INSPIRING OBSTETRICIANS - Professor Rajaram Pagadala

Professor Rajaram Pagadala

MD (ObGyn), DSS (Vienna), PhD (Population Studies), WHO Certificate ( Health Economics)

Consultant Obstetrician and Gynecologist & Oncologist and
Consultant International Medical Education
Mailing Address: USA: 1052 Ashford Chase Ct., Macon, GA 31210, USA
India: 153 Balamrai Society, Mahendra Hills, Secunderabad: 500 0026


Professor Rajaram, born during the World War II, lost his father at the age of 6. Brought up by his mother, a 4th standard graduate, with 8 other children from ages 13 to 7 months intra-uterine (9th baby in womb) when she became a widow but a daring and dynamic mother raised all children single handed. Prof. Rajaram went on to become one of the youngest professors in the Central Health Services and retired as the Deputy-Director General of Health Services Govt. of India. The President of India For his dedicated services in teaching, training, research and community services honored him with the prestigious “Dr. B.C. Roy Award as an Eminent Medical Teacher of India”. He chose teaching as his career ‘in pursuit of scientific knowledge’. Trained under eminent professors like P.M. Naidu, Surti, Suvarna and Sunadari in India he went on to become an Onco-surgeon after having been trained by Professors like Antoine (a student of Wertheim) and Navretil and Husslein (students of Schautta). He was one of the youngest Onco-surgeons of India.

President of India
(Honb’le Shankar Dayal Sharma)
Awarding Dr. B.C. Roy Award (1993),

Prof Rajaram, having learnt the techniques methodically, his passion was to transfer the technology he has learnt to his younger colleagues. His teachers taught him fundamentals and in turn Prof. Rajaram emphasized on teaching fundamentals. Giving primary importance to fundamentals, he argued, makes a man skillful and successful surgeon. His goal was to deliver systematic impart of knowledge which indeed contains complex harmonic components to be delivered. He realizes that teaching fundamentals has lower frequency. But when taught sincerely it also has greatest Amplitude. Teachers must teach in a Philosophical way. Objective, should always be towards intellectual disciplining and molding mental faculties of students and junior colleagues. It, in addition, will help build moral character.

He always impressed on his students and colleagues that the medical professionals have enormous powers that Bernard Shaw described as “Power of a Physician.”… “Science is always simple and profound. It is only the Half-Truth that is Dangerous”. Therefore he, insisted, that a Physician is bestowed with a unique ‘power’ to save the lives. And an Obstetrician in addition is charged with ability to prevent morbidity and mortality. He always believed that a ‘perfect teacher’ is one who always learns, learns and learn before he teaches only to learn more.

In the pursuit of practice of Obstetrics and Gynecology, he tried his best to achieve the objectives of the specialty. Maternal mortality and morbidity is, indeed, a nightmare to all. Professionals feel suffocated but rarely discuss the preventable causes. Specialists never educate bureaucrats nor influence them to help development of specialty. They did not exhibit leadership even when they attained administrative positions. Prof. Rajaram always persuaded his colleagues gently but at times aggressively interacted ners for better planning and pushed them to build institutions for humanity for the benefit of humanity. Educated community leaders to help pockets of excellence. He represented on behalf of pathetic families ruined and devastated due to pain and anguish caused by a maternal death and impressed everyone that mothers dying are not mere patients but are human beings on whom th family depend.

Prof. Rajaram Pagadala is a strong belien promoting population stabilization and achieving quality health for the community. Therefore he always believed in making the existing Referral System more functional and as an administrator he struggled to see that the specialty services were extended effectively to the Community Health Center level. This, he believed, is possible only if the staff at PHC made functional under the dynamic district healthcare services leadership, which is lacking. He was against promoting duplication programs for which the politicians and bureaucrats are enthusiastic. Changes in Healthcare services and progress in health status of people is essential for the promotion of socio-economics of the country.

He is a firm believer in the Constitution of India which emphasizes that if proper medical education is imparted it ensures a new social order based on ‘Equality, Freedom, Justice & Individual Dignity’ eliminating ‘poverty, ignorance and ill-health’. Achieving Safe motherhood was his passion and preached Motherhood as the Law of Mother Nature. He believed that the mortality and morbidity is greatly due to lack of obligations to duty and unethical practices and lack of values of Philosophy of Practice of Art of Medicine. A medical teacher should train others only after he or she gets trained first. A medical teacher must first acquire scientific skills before transferring those to his pupils, which not only enhances the teacher’s performance, but the process, also helps the teacher to acquire new techniques. Prof. Rjaram believed that one should make the student realize that ‘a human is caring for a fellow human suffering from pain and disease capable of earning livelihood” Students must be made to realize, that “ Prevention is better than Cure. Therefore the art of practice of profession of teaching requires intelligence, maturity and devotion. Training traditionally means teaching Drill or Discipline whereby the powers of Mind or Body are developed.



