45-year-old Rekha Gupta battled with cancer for eight long years -- without losing hope to survive and without detaching herself from the society. Now, completely recovered, Gupta was seen happily participating in the 10th annual Delhi Walk for Life on Sunday.
"It was tough for me to fight against cancer. It was painful to go through the whole process but I am cured now. Cancer cannot be allowed to win over us, people should maintain the fighting spirit. I am here against all odds," Gupta, who was at the walk for the second time, told IANS.
With the aim to create an awareness among people about cancer, the Walk for Life, an initiative by NGO CanSuppot, saw thousands of people coming out early Sunday morning at Rajpath to extend their solidarity for the cause.
Like Gupta, many other survivors participated -- like the 15-year-old Kulesh Kumar, who said: "This is the first time I am here and I feel happy to be part of the event. I don't feel ashamed of talking about cancer nor do I feel neglected by the society."
"Cancer can be defeated if we stop fearing it," said Bollywood actress Manisha Koirala, herself a cancer survivor.
"Do not lose hope even if you are diagnosed with it. People often fear visiting clinics or going through check-ups but that is not the solution to stop cancer growth," she noted.
"Detecting cancer at an early stage will help to get better treatment as medical facilities have improved a lot," said Manisha, who has overcome the disease, at the event.
"CanSupport helps ease the suffering and turmoil of patients and families coping with advanced illness that threatens their dignity and quality of life," Harmala Gupta, founder of CanSupport and herself a cancer survivor, said at the event.
"With events like this, we try to spread awareness about cancer and tell the patients not to lose faith in living," she added.