Monday, October 14, 2002, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi



What’s wrong with the sale of organs?

APROPOS the report "Organ sale in Amritsar", the hue and cry being raised about the kidney sales will end up in nothing. When your near and dear ones are dying of organ failure, all rules and regulations mean nothing.

Renal transplant is an advanced, high-tech skilled surgery and very few doctors in India are capable of doing it. Renal transplant virtually snatches a patient from the jaws of death. It is done only when all other medical options have run out.

The western parameters cannot be applied here. The waiting list for organ transplant is very long in western countries — 50 per cent of the patients die waiting. Some patients go to China, India and the Philippines where organs are available on the black market. Iraq is the cheapest place. The approximate cost they have to pay is $ 125,000.

If someone wants to donate his/her organ for kind or cash, why make so much fuss? If a healthy person wants to donate his organ, maybe for any reason, he should be made fully aware about the good and bad points, and the health hazard he is going to face. If he still wants to go in for it, he should be honoured and not hounded. In this material life nothing is done without some gain. No doubt only the poor will donate organs, but on the other hand the poor will also benefit. The rich can manage now also and jump the waiting list.


A kidney transplant surgeon should not be questioned. He is doing his duty only as a doctor to save a dying patient. Very few surgeons are there in this specialty. Dr Sareen has not taken a right step by stopping the operations; it amounts to going on strike when patients are dying.

At last my request to the Satya Pal Dang couple. The veteran leaders should not jump into everything. Industry is already ruined in Amritsar because of repeated political interference. Now if it goes on, the city will lose a rare renal transplant surgeon. This city is already much behind in health care.

The Cadaver Transplant Act was passed in Parliament in 1994, and was adopted by Punjab in toto. Hence, maximum patients are operated in Punjab. The Act permits renal transplant from a brain-dead patient. If all brain-patients are harnessed, there would be no shortage of kidneys and in government medical colleges organ transplant can be done for Rs 20,000 only.

In Punjab maximum transplant surgeries are done because the Punjab authorisation committee is liberal in granting permission. Punjab is earning good money from other states and foreign patients through renal surgeries.

The Press plays a negative role by highlighting that kidneys are stolen from patients. It takes minimum 15 days for the sophisticated test and repeated hospital visits. The surgery cannot be done without the knowledge of the donor.

There are two kidneys in human body. Their role is to purify the blood. One is capable of doing it.


Pilot's family seeks job

This refers to the news item in the column "Chandigarh News Digest" that the parents of Lieut Commander Rajesh Saini, who was killed in an air crash in Goa, have made a request to Lieut Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd) to appoint their daughter-in-law, at present working in Goa, as a doctor in Chandigarh.

I think instead of making a request, they should have been offered the post by the Chandigarh Administration, keeping in mind the condition of the parents. After all Chandigarh has lost a brave and brilliant son in Lieut Commander Rajesh Saini. We cannot give them back their loving child, but we can help them by doing so, to some extent.

Please publish the family background, schooling etc of any brave officer who sacrifices his life or gets killed in any accident, crash etc, particularly from this region. Everybody in this region wants to know all this.


Advani and police

FOR whom does the bell toll? For the police or for Mr Advani and his men down the chain?

In a way he admits that it is lack of good governance. If that is the case, then he should target the governance first and set it right. It is no secret that politicians and highly placed bureaucrats always meddle in the functioning of the police. Wherever there is a police officer capable of delivering justice, he is victimised and howled out; wherever a police officer plays to the true of the high-ups, he is protected. In both situations, the sufferer is the common man, who does not hold any string connecting an Advani somewhere.

Mr Advani is in the habit of shouting at the top of his voice without any tangible act on his part. Charity should begin at home.

K.S. GREWAL, Chandigarh



India-Tunisia flights

This refers to a Delhi-based report “India-Tunisia flights by year-end” (Sept 30). The report says that Tunis Air will begin flights from India to Tunisia via Dubai and Kuwait by December end” and attributes this statement to the Director-General of the Tunisian National Tourism Board, Mr Seifalla Lasram and Vice-President of Tunis Air Mohammed Mzah.

The fact is, (as stated in Assocham’s press release) that: “Tunis Air of Tunisia is starting its flights to Dubai from December this year. It has proposed to IA and A-I to carry forward its India-bound passengers from Dubai. The carrier has also offered to carry their passengers out of Dubai to London and Europe giving them a free stopover in Tunis”.


Polio drops

Polio drops were to be administered all over India on Sept 30. But perhaps due to lack of publicity through the media, there was little or no enthusiasm seen anywhere. No booths were set up for the purpose.

I have contacted my relatives and friends in other cities and towns and everywhere the position was the same. The government announced that after the closing time of the booths the workers would go from house to house to give drops to the left-out children. But nothing of the kind happened. In our own house nobody came to enquire about left-out children.

P.K. GUPTA, Bathinda

Chhat Bir Zoo

A group of 50 students below and above 12 years went to see Chhat Bir Zoo on October 1 at 10:30 a.m. At the entrance gate the news item published in The Tribune on the same date under the headline "Free entry to zoo from Oct 1 to 7” was shown to the dealing assistant. The person brushed aside the news report, calling it "wrong reporting". We purchased entry tickets for some Rs 400 and went in.


Our porous border

How do we expect Pakistan tostop cross-border terrorism along such a long and porous border when we ourselves are not able to nab forest brigand Veerappan operating within our own territory. We don’t know his whereabouts, but our emissaries meet him and negotiate with him without any hitch.


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