Out of the 10 million blind people in India, over 2 million Indians are affected by corneal blindness, and 60% of them are below the age of 12. This could be due to corneal disease, injury or infection where the cornea of the eye becomes opaque. A person with an opaque cornea cannot see, this condition is known as corneal blindness.
Corneal transplantation is the only known cure for corneal blindness, requiring a significant number of eye donations. However, due to a lack of awareness, along with myths and fears associated with eye donation, these numbers remain considerably low. The current cornea collection in India can only meet the needs of one-fourth of the patients. Dr Sunita Chaurasia, Medical Director of The Ramayamma International Eye Bank at the L V Prasad Eye Institute in Hyderabad, emphasized this gap during the commencement of the 38th National Eye Donation Fortnight. She stated, 'We urge people to pledge for eye donation and help bridge this gap.'