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  • She Says

Mumbai Taxis Teach You Sign Language To Communicate With Your Deaf Friends

  • IWB Post
  •  October 5, 2015


The Indian city of dreams, Amchi Mumbai, is also the Indian city of traffic! In this metropolitan, taxis and cabs come as a blessing sparing the Mumbaikars the torture of driving on jam-packed roads.

Now, the reason why I am conversing about Mumbai, Mumbai traffic, and Mumbai taxis right now on a Monday morning is because of this interesting Mumbai guy who has started something absolutely brilliant in collaboration with Taxi Fabric.enhanced-buzz-wide-1207-1443712423-7

Harshit Vishwakarma, a designer, creates special taxi seat covers with Indian sign language depicted on them in bright vivid colors. Why? You may ask? It is because the man wishes to acquaint as many people as possible with the Indian sign language so that… umm… let me bring to you his exact words that I fetched from Taxi Fabric’s blog“So the next time they meet a deaf person they don’t feel tongue tied.”enhanced-buzz-wide-1335-1443712849-7

“After having experienced the prevailing gap between the deaf and the hearing communities in my college years, I wanted to intervene. There are more sign language users in Bombay than in all of Europe. Taxi Fabric was an opportunity to create a fun, engaging way for deaf as well as hearing individuals to learn how to finger spell in Indian Sign Language.”enhanced-buzz-wide-15340-1443712524-8

What intrigues me the most is his approach! The human tendency of unintentionally and sub-consciously grasping knowledge from the environment has been put to use so aptly!

“The idea of doing it in a taxi was extremely interesting. Instead of people making an effort to learn the language, the language comes to them. It was a conscious decision of not taking the route of sympathetic sensitization of people about the deaf community but to invite them to a conversation.”enhanced-buzz-wide-27922-1443713015-9

Also, not to forget that the sign language will not only help us communicate with the deaf, but with the non-deaf too in situations where words aren’t allowed…Hmmm. Wait. This rings a bell. I was recently banished from the college library for being too ‘wordy’. Guess who is learning the sign language next! Me!enhanced-buzz-wide-18756-1443712704-7

Jokes apart, much kudos to be bestowed on this initiative! With our latest campaign Deaf Dreams in action, we feel all the more connected to the idea!

Here’s a short-film about the Sign Language Taxi Covers:

PS: Those colors on the taxi seat covers are so peppy!

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