In India, tile maker extends access to disabled people

H&R Johnson's "Red Ramp Project" challenges limited handicapped access throughout India

MUMBAI — Bath-tile manufacturer H&R Johnson has launched an initiative to help disabled Indians reach locations that have been inaccessible to them.

The brand kicked off its "The Red Ramp Project" with a ramp created using its tiles on Kiri beach in Goa. This ramp gives disabled visitors access to the sea. The project, conceptualized by Soho Square, features a variety of disabled people, including agency ECD Anuraag Khandelwal.

The video leaves viewers with a thought: "If only one ramp on one beach for one day can make a difference … Imagine what an access-friendly India could feel like."

According to the #RedRampProject website, India has more than 10 million physically challenged people, but only 5% of the country is equipped to accommodate wheelchairs or crutches.

According to Sushil Matey, chief operating officer with H&R Johnson, "H&R Johnson was looking to appropriate a larger good to the brand. We did evaluate a few initiatives but this one appealed the most to us because of its need in India and its uniqueness and scalability. We expect this movement to gain traction as more people, government bodies and NGOs participate in it. We at H&R Johnson shall be happy to contribute to this noble cause."

Khandelwal said, "This has really happened after a lot of personal experience; I have been on crutches since childhood. Public spaces like temples, beaches, cinema halls, railway stations, cafes etc. are mostly out of bounds. Small joys are a big struggle. Hope that this initiative sparks debates, conversations, and some change."

Satish DeSa, ECD and creative head, Soho Square, Mumbai, added, "Our society in not really sensitized to the needs of differently abled people. We hope this initiative sensitizes people at the least. The intent is to make people think, 'Hey, this place doesn't seem very welcoming to a physically challenged person.' "

This article first appeared on

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