Cultural performances by cancer survivors to mark the National Cancer Survivors Day in Visakhapatnam

A girl will sing, a man will present a humour show and a lady will perform Kolatam at the Port’s Kalavani auditorium on Sunday. They are not doing so at a cultural programme held on a Sunday but are survivors of cancer who are back to their normal routine after successfully warding off the terminal disease.

What makes it totally different from a routine cultural programme is that the girl was forced to stop singing due to cancer in her larynx, the man could not continue with his weekly humour shows and a lady who was expert in Kolatam had to put a halt to her favourite pastime. That was till they were cured of cancer. They and many other cancer survivors are performing on Sunday to instil a belief in cancer patients and also the general public that cancer is curable and one does not have to wait for the end to come to him or her.

As many as 1,000 patients who have been totally cured of cancer were invited to participate in the programme, being organised to mark the National Cancer Survivors Day and at least 600 of them, along with their attendants are expected to participate, managing director and surgical oncologist of Mahatma Gandhi Cancer Hospital and Research Institute Muralikrishna Voonna said here on Friday. All the patients and their attendants are being provided fare, food and accommodation.

“We have browsed the web and found that only 50 to 100 cancer survivors attended such meetings held at even major hospitals in the world. We hope the Sunday meeting will be the biggest”, Dr. Muralikrishna said.

After the inaugural session starting at 10 a.m. in which Collector V. Sheshadri participates as chief guest along with VUDA Vice-Chairman N. Yuvaraj, the rest of the show will witness cancer survivors or their family members presenting dances, skits and other cultural programmes. They also recount their encounter with the dreaded disease and how they could overcome it. This programme was expected to make people know that advanced treatment was available for cancer and patients could lead a normal life, he said.

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