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Chaptar-4

CREATION AND DEVELOPMENT OF DENTISTRY IN BALUCHISTAN

Baluchistan was at one time governed by the agent to Governor General and it was known as British Baluchistan and rest of the states like Kallat, Lesbella - were the sovereignty of the Nawabs. After the dismemberment of the four provinces into one unit West Pakistan Province, Quetta and Kallat were demarked in two divisions governed by the Commissioner and the Districts were administered through Deputy Commissioners.

Till 1956, there was no specific qualified dental surgeon in any District Hospital in the whole of Baluchistan, Sandeman (Civil) Hospital Quetta was the biggest and central administered Hospital having the physicians, surgeon, pathology, radiology, children speciality, gynecology, ENT had no system for diagnosis or treatment of oral health problems of the people of Baluchistan.

One unqualified dentist used to visit the Civil Hospital, and in the Town there were three or four technicians who were functioning as denture makers or pullers of teeth. General Surgeon used to do some aspect of surgery on the head and neck and some of the dental aid was sought from the CMH Dental Section headed by a rank of Captain or Maj. Yaseen Shah. There was no system to evaluate ORAL surgical need of the population and there was no system to have their treatment plan or any other procedure as there was no record of the disease or treatment available.

I was posted as the first ever Dental Surgeon for Quetta Kallat Divisions at Sandemon (Civil) Hospital Quetta on 23.11.1956. On my taking over, I found there is civil surgeon Dr. M. A. Durani, who was Eye Specialist and was very good at administration, there was Dr. M. M. Hu ssaini physician and his junior Dr. Ghulam Muhammad, on surgical side Dr. Akbar Khan was very friendly and I was accorded a warm welcome and found very helpful attitude from all of them and from all the departments. Everybody was happy atleast someone has come with new knowledge to help the patients both in reducing etiological factor of a dental diseases and surgical procedures including the restoration and maintenance of the other procedures.

During my student life, I was neither interested in continuing dentistry nor in becoming specialist and my interest in dentistry was not deep rooted. However, I was getting patient from all the professionals, my examination was considered good, intelligent. However as a student I never tried to stand first in professional examination. Once I got 1st position, in medicine and third position in 3rd profession and never-ever got gold or silver medal in academic or clinical side, though I was active in debates and extra curricula activities like writing of articles etc. giving lectures in the schools.

On reaching Civil Hospital, I had to see the conditions of the people, their need and budget of the hospital. I started my work on an ordinary chair with my own examination instruments and the news of my good work spread in the city like wildfire, that a young competent, smart dental surgeon has been posted at this hospital and he is helpful to the patients. So the individuals, groups of people, men and women started visiting the hospital. I found many other people at an acute stage of Alveolar abscess, pulpits and chronic diseases involving the oral cavity and systemically general diseases. Many of the people had the periodontal disease with heavy plaque and calculus deposits, many had dental caries, occlusal trauma, periapical bad environment and other lesion like syphilitic lesion, osteomylitis of jaw of very advanced nature. The children from 5 to 10 years were having different disease, hyperplasia of gums, ulceration and what not.

I arranged to purchase the equipment, medicine to plan necessary treatment for some of the population. I used to see initially 60 to 80 patients daily with periodontal conditions shaky teeth and if someone required extensive treatment. I used to admit him in the Hospital. My diagnoses was very quick a based on my experience and patients were having mild, moderate and advance type of gingival problem, with full pathology and advancement. There was no system to find out scientifically, etiology of specific factor, like bacterial growth, gram positive and gram negative for detecting infection the local and systemic environment which have contributed to the patients disease. Culture sensitivity test was not available so the diagnosis was on my will and quick action. There was hardly any broad spectrum antibiotic available at that time. Sulfadiazine APC was the only choice for swelling or for post operative care. Penciline injection was available and this injection was a good source of specific relief to the patient.

I was very quick in surgical procedure in removal of the teeth and we have been doing scaling, dressing and restorative procedure in some of the cases wherever it was the necessity. There was no record system, however, I trained ward boys and dental technicians to help me in sterilization of the instruments and maintenance of record. We got a good many cases which were published in various journals like Pakistan Dental Review and Medicos.

