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Ex-cop on mission to give gift of light

Chandigarh : For a better part of his career, retired Assistant Sub-Inspector of Police Balwinder Bhattal — along with police equipment — carried a pair of crooked scissors, scalp, sponges and preservative cases with him.
A box containing these is placed next to his bed at night also. No, as the impression of a policeman goes, these are not tools for third-degree torture, but are life-giving in nature. The tools are means to remove eyes from deceased donors and give vision to the blind. There may be many policemen indulging in social work like blood donation or spreading awareness about organ donation, but Bhattal is not happy just with lecturing others.
He is probably the only policemen around who is an expert in removing the eye through proper medical procedure, preserving it and delivering it in time to hospitals.
Retired for three years, the police uniform is gone but the medical box continues to be his constant companion.
“It is race against time. When I started it way back in 1998, I was told the eye has to be delivered within two hours. Now they say it has to be done within six hours,” Bhattal recalls.
A baptised Sikh, he used to distribute free medicines to needy patients coming for treatment to the village dispensary at Bhanot near Ludhiana.

About Jatin Kamboj