The car yatra is to raise awareness about spinal injury prevention

Nepalese Journalist and civil rights activist Kanak Mani Dixit will undertake a car yatra from Nepal to Pakistan via India to raise awareness about spinal injury prevention and rehabilitation in the subcontinent.

Mr. Dixit plans to use donations collected during the journey to expand the capacity of the Spinal Centre, Nepal. He fractured his spine after a hiking accident a decade ago.

The journey in a 1973-model VW Beetle will start from Kathmandu Valley on November 4 and its major pit stops will be at hospitals specialising in spinal injuries.

Coming down to the plains, the car will enter Uttar Pradesh and journey westward to arrive at the Indian Spinal Injuries Centre in Delhi.

Travelling along the Grand Trunk Road, it will pass through Amritsar and the Wagah-Atari border to reach Mayo Hospital in Lahore. It will then take the motorway to Islamabad and end its journey at the Paraplegic Centre in Peshawar on November 16.

Mr. Dixit has driven the “Spinal Beetle'' twice to Dhaka, to a “generous response”.

Financial crunch

Besides the need to raise awareness about spinal injuries, “the sudden rise of the number of patients over the last year has forced us to raise our service from 39 beds to 51. This has led to an unexpected financial crunch. The rally will help meet the challenge of growth even as we make plans for sustainability,'' he said in a press note.

Correction

The Hindu had reported on October 30 that eminent journalist Mr. Kanak Mani Dixit was on a cross-South Asian car yatra to raise awareness on spinal injury prevention and treatment. The report stated that Mr. Dixit, “himself a paraplegic after a hiking accident fractured his spine a decade ago, plans to use donations collected during the journey to expand the capacity of the Spinal Centre, Nepal.” While Mr. Dixit did indeed suffer an injury, he is not a paraplegic. The error is regretted.

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