After Kohima, Still Miles To Go For Blood Donation Activist Verma - Eastern Mirror
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After Kohima, still miles to go for blood donation activist Verma

By Reyivolü Rhakho Updated: Nov 28, 2023 6:40 pm
Kiran Verma in Kohima. (EM Images)

KOHIMA — Kiran Verma, founder of Simply Blood, who started his 21,000-km walk for blood awareness from Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, on December 28, 2021, reached Kohima on November 26.

In an interaction with media persons on Tuesday, Verma said the reason for his visit to Nagaland was to encourage the people to donate more blood.

After covering 10 districts of Nagaland, he observed that blood donation is “very low” in the state.

“On the other hand, HIV is a huge problem here. All across Nagaland, there are only six blood banks and very few are coming forward to donate it,” he said.

He urged the people of the state to come forward to donate blood so that nobody dies waiting for blood, because every life matters.

His main objective is “nobody should die waiting for blood in India after 31st December 2025”.

Explaining the story behind choosing this date, he said that he donated blood to a young boy in June 2017 but learned after two months that the boy passed away while waiting for a platelet at a hospital in Delhi.

“Imagine a boy who died just because he wanted blood. This is due to the lack of empathy. Nobody, out of millions came to donate platelets. The child died bleeding from his eyes, ears and nose in front of his father,” he said.

Then on, he resolved that such tragedy should not happen to any kid.

The country has been talking about blood donation for decades but is still not able to have 5 million blood donors, something which is achievable, he said, adding that he decided to choose “this date” (Dec. 31, 2025) to achieve the target.

“If 5 million youths start donating blood, then there will be not even a single death due to non-availability of blood in India,” he said.

The response from Nagaland has been “immensely good” for Verma. He has met with several people including those working at blood donation centres, district administration and also Minister Temjen Imna Along in Kohima.

He said he has come across many people willing to solve the problem. “We are the biggest problem and we are the only solutions. If we don’t come forward to donate blood, no administration, no civic body, no people can help you out,” he added.

As for choosing to walk when there are other options available, he said he wanted to do something that is very slow and something people won’t forget easily.

“I go to the remotest areas where no vehicles can go and people cannot even access roads. That is the beauty of walking. Walking is one of the best mediums to reach and be more reachable to people,” Sharma maintained.

But there are times when he has to take vehicles, especially when there is threat to life, extreme terrains and weather, which are rare cases. However, he said he doesn’t consider those travels in his walk.

Up until Kohima, he has walked 17,700 km. His next destination is Manipur, which will be followed by other north-easternt states.

Verma lost his mother to cancer when he was seven, which he said, made him realise the importance of life.

The personal loss helped him to empathise and do something for others when they are in need.

In Nagaland, he has traversed on foot to Dimapur, Chümoukedima, Niuland, Tseminyu, Wokha, Mokokchung, Longleng, Mon, Tuensang, Kohima, and Zunheboto districts. So far, he has walked through 229 districts across 17 states and UTs.

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By Reyivolü Rhakho Updated: Nov 28, 2023 6:40:51 pm
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