Emeritus Professor Sittampalam Shanmugaratnam
(July 4, 1928–August 6, 2001) was the professor and head of the department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology
of the National University Hospital
specializing in human reproduction research. His work on contraception contributed to Singapore's success in population control. The National University Hospital research laboratory for prostaglandin research was initiated and propelled by his vision and energy. He was also the founder of the IVF
programme which has given hope to many childless couples. Shanmugaratnam shortened his own name to Shan Ratnam, and he is credited as S. Shan Ratnam
in all official media.
In an interview in 1995, Ratnam said that his father had settled in Malaya
for three generations while his mother came from Ceylon
Ratnam claimed that it was an old practice among local-born Indian men to marry brides born from their native country. However, such brides usually return to their native country for confinement after marriage.
Ratnam was born in Chullipuram, Jaffna
, Sri Lanka
in 1928 to parents of Sri Lankan Tamil
descent. He returned to Kuala Lumpur
at the age of six months and spent most of his early life there. In the meantime, his father worked in the courts, and became the Official Assignee of the Supreme Court in Kuala Lumpur
just before the Japanese Occupation in 1942. During his early years, Ratnam was greatly influenced by his mother, who taught Ratnam the Tamil language as... Read More