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Thakker JG. Presidential address. Indian J Radiol Imaging 2015;25:85-6
Dear Chief Guest,
Office-bearers of the IRIA, Organizing team of the IRIA 2015 Conference at Kochi, Dignitaries on the dais and off the dais, respected past presidents, seniors, my dear friends, colleagues, ladies and gentlemen,
It is a great honor to address this august gathering as the 71 st president of the IRIA. I wish to thank my family, whose unwavering support has helped me to be in the most coveted position in the IRIA. I also wish to acknowledge the contributions of my seniors and colleagues at MSBIRIA and in other states, who always stood by me at all times and gave me the opportunity to serve this great organization. I also assure them that I, along with my colleagues at IRIA, shall leave no stone unturned to rise up to their expectations.
We face a multitude of challenges in these times, and the biggest challenge and concern is female feticide, which is responsible for the highly skewed sex ratio in many Indian states. The problem has assumed such catastrophic proportions that our Prime Minister has recently intervened personally and issued an emotional appeal to the nation to save and educate the girl child. While the problem has a social dimension and requires a change in people's mindset before it can be solved, we radiologists have to contribute our share of the effort toward this national cause. We know that sex selection and sex determination techniques were brought under legal jurisdiction by the PC-PNDT Act, but no significant change has been witnessed in terms of the ground realities. The heinous practices continue to flourish. Radiologists are the favorite whipping boys of the authorities, who hold them solely responsible for such practices and harass them at every small opportunity. The consistent effort by the IRIA has resulted in relief from some of the draconian provisions of the PC-PNDT Act. While I am convinced that radiologists are not involved in these illegal activities, we have to do a little more to convince the nation that we stand by our people in this fight. Therefore, I appeal to all of you to act as whistle-blowers and inform your local authorities if you notice any activity that is prejudicial against the existence and sustenance of the girl child.
As knowledge in the field of radiology expands and imaging applications become more complex, there is a growing trend among radiologists to branch out into various subspecialties. There is also a tendency to consolidate and form new subspecialty associations. Thus, instead of being an umbrella organization, we now have many groups representing many interests. Although the growth of various subspecialties is an inevitable process, the existence of many associations has made it difficult to get sponsorships for our main events. Under the leadership of Dr. Bhavin Jankharia, IRIA has embarked upon an initiative to create subspecialty chapters. These chapters are each led by a subspecialty head who is an acknowledged authority at various national and international forums. This step shall be instrumental in promoting excellence in subspecialty education and result in the growth of our association in the time to come. I also wish to focus your attention on the fact that in the clamor to acquire more members and gain clout with the members of the trade, some of the new associations are overeager to incorporate nonradiologist specialists as members. While discussions with our clinical colleagues are always welcome in the interests of patient care, the willingness to share our core expertise is a very debatable issue. The turf of radiologists has been shrinking over a period of time as our clinical colleagues become comfortable with imaging. I feel that we should not dig our own grave.
Over the past years, we have seen transformation in the functioning of the IRIA. This has been made possible due to the stewardship of past Presidents and Secretary-General Dr. O. P. Bansal, who has been elected unopposed to the post of President-Elect on the basis of his unwavering commitment to promote excellence and ensure transparency in the affairs of the IRIA.
Someone once said, "Change in the only constant." The acknowledgment, understanding, and imbibing of this simple truth form the basis of our philosophy, vision, and the actions we propose for the future. We have come a long way and have sufficient experience and data at hand to reflect upon the present state of affairs. A cursory look at the minutes of the Central Council and General Body meetings of the past years will clearly establish that issues regarding the National Conference always occupy center stage. There are issues regarding allotment of the conference, accommodation, transport, selection of faculty, quality of the academic program, selection of vendors, and submission of conference accounts. Other issues relate to the working of the central and state offices, guidelines and selection of candidates for various orations and awards, and the conduction of IRIA CME and resident education programs. Although considerable work has been done regarding these matters in the recent past, all would agree that we must move ahead with alacrity, urgency, and the resolve to bring about complete transparency and total accountability in all matters pertaining to our association. We have released a vision document at this conference to streamline all aspects of IRIA. We intend to follow this through in the next 2 years and we solicit your support in taking IRIA to the pinnacle of excellence.
I once again thank you for choosing me as President of IRIA and assure you that I shall try to fulfill my duties and responsibilities to the best of my ability.
Long live IRIA!
Dr. Jignesh G Thakker
D-3, Gokul, High Land Park, J. S. Nagar, Mulund Colony, Mulund (W) Mumbai - 400082, India
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None