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Project to offer free surgeries for acid attack victims

Several organisations have come together to carry out 100 free-of-cost plastic surgeries for the acid attack and burn victims.

‘Project Revive’ will be undertaken in Delhi-NCR from March 1 to March 12, wherein victims from remote and distant areas like Nagaland, Mizoram and Kashmir have reached out to avail the treatment, according to a statement issued by Acid Survivors Foundation India.

ASFI is a leading NGO for prevention of acid burn violence across the country, which is leading the outreach and acid attack victim identification under the project.

The project has been conceptualised by an Indian doctor and would be monitored and assisted by a specialist from an international organisation of plastic surgeons and associated professionals.

“The campaign has garnered response from Kenya, UAE, America, Australia and Germany. It is heart-warming to see that Indians living abroad have been calling to cross-check the authenticity of the message and have been referring people,” said Megha Mishra, manager, north India of ASFI.

“A lot of doctors, army officials, housewives have reached out to us. It is so good to see the society come out and help each other,” she said.

According to a report, India accounts for one-third of reported acid violence cases in the world. As per Acid Survivors Trust International, of the 1,500 cases that were registered in 2014, about 500 cases were from India.

About the project, Mishra said, “Pre-screening will be done based on photos received on Whatsapp or email. The patients identified would be requested to report to the hospital starting February 29.”

“Surgeries will be conducted in a planned manner. Post-operative care will be provided at the hospital. Accommodation is being worked out in case the patients require out-of-hospital stay for a longer time,” she said.

The team of doctors includes experienced surgeons from Europe and specialist nurses, who have worked extensively in the area of acid violence in the past.

“We don’t end it at just doing surgeries, we go ahead in bringing awareness about the issue at hand. There will be workshops and presentations at various night shelters and slums,” Mishra said.

In past three years, the acid violence has gone three times higher in the country, and the recent Soni Sori case only reaffirms the menace that plagues the society, AFSI said.

On February 20, three unidentified motorcycle-borne youths attacked tribal rights activist and AAP leader Soni Sori with an acid-like black chemical near a village in Chhattisgarh’s Dantewada district.

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