I arranged the clinical meetings of medical people, Dr. Zafar Hayat, Physician at that time now president PMDC, Medical Superintendent Dr. A. H. Chaudhry, Dr. Abdul Aziz, Deputy Director and other presided the clinical meetings. It was a good interaction between the medical people and personnel through these clinical meetings message of dentistry was spread to the medical men like acromegaly i.e. inter-dental separation i.e. migration of teeth, hyperplasia of gums during pregnancy and they were convinced that dentistry is a part of medical science. This message has given boost to the dental profession and thus I established dental section on a very important and standard line to deal with the patients i.e. examination, evaluation, extraction, restorative treatment and surgical manipulation. Almost all patients were happy and the message of the dentistry spread far and wide and I used to get the patients from all walk of life rich and poor, men and women and children.

It is interesting that the Commandant Staff College Col. Abdul Hameed Khan and his wife were my patient in my youth days and I had performed extraction of the wife of Commandant Staff College (later on General) under general anesthesia in CMH. Commissioner, M. Masood and M. H. Soofi, Kallat & Quetta divisions and their families were my patients. I. G. Police of Pakistan, Justice S. A. Mahmood and his wife were treated and cured at the dental clinic Sandeman (civil) hospital Quetta. Among the other politicians Makhdoom Talibul Moula stalwart of PPP from Sind, Mir Murad and Jaffar Khan Jamali from Baluchistan, Khan of Kalat family, Principal, Commissioners, Deputy Commissioners, Abdul Samad Achakzai, all were my patients and they appreciated my services.

During my stay at Quetta in 1956-61, it was an important city of West Pakistan, it was neat and clean and it had no lofty buildings due to fear of earthquake. The earthquake hit this area in 1932 perhaps, whole of Quetta was demolished, countless deaths were reported, many children were orphaned, many women became widows and heavy loss of human being by frighten earthquake. Quetta has got few places which attract outsiders and it is a good source of income as part of tourism. Quetta is rich with fruits and its climate, is very healthy except during the cold period when Qandhari winds blow, it becomes very cold. Some of the area of Baluchistan mostly closed down for 3 months due to snow fall. People are kept at home and they eat “Landhi and Larary” and no movement can take place because roads are closed due to heavy snow. There was no arrangements to remove the snow, therefore, during the said period life of some villages become still for agriculture production and source of water is underground Karaz. There is no canal system, snow, heavy rains provide a source of water.

The Kalat division is far away from Quetta, about 250 miles. Dr. H. R. Shah, Principal de’Montmorency College of Dentistry, Lahore visited Quetta in 1958, he had his friend Dr. A. M. Jaffar at Quetta who was a renowned physician and a very good person. Dr. Shah and Dr. Jaffar were together at Eden.
(U. K.) I took Dr. H. R. Shah to Kalat via Mustang on Jeep provided by Deputy Commissioner, Quetta, in order to open up second dental clinic at Divisional headquarter Kalat. Dr. Shah was progressive, dynamic and thus we took this adventurism by road, it was barren - on the way, no water could be. On reaching Kalat through Hills and stones on both sides, we could not recognize each other, our faces were covered with the dust through the wind of the area and we were shivering with cold wind. We met some of the people and Dr. Siddiqui a Physician Civil Surgeon and it was decided that dental clinic may be opened, as there was no facility of dentistry for the people of Kalat. On our recommendation, the dental clinic was sanctioned by Dr. M. A. Durani, Deputy Director, Health and Dr. Mushtaq, (Lord) BDS was posted as a first dental surgeon of Kalat Division. This was the second dental surgery clinic at Baluchistan.

In such young age, being posted in that region, I have to see diseases of such pathological and advanced nature in early life of profession, my all other interests vanished except rescue the unfortunate human from the clutches of the dreadful diseases. It may be added that in those days (1956) house job for all dental graduate was not essential therefore, I could not do my house job whatever I did it was my own initiative, interest and confidence. And this has resulted to stand with the patients in different position. I have come cross many such different cases of civilian population and from the military areas of Quetta. Lt. General Wajid Ali Burki, as Federal Health Minister in Ayub Khan Government, at his visit at Civil Hospital, Quetta (1958-59) and he visited dental surgery department at Civil Hospital Quetta he saw my surgery and was impressed by modern equipment and management on his appreciation I dare to place my articles on dentistry which was published in Pakistan Dental Review Lahore. Health Minister appreciated my writings before the Commissioner Fareed ulllah Shah, Civil Surgeon Doctor M. A. Durrani and Physician M. M. Hussaini. The Minster too also encouraged me for writing and such useful papers in future.

He described me in another public meeting of village aid function that I have met today “a young dental surgeon M. A. Soofi with small degree BDS but with versatile brain, keen and vigorous at research writings and is working very hard for welfare of the patients. He too appreciated my power of writings and collection of interesting patients with different ailments. He too has seen photographs of such cases in my Album. Of course the photographs and research was at my own cost as a fashion of interest. He too expressed such views in his other engagements at Quetta.

