Staff Reporter

CHENNAI: KG Foundation, which runs several educational, religious and healthcare institutions such as KG Hospital in Coimbatore, has announced the launch of "a crusade against childhood blindness in 2006."

K. Govindaswamy Naidu founded the Foundation and President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam launched the crusade. The hospital has so far performed 1,000 free eye surgeries on children. Under the `KG crusade' school students are screened for eye diseases and later offered all surgical procedures and treatments free.

In aid of this crusade, the Foundation is organising a music festival at Music Academy in Chennai on Monday evening, along with Viji Global Arts and Subramaniam Foundation. State Bank of India is supporting the event.

The festival will feature violinists L. Subramaniam and Ambi Subramaniam, santoor maestro Pandit Shiv Kumar Sharma and vocalist Kavita Krishnamurti Subramaniam.

A 77-year-old violinist from Israel, Ivry Giitlis, will also participate in the event.