Thatscricket - News - ACF to promote eye donation programme

Published: Saturday, February 17, 2001, 23:20 [IST]
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Kolkata: As part of its social welfare programme, Asian Cricket Foundation (ACF) has taken up a novel project called ''Eradication of Blindness'' through donation of eyes in different Asian cities, ACF chairman Jagmohan Dalmiya said here on Saturday.Briefing reporters, Mr Dalmiya, who is also the president of Cricket Association of Bengal (ACB), said that ACF would first launch this programme in Kolkata on February 27 and then would follow it up in Lahore, Colombo and Dhaka during or prior to major cricket tournaments there. Mr Dalmiya said with the second Test match between India and Australia beginning here from March 11, ACF requested Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) to take up the programme in the city, which would be known as ''Cricket for Life Beyond Death''. The CAB has readily agreed to take up this project as part of its concern towards 13 million blinds who live in India. Since cricket was the most popular game in the Asian sub-continent both ACF and CAB felt that there could not be a more appropriate vehicle than cricket to confront the global problem of blindness, Mr Dalmiya added. He said that the programme would mainly include restoration of eye-sight through cornea grafting and transplantations. Giving statistics, Mr Dalmiya said that according to World Health Organisation (WHO), there were more than 45 million blind people worldwide, while another 135 were visually impaired with the grave risk of becoming totally blind. Out of the estimated 1.5 million blind children the world over, one million were Asians. Eighty per cent of the world blindness could be cured or prevented, the WHO report said. This was one of the main reasons, which prompted ACF and CAB to come forward to take up this cause. UNI

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