- The National Trust for Welfare of Persons with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Mental Retardation and Multiple Disabilities (Amendment) Bill, 2018 was introduced in Rajya Sabha by Mr. Thawar Chand Gehlot, Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment on July 18, 2018. It amends the National Trust for Welfare of Persons with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Mental Retardation and Multiple Disabilities Act, 1999.
- The 1999 Act sets up a National Trust to enable persons with disability to live independently by: (i) promoting measures for their protection in case of death of their parents, (ii) evolving procedures for appointment of their guardians and trustees, and (iii) facilitating equal opportunities in society.
- Tenure of the Board: Under the Act, the Chairperson and members of the Board of the National Trust can hold office for a term of three years from the date of their appointment or until their successors are appointed, whichever is longer. The Bill amends this provision to fix the tenure of the Chairperson and members of the Board to three years. Further, the Bill states that the central government will initiate the process for appointment of the Chairperson or any member of the Board, at least six months prior to the expiry of his tenure.
- Resignation of Chairperson: The Act states that if the Chairperson or members of the Board resign, they will continue in office until the appointment of their successor is made by the central government. The Bill amends this to allow the Chairperson or members of the Board to hold office till their resignation is accepted by the central government.
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