First medical collaboration between India and Pakistan March 28, 2007

Amritsar - 23 March 2007- After 60 years of bitterness following the Indo-Pak partition for the first time India and Pakistan collaborated in the medical facilities sector .
Dr Daljit Singh a renowned Eye surgeon and Director Daljit Singh Eye Hospital, Amritsar laid the foundation stone of Nankana Medical Complex in Pakistan, recently.

Dr Daljit Singh talking to the press said that the 'NQ Khan Eye medical centre' a part of the medical complex -would be a befitting tribute to Guru Nanak Dev the founder of Sikh religion at his birthplace Nankana Sahib.

"This is perhaps for the first time that collaboration between medical experts of India and Pakistan have set up a venture of such mammoth proportions to offer low cost medical facilities in Pakistan" he said .

Medical facilities as well as the cost of medicines are prohibitively expensive for a common man in Pakistan, he added.

Dr Daljit Singh said his team of doctors including Dr Ravijit Singh , Dr Indu R Singh , Dr Seema and Dr Kiranjit Singh were applying for multiple and all-time visas to Pakistan so that they may be able to perform surgeries, disseminate latest techniques and mobilize eye surgeons within their country to offer services at nominal cost to their people .

Apart from that the local hospital here would also try to promote availability of equipment, materials and machines to the medical complex.

The complex has been sponsored and executed by the Pakistan Eye Foundation headed by Prof TH Kirmani president of SAARC foundation, on one acre of land donated by Mr Fazal Rabbani,a landlord . Prof Kirmani had pointed out that this project would symbolize a unique humanitarian cooperation among the SAARC nations and would help to build a strong bond between people of both countries.

In addition to this the local hospital aimed to exchange experts, technical manpower and strengthen existing training programmes in Pakistan.

The complex would be built in a phased manner at the expense of Rs three crores over a time period of three years with Operation Theatres, two OPDs, Eye bank and Eye-screening clinics.

Apart from this, regular free eye camps in schools besides community services, survey in entire Sheikhupura district , out-reach programmes for rural poor with free eye treatment to deserving besides bringing technical advancements of treatment of eye diseases was the aim of this venture.

He further revealed that the Nankana Sahib was one of the most backward areas and reports of eye diseases were abounding in the region .Even the cost of medicines procured from developed countries are astronomically expensive in Pakistan. Therefore they aimed to promote the export of medicines from India which would be affordable and mitigate the suffering and poverty caused by eye diseases and blindness.

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