The pain of discriminatory treatment meted out to her friend fired up determination in Faridkot woman resident to do her bit to spread awareness on thalassemia.
Sukhveer Kaur, 28, a resident of Hari Nau village in Faridkot plans to walk around 1,150 km in around 35 days to create awareness on the disease and help end discrimination against those afflicted.
"The walk will start from my hometown Kotkapura on January 10 and on the tour are all big cities of the state, where I will meet college student."
"I saw the ostracisation of my friend Disha, a thalassemia patient. In spite of a good professional degree, she did not get a job. There are a number of people suffering this humiliation and I want to help them. This is my motivation," she said.
She claimed that she wanted to spread awareness on thalassemia at a global platform and would do everything necessary to get the job done.
From March, Sukhveer also plans to climb the world' seven highest peaks starting with Killimanjaro in South Africa.
"Wherever I will go, I will try and create awareness on this disease. If I generate any money, 50 per cent will go towards helping thalassemia patients."
"One of my friends from Himachal Pradesh is accompanying me in the walk. To ensure that I am safe, we will inform the local police station of our arrival at each of our stops."
On sponsors, she said, "As of now, no well-known personality has approached us to help. However, a company, Events 365, has helped us by providing us with outfit and other necessary logistical support."
Recently, Sukhveer was also a part of the rescue team during the Uttarakhand rescue floods.
"Blood tests before marriage can help in controlling thalassemia. There are two types of patients, major and minor. Minor Thalassemia patients can lead a normal life. However, major thallesemia patients need frequent blood transfusion."
What is thalassemia?
Thalassemia is a group of inherited blood disorders that affect the body's ability to produce hemoglobin and red blood cells - patients have a lower-than-normal number of red blood cells in their bodies and too little hemoglobin.
In many cases the red blood cells are too small. The bone marrow of people with Thalassemia does not produce enough healthy hemoglobin or red blood cells, which causes anameia and fatigue, because the body is short of oxygen.
In more severe Thalassemia cases, the patient's organs may be damaged, there is restricted growth, heart failure, liver damage, and even death.