We see a lot of celebrities being conferred with honorary doctorates. Their fans and loyal followers insist on calling them with the prefix Dr. Dr Rajkumar, Dr Vijay (the Tamil actor) Dr Karunanidhi, Dr Vijay Mallya, and so forth. Many universities confer doctorate degrees to people of repute, who have contributed significantly to their field of operation. I have always wondered on this practise. Is it justified? Is it fair to hand a doctorate degree to an individual just like that? I am not undermining the contribution of the person to the society; it is in no small means. Yet, this thought always plagues me. Doing research is no mean feat. It takes people years to complete their thesis, and submit it. In that time, they must acquire enough knowledge on the subject to answer questions from the examiners. You have to travel in some cases, talk to a lot of people, and compile your dissertation. You have to dedicate every minute to your study. Some people give up their social lives, if they are unable to balance both. Many doctoral candidates pursue their research after their marriage. This is another great task, as with marriage comes a lot of responsibility, and new family members. This applies to both spouses. Apart from that, some candidates choose to teach, which is a good idea, as you get more insight into your subject. Again, some candidates might be rejected in their first attempt, and they will have to wait for one more year before they can submit their dissertation and attend the viva. How would it be justified if a doctorate were given to someone who has not even completed class 8? This is true in quite a few cases. They do not have a minimum of even tenth pass, and they are given doctorates. My question is, are they deserving candidates for an honour as great as a PhD. By giving out honorary doctorates, are we devaluing the candidates who work hard, carry out research, write their thesis, present it, field the questions, and wait for years to get the title of Dr? Is it a right choice? Dear ILites, please give your opinion on this topic.