Ikaanr Tirkey with his first glasses | © Antje Christ

Ikaanr Tirkey: “I can even see the leaves!”

Our partner project Care Netram is active in the city of Rourkela, located in the Sundargarh district, north of the Indian state of Odisha. 

Ikaanr Tirkey, 70 years old, worked half his life in a local steel mill and lives in the village of Chikatmati. He does not have a pension, but receives some monthly financial support from the government for his work at the steel mill consisting of rent for his small house, five kilos of rice and 500 rupees (about $7).


Ikaanr with his new pair of glasses | © Antje Christ


Ikaanr lives alone due to his wife passing away a few years ago. Ikaanr’s two adult daughters are married and, according to tradition, live with their in-laws.

In our outreach, Ikaanr’s eye tests showed that -2.0 diopters lenses would correct his vision in both eyes. He was so excited to purchase the glasses, his first ones in his life.  When our optometrist asked him to look into the distance at a tree, Ikaanr could hardly believe it, exclaiming, “I can even see the leaves on the tree!”.

  “I can even see the leaves on the tree!”

Ikaanr Tirkey (70), in Chikatmati in India