The focus in this brief monograph is to highlight the role of the dynamic community of the
Parsis in the public health of colonial Bombay/Mumbai from the middle of the nineteenth
century to the 1930s. It does not claim to cover all aspects of their enormous contributions, but
provides vignettes which could stimulate further research. It is based on the Government
Scholarship Lectures, delivered at the K.R. Cama Oriental Institute, in February, 2015. I am
grateful to Muncherji .N. M. Cama, President and Dr. Nawaz Mody, Joint Honorary Secretary
of the K.R. Cama Oriental Research Institute, for giving me the opportunity to present these
research findings at these lectures and for publishing them.

I acknowledge with gratitude the invaluable assistance of the staff at the Maharashtra State
Archives, Mumbai, the libraries of the University of Mumbai and the Asiatic Society of Mumbai,
the Rockefeller Archive Centre, Tarry Town, New York, USA, the British Library and the
Wellcome Institute Library for the History of Medicine, London, United Kingdom. The primary
source material consulted at these archives and libraries have been used in the preparation of this

Mridula Ramanna