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As an environmental activist and writer, I have tried for years to promote nationwide concern about the deteriorating state of our environment. The idea of writing about my own travails as an environmental victim had, however, never crossed my mind. But obviously, I could not have escaped what was and is happening all around me.

Facing a Silent SpringA young patient of cancer at New Delhi’s All India Institute of Medical Sciences

Cancer is a frightening word. It means a terminal disease with periods of excruciating pain. And the treatment, full of poisons, is often as horrific as the disease itself.So how would you feel if you are told that you are suffering not just from cancer but from such an extremely rare form of it that there is hardly any treatment available? That it has already invaded both your eyesformed a small tumour in the centre of your brain so that it cannot even be surgically removed without cutting up the brain completely and has even reached your spinal cord? And that as the cancer grows in the eyes the mass of cancerous cells will pull out the retina in both your eyes and make you go permanently blind; the tumour in the brain will grow to put pressure on the brain and cause strokesamong other things; and the malignant cells in the spinal cord could affect the various nerve endings attached to the cord any time and cause you acute pain and/or irreversibly paralyse parts of your body? The end of all this suffering will of course be death. Maybe not more than a year later but a large part of that year could be spent in bed groping in darkness and pain.
What’re lymphomas?Lymphomas are cancers that develop in the lymphatic system. They are parts of what are called lymphoid malignancies