Sunil Gavaskar
Sunil Gavaskar titled as the 'Stroke Ambassador for India' by the Indian Stroke Association at an inaugural function of 10th World Stroke Congress (WSC).Reuters

Former cricketer Sunil Gavaskar was named the 'Stroke Ambassador for India' by the Indian Stroke Association in Hyderabad. World Stroke Day is celebrated every year on October 29, but India is observing the campaign for the first time.

"In my cricketing career spanning many years I was looking for strokes to score more runs. But, as I grow up and get old, there is one stroke I am afraid of, and it may disable me or finish my innings. That is the brain stroke," Gavaskar stated in a video message broadcasted for the delegates.

Gavaskar expressed his happiness after being nominated as the 'Stroke Ambassador for India'. His responsibilities as an ambassador would include spreading awareness among people about heart stroke being treatable.

"Stroke is a leading cause of disability and death worldwide. Stroke affects young people in India during their productive period of life. Let us conquer stroke," said Gavaskar.

According to Jeyaraj Pandian, World Stroke Congress co-chair from India, 1.7 million new stroke cases are annually reported in India.

"It affects young people in India during their productive period of life. Stroke care infrastructure is developed mainly in private hospitals with most of the public hospitals being ill-equipped to treat stroke patients," Pandian was quoted as saying by the Economic Times.

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