"I Can," says Pandu Ranga Rao

By S. Kenneth ShishirPandu Ranga Rao

The problems faced by the disabled is gaining more and more importance all over the world. The government of India and also State governments have lent a helping hand to the differently abled by framing various policies like reservation in jobs, concession in traveling, special training institutions etc.

However, a major role is played by the family members who need to fill the affected person with strength to face the world. Here is the story of one such person who has gone beyond his disability and is telling the world "I Can."

Meet Pandu Ranga Rao, a young entrepreneur who wants to take the world of web and software to new horizons.

Born to Sunanda and Nara-yan Rao couple on Aug. 24, 1975, he was diagnosed with cerebral palsy, a disorder of movements, at birth. His brave parents did not lose heart and got him admitted to a normal school.

Speaking to Star of Mysore, Pandu Ranga Rao said that though he completed SSLC with flying colours, it was difficult for him to enter PUC. His mother got him admitted to CPC Polytechnic and he later obtained B.Sc. in Information Technology from KSOU.

After completing his Diploma in Computer Science from CPC Polytechnic, he joined as a Lab Instructor in JSS Polytechnic for Differently Abled in SJCE campus here. While working there, he developed two softwares for JSS Polytechnic and gained vast experience at Excel Soft Technologies.

He says that he is grateful to D. Sudhanva, Managing Director of the company, for his encouragement to develop softwares on his own and added that he never went to any special classes but learnt through the opportunities given at Excel Soft.

Pandu Ranga Rao says that he was humiliated a few times during his education and was frustrated with the experiences in life all because of him being specially abled. He says that he wanted to show the world that people like him can achieve anything and teachers should have an open mind and heart to help students like him.

While working as a Lab Instructor, he came across Yathish, who is also disabled. He involved Yathish in his activities of flash developing and founded the company I Can Technologies which offers services like website development, web hosting, software development and product development.

Inspired by the TV show Kaun Banega Crorepathi, he develo-ped a small programme called Quiz Master for a CD brought out by PC-Quest. He has also developed alerts which act as reminders of scheduled works on the computer desktop.

Pandu Ranga Rao says that he aims to provide jobs to people like him, not because they are disabled, but for their talents. He wants to help them enter into mainstream as they need more opportunities than sympathy.

He says that nothing is impossible and computers bore him to some extent. Smiling, he says he loves travelling.

Pandu Ranga Rao got married to Jyothi of Shimoga in 2011 and she has been supporting him in all his activities.

His mother Sunanda says that she faced a lot of problem in the beginning and it was a young doctor from All India Institute Of Physical Medicine And Rehabilitation, Mumbai, who advised her to admit Pandu Ranga Rao to a normal school. On his advice, she admitted him to a convent at Udupi. The teachers there said that she has to be with her son in the school for a few days as they needed time to study his behaviour.

Sunanda says she enjoyed being with him in the school during his studies. In 1985-86, they shifted to Mysore to provide him speech therapy at AIISH.

Pandu Ranga Rao is presently working from home as he cannot move about on his own.

He was honored by AIISH on World Disability Day in 2006 and won the 'Achiever Award' by GSB Bankers Educational and Welfare Trust in 2008 apart from being felicitated during Teachers' Day celebrations. He says that he is looking for a place to start an enterprise so that he can provide employment to persons like him.

I Can Technologies is presently running its own online tutorial in programming for children who want to be programmers. Product development is the key area of their focus and they will be developing and releasing a product which will target educational institutions. Through this, one can bring the entire student community and all their activities like payment of fees, borrowing of library books, etc. under one roof.

Pandu Ranga Rao can be contacted on 9341856071 or e-mail: info@icantech.in.

Reposted from: APCD Empowerment Cafe