The Journal of Pakistan Medical Association is now sixty. A little short of half a century, in February 1961, I was inducted as joint editor of the Journal. Dr. A. Salim, a serious and dedicated pathologist who set up the first clinical lab in Karachi "The Lab", was its editor and jovial Dr. Bashir Akhter, consultant physician was chairman. I was also in good company of members of editorial board like Dr. S.I.M.G Mannan, Prof. Zaman and Nurul Islam from the then East Pakistan and off course. Dr. H. R. Khan who appeared to be "permanent" Secretary General of PMA (C).
Dr. Sarwar Jehan Zubairi became editor of JPMA soon after Dr. Salim left for Houston and decided to stay on. Between 1962 - 1965 while in UK I came to know Dr. Zubairi better as we shared digs together. She raised the standard of JPMA beyond expectation, through peer review and strict selection of articles. The Journal was indexed by the efforts of its editor Dr. Sarwar Zubairi and her dedicated associates Dr. Fatema Jawad, Dr. Huma and Late Dr. Haziqul Yaqeen.
After completing two terms as secretary general of PMA (C). I was elected as chairman, editorial board. It was financially very trying time for the Journal. We went round various major drug houses to remind them about their responsibility toward research and its publication, with some short lived success. This was mainly because journal was posted to all members irrespective of their regular subscription. Later it was decided to charge a small subscription.
This may appear not relevant to sixtieth anniversary of JPMA but need to be recorded. I consider this an opportune time to do that. PMA Karachis executive committee used to elect editors of Urdu and English journals beside other posts. The Urdu journal used to appear erratically while English Journal never appeared. When I was elected as editor in 1960. I started a quarterly English Journal "Your Health". After four issues and expiry of my term I left abroad for training in psychiatry. The journal ceased its publication. The attempt at cessation of publication has special significance for the future of PMA.
It was a summer in late sixties when I was to attend a General Body meeting of PMA Karachi which had on its agenda to officially stop publication of Your Health.
After a sharing a lunch with Dr. M.R.A Hashmi and Late Dr. Imtiaz, a biochemist at Karachi Gymkhana, I invited both friends to attend the General Body meeting. There it appeared so easy to get the decision reversed, even if we were not at our best. The new English Journal "Spectrum" took some time to start publication.
The incident made us think about taking over PMA by younger generation. It did not take long when we gathered all the progressive Dow graduates and decided to become member of PMA and change the policies which were medical profession centered. The election of the Central Council and office bearer was at Dhaka. The participation of delegates was over subscribed and we had to accept \'alternate delegates\' and more than hundred doctors traveled to Dhaka. MRA Hashmi was elected as Secretary General and so was the entire new central council.
The policies of PMA were since radically changed. We introduced preventive strategy in health planning much more before Alma Ala Declaration of 1974 and focused on health of the nation.
A booklet was brought out \'Health: Policy and Planning Perception\' in 1988 containing major policy decisions, excerpts from Alternate Health Policy (1972) and resolutions on major issues.
To conclude I would like congratulate the team of JPMA who have held its banner high.
This journal is a member of and subscribes to the principles of the Committee on Publication Ethics.