Address by Governor at the Golden Jubilee Celebrations of Cancer Patients Aid Association
Address by Shri CH. Vidyasagar Rao, Governor of Maharashtra at the Golden Jubilee Celebrations of Cancer Patients Aid Association at Raj Bhavabn, Mumbai at 11 AM on Thursday, 28th March 2019
Shri Y K Sapru, Founder Chairman and CEO, Cancer Patients Aid Association, Smt Swati Pandey, Post Master General, Mumbai Region, office bearers of Mumbai Region of the Postal Department, volunteers and office bearers of the Cancer Patients Aid Association, invitees, ladies and gentlemen,
At the outset, I extend a warm welcome to each one of you to Raj Bhavan.
I am delighted to associate myself with this meaningful programme to celebrate the completion of 50 glorious years of service to society by the Cancer Patients Aid Association.
It is only appropriate that a Postal Cover and Postal Stamp are being released to mark the occasion.
Completion of fifty years of service is indeed a moment of joy and satisfaction, not just for the Association, but also for more than one million cancer patients and their near and dear ones, whose lives were impacted, by the Cancer Patients Aid Association during its journey of 5 decades.
I am happy that the Founder of the Association Shri Y.K Sapru is present in our midst today. He deserves our wholehearted compliments and kudos for his sustained commitment and good work in bringing a smile on the face of cancer patients, cancer survivors, children of cancer survivors and others.
I understand that the Cancer Patients Aid Association has constantly expanded its vision and strived to address the cause of the increase in cancer cases in India. It has complimented the work being done by Oncologists, Medical Practitioners, Hospitals and social service organisations.
I was pleased to note that CPAA has focused on education, research and awareness, early detection, cancer insurance, support to treatment, guidance and counseling and rehabilitation. In a way it has been working for the Total Management of Cancer.
Cancer is India’s second largest killer disease. It is estimated that 2.25 million people in India live with cancer. The World Health Organization research states that eleven lakh new cancer patients will be diagnosed and that there will be about 8 lakh cancer related deaths this year.
According to another report, cancer burden in India has more than doubled over the last three decades.
The government has laid down four priority cancers – breast cancer, cervical cancer, oral cancer, and lung cancer which together constitute 41 per cent of cancer burden.
While oral Cancer is among the top three cancers in India and number one among all cancers in men; Breast cancer is currently the most common cancer among Indian women.
We need renewed efforts to encourage people to stop consumption of tobacco. You will be surprised to know that even school going children in many parts of the country have been addicted to chewing gutkha and tobacco in one form or the other.
Apart from the economic cost of cancer treatment, which in many cases, ruins the families of affected patients financially; the physiological, emotional and psychological consequences of cancer are immense and long term.
Early detection is therefore crucial in addressing the problem. However, people approach the doctor when the disease has already spread its tentacles.
Nearly 60 per cent patients with breast cancers are diagnosed in advanced stages.
I do feel that there should be regular screening of all citizens once in five years, if not 3 years, to detect cancer and other diseases.
Today, fortunately we have advanced technologies, ranging from artificial intelligence and machine-learning to thermal imaging etc.to diagnose cancers.
We will have to involve public and private sector organizations to make early detection technologies accessible and affordable to people living in all parts of the country, and especially to women.
I wish and hope that the Association will chalk out a Vision Document to address the emerging cancer challenge in the country with preparedness and with participation of people and corporates.
As my appreciation of the work of the Cancer Patients Aid Association, I am making a donation of Rs. One Lakh to CPAA for its noble work.
I congratulate the Association on this momentous occasion and wish you all Godspeed in your future endeavours.
Jai Hind ! Jai Maharashtra !!