CHENNAI: I always wanted to become a doctor,” says Dr T Kamaraj, adding that he probably couldn’t imagine doing any other profession. A popular face on TV, the MD of Akash Fertility Centre and Hospital, along with his wife Dr Jeyarani Kamaraj, has conducted several conferences on sexual medicine and infertility. Though they started their journey with a small hospital at West Mambalam, today they have expanded to two hospitals — Aakash Fertility Centre and Hospital and Dr Kamaraj Hospital for Men’s Health. Dr Kamaraj talks to CE about his childhood, love for writing articles and travel escapades. Excerpts follow:
Can you take us through your childhood days?
I grew up in a remote area in Madurai. As kids, we used to head to school only for the noon meals, and not to study. But I was keen on learning and always came first in class, and all this without attending tuitions as we couldn’t afford to. It was during Class 9 that we shifted to Chengelpettu, where I finished the rest of my schooling. The school provided vocational training for classes 10 and 11 in engineering and agriculture, and because I scored high marks, they put me in engineering. However, I went to medical school later as I wanted to become a doctor.
You have actively been writing books and articles in your field of expertise. How do you find the time to manage everything?
Usually, a day in my life is really hectic — with back-to-back consultations and surgeries. But I felt there was a necessity to spread awareness about topics like sexual medicine and infertility, because firstly, many people are still embarrassed to talk about it. And secondly, I feel that there has been a lot of quackery being practiced in this field. So this keeps me going every day.
Are you an avid reader?
From the time I was 14, I would read different kinds of books and journals for around five hours daily. Even now, I have one lakh books in my book shelf. I read all genres of books, but love to read up on politics.
Can you recall any special college memories?
I studied in Stanley Medical College and was the hostel secretary and also the state secretary of the college student federation. We would go for several protests and march against MGR and would fight against caste system, corruption, etc. We even ran a small journal called Udhayageetham,
Are you a movie buff?
Not anymore. In my earlier days, I would watch a lot of foreign films, especially Russian films.
You travel a lot. Which has been your most memorable trip so far?
I think I have visited almost all countries in the world. Every year, I visit at least six countries. In fact, I will be visiting Portugal in a few months. One of the most favourite memories from all of my travels is when I visited all the Seven Wonders of the World. Apart from that, I loved visiting Sweden. It is such a beautiful country, and the weather is just great. An interesting fact is that at 2 am there, the sun will look like how it is at 4 pm in India.