Remarks of General Wajid Ali Burki, Minister for Health of Pakistan very encouraging for me who said “a genius doctor was, not less than a decoration and ultimately such people wedded themselves into accounts of treasure of advancement in research/service and thus they engaged themselves in this war of writing. Due to this encouragement in my such early age of profession, I made school dental health surveys of English medium school and Urdu medium schools and had analytical results, these results and research were included in my dessertation 1970 University of Dundee Scotland for my diploma in Public Health Dentistry and the remarks of the examiner on this dessertation on my original work were that “this is addition to international literature”. People elsewhere in other continents started interest in my articles and investigation and requests for reprints and were received from all over the world like: -

  • Dental Health in Pakistan- appeared in Pakistan Dent. Rev. 18-30-36 an. 1968. Perodontic Department of Dental College, Seoul National University, 111 Songong dong Choon KU, Seoul Korea.
  • The Tooth and the Eye- Appeared in Pakistan Dent. Review. Vol. 18 pages 73-75, April, 1968, Universidade Federal do espirito santo (Brasil), 6500 Wissahickon Avenue Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19119, USA. 523 Waldon Building Little Rock, Arkansas and School of Dentistry, University of Southern California, 925 West 34th Street Los Angeles, California, 90007.
  • Culture and Sensitivity Tests for an Antibiotics in Periodontal Disease- Appeared in Pakistan Dental Rev. Vol. 18 (3) Pg. 103-106, 1968, Smith Kline and French I.A.C. 300 Laurentian boulevard Montreal 9, Quebec.

After my Nikah ceremony on June 3, 1961 at Quetta I was transferred to Mayo Hospital Lahore in August, 1961 as incharge of dental clinic in outdoor and my wife Dr. Mrs. Iqbal Soofi MBBS was kept at civil hospital Quetta. She was woman medical officer looking after the female patients in out door from 100 to 120 daily also - indoor patients in female, medical, surgical, gynae and children wards. She was also teaching the students of Aminud Din Medical School Quetta, and she was also girls’ hostel Superintendent. Her transfer to Lahore was difficult, I had to visit Quetta to see her, to meet my old friends and to watch the development in dental health.

Dr. Abdur Rauf Shah, Dental Surgeon from Bahawalpur was posted at my place Quetta 1961 and he remained there till his retirement. Dr. Rauf Shah was a gentle person, and smooth worker he could not do much of expansion except when Bolan Medical College was created, dentistry was included as a part of Medical College Quetta.
Dr. M. A. Soofi a pioneer Dental Surgeon Quetta/Kalat Region

Quetta : 23 Nov-1956 to Agu-1961.
Prior to my posting at Sandeman (Civil) Hospital Quetta by the then West Pakistan Government Health Department, Lahore, there was no qualified dental surgeon in Baluchistan. Dentistry was not known in any corner of this area and no facility of dental care was available in any government hospital. There were few quacks practicing in the market at Quetta and some elsewhere in Kalat. These were dangerous men and had spoiled many cases by ill treatment. On my arrival at Quetta I dreamed of setting up a dental clinic with open eyes on the modern lines with the hope to serve the common people and children of this region. Because many people were trapped in many advance diseases of oral cavity and there was no separate healing centre at any place except Combined Medical Hospital (CMH) had a dental unit and chair under the supervision of Captain or Major of Medical Core. Since there was no dental care centre with hospital to treat these patients so I started the health education programme in English and Urdu Medium Schools and to Government College Quetta and started writing of articles on dental health care in urdu and had a chance to broadcast from Radio Pakistan, Quetta in 1958. I had addressed the citizens as well, educating them about scientific methods of treatment because dental healing system was carried out by faith healers or unqualified practitioners and unqualified hakeems.

On the basis of education, the region of Quetta / Kalat (Baluchistan) was very backward and most of the area had been governed by the British and called British Baluchistan. Whereas the states of Kalat, Mikran, Khuzdar, Lasbela and others were governed by the cultural system of Sardari Nizam, there was no education system in any state and Sardars could not afford to educate the people due to fear of being challenged by them. Each Sardar owned his domain and whatever he said, was the last word, he used to have separate jail thus education could not develop in these states and these areas were most backward areas in all field of life.

