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Times of India
30 April 2011
Kolkata, India

Aditya Birla Group is joining hands with leading eye hospital Sankara Netralaya. The group has decided to make "substantial donation" in Sankara Nethralaya’s Kolkata hospital which is being subsequently renamed as Aditya Birla Sankara Nethralaya. "We will partner to set up an eye clinic in Pune," said Aditya Birla Centre for Community Initiatives and Rural Development chairperson Rajashree Birla. "Partnering with Sankara Nethralaya is the second major milestone for us, next to setting up the Aditya Birla Memorial Hospital in Pune," said Birla. Birla had announced about the partnership last year.

Birla declined to specify the group’s financial commitment in the partnership. "There is not so much details about the financial commitment right now," she said.

Sankara Nethralaya founder and chairman emeritus Dr S S Badrinath said the hospital would seek to expand ties with Aditya Birla Group. "The Birla group’s agreement does not include any provision for profit sharing. The scope of partnership lies for our hospitals in Chennai, Bangalore, Tirupati and Rameswaram and the future ones," said Badrinath. At present, Sankara Nethralaya’s Kolkata facility receives around 500 patients a day and it undertakes almost 50% of the cases without any charges. "We want to make our Kolkata operations our largest nationally," said Badrinath. Sankara Nethralaya plans to set up a second unit in Rajarhat. "This will be a hospital-cum-medical college. The investment on this venture can be up to Rs 120 crore," said Badrinath.

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