Dying is not a good thought (especially given the kind of events happening all over). Though we know what is born must die, we somehow think the grim reaper will pass us by for later. But chronic illnesses bring us far much closer to a reality that we do anything to prevent, especially when it relates to family and friends. And that's the time we look for therapies alternative to allopathy for answers, for life.
Though homeopathy has a German origin it has a lot of believers in India and a lot of practitioners. In the time of AIDS when the entire body's immune system is under threat there are more and more people who seek out homeopathy because it makes more sense to stimulate the body's own natural healing abilities than opt for external support. New research has also helped homeopathy gain greater credibility. And today we profile one of the city's practicing homeopaths who is waging a war against cancer, and helping his patients fight it.

An interest in homeopathy, encouraged by an aunt who herself was a practitioner at the Calcutta Corporation, saw Kanchan Mukherjee decide to take up this line of healing. "I saw my teachers and others heal cases of lung cancer and paralysis when other doctors had given up. That's when my interest grew." He says.

He has a string of qualifications to his name, the primary being a diploma in Homeopathy and surgery. But more than the qualifications it's his continuous exploration of all the permutations and combinations a homeopathic remedy can be applied to, that characterizes the way he diagnoses and treats his patients.

According to A Dasgupta of Mahendra Hills "homeo medicines can produce matchless results." He was a colon cancer patient who was not getting any relief from allopathic medicines inspite of a surgery and subsequent chemotherapy. It all changed when he turned to homeopathy and Dr.Mukherjee, "I am almost normal now." He says, "thanks to Dr.Mukherjee."

Three cases of cancer have been completely cured, and five more are under treatment. I can almost always stop the cancer from spreading but sometimes other factors like diabetes or a heart disease can prevent complete recovery. But what I have been able to help my terminal cancer patients with, is a painless death. Because cancer in its last stages can be excruciatingly painful and I can prevent that, " says the doctor who is also developing medicines for diseases like Hypothyroidism, piles, haemorrhage, acne and dandruff. Talks are on right now with the city's top pharmacy labs for patenting his formulas.
While cancer is what he likes to concentrate on, there have been a lot of cases involving arthritis, breast cancer, convulsions and diabetes that he is helped in control and cure. He helped Lavanya, Dasari Narayana Rao's (the Telugu film producer) sister, to walk and resume her life after she was paralysed.

Mahesh Akhil of Satavahana Nagar was operated on for cardiac infarction (when the left ventricle of the heart weakens) at one of the city's well-known facilities and asked to go in for a pace maker worth Rs.7.5 lakh. He was in no state to take on such expenditure and he asked Dr.Mukherjee to look in Today h says, "Following Dr.Mukherjee's medicines has brought my problem under control."

There has been a lot of cynicism Dr.Mukherjee's faced. "People tell me there have been so many cases where homeopathy hasn't worked, what difference will I be able to make? "for me, treatment is a four-step process. One, establishing a rapport with the patients so you are able to extract all the information about their symptoms. Two, arriving at the right diagnosis based on the symptoms. Three, coming to the right medicinal decision and four, using the best quality medicine there is."

Dr.Mukherjee uses medicines only from King and Co, the homeopathy medicine manufacturers, who he thinks are the best, given their more than a century old track record in this business.

According to his patients, Dr.Mukherjee is a good man. For a doctor who likes to grapple with the tougher cases, who will do anything to beat the odds, he is also very sympathetic. No consultation fee from the economically disadvantaged, and over the phone consultations even, long distance calls with patients who need his help but can't meet him - he does it all.