Setting of dental section at Sandiman (Civil) Hospital was a new challenge in that system, Civil surgeon, was the head of the Hospital or Institution. In this hospital, all specialities of medicine, surgery, gynecology and children - Medical Laboratory & X-Ray were available except dental surgery. Thus this hospital became teaching hospital for Ameen ud Din Medical School Quetta to create Licentiate Doctors in Medicine. Almost all the higher qualified staff of this hospital was teaching the students. Prof. Dr. Baligher Rehan MRCP was professor of Medicine and Principal of Ameen ud Din Medical School, Quetta.

After my arrival at the hospital 23.11.1956, I had convinced the administrator (Civil Surgeon) of Hospital that dentistry is very essential in this part of land and people have got suffering from various oral cavity diseases. So as similar difficulties was felt for the cases of harelip and cleft palate, cleft palate was a congenital defect. Even all the medical staff needed Dental Care.

I used to arrange the scientific session (Clinical Meeting) in Civil Hospital, Quetta each month in order to attract the medical and dental doctors of Ameen ud Din Medical School, for better learning. Luckily Dr. Zafar Hayat was posted here as a physician, after his return from London with MRCP. He was a sharp and intelligent physician and sweet mannered friend, later on he became Professor and Principal Nishter Medical College Multan and lastly, he was elected President PMDC. During that Quetta period he used to encourage me a lot, his letter is being written to me dated 31.05.2003 produced here:

“I am glad to have your letter and your ambitious plans to write the history of Dentistry in Pakistan. I know of your pursuits in the world of literature and various publications in the discipline of Dentistry. Your career in Pakistan Dental Association was always vibrant. I can send you some of the information available with PMDC”.
There was another letter from Prof. Dr. Zafar Hayat, where he mentioned my topic of discussion in 1958, he remembered my days of past at Civil Hospital Quetta after about 40 years. This speciality of dentistry was absent in this part of land till my posting on 23.11.1956 as the first ever Dental Surgeon of Quetta/Kalat Regions by the then Govt of West Pakistan.

I became Secretary of this scientific medical committee of the Sandeman (Civil) Hospital Quetta. When I presented my research survey report, and other matters, I was given budget by the Civil Surgeon for purchase of dental equipment and I purchased the instruments from Lahore and installed them in a room, on medical ward side, thus the dental clinic was set up during 1956-58 in a small room with modern equipment’s and services to patients were started in a befitting way.

I became an active member of Pakistan Medical Association Baluchistan and in other social activities and was a teacher in Dental Health for students of Amin ud Din Medical School. I had received various advance cases of dental diseases and many cases of deformities and destruction. I dealt with many maxillo-facial cases, fracture problem of jawbones and thus my professional skill was very much highlighted and appreciated by Medical doctors and patents. Each person of Quetta had an access to the first dental clinic of Baluchistan, though he / she may have to stand in long row, I had courage to treat as many as cases 80 to 100 in a day and provided services to the people of Baluchistan at large. Due to my personal interest in profession every civil officer was my patient, the dental clinic became popular center for providing dental care to army officers as well. I used to visit CMH for treatment, for example the wife of Commandant Staff College Quetta, Brig. Abdul Hameed who later on become General was my patient. Many dignitaries Sardar / like Mir Jaffar Khan Jamali, Makhdoom Talibul Maoula, divisional commissioner Kalat & Quetta. Mr. M. Masood, Mr. M. H. Sufi and their families were my patients and all the Tribes Sardar and Nawabs were attracted to the hospital for their treatment. So there was great name in Dentistry and development of Dentistry in Baluchistan through my services. I have been dealing with such cases like “Ludwings Angina”, Oral Cancer and Syphilic Lesions and others published in “Pakistna Dental Review”.