Institutions are temples of learning. In order to become a Physician, one who is intelligent, skillful, humane and capable to serve the community with highest standards, Prof. Rajaram built three medical schools including one in Nepal. He invested his 4 decades of experience in the Institutions he has built have now become Postgraduate institutions. He brought in modern technology preserving the main objective which is service to the community. He dedicated the institutions to the Community by making Primary healthcare as primary objective of teaching.

Prof. Rajaram right from childhood was deeply interested in community services. Exposures to extracurricular activities like a Cub, Scout and National Cadet Corp (NCC) gave him the leadership qualities that helped him to serve the community better. As a young high school student he participated at the Third World Jamboree of scouts and won many prizes and certificates. In NCCC he attained C-Certificate at National level. He was deeply interested socio-cultural events and was an actor and an athlete. He led several teams to provide relief to flood victims, earthquakes and famine.

While the entire country became independent Prof. Rajaram could see the light of independence one year later since he lived in the erstwhile State ruled by the then Nizam. In his young days he saw poverty, hunger, terrorism that the modern world is witnessing now. With this background, he went on to become a physician and though he had option to go to USA in 60’s he preferred to stay in India taking teaching as his profession. Drawing inspiration from his teachers like Surti he became a leader in organizing regular rural and tribal health camps.

Due to the encouragement of Dr. Surti he was selected for Austrian Government scholarship to specialize in Gynecological Oncology in Vienna. While in Vienna he was also offered scholarship by the American Society of Vienna that helped him to work towards obtaining a degree in Specialized Surgery by the University of Vienna. Trained by the eminent gynecologists like Prof. Tassilo Antoine (student of Wertheims), Husselein (student of Scahutta) and Prof. Navretil (student of Scahutta and Henselman pioneer in Colposcopy) Prof. Rajaram returned to initiate cancer surgery in India. That was the time when Gynecologists were selfish and shivering to touch the ureters. Prof. Rajaram who trained himself trained the young Gynecologists to carry out the surgery. Today many Gynecologists trained by him are performing radical surgeries in Hyderabad, Goa and Pondicherry.

After a 2-year stint in Austria Prof. Rajaram served UK National Health Services and worked as Registrar. His passion to learn new things and teach to his colleagues and student encouraged him to conduct the First National Workshop on Ultrasound, 1st National Workshop in Microsurgery and many other first. Today most of the members who attended the workshop are leading practitioners who were given a platform in JIPMER to learn.

In JIPMER, where he spent 13 years as Professor, Director-Professor, Director of Human Research Reproduction (ICMR) and Dean was the period during which his contribution to medical profession was coupled with service to humanity. He took the students and faculty to the doorsteps of the community, yet gave them an opportunity and exposure to the academic world. He created awareness for combining community based research and prevented most of the faculty from increased risk of unwanted characteristics of being an alumnus. Thus he enhanced the development and growth that bore fruits that most of them are enjoying today.

From JIPMER he entered the National scene as deputy Director-General of Health Services, Govt. of India where he was in-charge of Medical Education

Prof. Rajaram with Honb’le Sri P.V. Narsinha Rao Explaining the academic problems


and Research, represented the Govt. of India on the Management of several National institutions like AIIMS, PGI (Chandigarh) ICMR etc. He returned back to Pondicherry (Puducherry) at the invitation of Sri Balaji Educational and Charitable Trust to Establish a world class medical institution of which was the Director, CEO and Dean. He was there from ground breaking till it achieved global recognition-Mahatma Gandhi Medical College and Research institution.

In all the three medical schools which he established (College of Medical Sciences, Nepal, ASRAM in Andhra Pradesh and the Mahatma Gandhi Medical College in Puducherry) Prof. Rajaram, made sure that the values of the medical profession was kept as sacred as from the days of Charak. The students and staff were tutored to be humane and kind and for students he inculcated the habit of inquiry while teachers were told that the characteristics of a teacher is one who always learns, learns and learns and then teaches until he learns again.

He was criticized for being punctual. He was heckled for dressing spotless. Staff and students were dissatisfied for being strict with wearing white coat. While enforcing discipline a message is being sent that wearing white coat signifies doctors specific role bestowed by God to serve the humanity. White coat ceremony is performed in medical schools in most countries all over the world. It reminds the medicos that it is their entitlement and it is the beginning of possessing authority over human kind by becoming a healer of the disease. It is thus a symbol of respect and possession of wealth of knowledge and sign of commanding respect. Once one wears a white coat it shows the professionalism and proficiency.

