Legends of India
Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam
Amitabh Bachchan
Bachendri Pal
Field Marshal Sam Maneckshaw
Indra K. Nooyi
B. K. S. Iyengar
Kapil Dev Nikhanj
Karnam Malleswari
Khushwant Singh
Kiran Mazumdar Shaw
Lata Mangeshkar
Dr. Manmohan Singh
N. R. Narayana Murthy
M. B. Nirmal
Rakesh Sharma
Sabeer Bhatia
Dr. Shantha
M. S. Subbulakshmi
M. S. Swaminathan
P. T. Usha
Dr. Verghese Kurien
Viswanathan Anand
Business Personalities of India
Adi Godrej
Anil Ambani
Azim Premji
Brijmohan Lall Munjal
Dhirubhai Ambani
Dr. Parvinder Singh
J. R. D. Tata
Kumar Mangalam Birla
Kushal Pal Singh
Lakshmi Mittal
Lord Swraj Paul
Mukesh Ambani
N. R. Narayanamurthy
R. P. Goenka
Rahul Bajaj
Ratan Tata
Shapoorji Pallonji mistry
Shiv Nadar
Sunil Bharti Mittal
Vijay Mallya

Famous Personalities
Akio Morita
Albert Einstein
Charlie Chaplin
George Washington
Helen Keller
Henry Ford
Marilyn Monroe
Martin Luther King
Michael Dell
Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi
Mother Teresa
Muhammad Ali
Napoleon Bonaparte
Nelson Mandela
Walt Disney
William Shakespeare
Winston Churchill
Wolfgang Mozrat
Yasser Arafat

Dr. Shantha

    Dr. Shantha, aged about 70 years, is the chairperson of the Cancer Institute (WIA), Adyar, Chennai. The Outlook magazine's survey of hospitals in the country ranked it as the best with respect to 'competence of doctors' and second in all other aspects. "From saving one out of three patients, we are now aiming at two out of three patients, besides an almost 60 per cent success rate in paediatric leukaemia," says Dr. Shantha with pride glittering in her eyes. Here is a woman who fearlessly follows her heart and has given the cancer-stricken patients a ray of hope and life. "It is not the fear of cancer but the fear of delay that is dreadful," she points out.

    Dr. V. Shantha commented that 76 per cent of the movies show tobacco in some form and 50 per cent of the time the hero is shown smoking. She appealed to cine stars not to smoke on screen since they set a bad example to young filmgoers. Speaking at a function organized by WHO on "Tobacco-free films and fashion," Kamal Hassan swore that he would never again wield a cigarette before the camera. The Cancer Institute has invited film and TV stars, directors and producers for a dialogue to evolve smoking-free films.

    There was conceived an innovative fund-raising campaign "Iruvadhu Muthal Iruvadhu Varai", to collect Rs. 20 from the public till the target of Rs. 20 crores was reached by the Cancer Institute. It was launched to facilitate the institute's expansion plans. It is not just about collecting money, but a way of creating awareness and generating hope and positive action among people about cancer.

    On June 18th 1954, Dr. Muthulakshmi Reddy fulfilled a long-cherished dream; she began the Adyar Cancer Institute in Chennai. Dr. Reddy sent her only son, S. Krishnaniurthy, to the United States, Switzerland and the UK to combat cancer treatment. Dr. Shantha, who landed in a government job soon after her MD, chose to join the fight against cancer. "I had decided to make it a lifelong mission." As a house surgeon in 1950, she had seen Dr. Krishnamurthy work in the cancer unit of the government-run General Hospital. She had heard him talk to large audiences about the plight of poor cancer patients. "It was very pathetic. I felt I should participate in their effort," she says.

    The Institute began with two doctors, Krishnamurthy and Shantha, a single building with minimal diagnostic and therapeutic facilities and a cluster of 12 huts to house the inpatients. The only cancer hospital in south India, it was established with public donations as a voluntary, charitable and non-profitable institution. "It was a very difficult journey. Finances were hard to come by and daily existence was a struggle. It was a frustrating and painful period because people did not understand us. The first thing people asked me those days was, 'Where were you trained?' My reply, 'Here in India, in Madras,' did not make many happy!" recalls Dr. Shantha, who took over as the Institute's director and chairperson when Dr. Krishnamurthy retired in 1979.

    Dr. Shantha tries to lead by example and feels that if doctors worked in a corporate setup, they would probably earn three to four times the salary they are drawing here. "It is certainly disheartening when you see them go, but then they are spreading the message of the Institute elsewhere. Those who stay behind are committed to the cause." Dr. Shantha cannot be identified apart from her institution. She took over the cancer hospital 25 years ago and is as devoted to it as she was when she joined in 1954. She doesn't think of a life beyond the institution. Service is of primary concern and working for a cause seems to be-the-be-all-and-end-all for this noble lady.

    Awards don't seem to distract her dedication though she has quite a few to her credit. She was honoured by the Belgium-based International Network for Cancer Treatment and Research (INCTR) with the Award for Outstanding Work in a Country with Limited Resources. CURE Foundation Award Presentation during its inaugural function honoured doctors from India and abroad. Dr. V. Shantha, Adyar Cancer Institute was the Indian awardee. Last but not the least has been the Magsaysay Award (2003), another feather in the cap of this committed doctor. Her selfless service is an inspiration to all of humanity. Selfless service with endless journey reverberates her noble commitment and keeps saving many from the clutches of death.

Short Biography
Abraham Lincoln
Adolf Hitler
Albert Einstein
Alexandre Dumas
Alexander Graham Bell
Alexander the Great
Alfred Nobel
Anne Besant
Anton Van Leeuwenhoek
Benjamin Franklin
Bill Gates
Bruce Lee
Carl Jung
Charles Darwin
Charles Dickens
Charlie Chaplin
Chiang Kai-Shek
Christopher Columbus
Colonel Nasser
Dalai Lama
Dante Alighieri
David Livingstone
Donald Bradman
Earnest Hemingway
Edmund Halley
Erwin Romell
Florence Nightingale
George Bernard Shaw
George Eastman
Hans Christian Anderson
Ho Chi Minh
James Cook
Jean Jacques Rousseau
Jesus Christ
Jim Corbett
Joan of Arc
John Milton
Jonathan Swift
Josip Broz Tito
Karl Marx

Copyright © PurpleOPurple