The Pakistan Dental Association Lahore has nominated me as a Convenir of Quetta/ Kalat Division. Meanwhile Radio Pakistan started its broadcasting from Quetta. Mr. K. J. Ali was station director and Nasir ud Din Nasir was Deputy Director - a scholarly person, who later on did D. Lit and become religious scholar and I used to give talk on the radio on dental care. I had the honour to serve Pakistan Railways employees in the Railway Hospital Quetta for dental diseases. On my arrival at Civil Hospital Quetta the news spread like wild fire in both division. There was chief nurse of Railway Hospital; she visited my surgery at Civil Hospital with dental problem soon after my arrival in Nov. 1956. I examined her and told her, you need general anesthesia for removal of your wisdom tooth and there is no arrangement at this Hospital as yet. Yes, she said “Sir if you could come to our Railway Hospital, we will arrange anesthesia. I was very enthusiastic I agreed and I walked to Railway Hospital from my residence. I removed the tooth under general anesthesia that was my first operation and achievement, after my graduation BDS from de’Montmorency College of Dentistry Punjab University-1956. I did not serve as a House Surgeon at Lahore, after finishing my surgical task on that day I started walking to my residence. On my departure the attendant of Nurse gave me Rs. 10/- as my fee, I refused to accept but she insisted to take Rs. 10/- again and again. At that time value of Rs. 10/- was very high. I saw Rs. 10/- for first time and note of Rupess in my pocket four times till reaching my clinic. In these days my official pay was Rs. 250/- + Rs. 48/- as month salary.
Dr. M. Ibrahim MBBS, later on reknown Radiologist had constructed some shops at Liaquat Road, Quetta. During his posting at Quetta, he was selected for higher studies from Civil Hospital Quetta and was my senior colleague, his son Prof. Dr. Haq Nawaz was medical student at that time. In his shop a medical practitioner Dr. Haqui was practicing he was a genius, very nice, sympathetic. He advised me to start dental practice at evening, So I started my private clinic following his advice and he gave me a room. I purchased a steel iron dental chair “field dental chair” costing Rs. 158/- only. One of my friend Sh. Mukhtar Ahmed photographer of Soil Conservation Department who was my patient and became good friend donated me a flexible table lamp which I fixed on the wall and Tin of dalda was used as spitoon. Sterilization was done through boiling system so I started my practice in that small shop with simple equipment. I used to charge fee of Rs. 5/- my fee at that time. All the dignitaries of that area mentioned above were treated in the steel chair by me. One of them, Makhdoom Talibul Maoula was a very great person he gave me Rs. 10/- fee at that time, it was most astonishing. So this made the dental profession a popular in that region and I was given tremendous respect by lady doctors, doctors, Medical Superintendent, police officers, civil officers, army officers, citizens high or low each person knew me. Iranian Counselor Aga Afsaryab Nawai was also my patient and I used to speak with him little Persian. However, I was not very well at Persian, for one patient I received Rs. 5/- as my fee I used to enjoy Lal Kabab as I was doing body building exercises and patients was sufficient, it was difficult to spend Rs. 5/- each evening.

 

Visiting Macchh Jail as Dental Surgeon
Macchh Jail is very big Jail of Pakistan in Baluchistan. Prisoners in this jail are very dangerous dacoits & killers. When I enter in the office of Superintendent Jail I asked him kindly take out all the people in ground those who have teeth problem. He said “what you are talking young boy”? they are very dangerous prisoners, you have to see them in their cell with two or three officials. I was young and was doing bodybuilding at that time I had confidence in me and I examined and treated the prisoners without any problem. On my persistent, he asked caretaker to take the prisoners in the ground. I saw the each prisoner he was very dangerous having high height, stout body with red eyes. I used normal psychology, firstly I judged his language he was pashtoon then easily I spoke in pashtoo and treated him with no fear. One who was from a Persian speaking area, I spoke Persian for him. The pashtoon prisoner patient said “you are pashtoon, my brother, there shall be no pain and asked me “you remove tooth without anesthesia”. I told him it will be painful but I could not convince him and ultimately I removed his tooth without anesthesia. On such performance “Jail Superintendent” astonished how this young boy could deal with such dangerous prisoners I told him, they only need love and if you treat them with love, they will behave well. All prisoners are treated by me very friendly.

JOURNEY OF DENTISTRY IN BALUCHISTAN

Baluchistan, before partition of sub-continent, was governed by an Agent to Governor General of India and there was hardly any process of upliftment of both rural and urban areas. Thus Baluchistan remained economically, socially and educationally backward as compared to the other provinces of Indian Civil Administration.

During 1956, formation of one Unit took place and thereby many changes took place administratively. Through such changes it acquired little increasing momentum in socio-economic life. Firstly, the population which was being governed by rule of Sardars, started understanding of law of government and general standard of living started rising, yet it was lower. There was also change in the outlook of life of the people of Baluchistan. As a result, education spread partly and multiplication of contacts, with the rest of the civilization of the country improved the condition. As such, many officers from Punjab and NWFP and Sind were posted through West Pakistan and lastly there were some political awareness and changes in Baluchistan having an area of 134638 sq. miles.

The health department of West Pakistan started accelerating preventive and curative treatment of the population on the soil of this land. There was some amenities at Sandemon (Civil) Hospital Quetta in the sphere of general health the rest of the province was different because the people of these areas were unaware of sense of health care. Till Nov. 1956 there was no Dentist in this part of land. Quacks and Religious Elder, Barbers and Blacksmiths used to pull out painful teeth. The Medical Doctor used to provide first hand treatment. CMH Quetta had a Dental Centre for Army Officers only.

