Delhi hosts walkathon for public awareness on cancer

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New Delhi, Feb.7 (ANI): To raise public awareness about cancer, a large number of people of Delhi took to the streets on Sunday morning for a walkathon.

Organised by 'Can Support', a non-governmental organization working for cancer patients, the 'Walk For Life' event witnessed participators belonging to different walks of life coming out for a social cause.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's wife Gursharan Kaur and Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit, flagged off the four-kilometre walk that started from Vinay Marg in Delhi.

U.S. Ambassador David Mulford, who came along with his wife Jeannie, a breast cancer survivor herself, joined the activists along with eminent celebrities like veteran Bollywood actress and Censor Board head, Sharmila Tagore, actor Rahul Bose and fashion designer Ritu Kumar.

The walkathon was organised with an aim to raise funds for free supportive care services for cancer patients in India.

The event also saw many cancer survivors walk shoulder-to-shoulder to send out the message that there is life after cancer.

The 'Walk For Life is an annual affair and every year lots of enthusiasts take part in it.

"In India, cancer is on the rise and most underprivileged people when they come to the hospital are already in the advanced stage. So, this particular group CanSupport, brings medicines to their houses, make sure there is a home-care team, with collaborative effort nurses, doctors, counsellors and they try. They try and make the last few days of the patient happy and pain-free as possible," said Tagore.

A strong supporter of the cause, actor Rahul Bose, reiterated the importance of living and dying with dignity.

"I believe that the biggest thing that CanSupport understands is to allow people to live with dignity and allow people to die with dignity. I think the sense of dignity is something that CanSupport understands," Bose said.

There are approximately 2.5 million people living with cancer in India and around one million new cases are reported every year.

Lung cancer is very common amongst men in cities like Bhopal, Delhi, Mumbai, Ahmedabad and Kolkata, while stomach cancer is prevalent in Bangalore and Chennai.

Prostrate cancer is also one of the leading cause of death amongst Indian men, and in women, common types are cancers of the breast and cervix. (ANI)

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