Journal of Civil Society 16(3) pp 191-215

In response to international concerns about ongoing rights violations, this benchmark study analyses the situated knowledge of civil society organizations and examines their discourse on the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) in India. The findings show that Persons with Disabilities continue to experience rights-denial, and institutional ableism resulting in barriers to shaping policy and accessing social welfare. These are real challenges owing to their systemic nature. Crucially, they relate to the public policy-making process itself and stem from a failure on the part of successive post-2007 governments to put in place a comprehensive strategy for implementing the CRPD. In turn, this is indicative of an ongoing disconnect between state and civil spheres that hampers effective implementation and explains the endurance of the Medical Model of Disability across the country.