Since then Dentistry is in the evolutionary stage in the province of Baluchistan. Baluchistan was given the status of a Province only 22 years ago. At present it consists of six Divisions and 18 districts. It is the biggest province by area of Pakistan. The language in the vast area is known as Baluchi, which contains many words of Persian. Other languages are Pushto and Brohi. Most of the people speaking Persian.

The West Pakistan Government has appointed then a Dental Graduate Dr. M. A. Soofi, who took over on 23.11.1956 as a part of service in Dentistry for Quetta/Kalat Divisions. Dr. Soofi with his youth and dynamicity established a service clinic in the Wing of Medical Ward and organized his impressive office of dental Surgeon at Sandemon (Civil) Hospital Quetta / Kalat with his dedication accomplished his goals through medical literature. He, by virtue of social welfare qualities was encouraged for the advancement of dental science by the Civil Surgeons. Dr. M. A. Durani, Dr. Zafar Hayat, Syed Darbar Ali Shah and other officials soon became Secretary of Clinical Meeting of Sandemon (Civil) Hospital Quetta and presented their papers and thus introduced the dental profession to the Medical Superintendent. Due to his educational organization and habit of updating, Dr. Soofi published first paper in 1958 and made many surveys. His skill made him the most popular dental surgeon of his age.

He remained as most effective and popular Dental Surgeon till his Nikah on 3rd June, 1961 with Dr. Mrs. Iqbal Soofi. After five years of incorporation academic publications he handed over the well established Dental Section to Dr. Abdur Rauf Shah now Head of Dental Department of Bolan Medical College. Dr. Soofi was also practicing as Dentist and was popular through the two Divisions as an outstanding Dental Surgeon, literary figure and a social Youngman with research aptitude.

Prof. Dr. H. R. Shah, the late Principal, de’Montmorency College of Dentistry visited Quetta in 1960. Dr. Soofi and Dr. Shah traveled to Kalat to ascertain the possibility of opening a Dental Clinic. The West Pakistan Government under the advice of Dr. Shah appointed Dr. Mushtaq Ch. (Late) Dental Surgeon at Kalat and another Dental Clinic at Turbat was started. It is a famous saying that once you are in Quetta, you like to serve again after being posted outside.

Dr. Soofi was posted again at Quetta Division alongwith his wife as a Dental Surgeon, Sibi/Ziarat on August 1, 1964. Honouring his position, building was constructed by PWD Department privately and funds were obtained from Red Cross Society, Sibi and thus Sibi too had Dr. Soofi as a first Dental Surgeon.

On the basis of dedication and publications, Dr. Soofi was selected as a British Council Scholar, 1965-66 for London University for periodontalogy. He became pioneer periodontist Pakistan as well.

Dr. S. Rauf Shah was his nobility and modest personality carried on arranging further development in dental science, by his constant contribution as member of PMDC and first teacher of Bolan Medical College. He too, with is zeal started BDS classes and organized Dental Association and has got funds of Rs. 7.5 million for construction of Dental Hospital in the Sandemon (Civil) Hospital, Quetta.

Once can’t think a Dental Clinic, pioneered by Dr. Soofi in one room in 1956, will be developed into Hospital in 1989-90. Dr. Soofi served as Lecturer (Part time) in Amin ud Din Medical School Quetta in Dentistry in 1990.

It is a miracle and surprising road of dentistry in Baluchistan. It could be a dream, that a dental surgeon appointed at the biggest area in 1956, will retire as Principal of College of Community Medicine, Lahore. A Bank of Jaws and teeth started in 1956 had victory over the body. Dental cement found its way to cement future of many dental graduates of Baluchistan.

The prime land remained concern of Dr. Soofi, because of his dedication love for patients and he claims that Baluchistan and his patients are his research tools and laboratory. He loves Baluchistan because last days’ of Quaid-e-Azam were spent here. At this occasion we welcome Prof. Soofi the pioneer of Dentistry in this province as a speaker.

It may be recalled that he was Chairman of 4th International Dental Conference, Regent International College of Dentists and President Pakistan Dental Association, Lahore and Internationally known Research Scholar, which pridely he owes due to his interest and initiative as a Dental Surgeon.

Ref: Medical Herald, Ps.3-4, Sept. 1-14, 1992.

