto-rickshaw rides so she could see new places in the city and also get some fresh air and spend time away from the small room the family of five shared. He said, “She is happy in the rickshaw, she likes to sit at the back, and she can understand what is happening.”  

Another interviewee was a single mother working two jobs to provide for her four children, the oldest of whom went to school. She moved to Mumbai with her husband, who then left her to fend for herself and their children. They lived in a room with only one small cot and a sink. To get to their room, one had to climb up an extremely unsafe metal ladder through a small opening. Her child almost never went outside the house unless there was a medical emergency, as the mother could not afford it, nor did she have the time. The child was looked after by his older brother who is only 14 years old, as he stopped his schooling after the ninth grade to help his mother. The mother works as a domestic help in a house close by, and said she still does not earn enough for schooling for all her children, let alone one with cerebral palsy. She said her son does not even have a birth certificate, so she cannot enroll him in a school. In addition to this, she also did not know that there were schools for children with disabilities. She was also unaware of any concessions that could be made in terms of travel. When going for medical visits at Haji Ali, she said she took him by train with a lot of difficulty. Since he has stiff limbs due to the disability, he needs a lot of help with movement, which makes it extremely difficult for her to take him anywhere.   

Another mother who was speaking for her child broke down during the interview, as she did not know how to help her son beyond a certain point, and the family did not have enough money to eat well, let alone for schooling and medication for their child. She is a stay-at-home mother, taking care of her three children along with her husband. While she does the daily housework, her attention is also on her son, as he cannot walk and thus his movement is severely restricted. 

Another interviewee said that she was told not to bring her five-year-old child back to the school he was enrolled in because they did not have the resources to teach “someone like him.” He also fell sick frequently, due to low immunity and borderline malnourishment. In addition to taking care of her son with cerebral palsy, she also takes care of another child, as well as an ailing senior citizen. 

Eide et al. (2011) outline the fact that people living in poverty live in far worse hygienic conditions than those living with clean water and a good sewage system. They also say that cultural beliefs and attitudes play an important part in the lives of young children. They argue that, to overcome poverty, people with disabilities need opportunity, empowerment, and security. However, when the government does not even provide adequate transport for people with disabilities to travel in their daily lives, perhaps to the hospital, it is difficult for them to believe that society cares about their health and well-being. It is possible for people with less severe cerebral palsy to be a contributing part of society, as seen by three participants in this study. Further, they suggest that education is necessary to overcome poverty. For PwDs, access to education can be difficult, primarily because of social stigma. The segregation of mainstream schools and special schools should be cancelled, and inclusive methods of learning must be introduced. 

When it comes to daily travel and public transport, it should be the responsibility of the government to make our roads and public transport accessible. Wheelchairs are a basic necessity for non-mobile people with cerebral palsy, and with them, so are wheelchair ramps. In India, the cost for a basic wheelchair ranges anywhere from INR 4,999 to INR 10,000. 

Disability, rather than being a static concept, is a spectrum. There are four broad categories of disability- neurological, speech and hearing, physical, and psychiatric disabilities. Often, people with disabilities have a combination of these four categories. It is important to take into account accessibility for all four categories, even though this paper focuses only on one type of disability. We must also remember that not all disabilities are permanent. For example, even pregnancy could be considered a physical disability for the period of nine months. A heavily pregnant woman will not be able to climb up and down stairs in a crowded station, nor will she be able to climb up onto the train in less than ten seconds. It is society’s responsibility to make transportation in daily life easier for people with disabilities. 

Though there are special compartments in the local trains for people with disabilities, the train barely stops at the platform for more than 30 seconds, which is not enough time for someone on a wheelchair to get on. In fact, reaching the platforms in the first place is also a difficult task. Local train stations in Mumbai fail accessibility tests, as there are no ramps or elevators to get from the ticket booth to the platform; there are only stairs. Elevators, if available are placed out of the way, in a corner far from the platform. In addition, there is a big gap between the train and the platform, and it is impossible for a wheelchair user to get on and off the trains without help. 

