Veteran oncologist V. Shanta who headed the Cancer Institute (WIA) here, popularly known as Adyar Cancer Institute died at a private hospital on Tuesday early morning.

A Padma Vibuhshan, Padma Bhushan, Padama Shri and Ramon Magsaysay awardee Shanta, 93 was admitted to a private hospital on Monday night as she was unwell. 

V shanta

Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed grief over the demise of Dr V Shanta, one of the senior-most Indian oncologists who headed the Adyar Cancer Institute.

In a tweet, the Prime Minister said: "Dr V Shanta will be remembered for her outstanding efforts to ensure top quality cancer care in the country. The Cancer Institute at Adyar, Chennai, is at the forefront of serving the poor and downtrodden. I recall my visit to the institute in 2018. Saddened by Dr V Shanta's demise. Om Shanti,"

Lesser known facts about V Shanta:

According to the Cancer Institute, Shanta has published over 95 papers in national and international journals, contributed chapters in Oncology books, delivered many prestigious orations and participated in many international and national conferences.

  • Born into a distinguished scientific family - her immediate grand uncle (C.V.Raman) and uncle (S. Chandrasekar)- Noble Laureates.
  • She graduated (M.B.B.S.) in 1949, D.G.O. in 1952 and M.D, in Obstetrics & Gynecology in 1955.
  • In April 1955, she joined the fledgling Cancer Institute, established in 1954 by the Womens' Indian Association Cancer Relief Fund, as its Resident Medical Officer.
  • PMK's Ramadoss said Shanta joined the Cancer Institute preferring over the Assistant Surgeon's Post in the Women & Children's Hospital, Madras, to which she had been selected by the Madras Public Service Commission.
  • Since then, Shanta's entire professional life was dedicated to the mission of organising care of cancer patients, the study of the disease, its prevention and control, the generation of specialists and scientists in different aspects of Oncologic Sciences.
  • She has played an important role along with Dr. Krishnamurthi in the development of the Cancer Institute (WIA) from a cottage hospital of 12 beds to a major comprehensive Cancer Centre of national and international stature. She has played a pioneering role in all the achievements of the Institute.
  • Shanta was on WHO Advisory Committee on Cancer till March 2005.
  • She was also Convener of the State Advisory Board on Cancer.
  • She has been the Chairman of the INDO-US Collaborative Group on Lymphoid Neoplasias (Indian Chapter), member of many ICMR Committees, member of the ICMR Task Force on Registries and member of the Syndicate of the Anna University.
  • She was President of the Indian Society of Oncology (88-90), President of the Asian & Pacific Federation of Organisations for cancer control (97-99) and President of the 15th Asian & Pacific Cancer Conference (1999).
  • She has participated in a number of Scientific International Collaborative Programmes.