Expansion of Dentistry in Baluchistan in 1964

Quetta has got attraction, it is a common saying that one who had remained in Quetta for a period of a year always has desire for reposting again in Baluchistan and it so happened to us that my wife was transferred to Institute of Hygiene and Preventive Medicine, Lahore as demonstrator in Department of Nutrition and diabetics in beginning of 1962 she remained there in Nutrition Dept headed by Prof. Alvi a very kind hearted, affectionate teacher and officer. But after taking-over Institute by Prof. Dr. Nazir Ahmed as a Dean, he transferred all the lady doctors from the Institute. So there was no option except to accept the post of WMO at rural health centre Chabb District Attock which was offered by Director Health Services Punjab. Some of the period was passed on long medical leave, and thus we both opted for Baluchistan in 1964. In order to be posted together at one station as part of Services and General rules “that husband and wife should be accommodated at one station”.

 

On reaching Baluchsitan in August, 1964, we called at the office of Dr. M. A. Durani Deputy Director, Health Services who was my first boss in the civil hospital Quetta 1956-1961 and was much impressed by my work, conduct and efficiency. Since there was no vacancy of a Dental Surgeon at Quetta or Kalat, so Dr. Durani posted us at Civil Hospital Ziarat / Sibi. Thus the new post of dental surgeon was created at civil hospital Ziarat/ Sibi and we were asked to go to Ziarat and enjoy the season.

Ziarat is an attractive place. It is 76 miles from Quetta at 8200 Ft above the Sea level. On the way, while ascending to Ziarat, we witnessed the vastness of this valley. It was pleasant, fresh air, on way, we found many hills. The women and children were working on the road side, we saw the women carrying water in pitchers and it was a very panoramic view of the whole of Ziarat. We found juniper trees, some of them as old as 5000 years with challenging heights and it was presenting a picture of paradise.

 

We were very excited to reach at Ziarat, two rooms house of women medical officer was allotted to us nearby the Residency where Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah Governor General of Pakistan spent his last days as part of treatment. This Residency was the summer headquarter of Quetta, it was built by Sir Robert Sandeman in 1860. There is shrine of Hazrat Abdul Hakeem known as Kharwari Baba, many people visit the tomb of this famous person. We husband and wife and two children Bilal and Rabia started visiting the residency enjoying its structure and green grossy lawn. We used to seen Balcony where father of the nation Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah used to sit and during his illness, Liaquat Ali Khan the Prime Minister, Raja Ghazanfer Ali Khan, Ch. Muhammad Ali and many others visited him.

 

Quaid e Azam was under treatment and care of very senior, competent, devotee team of doctors comprising of Prof. Dr. Col. Elahi Bukhsh, Principal KEMC a Physician, Dr. Riaz Ali Shah, Chest and Tuberculoses specialist, Mayo Hospital, Dr. S. S. Alam Radiologist and Dr. Ghulam Ahmed, Pathologist of Mayo Hospital and Miss Fatima Jinnah who was looking after the ailing brother, she was a dentist and had the interaction with doctors.

 

Arriving Ziarat Quaid-e-Azam was examined by Dr. Siddique and Dr. Mahmood Pathologist of Quetta, who did whatever Quaid-e-Azam asked. But they were not competent to go further for investigation and treatment thus this team of the doctors were invited to Quetta from Lahore who reached here by train. All these doctors were my teachers at KEMC and Dr. S. S. Alam was practicing as Radiologist at the clinic of Col Elahi Bukhsh, where I practice dental surgery since 1971 and we used to talk about Quaid-e-Azam and his stay at Ziarat.

 

There was no sanctioned dental clinic or budget available at Ziarat Civil Hospital so I have been examining the cases at the operation theatre of the Ziarat Civil Hospital and started health education programme to the schools of nearby villages, and to the public when we shifted the office alongwith the offices of Deputy Commissioner winter headquarter Sibi. I managed to acquire place for dental clinic two rooms and construction was carried out by PWD Executive Engineer Mr. Mir as a social contributor and Deputy Commissioner Azeem Khan allocated 5000 rupees from the Red Cross funds. Thus a dental clinic at Sibi was established in 1965 and we started getting patients from all villages and health education was given to educational schools.

 

I had done health education at Quetta, lectures were arranged in School and Colleges and and it gave a boost to the dental profession in that region and I conducted dental epidemiological survey of two schools, Western and Islamia High School Quetta to detect dental diseases during my stay at Quetta 1956-61, summary of this survey is as under: -

SUMMARY OF FINDINGS OF SURVEY OF TWO SCHOOLS

A self-sponsored clinical dental survey of 1507 children and young adults of Eastern and European styled educational institutions in the Quetta, West Pakistan, is reported. The results show the prevalence of periodontal disease and give information on oral hygiene standards. A comparative study of two different patterns of schools and the dietary habits is carried out. The hard and fibrous diet is reported to produce better dental health. The prevalence of periodontal disease is over 99% among the population examined.