Travelling on buses is also not easy for PwDs. The bus conductors are not trained to help, and the step to climb into the bus is placed too high for the person in a wheelchair to access. Even if they are not in a wheelchair, they might still have issues with their muscles, and climbing on and off such a height could be very dangerous. There are also no places reserved for people with disabilities. There is also no space for wheelchairs at the front of the bus like some western countries have.     

Ola and Uber cabs are not equipped with the correct materials to handle a wheelchair and are often only used as a last resort. The drivers are not trained either and often lack the sensitivity to help a person with disabilities. Not everyone has access to a personal vehicle, and as large corporations, Ola and Uber should take the initiative to install hydraulic lifts in at least some of their vehicles. According to a 2018 article by the Economic Times, Ola and Uber have 35,000 to 40,000 cars in the city of Mumbai (Shrivastava, 2018). These lifts can be expensive, but in the long run it could prove beneficial to the companies. 

This paper does not look at the Metro and Monorail in Mumbai since they have only one line each and provide limited services. In an audit conducted in 2014, three auditors on wheelchairs found that it was passable, but more work needed to be done in terms of the infrastructure and services offered. For example, there was no return ticket system; instead each time one wanted to ride the monorail, a new ticket had to be bought (Pinto, 2014). 

Steps Taken by Other Metropolitan Cities in India

In January 2019, the Delhi government announced acquisition of new, wheelchair-friendly buses with three doors instead of two (Goswami, 2019). Currently, only 3,750 out of Delhi’s total 5,443 buses are accessible to PwDs, and only accommodates limited categories of disabilities. The new buses will have hydraulic lifts, as well as additional space to park the wheelchair. The bus will also have GPS trackers, CCTV cameras, and panic buttons. Hopefully, the bus stops will also be updated to accommodate PwDs, and the buses will stop near to the designated stops. It is yet to be seen whether the bus conductors and drivers will receive appropriate training on how to handle the hydraulic lifts as well as wheelchairs (Goswami, 2019).    

In June 2019, the government of Goa announced that it would be launching wheelchair-accessible school buses for the students of Sanjay Centre for Special Education in Porvorim. This is an excellent step forward for providing an equal platform for school students in Goa, and with the help of the state government should also be implemented in Mumbai (ANI, 2019). 

Taxi service EzyMov, is a taxi company for people in wheelchairs. However, it is not a solution for everyone, as they can be expensive. The advantages of this company, however, is that it functions almost exactly as an Ola or an Uber, except the booking has to be done a day in advance. They have vans that are fitted with hydraulic lifts, as well as completely trained and sensitised drivers to help the wheelchair-bound passenger. The cost of their services depend on the duration and the transport required, and prices range from a base fare of INR 300 to INR 500 for 5 kilometres for 13 hours, with added cost for distance travelled. They also offer rental packages based on the duration and the length traveled (EzyMov, Personal Interview, May 2020)

Further, it can be noted that there is a city in Spain that has imposed a complete ban on private cars. The citizens of Pontevedra get around entirely on foot, and everything is within walking distance. Mayor Miguel Lores made the entire city car-free in 1999, and made everything accessible, for the city’s most vulnerable population, i.e., the elderly, people with disabilities, and children. Lores pointed out the importance of reclaiming public spaces that were overtaken by private vehicles (Burgen, 2018). It is understandable that such a practice might not be effective in a city as congested as Mumbai, but it is a leap forward for accessibility and for environmental sustainability. 


Able-bodied people have the privilege of not having to think twice about something as mundane as daily travel. As we can see from this study, the struggles for people with cerebral palsy are immense, and while steps are being taken to relieve the stress, it is not enough. It is difficult for able-bodied people to understand the troubles and travails of people with cerebral palsy. The researcher hopes that this paper has been able to contribute to disability studies in India and that this might be a topic that more people will find not only interesting but necessary to study to make Mumbai a truly inclusive and accessible city.


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