After Tamil Nadu, Karnataka to accord state honours to organ donors

Karnataka Health Minister Dinesh Gundu Rao has instructed officials to frame a policy to grant state recognition to organ donors.

BySumit Jha

Published Nov 03, 2023 | 2:29 PMUpdatedNov 03, 2023 | 3:10 PM

After Tamil Nadu, Karnataka to accord state honours to organ donors

Karnataka’s Health and Family Welfare Minister Dinesh Gundu Rao has instructed officials to frame a policy to accord state recognition to organ donors.

The government is also exploring the possibility of issuing certificates to individuals or families who donate organs, besides arranging for state-sanctioned funeral ceremonies for organ donors, similar to the model implemented in Tamil Nadu.

Tamil Nadu in September decided to lay to rest organ donors with state honours.

“The state (Karnataka) government is contemplating the recognition and appreciation of individuals and families who selflessly contribute to saving lives through organ donation, without expecting anything in return,” Gundu Rao said.

“The government is considering issuing certificates to those who donate organs and organising funerals with state honours for organ donors, following the Tamil Nadu model. As part of this initiative, the government will soon formulate a policy aimed at raising awareness about the significance of organ donation and promoting greater participation in this noble cause,” he added.

In 2022, Karnataka witnessed 837 organ donations. Among these, the highest number of donations were of kidneys, with 232 instances of live kidney donations and 291 cases of cadaver donations. Additionally, there were 127 live donations and 124 cadaver liver donations.

The state also reported 46 heart donations, 13 lung donations, and four pancreas donations. It is noteworthy that Karnataka ranks sixth in organ donations in the country, with Delhi leading the nation.

Also read: Meet India’s youngest living organ donor, who saved her father

Tamil Nadu leads the way

On 23 September this year, the Tamil Nadu government announced that the organ donors would be laid to rest with state honours.

“Through the mechanism of organ donation, Tamil Nadu continues to illuminate the nation, offering a lifeline to hundreds of patients grappling with various illnesses,” said Chief Minister MK Stalin while announcing the decision on X (formerly Twitter).

“By gifting their organs, paying homage to the spirit of sacrifice, and celebrating the act of protecting lives, these donors have reshaped the government’s approach to the final stages of the organ donation process. The last rites of those who selflessly provide organs for others will now be conducted with enhanced government respect and honour,” he added.

Following the announcement a 43-year-old man who was declared brain-dead and had his organs harvested for donation was posthumously accorded state honours in the Theni district of Tamil Nadu.

Also read: India’s 1st organ transplant public hospital coming up at NIMHANS