Dental fluorosis is widespread in inhabitants of Quetta. However, dental decay was noted in cases having fluorosis. No clinical signs of skeletal fluorosis were seen. No case of ulcerative gingivitis or congenital deformity or benign or malignant growth have been seen; although such ailments have been seen in a dental clinic attached to Civil Hospital (Quetta), there is less dental decay in the local population, i.e. poor and lower middle class as compared to high and upper middle class, has been observed.


About 78% of the poor and lower middle class had natural feeding against 65% of the rich and upper middle class. The lower middle class enjoys good (general) health as compared to the higher group.


Rich and upper middle class has used the toothbrush- male 69.65% and female 91.01% - whereas poor and lower middle class- male 33.07% and female 31.94% has used the toothbrush, still the D.M.F. is significantly higher in the rich and upper middle class despite the fact that 20% of the poor lower middle class has not used anything.


Similarly, O.H.I. is higher in the rich and upper middle class in the various age groups as compared to the poor and lower middle class. However, there is no marked difference in the calculus index of both the classes but the debris index is higher in the rich and upper middle class.


The periodontal index also represents the higher score in higher and upper middle class in the male group from 10-14 and in the female group from 20-30 years of age group. The other age group does not represent any other significant differences. This survey have contents of my dissertation University of Dundee 1970.

BRITISH COUNCIL SCHOLAR

The British Council announced one scholar ship for advancement in medicine and dentistry and it was publicized in both wings of Pakistan. I applied there were several other candidates from the medical and dental side, however, I was selected having credit of publications on different aspects of oral cavity and according to the standard merit of British Council I was given scholarship in the field of Periodontology to benefit my countrymen who are suffering from gums diseases.

As a British Council Scholar (1965-66) spent one year at Eastman Dental Clinic at British Post-graduate Dental Institute, University of London, framed my mind for treatment and diagnosis of a vital and sparking problem of Pakistan “Periodontal diseases” and research in bacteriology. Due to proper training and exercises in a clinical surgery at London University, styled my career as a Periodontist successfully. Perhaps I stand as a unique, so far in my country is concerned. This was neither my hope nor I planned for it. This is second incident, that I gained/ new knowledge in periodontal surgery and confirmation stands with my experience style, skill and gallantry hope.

An incident is not opponent of hope. Hope is mechanism and that actually keeps a person alive for dreaming and planning. Thus my ideas made my future for preventive discipline and I am engaged here with many articles and a book on Dental Public Health 2001 for postgraduate. A chapter on Dental Public Health by me is included in Community Medicine book for MBBS, written by Illyas and Ansari.

Development of Dentistry at Mayo Hospital Lahore,
1961-1964

After my Nikah ceremony with Dr. Iqbal Jehan Qureshi, WMO Civil Hospital Quetta, I was transferred to Lahore by the Health Directorate of West Pakistan.

I was posted at Mayo Hospital Lahore in Aug. 1961 as Incharge of Dental Surgery Mayo Hospital Lahore. Besides my clinical services, I started dental health education and I started giving lectures on care of teeth to various schools and colleges. Mr. A. G. Butt was principal at Central Training College and I delivered detailed lectures to the teachers to show its importance on healthy teeth and gums. Similarly a lecture was arranged on the importance of dental health at Diyal Sing College. Over and above started dental health education in the city of Lahore as a part of the campaign supported by the central council of Pakistan Dental Association. This was adopted to over come lack of dental surgeons and in this way dental committee was formed comprising Maj. Qaiser Ali Khan as a Convener he was DG Social works. Mr. Zafar Umer, Raja Khursheed Alam Advocate Bilal Ashraf and Dr. M. A. Soofi. During this campaign my lectures were covered by daily Kohistan 23.3.1963 and other dailies which mentioned the reason for most dental disorders is the ignorance of population regarding how to clean the teeth and which medium is to be used to clean the teeth and not knowing about seriousness of dental diseases and how they can effect general health problems like oral cancers can erupt in those cases who are smokers and betal chewers. In one interview I suggested that people should get through teeth checked up regularly at least after six months and visit the Dental hospital/ dental clinic Mayo Hospital so that the disease should be controlled. During my stay at Mayo Hospital, I managed to organize the dental clinic outdoors and looked after the indoor patients and spread Public Dental Health campaign on Radio, Print Media and public. I became very popular dental surgeon and wrote articles.