Cipla was born out of Dr. K.A. Hamied’s vision to harness Indian expertise for self-sufficiency in the chemical and pharmaceutical industry in India. Dr. K.A. Hamied was an exemplary visionary who donned various hats; he was a chemist, an entrepreneur and pioneer, an active participant in India’s independence struggle, a close ally of Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. Zakir Hussain and various others, a legislator in the Bombay Presidency, head of various associations, Sheriff of Bombay, proactive supporter and sponsor of institutes of scientific excellence in India.
Be it the commencement of bulk drug production in India, the landmark Indian Patents Act of 1970, the several ‘firsts’ in India and the world, its historic international stance on the price and availability of antiretroviral drugs for HIV treatment in 2000-2001, its free-of-cost Palliative Care Centre for terminally-ill cancer patients, Cipla, under the leadership of its current Chairman Dr. Y.K. Hamied, has stood for fearlessness and compassion. It is not for nothing that we say ‘None Shall be Denied’.
Apart from its various national and international milestones, the story of Cipla’s growth and expansion, its ups and downs, successes and challenges is also one that deserves to be chronicled. According to Dr Y K Hamied, Cipla was ranked 56 in the 1960s.
It is with this view that the Cipla Archives project has been launched recently. We treat our proud legacy with the seriousness and the sense of responsibility it deserves. We want to share Cipla’s story, celebrate its rich history, remind ourselves of the lessons learned, and reflect on the evolution of the pharmaceutical industry in India and at Cipla’s role in shaping it.
The Cipla Archives will bring together and house a treasure-trove of documents, photographs and oral history interviews, among other material. As the project progresses, we hope to make information available through this website. With this initiative and related activities, we not only hope to showcase Cipla’s history but also contribute to the development of business archives in India, and serve as a forum for debates and discussions on the history and historiography of science and the pharmaceutical industry in India.