During Indo-Pak wars there were a large scale casualties in military personnel and civilians resulting increase of disabled. To rehabilitate the civilian physically disabled, Artificial Limbs Manufacturing Corporation of India (ALIMCO), Govt. of India Enterprise was established at Kanpur with the help of experienced army professionals (retired/in-service) worked at Artificial Limb Centre (ALC), Pune.
It was felt necessary to train technical professionals for fabrication and fitment of artificial limbs as per the requirement of patients out of readymade components/accessories manufactured by ALIMCO. Hence, a unit for manpower development was created in the name of Directorate of Artificial Limbs Fitting Centre (DALFC) in March 1974 and started functioning at Safdarjung Hospital, New Delhi. Subsequently it was shifted to a rented building in Safdarjung Enclave under direct supervision of Dr. Balu Sankaran, the then Head of Orthopaedics Department, Safdarjung Hospital who was also the Ex-Officio Chairman of ALIMCO. Since its main objective was to impart training, its name was changed to Central Institute of Prosthetic and Orthotic Training (CIPOT). A small area of land near AIIMS, New Delhi was earmarked by the Govt. of India for its permanent establishment.
During the visit of the then Hon'ble Prime Minister Mrs. Indira Gandhi to Orissa in 1975, Mrs. Nandini Satpathy the then Chief Minister of Orissa informed the PM that there was 16.5 acres of land with few buildings donated by late Shri Bijayram Mishra to Govt. of Orissa was available in the village, Olatpur of Cuttack District at 35 kms. from Cuttack/Bhubaneswar in a rural area which could be considered for the establishment of the Institute. On her return to New Delhi Mrs. Gandhi suggested to Dr. Sankaran who was her personal Surgeon to visit Olatpur and to find out the feasibility of starting the Institute in a rural area instead of establishing it in New Delhi where rehabilitation facilities were available.
Accordingly Dr. Sankaran visited the place and
recommended for establishment of the Institute at Olatpur. On its approval the Institute
was shifted from New Delhi to Olatpur in November 1975 and started functioning from 3rd
To give more stress on the rural rehabilitation and to give autonomy , the Institute was separated from ALIMCO on 22nd February 1984 and made an autonomous body under the direct administrative and financial control of Ministry of Welfare (then known), Govt. of India after registering it as a society under the societies registration act XXI of 1860. Its name was once again changed from NIPOT to National Institute of Rehabilitation Training and Research (NIRTAR).