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Sunday, March 4, 2012

Following, is an article regarding the first test tube (IVF) baby of India, extracted from the website of Deccan Herald:

Saturday, October 04, 2003

I feel like Edison’s bulb, says India’s first ‘test tube baby’
 D H News Service BANGALORE, Oct 3
She sat in the corner of the auditorium quietly listening to the presentations. Suddenly her name was announced and all eyes turned to her. The audience applauded and the lensmen clicked on Kanupriya, India’s first and world’s second test tube baby, now a 25-year-old marketing executive in Delhi.

“I often feel like Edison’s bulb. Everybody talks about the bulb, very few know about the man who founded it. I wish this applause could go to Dr Subhash Mukherjee, the architect of In-Vitro Fertilisation (IVF) in India. Unfortunately he is now no more,” said Durga alias Kanupriya while addressing a gathering of doctors and specialists at the 25th anniversary celebration of IVF in the world, here today. It was organised by Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), Hope Infertility Clinic and Inter Academy Biomedical Science Forum, Bangalore.

“I feel no different from others, thanks to my parents, especially my father, who kept me away from media glare. I was told in phases about my birth but I understood more as I grew up. My first question to my parents was regarding Dr Subhash because his name was often mentioned. They told me he was the man who helped in my birth. Unfortunately I could not spend much time with the doctor as he died when I was very young,” said Kanupriya.

Her father P K Agarwal, a businessman from Kolkata came all the way to celebrate his daughter’s birthday in Bangalore, which was commemorated as IVF’s 25th anniversary. He said he was averse to media because, “Media was skeptical about the technology employed by Dr Subhash. The irony is that it was the time when the rest of the world was celebrating the birth of Mary Louise Brown, who preceded my daughter by 67 days and became the world’s first test tube baby,” said Mr Agarwal. India’s first recorded test tube birth was in 1984 in Mumbai.

He narrated his first visit to Dr Subhash who was a noted endrocronologist, physiologist and gynecologist at Nilratan Sarkar Medical College, Kolkata. “I told him we were a childless couple and my wife’s fallopian tubes were blocked.

He said he could help but he warned that the child could be deformed or disabled. He explained to me the IVF procedure. I agreed ,” said Mr Agarwal. Born on October 3, 1978, Kanupriya’s birth remained unrecognised in the medical history because Dr Mukherjee could neither document his research in IVF nor make it public because of the controversy it would have raised.