Mr. Anant Acharya
Wearing a hot pink dhoti and a T-shirt I entered the Sree Kanteerava Stadium, Bengaluru in the early morning hours of May 21, 2023 to promote Organ Donation.
The World 10K Bengaluru (known as the TCS World 10K Bengaluru by Tata Consultancy Services (TCS)) is an annual 10 kilometres road running competition. It has various category like 10 Km open timed run, 5km Majja run, 5 Km senior citizen run & Champions with Disability run.
I participated in the Majja Run 5km category which is a participative, non-timed category fun run. Runners are encouraged to wear costumes and promote a social cause in this category. Post my kidney transplant I have been participating in many 5km runs, I was thrilled to RUN for a cause in a costume. I was gifted a T-shirt from MOHAN foundation with a placard with the promotion of “Organ Donation” message. I matched that with a hot pink dhoti and Mysuru Peta (traditional head gear) of Kannadigas.
Thousands of runners were geared up for this event and were ready for the flag off. I started running and saw some other enthusiastic runners in different costumes sensitising the running community about Child labour, The Right to Education, Importance of CPR (Cardiopulmonary resuscitation), one runner was dressed up as Lord Shankar. Beauty of the mesmerizing morning run was the route that went through Cubbon Park and in front of Vidhana Soudha. TCS had ensured that at every 1 km interval there were water, snacks and juice’s dispensers for the runners. Jaya Jairam and Hemal Kanvinde of MOHAN Foundation encouraged me to participate and guided me to promote this activity via my ambassador activity. I finished my 5km run in 38 min 23 secs.
Today’s run was fun! It was so nice to talk to runners and hear about their recent runs. I also met a few people from non-profit organizations, which was really interesting.
I collected my finishers medals and snacks, and then started interacting with other runners and talking about organ donation. They were delighted to know that I’m a kidney recipient, but they wanted to know more about how it works! I told them everything—how it happened, what happened to me after the operation, and how it was so important that they donate or pledge their organs if they ever need to.
I met several people who were interested in learning more about organ donation—not only because they had just completed a 5k run themselves, but also because they were planning on running another one or two in the same area soon. They even asked me if there was any way that they could help with the cause by donating their time or resources (which is something we do all the time!).