How the first green corridor was created in Kolkata for organ transplant
Sergeant Rajkiran Shaw escorts VIPs almost every day. But on Thursday night he was guiding life.
At 12.47am, when Shaw’s red gypsy was speeding down EM Bypass, his eyes kept shifting between his wrist watch and the rear-view mirror. He was in a hurry but not to transport a VIP but deliver life in the form of a kidney to a recipient at SSKM Hospital.
"Every second was precious. The doctors were monitoring our movement. All the arrangements had been made and the patient was waiting for the kidney which I was responsible to deliver safely," said Shaw, 31 who did two sorties --- both in almost 13 minutes --- between Apollo Gleneagles and SSKM Hospital to deliver a kidney and liver.
Shaw was not alone. From cops to drivers, from doctors to their support staff, several individuals came together on Thursday evening to retrieve, transport and transplant human organs to gift lives to three individuals and hope to their families.
A team of doctors led by eminent uro-surgeon Subhas Gupta flew in from Delhi at around 7.30pm and reached Apollo Gleneagles.
By then, surgeons from SSKM Hospital had started retrieving both of Swarnendu Roy’s kidneys. Uro-surgeon Vinay Mahendra, general surgeon JB Roy and their team then got busy transplanting one of them at Apollo on recipient Ruby Sardar. The other kidney was put into a custodial fluid inside an ice box and kept ready for transportation to SSKM. It left Apollo at 12.47 am and reached the SSKM Hospital in just 13 minutes.
The team of SSKM surgeons then started retrieving the liver. They finished around 2.14 am and the organ was put into the transporting vehicle at 2.24 am. It reached SSKM at 2.34 am. Gupta and his team of 25 walked into the SSKM Hospital operation theatre at around 5am for the transplantation surgery on recipient Sanjukta Mondol. The surgery came to an end at 11 am on Friday morning.
"Our team of surgeons led by Subhas Gupta had flown in from Delhi for the liver transplantation that was done at SSKM Hospital. The latter’s surgeons did the retrieval of organs from the donor at Apollo. Above all, it was the health administration and the police who chipped in with their support, paving the way for a 'green corridor' without which the organs could not have been transported so quickly and the transplantations may not have happened," said Rupali Basu, CEO, Apollo Gleneagles.
The transportation of the organs was as important.
At 5pm on Thursday, Tanmay Upadhyay was getting ready to manage peak hour traffic when his mobile phone rang.
Five minutes later Upadhyay, officer-in-charge of the Ultadanga Traffic guard, summoned his senior officers to his chamber and told them to get ready for an assignment probably no police officer in West Bengal had done so far.
"By 7pm we had a plan in place. Our pilot car and officers reached Apollo Hospital and established contact with the doctors. The officers of the other traffic guards were out on the road in a few hours. Just before the first sortie, we stopped Garia bound vehicles so that there is no vehicle infront of the convoy to slow it down. By the grace of god, we were successful," said Upadhyay.
The convoy carrying the organs took Ma flyover and then crossed Circus Avenue to take the AJC Bose Road flyover. The distance of almost 17 kilometres was covered in 13 minutes.
The 31-year-old sergeant did realise that he was becoming a part of history. "In my heart I was constantly praying that I reach on time so that somebody gets a life. After I accomplished my job, I felt a deep sense of satisfaction within," said Shaw.