AGARTALA, March 16 (IANS): Tripura has maintained its top position for the sixth consecutive year in voluntary blood donation in the country, Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar said here Sunday.
"Of the total requirement of blood during the current financial year (2013-14), 99 percent was collected through voluntary donation till last month. With the end of the year (financial year) in March, it would be 100 percent," Sarkar said at a blood donation camp organised by the Agartala Press Club.
He said: "If we use clean blood, we would be able to check contagious diseases and such efforts would also save precious lives."
According to National Aids Control Organisation, only five states in India have the distinction of over 80 percent blood collection through voluntary donation against the national average of 55 to 60 percent. The states are Tripura, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Punjab and Maharashtra.
Sarkar, 65, who has donated blood six times so far, said of the total requirement of 26,541 units between March 2013 and February 2014, 26,240 units of blood was collected through voluntary donation.
Saying that the voluntary blood donation movement became a festival in Tripura, the chief minister urged young people to generously donate blood to save lives.
"Since 2006, a total of 28 pairs of eyes were deposited by voluntary donors and these were successfully implanted in 23 people, who can now see the world. We (Tripura) wish to become number one in voluntary eye donation too," Sarkar said.