Therefore, Professor Rajaram says, that ‘the Mission statement on becoming a physician should be not only to acquire medical expertise to treat the disease but also assume leadership developing social skills to help build the society from the grass root level’. In his opinion, ‘Graduation is not simply receiving a scroll of paper’ declaring one as a Physician but in fact it is the commencement of a career. It is the day to assemble to usher you into new era that invokes one to help and support to assume authority to serve effectively. It reminds one of the cause and the purpose for which one is born. A doctor is born to serve the society suffering from disease and pain.

Prof. Rajaram always practiced what he preached. He was kind to all those who approached him for help. He reminded his students and colleagues to make use of what they were taught. For his community services organizations like Rotary International decorated him with the award ‘For The sake of Honor’. In fact Prof. Rajaram exhibited his leadership qualities right from his student days and was declared as the ‘Best Outgoing Student of 1961’ from Gandhi Medical College.

In recognition of his services, The Commonwealth Foundation offered him Senior Commonwealth Fellowship (Visiting Professor) to the universities of Oxford/ London/ Glasgow/ Edinburgh/ Wales/ Dundee. Earlier in his career he was also awarded Government of Austria Fellowship. The WHO sent him Thailand where he underwent training in Health Economics and obtained a Certificate in Health Management & Health Economics from the University of Bangkok. He started his career as the first Social Obstetrician of the country and was in-charge of Indo-Dutch Project on Social Obstetrics and Paediatrics.

He was Life member of many organizations notably Academy of Medical Sciences of Austria and India, Fellow of Indian Medical Sciences Academy, International College of Surgeons (USA), Indian Academy of Paediatrics, Indian College of Maternal and Child health and family Welfare. As Deputy-Director General of Health Services, Govt. of India Prof. Rajaram was in-charge of Medical Education and Research of the country. He also served on the Executive Boards of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER), Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences (PGI), Chandigarh, Indira Gandhi Institute of Medical Sciences. He served on the Executive Bodies of Medical, Nursing and Dental Councils of India and Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR). As Member of SAC (Scientific Advisory Committee) of several national institutions under ICMR his academic contributions were well appreciated. As Member Secretary, Health Universities of India Act, he saw to it that the bill was passed by the Parliament and the first Medical Sciences University was established in Andhra Pradesh in record time.

Prof. Rajaram established three medical schools in the private sector from its foundation to functional status all of them are recognized postgraduate institutions in Nepal and India. Currently he is a Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist and International Medical Education to Destiny Health University in Caribbean and The University of Montana in USA. Prof. Rajaram continues to serve the poor and rural areas as Managing Trust of Academy of Safe Motherhood, Association of American Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI) - Kalli Trust, International Society for Prevention of Birth Defects, Carcinogenesis Foundation, USA, Cancer Society of Pondicherry, SRIM Canter for Research on Meditation and Medicine, USA.

His achievements in the academic field are remarkable. He served as Executive Member, Scientific Advisory Committee, and Academic Councils of many universities including Benarus Hindu University, University of Madras and Goa, Central University of Pondicherry. As a Task Force Member of Govt. of India and Principal investigator of many ICMR projects supported by WHO, USAID Prof. Rajaram contribution in the field of Perinatology was unique. He was a member of team that recommended to govt. of India to implement minimum needs for promoting Primary health care to reduce Maternal and Neonatal mortality and morbidity, strengthening primary health centers and universal immunization, testing of various contraceptives. He was founder Member of National Neonatology Forum. Other institution to which he contributed is National Institution of Nutrition (NIN), Institution for Research in Reproduction (IRR), Institution of Cytology & Preventive Oncology, and Communicable & Non-Communicable Diseases (ICMR). He was invited by the Planning commission of govt. of India to serve on the Sub-group set up to draft National Policy on Achieving Safe Motherhood.

Travelled extensively to many countries including China and Russia, delivered several orations and guest lectures. Published several articles, chapters, reviews and edited books. A multi linguist is proficient in 9 languages including English, German, Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Konkani, Urdu, Hindi and Arabic.

Prof. Rajaram with Lt. Governor of Puducherry and Director Commonwealth Foundation in Puducherry, 2008. He is active in every filed. Practices medicine and meditation. Serves the society. Writes extensively and travels tirelessly ready to answer anybody, anytime for any help that he is capable of extending.



Click here to view other articles in this section