‘Kashmira Singh is God for me… I will worship him along with Lord Ganesha from now on’

Ever since her husband was diagnosed with a kidney ailment,life had not been easy for Rajni (name changed).

Written by TANBIR DHALIWAL | Chandigarh | Published: August 12, 2013 2:09 am

Ever since her husband was diagnosed with a kidney ailment,life had not been easy for Rajni (name changed). With repeated dialysis getting riskier for her husband,Rajni had been waiting for almost five years to find a kidney donor with a compatible blood group. On August 4,her prayers were finally answered when the family of brain-dead Kashmira Singh decided to donate his organs.

“Kashmira Singh is God for me. From now on,I will worship him along with Lord Ganesha,” a visibly emotional Rajni told Chandigarh Newsline. “My husband is a heart patient and a diabetic too. Due to high doses of medicines,his kidney became weak. The only solution before us was a kidney transplant,as every dialysis was risky for him.”

Rajni is not the only one feeling this way. “My sister was very healthy but after she developed an infection in her kidneys,it has become difficult to even recognise her,” said Rajesh Singh (name changed),the brother of 35-year-old Rakhi (name changed) who received Kashmira Singh’s second kidney. “She had been to various places like Hyderabad,Chennai,Ahmedabad and other states for her treatment. But at last my brother-in-law brought her to PGI. It was here,after years of wait,that she got her transplant done. I never knew how important the organs of a brain-dead person can be. It is now that I am realising the importance of organ donation.”

August 4,the day when five surgeries transplanted Kashmira Singh’s five organs into five people,was also the day PGIMER conducted its first-ever heart transplant surgery. “My husband had been under treatment at Advanced Cardiac Centre of PGI for the last four years. As per doctors,the only solution was heart transplant,” said the wife (name withheld) of the Ambala-based patient who received Kashmira Singh’s heart.

“His condition became critical and he remained in PGI for 15 days. We waited for a donor but could not find one. On August 3,doctors asked us to go back home and wait for a donor. I was shattered as the last hope of saving my husband was diminishing. I cried all the way back home,but God had some other plans for us. After two hours of reaching home,I got a call from PGI that they had found a donor,” she recounted,with tears welling up in her eyes.

“The moment we reached PGI I saw Kashmira Singh’s wife. At that time,I could not utter a word,but I would keep thanking her for the rest of my life. Singh’s family members are angels for me and my family,” she added.

In addition to Kashmira Singh’s heart and kidneys,his eyes have also lighted up the lives of two women: 35-year-old Sheila (name changed) from Himachal and 74-year-old Maya Malhotra (name changed),a resident of Chandigarh.

Visually impaired from both of her eyes,it was very difficult for Maya Malhotra to do her routine work. “What can be more dreadful than losing eyesight. I was handicapped without my vision,I could not live alone and needed some one to accompany me every time,” she told Chandigarh Newsline.

Her life has now changed after the cornea transplant operation. “Now everything is clear and I can see things clearly around me. Those who donated the eyes are not less than angels for me. They have done a great deed.”

Around 15-20 people are declared brain-dead at PGIMER every month. But instances of the likes of Kashmira Singh are extremely rare.

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