Larry Page has an ‘eye’ on Madurai

Larry Page, co-founder of Google, made a quiet visit to the temple town of Madurai to see the Aravind eye care institution, which management guru C K Prahalad called the “gem at the bottom of the pyramid”.

Each of Aravind’s doctors’ conduct an average of 2,200 surgeries annually compared with average of 250 by doctors of other hospitals in India.

The hospital group sees 1.8 million patients every year with 65% of them undergoing cataract treatment. The cataract surgeries cost less than Rs 700, the lowest in the world, for patients who come from as far as Assam.

Larry Brilliant, executive director of, the philanthropy agency of the search engine, brought the 33-year old Page to Aravind.

Brilliant, who played a role in eliminating small pox in India in the early 1970s, has been a patron of Aravind through a non-governmental organisation called Seva. He was also a close friend of G Venkataswamy, the founder of Aravind, who died recently.

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