Shanti Swaroop Bhatnagar

Sir Shanti Swaroop Bhatnagar (1894-1954) was the Founder -Director of CSIR and first Chairman of the University Grants Commission (UGC).

Bhatnagar is known as Father of Indian Research Laboratories, remembered for having established various chemical labs in the country. Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru was a proponent of scientific development, after the independence in 1947, the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) was set up and he was the chairman.

Today, the CSIR has grown to become one of the world’s largest networks of scientific laboratories. He developed a total of 12 national labs, for example Central Food Processing Technological Institute, Mysore, the National Physical Laboratory, New Delhi, the National Chemical Laboratory, Pune, the Central Fuel Institute, Dhanbad and National Metallurgical Laboratory, Jamshedpur.

His main area of research was emulsions, colloids and industrial chemistry, but his major contribution was in the field of magneto chemistry. He designed the Bhatnagar-Mathur interference balance, along with physicist R. N. Mathur which was later manufactured by a British firm. He also played an important part with Homi Jehangir Bhaba, Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis, Vikram Sarabhai and others in building of post independence science and technology infrastructure and in the formulation of India’s science and technology policy.

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