India’s overgrowing population is set to put the nation’s future in danger. Government and various sectors are continuously working to tackle this major issue that has already started to poses a great strain on the country’s diminishing resources, such as water and energy. In India’s population trajectory there is a great imbalance, with southern states meeting global trends of less than two children per family but on the other hand, families in the northern states, home to 40% of the population of India, prefer to have approximately four children per household.
Finally, a solution for this issue has been discovered and accepted after much contemplation of four decades.
In 1979, a professor in his 40s, Dr Sujoy Kumar Guha, published his first scientific paper on Risug, a molecular drug he had developed as a reversible contraceptive for men. But since he did not have a medical degree, just a PhD from American University, all of his pleas for clinical trials and the efforts to bring out drug in the market was shunned by the India’s supreme medical body, the ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research).
But Dr.Guha did not just accept his defeat and went on to acquire a MD. After that the ICMR had no choice but to start the clinical trials again. Phase One of clinical trials progressed for about a decade and finally in 1993 they proved to be spectacularly successful. But then the ICMR put them to a stop after someone reported that some of Risug’s components were known to cause cancer.
Guha tried to convince that, individual substances become harmless as compounds, just as chlorine, which could melt human flesh, becomes basic everyday salt when mixed with sodium. The ICMR was not satisfied. Then Dr. Guha knocked at the Supreme Court’s doors; after a few years, Phase Two was set in motion and, by 2002, Dr. Guha’s hopes were close to being fulfilled before another obstacle came in the way.
This time, the international norms for clinical trials have been updated. It took another five years for the Indian medical authorities to enforce these necessary standards.
Finally after four decades and after many barriers, in the next six to seven months, Indian medical authorities are planning to bring Dr. Guha’s this reversible contraceptive for men to the market. It would be the world’s first male injectable contraceptive. Indian men prefer to use condoms to sterilize their reproductive systems instead of invasive vasectomy surgery. But the innovation of Dr. Guha is natural, non-invasive, and inexpensive, and may cause millions to opt contraceptive for men, provided that it is reversible with only two counter injections.
Dr Guha believes to this day that this was meant to promote a pill-in-the-making which, unlike his one-time injectable hormone-based drug, promised a continual demand and endless profits.