Indian Dietetic Associaiton (IDA) Institutes Founders’ Oration
  • Country – India

     

    The Founders’ Oration was instituted in the year 2010 by the Indian Dietetic Association in honour of its Founder General Secretary Dr. Kalyan Bachi and Founder President, Dr. C. Gopalan, the guiding force behind the Association since its inception. Dr.Kalyan Bachi and Dr. Gopalan have nurtured the Association for many years. The Founders’ Oration is delivered every year by a person who has contributed significantly to the field of dietetics and nutrition.

    The Founders

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    Dr Kalyan Bagchi, a doctorate in human nutrition from the London School of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, UK (1958), was involved in the creation process of IDA while working at the All India Institute of Hygiene & Public Health, Kolkata. His work profile includes Nutrition Adviser, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, India, Medical Officer for the World Health Organisation (WHO) office in Sudan and Geneva, and Consultant for WHO in Egypt. He also established 2 non-governmental organisations in India to take up projects on food and nutrition on behalf of the government of India. He has been involved in India’s national goitre control program, prevention of food adulteration activities and health care programs for the elderly. Now in his nineties, Dr Bagchi continues to read and write on food security, nutrition and ageing. 

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    Dr. Gopalan, a scientist of international eminence, who has spearheaded the cause of nutrition science for over four decades in India, has his doctoral degree in medicine. He was the first Asian to be elected the President of International Union of Nutrition Sciences (IUNS). He has been on several WHO expert panels. The National Institute of Nutrition in India was nurtured by Dr Gopalan when he was its Director for 14 years. He was also actively involved in initiating Asian Congress of Nutrition. He created Nutrition Foundation of India which has a wide interdisciplinary research network in the country. 

    The Recipient

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    Prof. M S Swaminathan

    The first Founders’ Oration on “Building a sustainable nutrition security system - The role of the proposed National Food Security Act” was delivered by Prof. M S Swaminathan, Chairman, MS Swaminathan Research Foundation, India. Professor M S Swaminathan called “one of the most influential Asians of 20th century”, “father of economic ecology” and "a living legend who will go into the annals of history as a world scientist of rare distinction", was Chairman of the United Nations Science Advisory Committee set up in 1980. He has also served as Independent Chairman of the FAO Council and President of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, among others.

    While speaking at the National Conference of IDA in December 2010, he said that the goal of National Food Security Act should be to ensure that every Indian has physical, economic and social access to balanced diet, clean drinking water, environmental sanitation and primary health care. Food security has three major dimensions – availability, which is a function of production, access, which is a function of purchasing power, and absorption, which is a function of clean drinking water, sanitation and primary health care. He emphasised that a life cycle approach should be adopted in designing the food entitlement programs, which will involve maternal nutrition, foetal nutrition, breast feeding programs, child nutrition programs, school noon-meal programs, elderly and infirm persons, destitute, orphans and street children. Revitalisation of agriculture, popularising fortified salt, using horticultural remedies for nutritional maladies and popularising millets were some of his suggestions. The right to food should become the right to balanced diet over time. 
     

    Bhaskarachary K, PhD
    National Vice President
    Indian Dietetic Association