Indian Medical Association History  

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Indian Medical Association History

What is IMA? And it's History

Indian Medical Association is the only representative voluntary organization of Doctors of Modern Scientific System of Medicine, which looks after the interest of doctors as well as the well being of the community at large.

The Association was started in 1928 on the occasion of the 5th all India Medical Conference at Calcutta with the avowed objectives:

a. Promotion and Advancement of Medical and allied sciences in all their different branches.
b. The improvement of public Health and Medical Education in India.
c. The maintenance of honour and dignity of medical profession.

TODAY, I.M.A is a well established organization with is Headquarters at Delhi and State/Terr. Branches in 23 States and 9 union Territories. It has over 78000 doctors as its members through over 1274 local branches spread all over the country.

HOW THE I.M.A. Functions:

The general control management and direction of the policy of the Association is vested in the ‘Central Council’ to which local branches send representatives and which meets once a year to lay down policies. It delegates its powers to ‘WORKING COMMITTEEE’ (A representatives body of all state Terr. Branches) for implementation of programmes and activities (but without powers to change the rules). This committee meets at least three times a year to execute various activities for welfare of members and the people in matters of health.

National Headquarters:

The National Headquarter of the IMA is situated at New Delhi, and its Journal Office functions from Calcutta. For Housing the headquarters of the Association, a six storeyed building has been constructed at Indraprastha Marg, New Delhi and a Building of IMA housing the J.I.M.A has also been constructed at 53. Creek Row, Calcutta.

President IMA and three vice-presidents are elected by all the members of association, while the Electoral College for the other offices is the Central Council.

Similar situation prevails at the State level, under the Jurisdiction of the State Branches the local branches are established which functions autonomously within the frame work of the IMA constitution.

Over 100 local/state branches have their own buildings where provision of stay fom members is possible.

For these who fulfill the membership qualification, to become a member of IMA, the prescribed from in triplicate be filled & given to the nearest branch along with requisite membership fees.

For any more information, please contact:
The Honorary General Secretary,
Indian Medical Association,
I.M.A. House, Indraprastha Marg,
New Delhi.
State Secretary in your State
Local Branch Secretary in your Town.

History Of IMA

IMA was started on 28-12-1928

IMA has to date (Sept.1990) 78,000members including 9,000 life members
IMA has 23 State Branches and 9 Territorial branches and 1274 local branches

IMA safeguards interest of its members and participates in all national health programmes.


The Indian Medical Association celebrated its Diamond Jubilee in the year 1988 and is completing 72nd year of its glorious functioning on the occasion of the 76th All India Medical conference being held on the 28th December, 2000 at Calcutta.

Prior to the formation of the Association, four All India Medical Conferences had been held the first at Calcutta in 1917 under the Presidentship of Lt. Col. Raghavendra Rao, the second at Delhi in 1918 with Sir Nil Ratan Sircar as the President, the third in 1919 with Dr. M.. N. Odedar as its President and the Fourth at Nagpur in 1920 under the Presidentship of Rao Bahadur Dr. Maharaj Krishnan Kapur. It was at the 5th conference held at Calcutta on 28th December, 1928 under the Presidentship of Dr. G. V. Deshmukh of Bombay, that a resolution was adopted forming an All India Medical Association with the objects of promotion and advancement of medical and allied sciences in their different branches, the improvement of public health and medical education in India and the maintenance of honor and dignity of the medical profession. In the year 1930, the All Indian Medical Association and the body was duly registered under the Societies Registration Act, XXI of 1860.

The association had come in to being at a time when there was political unrest and the country was passing through big turmoil. Yet, it was a matter of great satisfaction that the stalwarts of the medical profession in those days like Dr. K. S. Ray, Sir Nil Ratan Sircar, Dr. B. C. Roy, Dr. M. A. Ansari, Col. Bhola Nath, Major M. G. Naidu, Dr. B.N. Vyas, Dr. D. Silva, Dr. N. A. Ghosh, Dr. D. A. Chakravarthi, Dr. Viswanathan, and Capt. B. V. Mukherjee actively participated in the promotion of the Association. Some of these stalwarts were also active in the Indian National Congress and had their terms in the jail for participating in the struggle for participating in the struggle for Independence of the country.

Though the Association was formed with only 222 members. Yet even with this numerical strength, it could achieve itsposition of strength, it could achieve its position of strength and command respect from the British rulers. It could prevent the appointment of British rulers. It could prevent the appointment of British IMS Officer as a Commissioner of MedicalEducation in 1929 and it could achieve to organize an all India Medical Register and include the licentiates in it. TheMedical Council of India Act was got amended to have an elected President in place of a nominated one and it was a matter of a pride that Dr. B. C. Roy, one of the most illustrious past Presidents of IMA, became the first elected President of Medical Council of India followed by many other illustrious presidents of IMA gracing the exalted chair including the past president of the Medical Council of India Late Dr. A. K. N. Sinha.

