SIALKOT-Speakers pledged and stressed a need to make an all-out effort for the betterment and welfare of the disabled persons especially the visually impaired.

They said that proper encouragement and motivation could help them become useful citizens of the society. They said, "We all should change our thoughts and our attitude towards the disabled persons especially the visually impaired in the society for making them useful citizens of the society."

They were addressing the participants of a a certificate and prize distribution ceremony held at the auditorium of Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI). SCCI Vice President Abid Ahmed Khawaja presided over the ceremony. Al-Nisa Welfare Society Sialkot Chairperson Dr Mariyam Nouman and Pakistan Facilitation Center for Disabled Persons (PFCD) Chairman Mirza Imran Baig were the chief guests.

The first batch of 20 blind girls from Sialkot, Lahore, Peshawar, Sheikhupura and Mandi Bahaud Din successfully completed their a month-long cooking training course at Sialkot under the supervision of Sialkot-based philanthropists. SCCI VP Abid Ahmed Khawaja, Dr Mariyam Nouman, Mirza Imran Baig and others distributed certificates and prizes to the girls for their brilliant performance in this month-long cooking training course.

The philanthropists and exporters initiated the cooking training programme for the blind girls in a bid to give them the necessary training of cooking skills.

A visually impaired woman, Shamsa Kanwal, while talking to the participants, said that though she had no eyesight she had been blind by birth, but she had a very broad vision for the development of the humanity especially for the visually impaired.

Addressing the participants, the SCCI vice president stressed a need for early change in the social attitude. Addressing the participants, Dr Mariyam highly hailed the performance of the girls in the cooking training programme and their other hidden qualities. She said that love, care, affection and better social attitude were direly needed for making the visually impaired and disabled people as the useful citizens of the society.

On the occasion, several visually impaired persons including Mirza Imran Baig, the chairman of Pakistan Facilitation Centre for the Disabled Persons (PFCD), Sana Mir, Saima Shabir, Amina Jalal, Iram, Hira also spoke. They also demanded a nationwide survey about the disabled persons in Pakistan. They said that there was no proper data about the disabled persons in Pakistan.

They said that blindness never created hurdle in their way. They also urged the government to ensure early establishment a special helpline to solve the social problems of the disabled persons especially the visually impaired persons.

Dr Mariyam Nouman said that she was intending to do some this extraordinary and unique for the welfare of the blind in Pakistan and in the world.

She said, "The eyes are useless, when the minds are blind". She said that there should be early launch of some effective and revolutionary steps for the betterment of the disabled people and making the visually impaired people useful citizens of the society by giving them a proper social cover.

The blind girls said that the visually impaired persons in Pakistan have quite a difficult life. They also shared their experience of getting the month-long training of cooking skills under a useful training programme, especially designed for the blind, first time here in Sialkot.

The participants were told that the blind girls from across Pakistan could join the free cooking training programme as the Sialkot based philanthropists and exporters bear all the expenditures. They highly hailed the Sialkot exporters' initiative and demanded its continuity.