New Delhi: The government is putting in place a nationwide social movement to motivate more people to join the blood donation movement, Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said on Wednesday.
"By donating a unit of blood a year a person can get more blessings than by going to a place of worship," he said.
He was addressing more than 2,000 school children and other volunteers on the occasion of the National Voluntary Blood Donation Day.
He said the government is putting in place a nationwide social movement to motivate more people to join the endeavour to bridge the demand-supply gap in blood.
The minister said that contrary to popular perception, a person's health does not deteriorate after donating blood.
Regular blood donation is a reliable way of updating oneself on one's health condition. It secures a person from heart attacks and cancer. It is a good way of burning calories and moreover gives the supreme satisfaction of saving lives, he added.
"We have a shortfall of 2-3 million units per year in India. Through enhanced voluntarism we can easily make up the deficit. Till date, 84 percent of the requirement of safe blood has been fulfilled. We must take it to 100 percent soon," he said.
The minister also flagged off a rally at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium to create awareness about blood donation.
The rally comprised volunteers from different educational institutions, NSS volunteers, regular repeat voluntary blood donors, voluntary blood organisations and blood bank officers promoting the cause of voluntary blood donation.
The theme of the rally was: "Run for the Little Red Dot Power".