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I am deeply conscious of the honor which the Society has bestowed on me in inviting me to deliver the Craig Memorial Lecture this year, and thus to follow in the footsteps of many distinguished scientists, who have rendered homage to the memory of Dr. Craig. I have chosen to address you today on “Communicable Diseases in Twentieth-Century India.” Indeed when my friend, Dr. Telford Work, suggested this topic to me, I readily agreed. Let me, however, state at the outset, that my only qualification to do so is that, having been born only 5 years before the birth of the century, I was a silent spectator to the ravages brought about by most of them, have suffered from some of them, and have had the privilege, in later years, to work on some facets of the problems posed by them.
Looking back on the period of 70 years of this century, which is just about to end, one is amazed and intrigued with the problems which India had to face during those eventful years.