The Headquarters Office of the IMA was originally located in Calcutta. At the suggestion of Dr. S. C. Sen supported by Dr. B. V. Mulay, Dr. Chamanlal C. Mehta and Maj. General Amirchand, the IMA Headquarters was shifted to Delhi in January 1949, after the attainment of Independence. The Journal of IMA continued to be published from Calcutta. Dr. S. C. Sen also obtained a plot of land in Indraprastha Estate, New Delhi at the concessional rates from the Government and the project of construction of IMA Building thereon was undertaken, supported by Dr. B. V. Mulay, Dr. Chamanlal Mehta, Dr. C.S.Thakar, Dr.A.P.Mitra, Dr. Ved Prakash, Dr. R.C.Goulatia, Dr. P.C. Bhatia and Dr. D.S. Mehra. The foundation stone of IMA House was laid by the first President of India, Dr. Rajendra Prasad on September 19, 1958 and the construction of the building was started under the supervision of Dr. P.C.Bhatia who supervised it brick by brick. With his untiring efforts, the building was completed and opened on September 6, 1964 by the then President of India, Dr. S. Radhakrishnan.

During the British Rule, some selected members of the profession were members of the British Medical Association which had branches in India. The stalwarts of IMA ultimately succeeded in reaching an agreement with British Medical Association that they would have no branches in India and got mutually affiliated, which relationship continues even today. In the year 1964, IMA helped in the organization of the world body viz., the World Medical Association and thus became its founder member through the efforts of Dr. S.C.Sen, Dr. R.V.Sathe, the then President, IMA held the chair of the President of WMA when the WMA met in New Delhi in 1962. It’s a matter of pride that another illustrious Past President of IMA Dr. A.K.N. Sinha also held the office of the WMA. The IMA has been playing an important role in the deliberations of the World Medical Association at New Delhi in the year 1966. later developments, however, forced us to take decision to withdraw from World Medical Association in 1985, since the organization refused to expel South Africa despite its dismal record of racial discrimination. The Indian Medical Association after consideration of all aspects of the matter decided in February, 1993 that IMA may again become a member of the World Medical Association. In pursuance of the above, 45th General Assembly of the World Medical Association at its meeting held on October 2-5, 1993 approved IMA’s membership of the WMA. The IMA has continued to play an important role in the affairs of the Commonwealth Medical Association.

IMA has been pursuing the academic activities and continuing education of its members through its academic wings viz., IMA College of General Practitioners (IMA CGP) and the IMA Academy of Medical Specialities (IMAAMS). Through the IMA CGP which is a Founder member of the World Organization of the National Colleges and Academies, (WONCA), third Conference on General Practice was hosted by the IMA in the year 1968. It is a matter of pride that the first ever Fellowship of the World Organization was conferred on one of our illustrious Past Presidents, Dr. P.C. Bhatia.

Over the period of 72 years, the IMA while maintaining its glorious traditions has secured a place of pride in the community, through its 1470 branches with a total membership of 120298 throughout the country. It has been rendering yeoman’s service in the field of health care deliver, disease control and eradication. Its services to the community during natural calamities like earthquakes, droughts and floods, famines and epidemics in the pre and post-Independence periods have been highly lauded. Its role and involvement in the formulation and implementation of National Health Programmes e.g. Family Welfare, Maternal and Child Health, Universal Immunization Programme, Oral Rehydration Therapy, AIDS Prevention, Control and Management etc., has been highly significant and has received recognition by the Central and state Governments and the UNICEF. The IMA and its branches have been running many community service Projects and a number of branches have established Family Welfare Clinics, Immunization Centres, Ambulance Services, Blood Banks, Polio Eradications and RCH programmes, etc.

The affairs of the association are managed by the elected members of the Central Council and the Working Committee which lay down the policies and deliberate on the day to day activities of the Association. It has a number of Standing Committees which look after the specified subjects entrusted to them under the various terms of references. Each State and Local Branch holds regularly Scientific and Medical Meetings and elects its Office bearers once a year. The State Branches organize their respective state conferences every year during which, besides organizational matters, they have scientific sessions for the benefit of their members in the various specialities in medicine.

Indian Medical Association publishes a Scientific Journal called ‘Journal of the Indian Medical Association’ a copy of which is mailed to each and every member of the Association. “Your Health” in English and “Aap Ka Swasthya” in Hindi are published regularly and cater to health education needs of the lay public. Some of the State Branches are also publishing their bulletins in English and/or Regional languages. IMA News is published monthly by the IMA Headquarters. Besides this, IMA College of General Practitioners has a publication named “Continuing Medical Education” Bulletin. With a view to make it more relevant to Family Medicine, the title of this Bulletin has been changed to “Family Medicine – India” from the year 1996. The College has published a number of books. It is hardening to note that most of the articles had been voluntarily subscribed by the members of the Association. The IMA Academy of Medical Specialities is now publishing the Annuals Quarterly, containing original articles, interesting case reports, review articles by eminent medical specialists and super specialists.

IMA College of General Practitioners has been conducting regular examinations twice a year and the successful candidates became eligible for the award of Fellowship.

The IMA AMS also awards Fellowships every year to selected highly distinguished specialists.