Saturday, August 1, 2009

NRI donates 90,000 pounds for bowel cancer research in UK

LONDON: A 73-year-old Indian origin philanthropist has donated 90,000 pounds collected after an 800 km fund-rising walk for bowel cancer research here.

Balwant Singh Grewal, popularly known as 'Bobby Grewal' handed over to the money to St Marks Hospital Foundation after his 800-km marathon walk last year.

Grewal born in Punjab, migrated to Britain in 1958, had earlier donated 80,000 pounds to the Foundation after his walk from Scottish Parliament building to the House of Commons in London.

He had earlier also walked from Amritsar to Kanyakumari in India raising 50,000 pounds for bowel cancer research.

At a function organised yesterday to celebrate the success of his walk, Grewal, president of the India Association, said "I feel like walking to the summit of Mount Everest, across the Sahara from Morocco to Egypt and to Antarctic to raise funds for the charity.

"My dream will be a reality soon," he added. The septuagenarian's ambition is to raise 1 million pounds for research into bowel cancer and other bowel diseases for the St Mark's Hospital, Harrow, only specialist bowel disorder hospital in UK.

Bowel cancer refers to cancerous growth of cells in parts of large intestine, appendix and rectum.
A keen sportsman, Grewal at the age of 68 ran the London marathon in just over five hours in 2004. He also completed a walk covering 2,500 miles across India from Amritsar to Kanyakumari to raise funds.

Prominent among those present on the occasion were Baroness Sandip Verma, Dr Rami Ranger, leading NRI entrepreneur, Dominic Grieve, QC, MP, Shadow Justice Secretary and Prof Colin Green, Professor of Surgical Science at St Marks Hospital.