Blind Walk at USTM
USTM students taking Pledge to donate eyes on World
Sight Day-2019 on 10 Oct 2019
9th Mile, Ri-Bhoi, October 10, 2019: In a bid to
create social responsibility among students on the
occasion of World Sight Day today, about 4000 students
of the University of Science & Technology Meghalaya have
pledged to donate their eyes and help the cause of the
visually challenged people across the world. Led by the
visually challenged children studying in Jyoti Niketan
school of Narengi, Guwahati, students of USTM along with
university staff and authorities participated in the
Blind Walk at the university campus today which was a
part of the larger programme called ‘World Blind Walk’
being held at the same time today in 200 locations
across 5 countries including India, Sri Lanka, China,
Philippines and Canada. The walk-a-thon was organised by
NavJanan NGO run by the Claretian Missionaries in the
North East in association with USTM. The blind children
also enthralled all present with their singing
performance at the end of the walk-a-thon.
Speaking on the occasion, Mahbubul Hoque, Chancellor of
USTM said, “We want to make our students socially
responsible and become ambassadors for social awareness.
The purpose is to express our solidarity with the
visually challenged people and to motivate for eye
donation.” World Blind Walk is bringing together over
500 organizations across the globe from social,
developmental, medical, academic and religious
backgrounds on a single platform to push for a global
movement on Eye Donation.
Fr. (Dr.) Joseph Mappilaparambil, Director, NavJan said,
“We would like to draw your attention to the issues
related to blindness that is affecting a large section
of our countrymen. According to WHO, an estimated 39
million people are blind worldwide. One in every three
blind people lives in India – 15 million. As much as
this fact arouses sympathy, it equally calls for a
response from every socially conscious person and
organization to reach out to them. We can join our hands
to bring them light”.
Sister Jomsy, Principal of Jyoti Niketan said that the
Project Vision was started by Fr. George Kannanthanam, a
Claretian missionary, as a response to meet the demands
of the visually impaired. “The goal is to fill gap
between the supply and the demand for corneas in India,
which is about 100,000 at present”, she added.
World Sight Day is an annual day of awareness to focus
global attention on blindness and vision impairment, and
is held on the second Thursday in October each year.
This year’s theme is ‘Vision First’ as fixed by
International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness
(IAPB). The diseases which receive attention on World
Sight Day are Trachoma, Low vision, Cataract, Glaucoma,
Refractive error and Diabetic Retinopathy.