Year : 2012 | Volume
: 57 | Issue : 1 | Page : 1--2
Editor, Indian Journal of Dermatology, India
Editor, Indian Journal of Dermatology
|How to cite this article:|
Lahiri K. Prelude.Indian J Dermatol 2012;57:1-2
|How to cite this URL:|
Lahiri K. Prelude. Indian J Dermatol [serial online] 2012 [cited 2021 Aug 5 ];57:1-2
Available from: https://www.e-ijd.org/text.asp?2012/57/1/1/92664
Some old issues of the Indian Journal of Dermatology (IJD) of the mid and late sixties of the last century kept in our house bear some illegible pencil scribbling of a toddler. Those are from my father's collection. Even before I was introduced to the English alphabet I became familiar with the decorative moss green famous mast head of this journal. The pungent smell of the letter press printing ink on the glossy art plates of that journal is still very fresh in my olfactory hard disk.
The gradual changes in the journal's get up were not missed by the schoolboy. The cover changed, the size became thinner, the paper quality worsened. Much later did I come to know of the harrowing time the journal faced during those demanding decades. I now realize with respectful reverence that even during those trying times the journal kept ticking, without missing a single issue, and without compromising on the quality of the articles published in it. I pay my homage to the editors and guardians of the journal, whose untiring efforts during that difficult period made this possible during those difficult days.
I still remember the day when my first article was published in this journal, while I was still a postgraduate student. I could not sleep that night. Even today the memories of that feeling come back to my mind whenever I click on the link for accepting or rejecting any article.
When I was inducted into the editorial board in 1997, my only job was to manually prepare the author index and subject index. I tried to do that with the utmost care, while sitting in my still-to-get-busy clinics. Those were the days of hard copy preparation and submission of manuscript in triplicate, distributing and sending the copy to the reviewers for manual proof correction, physically going to the printing press, and sundry other jobs. I consider myself extremely fortunate and privileged to have had the opportunity to be intimately associated, in various capacities, with the Indian Journal of Dermatology, for a decade and half that followed, and be a witness to the outstanding and mind-blowing metamorphosis of the journal.
The journal took a big and futuristic step forward when, at the turn of the new millennium, the first ever website (www.e-ijd.org) of any Indian Dermatology Journal was launched in November 2000.
In 2001, as the Honorary Secretary of the Indian Association of Dermatologists, Venerologists, and Leprologists (IADVL), West Bengal branch, I was fortunate enough to see that my humble efforts succeeded in enlisting IJD in Ulrich's International Periodicals Directory, R.R.Bowker and PUBLIST. During the same year again I was privileged to collect, compile, and publish the Book of Abstracts (1991 - 2000) under the guidance of Dr. B. Haldar.
Exactly a decade back from today, the January - March 2002 (Vol 47, No. 1) issue saw the Journal increasing to the International standard size. This was another pioneering effort with respect to publishing of Dermatology journals in India. This fresh and colorful look and a complete revamp of the basic get-up helped to increase the stature of the Journal among its readers.
To commemorate the golden jubilee of the journal in 2005, a Book of Selections was published. This anthology of articles was conceived primarily to pay tribute to the founding fathers of an astonishingly high quality journal, from this part of the globe, and the architects and contributors who kept the proud pennant flying high, down five long decades. A dozen milestone articles were reprinted and published. This endeavor was an aide memoire of a very rich academic legacy that we have inherited from our forefathers. I was extremely fortunate to conceptualize and execute this project with the help of two of my younger comrades Drs. Saumya Panda and Nilendu Sarma. Incidentally my first teacher in Dermatology from my UG days Dr. Arijit Coondoo was instrumental, as the then President of the state branch, to oversee the Golden Jubilee celebration and the signing of the historic contract with Medknow. This was another decisive and significant step forward. With the introduction of this professional publishing house the journal management system was completely revamped and modernized. The journal got an open access online version with full text for free. The review process of IJD became fully web-based, double blinded, and transparent. Submission of articles was done exclusively online. In this advanced system the authors could even track the progress of their articles online through the website. This completely revolutionized the system of editing the journal. Articles from all over the globe started pouring in again. International authorities joined as reviewers. IJD returned to the glories of the golden era of renaissance.
With every single issue the standard of the journal was improving. Articles from all over the globe became a regular feature. The rate of annual submission to the journal rose phenomenally from 139 in 2006 to 548 in 2011, a jump of 394%.
Meanwhile another new chapter in the history of this journal started when on 5 November, 2009, at 6 pm. After nineteen long years of struggle, the Indian Journal of Dermatology became indexed in PubMed again.
This had a huge impact on the number of high quality original article submissions.
To accommodate more articles we had to increase the frequency and make IJD bi-monthly. Still, as of now, the acceptance rate is only about 15%.
When I was writing the editorial two significant incidents to rejoice took place. From this issue, the Indian Journal of Dermatology will reach almost all the dermatologists, all over the country, for the year 2012. This is being made possible by the generous support of Ranbaxy, the biggest Indian multinational pharma house.
Furthermore, with this issue, IJD has received the first impact factor, and thus, has been elevated to the select club of highly rated dermatology journals. I am sure both these happenings will have far-reaching positive consequences.
At this moment of picking up the mantle from my illustrious predecessor and mentor Dr. Sandipan Dhar, I can only pray with all humility to at least be able to match the astonishing high standard that he has set. Although the outcome is not always directly proportional to the effort exerted, I can at least vouch to offer the best that I can, with the help of the highly erudite, focused, and committed editorial board members.
I remember with respectful regard all my predecessors, especially Dr. B. Haldar who was instrumental in rescuing the journal from an inevitable and unceremonious death and Dr. S.R. Sengupta who took the journal to the next level with his tenacity, vision, and hard work. The names of two persons will remain etched in the history of our journal. They are Dr. A.B. Gupta and Dr. Dwijen Gangopadhyay, both of whom played pivotal roles from behind the scene, with their unflinching passion for perfection and excellence.
I am confident that I shall be able to get the same level of help and cooperation from the state executives that all the editors of the Indian Journal of Dermatology enjoyed over the decades. They are the custodians of a historical possession, a priceless inheritance of the oldest living Dermatology journal from Asia, which has never changed its name or place.
Before I sign off my maiden editorial and sign in as the editor, I respectfully remember two individuals who, if alive, would have been the happiest persons today - my father Dr. Bhabesh Chandra Lahiri and Sri Jhari Patra (Jhoruda), who, through his dedicated hard work, was the heart and soul of IADVL, West Bengal branch, and the Indian Journal of Dermatology for decades.
Long Live IJD.