New Delhi: Sanduk Ruit, a Nepalese eye surgeon educated in India, was Monday conferred with the first Reader's Digest Asian of the Year award.
Ruit has conducted over 70,000 surgeries for cataract, considered to be the main reason of blindness in the subcontinent.
"It is an apt award for a man of his stature. India and the Indian subcontinent need his service," Indian Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss said about the 54-year-old surgeon at the award ceremony here.
Ruit has been working for the cause of eliminating blindness for 20 years and has been active in the northeastern states of India and northern Bihar. He has also been working in his homeland Nepal, Thailand, China and many other countries of Asia.
The eye surgeon did his graduate studies at Lucknow's King George Medical College and postgraduate studies at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) here.
Said Jim Plouffe, the Asia Editor of the 85-year-old magazine Reader's Digest: "Ruit is such an amazing personality about whom the whole subcontinent can feel proud of."
Ruit was chosen for the Ramon Magsaysay Award for International Understanding last year.