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Ganpati mandals in Mumbai and suburbs to promote organ donation this year

Around 10 mandals in Thane and Kalyan, 20 in Andheri and a few in Vasai plan to spread awareness on organ donation this year

mumbai Updated: Aug 19, 2017 00:50 IST
Yesha Kotak
Yesha Kotak
Hindustan Times
mumbai,mumbai news,ganpati in mumbai
An idol made from auto spare auto parts in Goregaon in Mumbai. (Satish Bate/HT Photo)

Many Ganesh mandals across the city and the suburbs are rooting for a noble cause through festivities — organ donation.

Around 10 mandals in Thane and Kalyan, 20 in Andheri and a few in Vasai plan to spread awareness on organ donation this year.

‘We will have a small act running for our visitors. It will show how a person who died while clicking a selfie is blessed with a heavenly abode because he donated his organs,’ said organisers from the Ganpati mandal next to Vasai court.

“We have written to the State Organ and Tissue Transplant Organisation (SOTTO) and Regional Organ and Tissue Transplant Organisation (ROTTO) to draft a letter to the Municipal Commissioner and get us an approval, so we can run the campaign during festivities. We will receive permission in a day or two,” said Prakash Desai, secretary, Jan Jagruti Creation Sanstha, in Andheri.

On the other hand, Dr Kamakshi Bhate, associate professor, department of preventive and social medicine, King Edward Memorial (KEM) Hospital, said that they had spoken to assistant commissioners of all 26 wards, and around 200 pandals have been informed about the campaign.

“There are around five lakh people who die every year because they do not receive organs. So, the civic body grants permission to spread the message for organ donation during these festivities,” she said.

A few days back, Lalbaug Sarvajanik Utsav Mandal, known for its support to social causes apart from its famous Ganpati, organised a blood donation drive. It was supported by the State Blood Transfusion Council (SBTC), and the National AIDS Control Programme (NACP). Approximately 20,000 people donated blood, and 15,248 bags passed the tests and were taken to blood banks.

“The day the drive ended, around 2,000 bags were airlifted to government-run hospitals in Nagpur, Gondia and Chandrapur. We also donated 1,500 bags to Military Hospitals in Jammu and Kashmir and some to various districts in Aurangabad,” said Balasaheb Kamble, president of the mandal. Some of the bags were passed on to Delhi, Kolkata and Pune.

The mandal also runs a dialysis centre all year round, where patients are provided treatment and snacks for Rs 100.

Kanmanagar Vikhroli Sarvajanik Ganesh Chaturthi provides physiotherapy services to the needy not only during the festival, but all year around.

9000 kms in 40 days

Lourd Vijay, a professional dancer from Bangalore, had to wait for two-and-half years before he could get a kidney, that’s when he decided that he would spread awareness regarding organ donation.

Vijay, along with his team of three people of Spread Hope foundation, is on a 9000 kms, 40 days drive from Chennai to Ladakh, wherein he will be visiting 13 cities, 17 towns and 80 villages for the cause.

“I aim to reach out to 10 million people in five years. Right now, since I am passionate about travelling, I am going across length and breadth of the country to spread a word about organ donation,” said Vijay.

(With inputs from Shasta Kaul)

First Published: Aug 19, 2017 00:50 IST