Indian fashion's charitable season
It's Santa Claus season for Indian fashion as designers do a good turn using their style prowess to gather funds for causes.
By Hindol Sengupta, IANS
Two of the most prominent people doing this are the fashion house of Satya Paul and designer Raghavendra Rathore.
Satya Paul has roped in Bollywood star Sanjay Dutt to help in its fundraiser fashion shows to collect money for breast cancer patients.
"Both Sanjay Dutt's mother and first wife died of cancer, so he feels for the cause and he is genuinely a very philanthropic man," Sanjay Kapoor, managing director of Satya Paul, told IANS.
Rathore is doing a special series of T-shirts to help promote eye donation. "I feel very strongly about this cause," said Rathore, adding that the money from the sale of the T-shirts would go towards eye donation campaigns.
"I want to make this an annual feature of our. Sight is a great blessing. Everything that we are and can be is due to our vision."
India has an estimated 12 million people who are blind in both eyes and eight million blind in one eye - this is about one fourth of the total number of blind people in the world.
This means 14.9 out of every 1,000 people in India are blind compared to just three per 1,000 in the developed countries. Blindness in most cases is avoidable that is, either preventable or curable.
"I want to spread the message that giving an eye is opening up new horizons and a new life for people," said Rathore.
Satya Paul fundraisers would be held in New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Bangalore to spread awareness about the easily curable but often neglected disease.
Satya Paul has joined hands with The Women's Cancer Initiative-Tata Memorial Hospital of Mumbai for the project.
Called Think Pink, the project is the brainchild of Mumbai socialite and philanthropist Devieka Bhojwani, who battled with breast cancer and is now fully cured.
"When the doctor first told me that I had cancer, I was devastated. Traditionally, cancer is seen as the end of a life, but in my case it was the beginning of a new one," said Bhojwani.
According to estimates by the Tata Medical Hospital, one in 30 women in India fall in the high-risk category of being affected by the disease and around 40 percent of the Indian women today suffer from breast cancer.
Pink is the international colour for the cause of breast cancer and the collection of polkas and geometric designs is structured around pink in shades of salmon, coral, hot pink, fuschia, blush, flesh, flush and rose in crepes and georgettes.
"In Mumbai we are selling passes for the show. Everywhere else, it's donor cards for people to give what they want," said Kapoor.
Satya Paul looks to support one social cause every year. Next year it might be environment. "I'm very concerned about the state of the environment, so perhaps we'll look at that," said Kapoor.