The Mysore City once during the British rule called the Birmingham of India has been a model state under the able control of the Royal Dynasty of Wodiyars. Krishnaraja Wodiyar IV (1902 - 1940) was the model king, with his efficient efforts to improve the welfare of the citizens, like organizing proper education, schools and colleges health and welfare programmes. Although we were under the British rule, he dared to introduce bilingual system of education with Kannada besides English. Our Alma Mater Mysore Medical College is the brainchild of Krishnaraja Wodiyar.
The First 25 Years - 1924-1949
THE BIRTH OF THE COLLEGE AND THE TRANSITION PERIOD
Sri Krishnadevaraja Wodiyar was the founder of Mysore Medical College in 1924. Prior to 1924 and as far back as 1881, there were no medical institutions in the erstwhile state of Mysore, hence the concept of giving Medical education was started in 1881 and to train the personnel for this purpose students were being selected, they were called the "Hospital Assistants" and were being given scholarship and sent to places like Madras and Bombay to undergo a course in Medical Colleges.
In the course of time due to certain constraints like providing accommodation to students, the Madras Presidency expressed inability to admit Mysore State students. "Necessity was the mother of invention". The Government of Mysore sanctioned a scheme in April 1917 at Bangalore to train the then called "Sub Assistant Surgeons", and directed that the "Mysore Medical School" be started. Although it was started at Bangalore, as it was the 1st of its kind in the state of Mysore, if was named as Mysore Medical School.
To start with 16 pupils were selected and were provided teaching facility at the Victoria Hospital and the course was for 4 years to be qualified for LMP. The medical officer i/c of Victoria Hospital was the Principal. The Mysore Medical School was managed by a council consisting of the Principal and 4 Lecturers and the Senior Surgeon of Victoria Hospital was the controlling authority. In the year 1924-25 this Medical School was raised to the grade of a college called as the Mysore Medical College; then the candidates were prepared for Medical Degrees and the college was affiliated to the University of Mysore.
The King was keen on providing medical education in a serene Royal city the Birmingham of India, the pensioners paradise, the city of palaces and parks, hence at the behest of Sri Krishnaraja Wodiyar the College was shifted from Bangalore to Mysore in the year 1930.
The foundation stone was laid in 1930 by H.H. Krishnaraja Wodiyar and the Majestic looking Mysore Medical College main building was constructed by the then famous contractor of Mysore, Boraiah Basavaiah & Sons
Our Alma Mater has been a gift by our Highness to us. We are proud today, that we are the products of this illustrious college, was the 1st of its kind in the state and the 7th in the entire country in those days.
In the year 1930, 30 students were admitted to the college and to start with anatomy and physiology Departments were established and growing further they were given clinical training at the K.R. Hospital and Cheluvamba Hospital which were functioning at Mysore prior to Mysore Medical College at Mysore. The then superintendent of the K.R. Hospital and a renowned personality, Dr. J.F. Rabinson was selected as the Principal of the College after Dr. S. Subba Rao. Dr. Shyama Sastry was the 1st student to get 1st class in MBBS who retired as DMS.
From 1930 onwards for nearly 25 years our college remained as the sole medical institution in the entire state giving outstanding education with a proven excellency. During the 1st 25 years of its existence, it is worth remembering the names of the teaching faculty who were indeed stalwarts, great mentors, dedicated personalities and luminaries according to the tales I heard from my teachers and seniors who taught them and inspired.
The following are some of the names of those stalwarts.
Dr. B.K. Naraya Rao, Dr. Col. Nagendra , Dr. B.N. Balakrishna Rao, Dr. K. Srikantaiah Rao Bahadur, Dr. B.T. Krishnan, Dr. J.F. Robinson, Dr. V.R. Naidu, Dr. C. Krishnaswamy Rao, Dr. Y. Appaji, Dr. Adhikeshavalu, Dr. T. Seshachalam, Dr. Hirannaiah, Dr. R.E. Heilig.
Some of them were Palace Doctors
Silver Jubilee of the College was celebrated in 1947, inaugurated by Sri H.H. Jayachamaraja Wodiyar presided by Dr. A. Lakshmanswamy Modaliyar, the Vice-Chancellor of Madras University and a pre-eminent personality in the medical field and Dr. Amrith Kaur, the then Union Minister for health was the guest of Honour.
During the Silver Jubilee celebrations, the Student Secretary was Dr. K.C. Pani who is a living legend witnessing the Platinum Jubilee celebration along with us who contributed lot of information and portraits of the past.
The Silver Jubilee period for 25 years has been an era of Stalwarts.
The Next 25 years (1949-1975)
This period has been the era of growth and development. This has been a golden era in the history of Mysore Medical College. It is during this period many Mysore Medical College graduates moved to various parts of the world mainly USA, UK, Canada. Many of them have proved their excellence and distinguished themselves in various fields as clinicians, academicians and administrators, etc..
The teachers were eminent and devoted who had involvement in their respective fields, quotable among them were Dr. Rajagopal from the Department of Anatomy who dissected Elephant for comparative Anatomy, Dr. Krishne Urs had a Silver tongue in teaching Anatomy, Dr. Thakar Nayak as a sober Anatomy teacher.
From the Department of Physiology, Dr. Narayan Setty was famous for his explaining the "Theory of Equilibrium". Dr. B.V. Puttaraj Urs by his majestic look and teaching, Dr. Sampathkumaran, Professor of Physiology is a living legend, Dr. D.S. Shivappa from the Department of Pharmacology who had unique quality of writing medical terms in Kannada. Dr. Krishna Bhargava and Dr. Saraswathi Bhargava, Dr. Charles D'souza were committed teachers in Pathology. Dr. S.P. Anikar in the Department of P&SM was a great witty teacher.
