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Salesian Intervention Sees Eye Surgery Miracle After 33 Months

By C.M. Paul
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Kolkata, Siliguri, Aug. 20. ''If it was not for Father U P Sebastian and Father Mathew George, and the kindness of Madam Petra, the miracle of the restoration of my eyesight would never have happened,'' said Darshan Oraon, a 21-year-old youngster after the eye surgery. Darshan hailing from Oodlabari tea gardens in North Bengal had to undergo surgery for his eye for an injury of 33 months old. His insatiable desire to learn to ride a motorbike ended in a tragedy when a speeding motorbike hit him from behind, throwing him off the road and causing severe injury to his face and eye on that ill-fated day in December 2018.
His friends took him to the Maxillofacial Department of Calcutta Medical College. In the Kolkata city hospital, Darshan and his friends had to run around from counter to counter for urgent medical attention. Finally, a doctor who pitied the North Bengal youth attended to the injuries and sent him back home, telling him to wait for a call from the hospital for the corrective surgery. However, that wait lasted for 33 months until the Salesians came to know about his plight.

Assistant Parish Priest of Don Bosco Parish Oodalabari Father Sebastian, aged 74, came upon Darshan, a sales boy at a mobile shop with a bandage on his left eye and drew his attention. Wanting to help Darshan, Father Sebastian contacted Father Mathew George, who works in Kolkata, to see if he could find some generous sponsor towards the expenses for the corrective surgery costing around two lakhs of rupees. Father George contacted Petra Theiner, the Founder of the organization, 'Hope for a Better Tomorrow,' in Sudtirol, Italy, for financial assistance and generously came forward to fund the surgery. Earlier, Petra had sponsored the fitting of artificial limbs on 12 people from North Bengal who lost one or both legs in accidents.

Darshan was operated on August 6, 2021, and discharged on August 8. For his post-surgery recovery period, Darshan stayed at Don Bosco Nitika, Kolkata, for almost a week. After removing the stitches, Darshan left Kolkata by train on August 13 and reached back home on the following day to join his former job as a front desk salesperson on the mobile phone.

Darshan lives with his ageing and ailing grandmother as his parents abandoned him at different points in time.
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