Andaz Mera Nirala, a sold-out show in New Jersey raises funds for free eye surgeries

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The non-profit, Sankara Eye Foundation, raised more than $10,000 at a June 9, fundraiser at the Stuart Country Day School Auditorium in Princeton, N.J. The event was themed “Andaz Mera Nirala,” where performers included Sachin Raje and Ajita Chaoji who took the audience on a journey through the golden era of Bollywood.

Raje and Chaoji capped their performance with a duet “Aap Ki Ankhon Mein,” apart from many other hits like Paradesi (Mr. Natwarlal), Tere do Nayan (Choti Si Baat), Yeh Kaha Agaye Hum (Silsila) and Ek do teen (Tezab).

The funds raised go towards free eye surgeries at Sankara Eye Foundation hospitals in India, organizers said. That evening’s funds will support 350 free eye surgeries to benefit those in rural areas most in need of help, a press release from SEF said. New York Life and Mass Mutual sponsored the event.

Established in the Bay Area, SEF is a non-profit organization working to help rural poor in India get rid of curable blindness. The SEF has established eight community hospitals as well as two city hospitals in India and is set to inaugurate their ninth community hospital in Jaipur Rajasthan. It is in the process of launching three other hospitals in Indore, Mumbai, and Hyderabad. Eighty percent of those who are helped by Sankara are from rural areas and unable to afford the surgery. That amounts to some 145,000 people per year. To date, SEF has helped 1.5 million people receive the gift of vision free of cost, the organization says.

For more information, www.giftofvision.org

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