21 October 2014
Contributed by Dr S. I. Bux, with research assistance from Ms Janet Low (Secretary of the MRS)
The idea of forming a society of radiologists and radiotherapists was first mooted by Allahyarham Dato’ Dr Hj Omar bin Din way back in 1971-2. However, this was met with poor response. It was not until 1976 that things got moving. (Then) Associate Professor Dr Joginder Singh in his capacity as the pro-tem secretary drafted the constitution for the society.
Proposed names for the society included ‘Malaysian Society of Radiologists’ and ‘Radiological Society of Malaysia’. Dr Hussain Abd Ghani was the pro-tem chairman. The inaugural General Meeting of the Society was held on Saturday, 27th November, 1976 at 4.30pm at the General Hospital, Kuala Lumpur. A total of 13 radiologists and radiotherapists attended: Dr AH Ang, Dr NK Ghouse, Dr Hussain Abd Ghani, Dr Ismail Sa’ad, Dr Joginder Singh, Dr K Kulaveerasingam, Dr AK Mukherjee, Dr Narinder Singh, Dr K Ragupathy, Dr SK Dharmalingam, Dr Perdamen Singh, Dr V Mahadev and Dr K Narashima.
The elected office bearers were as follows:
President: Dr SK Dharmalingam (Department of Radiotherapy and Nuclear Medicine, GHKL)
Vice-President: Dr Hussain Abd Ghani (X-ray Department, GHKL)
Secretary: Dr Joginder Singh (Department of Radiology, UHKL)
Treasurer: Dr Perdamen Singh (Department of Radiotherapy and Nuclear Medicine)
Dr Ang Ah Hoo (Department of Radiology, UHKL)
Dr Ismail Sa’ad (Department of Radiology, UKM)
Dr NK Ghose (c/o Drs Lim & Hoe, Lee Lian Yan Building, 709 Jalan Tun Perak, KL)
Dato’ Dr Hj Omar bin Din, being the most senior radiologist in the country then was unanimously elected as the first Honorary Life Member of the society under Article VII of the Constitution. The society’s name was finally decided as ‘Malaysian Radiological Society’ and an application for registration was made to the Registrar of Societies on the 26th of January, 1977.
The very first AGM of the MRS was held on 17th June 1978 at Lecture Hall 3, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya and was open to all doctors, Final Year Medical Students and radiographers. Why, even the lunch was held at the UH Cafeteria. Dinner was however sumptuously held at the Selangor Club.
As at 1980, there were 37 radiologists, radiotherapists, oncologists and those practising nuclear medicine to serve a population of 12 million then. Because of this small number, general practitioners and personnel not trained in the use of X-rays were rampant and this was a subject of much debate in the early years of the MRS. In maintaining a high quality in imaging, the MRS Council then, in particular, Dr Joginder Singh, had gone to great lengths to oppose the formation of a GP X-ray Society. Thus was the humble beginning of what we are today. We thank the wisdom of our pioneers.