Walking the thin red line

 thehindu.com  11/21/2020 05:34:34  2

Long hours of traffic regulation does not deter A. Purushotaman, a traffic head constable at Adyar, from doing that extra bit. He has gone beyond his call of duty and started a blood donation network in the city, called Police Blood Donation Group, to help pregnant women, infants, children afflicted with cancer and families of policemen.

We have seen families of policemen struggle to arrange blood. Furthermore, during our duty, we have taken many accident victims, pregnant women and children to hospitals, and I am keenly aware of the importance of having blood available for transfusion on time. Hence, I started this network. I have also requested a few other policemen to start similar groups in other districts, so we will be able to help more people, says Mr. Purushotaman, a body-builder, who has won the Mr. Tamil Nadu title and a silver medal at the national police meet.

In the last fortnight, a one-and-a-half-year-old boy, a four-day-old child and two pregnant women across the State have been helped by policemen in the group.

He says the group operates through a message-sharing platform. There are 500 policemen who are members in the Chennai group. Across the State, there are over 6,000, says Mr. Purushotaman, who donated blood last week.

Once a member posts blood requirements in the group with the contact number, the message is cross-checked. Thereafter, we coordinate with the policemen in the respective district and then our volunteers visit the hospital and donate blood, explains Mr. Purushotaman.

One of the persons helped by this group is R. Chitra from a village near Salem. She has been bringing her one-and-a-half-year-old son Sarveshwaran to the Institute of Child Health, Egmore, for blood transfusion. During this trip, A. Vijayakumar, a highway patrol head constable from Madhavaram, donated blood for her child on time, and she is grateful for his help.

My child has been in need of blood transfusions since he was five months old, and we come to the hospital every month. I was happy to get support from policemen in a city that I am not familiar with, she says.

Mr. Vijayakumar says that while he is used to donating blood, being part of the police network makes things much easier.

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