New Delhi: After Padma Shri, Dr Chandrakant Pandav, former Professor and Head of Community Medicine at AIIMS, also famous as Iodine Man of India, got the profuse praise for being saviour of a kind. In a celebration of conferring of Padma award on him, Maneka Gandhi, an animal rights activist and environmentalist, said due to Dr Pandav, the lives of thousands of cats and dogs could be saved in COVID times. Thanks to fake health news, they were in danger of being culled. Dr Srinath Reddy, former professor of AIIMS and Chairman, Public Health Foundation of India, called him the saviour of brains of India.
Ms Gandhi, MP and former Union Minister, said she was much worried when fake news purporting cats and dogs were carriers of COVID 19 started appearing in the media. At her behest, it was Dr Pandav who came forward to debunk the news and saved the lives of thousands of cats and dogs who might have been culled. She also spoke about Dr Pandava’s immense contribution to public health. She said Dr Pandav’s quintessence is kindness and he has ‘appalling’ sense of humour. She bemoaned the fact that along with essential goodness of people, COVID also brought out the meanest side of human beings.
Dr Srinath Reddy, one of the few greatest global public health policy experts and former colleague of Dr Pandav said that by his seminal works on iodine deficiency, Dr Pandav saved the brain power of the country as this deficiency severely impacts the intellectual and cognitive abilities. Dr Reddy went at length to say that his contribution to public health even ‘inspired me’ to some work. Dr Reddy said, ‘Overall nutritional disorder in India is monumental. Dr Pandav on his part saved brain powers of India. Dr Reddy was profuse on Dr Pandav’s work ethics and complete commitment to public health cause. Dr Swadeep Srivastaav, Founder, Heal Foundation, recounted Dr Pandav’s immense contribution to record number of COVID webinars by HF.
Community Medicine Department of AIIMS looks at Padma to its former head as honour of the whole department. Dr (prof) Sanjay Rai, Professor, Department of Community Medicine, AIIMS and President of IPHA(Indian Public Health Association and Dr Kapil Yadav of AIIMS expressed their happiness on conferment of Padma Award on Dr Pandav. The celebration was organised by HEAL HEALTH and ICCIDD (International Council for Control of Iodine Deficiency). The celebration in Ethopian Culture Centre was attended by veritable who”s who of public health.
Dr Chandrkant Pandav is currently member of National Council on India’s Challenges under Poshan Abhiyan. His work on Iodine deficiency won him several awards and recognition from global organizations including World Health Organization. Due to his works on iodine deficiency he has earned the moniker of ‘Iodine Man of India’.