There was a galaxy of eminent teachers and clinicians in the clinical side (other side of the road as we used to call) consisting of Medicine, Surgery, OBG, Pediatrics that included Dr. Govinda Setty, Dr. Basavaraj Urs, Dr. K.G. Das, Dr. Y.P. Rudrappa, Dr. N.A. Jadhav, Dr. M.V. Govindappa, Dr. Gurupadappa from the department of medicine and Dr. A.K. Gopal Rajan, Dr. H. Nanjarajaiah, Dr. R.H.N. Shenoy, Dr. Narayanaswamy, Dr. Jeevandharakumar, Dr. P.R. Sathyanarayan Setty from the Department of Surgery.
From the Department of OBG: Dr. Leelavathy Reddy; Dr. Vyjayanthi, Dr. Lalitha Lingaiah and Dr. Jayalakshmi Iyer.
From Pediatrics : Dr. Indira Amla, Dr. Anke Gowda and Dr. Manikya Raju.
During the first half of this quarter academically it was exemplary. Many brilliant and outstanding students like Dr. M.V. Govindappa who took 1st class in Final MBBS after a gap of 32 years next to Dr. Shama Sastry's record in the Mysore University. Many other brilliant students were trained, mentioning all names is impossible but may be available at University Gazetteer.
As there were no private teaching institutions and Corporate Hospitals were yet to come up, the Mysore Medical College with its attached Hospitals like K.R. Hospital, Cheluvamba Hospital, was in the forefront to serve the needy persons at large.
The Krishnarajendra Hospital at Mysore was constructed at a cost of Rs. 3,65,000/- and started as a 100 bedded Hospital with X-ray apparatus.
Silent tributes to the aesthetic sense of our Royal Dynasty who created things of beauty, because of the strong British influence on the Princes, the structures built during their rules are still engineering feats incorporating architectural designs, our K.R. Hospital is one among them evoking nostalgia of the past.
The royal family was very much concerned about the health of their citizens hence they built this hospital. The last ruler of Mysore Sri Jayachamaraja Wodiyar was once treated in this hospital when he got injured while hunting in the forest is an anecdote.
Cheluvamba hospital is already 120 years old, built in 1880with 24 beds, was first named as Vanivilas Hospital, when it was upgraded to 200 bedded hospital with 2 storied building in 1939 it was renamed as Cheluvamba Hospital. Further expansion in 1954 to 3 storied building named as women and children block. New OPD Block of OBG built in 1997 is added Dr. Mrs. Hanumattekar was outstanding teacher and improved the standard of Hospital.
The post of the Dean was created in 1961 vesting in him the administrative charge of both the college and the attached teaching hospitals with a view to ensure co-ordination of both teaching and hospital administration assisted by Vice-deans from K.R. Hospital and Cheluvamba hospital and this system existed for 14 years until 1974 when the post of Principal was redesignated with Superintendents I/C of the Hospital. The Unit system came into force from 1961.
Ending with platinum Jubilee and just coinciding with the end of this millennium - This era has been a vibrant period in accordance with the global changes in scientific advancements and the use of gadgets, the administration has been trying its best to march ahead, establishing cold storage mortuary, expansion of the buildings, equipping the departments with modern instruments, modernizing the blood bank, establishing Burns ward. Superspeciality departments like Plastic Surgery. Urology, nephrology, cardiology, Laser Surgery, Emergency O.T. etc., are introduced.
One of the most modern bedded Air conditioned ICCU is now established since 1998 in the ground floor of newly built multistoried OPD building towards Dhanvanthri Road is a massive structure behind the spacious special wards of our days.
For the past 25 years of the history of our Alma Mater, I have tried to narrate the story partly with the best of my knowledge and the information I gathered through the present Principal.
Mysore Medical College - our college has sailed through the SAGA of 75 years, during this journey, the various expansion programmes and academic achievements which culminated in the development of this illustrious institution that is academically on par with any in the nation, is founded by H.H. Krishnaraja Wodiyar, nurtured and guided by series of eminent teachers and 23 administrators - Deans and principals like
Dr. S. Subba Rao
Dr. H.B. Myalvagnam
Dr. B.K. Narayana Rao
Dr. J.F. Robinson
Dr. C. Krishnaswamy Rao
Dr. B.T. Krishnan
Dr. Y. Appaji
Dr. G.S. Raghunatha Rao
Dr. B.N. Lingaraju
Dr. J.J. Dharmaraj
Dr. T. Manickam
Dr. Lalitha Lingaiah
Dr. B.V. Puttaraj Urs
Dr. V. Ramachandra
Dr. Indira Amla
Dr. R.H.N. Shen
Dr. N.K. Channappa
Dr. D. Chamaraj
Dr. D. Shankar Raj
Dr. D.C. Parthasarathy
Dr. A.M. Krishne Urs
Dr. B. Lakshmi Bai
Dr. R. Seethalakshmi
Incidentally 23rd administrator of the college is the present principal Dr. R. Seethalakshmi who is blessed with 3 gifts - being the Chairperson of the alma mater celebrating Platinum Jubilee, the last Principal of this millennium and the 1st Principal of the next Millennium in a fortnight from now. We see in her the dedication and commitment to the development of our institution.