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Prof Yash Pal
is no more

NEW DELHI : Prof Yash Pal former chairman of University Grants Commission and an eminent educationist passed away early on July 24, 2018 at his Noida residence, according to his family members.

Born on 26 November 1926 in Jhang, British India, now in Pakistan he was raised in Pai, Kaithal, Haryana (India). He graduated with a master's degree in physics from Panjab University in 1949 and gained a Ph.D degree in Physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1958

He was known for his contributions to the study of cosmic rays, as well as for being an institution-builder. In his later years, he has become one of the leading science communicators of the country.

Starting his career at Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR), he later became chairman of the University Grants Commission from 1986 to 1991. In 2013, he was awarded India's second highest civilian honour, the Padma Vibhushan.

Rajiv Shukla adds :

The most monumental work that he left behind -- the effect of which would be quite lasting -- are his report on "Renovation and Rejuvenation of Higher Education in India" submitted to the Ministry of Human Resource Development on June 24, 2009 and the landmark case that he fought, and won, against the fake private universities of Chhattisgarh. He did most of the ground work for the case, compiled data and developed the arguments for the case.

Finally he won the case, Prof. Yashpal Vs. State of Chhattisgarh & Ors in the Supreme Court following which 112 fake private universities registered in Chhattisgarh had to close shop. The judgement was delivered by a division bench on February 11, 2005.



 Obituary :  Mushirul Hasan is no more

NEW DELHI : Historian Mushirul Hasan, who has extensively written on India's Partition, passed away on Monday, December 10. He was 71.

He is survived by his wife Zoya Hasan, a political scientist and academician.

An alumnus of the Aligarh Muslim University and the University of Cambridge, Mr. Hasan was the Vice-Chancellor of the Jamia Millia Islamia University. He has also served as the Director-General of the National Archives of India, and the President of the Indian History Congress.

Mr. Hasan's health started declining after he was critically injured in a road accident on his way to Mewat from Delhi in 2014.

Mr. Hasan has extensively documented Islam and Muslims of South Asia. His book India Partition: The Other Face of Freedom, documents how Partition displaced millions and left behind a legacy of hostility and bitterness between the governments as well as the people from India and Pakistan.

In his book When Stone Walls Cry, Mr. Hasan presents the unknown facets of prison life of the Nehrus and how that transformed their vision and character. He documents how Jawaharlal Nehru decided to guide India on to the world stage as a modern nation, contrary to Mahatma Gandhi's imagination of Hind Swaraj.

His namaz-e-Janaza was performed at 1.00 pm at Babul Ilm and 2.00 pm at Jamia Mosque and burial took place in Jamia graveyard, according to sources.

Space scientist U R Rao passes away

BANGALORE : Space scientist and former Chairman of ISRO, Udupi Ramachandra Rao, died here early morning on July 24, 2018.

According to an ISRO official, cited by PTI news agency, he took his last breath at around 3 am in the morning. “Rao breathed his last during the early hours, around 3 AM today,” ISRO Public Relations Director Deviprasad Karnik told PTI. According to ISRO officials, the 2017 Padma Vibhushan award winning scientists is survived by his wife, a son and a daughter.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed profound grief over his death. In a post on Twitter, the Prime Minister said that he is saddened by Professor Rao’s death. “Saddened by demise of renowned scientist, Professor UR Rao. His remarkable contribution to India’s space programme will never be forgotten,” he wrote.

Born in Admaru village in Udupi district he had his early education at the Christian High School in Udupi. Later the family moved on to Ballari, where Prof. Rao did his inter-junior course. He later continued his education at Ananthapur and other places.

After retiring from ISRO, Prof. Rao visited and held meeting with the officers of district administration as Chairman, Karnataka State Science and Technology in Udupi.

A noted scientist, Prof. Rao liked to interact with students. He participated in the student-scientist interaction at the Poornaprajna College in January 2015, at which select students from degree and PU colleges and general public were present. “I love interacting with the students,” he had said back then.

At the interaction programme, when asked by a student which was the happiest moment in his life as astrophysicist, Prof. Rao said that creating the satellite Aryabhatta in the sheds of Peenya in Bengaluru for two-and-a-half years and later its successful launch in USSR was one of his happiest moments.

Professor Rao, who served as the Chairman of ISRO for 10 years between 1984-1994, was included in the highly prestigious International Aeronautical Federation (IAF) Hall of Fame last year during the closing ceremony of IAF Congress 2016 in Guadalajara, Mexico. He was also included in the prestigious “Satellite Hall of Fame” at Washington DC in 2013.

As ISRO Chairman, Professor Rao had accelerated the development of rocket technology which led to the launch of ASLV rocket and the operational PSLV launch vehicle, according to ISRO’s profile. He was also responsible for initiating the development of Geo Stationary Launch Vehicle (GSLV) and the development of cryogenic technology in 1991.

Historian Bipan Chandra is no more

GURGAON : Noted historian Bipan Chandra died on Saturday, August 30, 2016 at his residence here after prolonged illness. He was 86. “He had not beenBipan Chandra keeping well for past few months. He passed away at 6 am,” his family said.

A Padma Bhushan awardee, Chandra had donned multiple roles including that of chairperson of the Centre for Historical Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Member of the University Grants Commission (UGC) and the Chairman of the National Book Trust (NBT).

Considered to be a specialist in economic and political history of India, Chandra had authored several books including “The Rise and Growth of Economic Nationalism”, “In the Name of Democracy: The JP Movement and the Emergency”, “Nationalism and Colonialism in Modern India’”and “The Making of Modern India: From Marx to Gandhi”, among others.

The left leaning author had founded the journal Enquiry and was a member of its editorial board for a long time.

Born in 1928 in the Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh, Chandra studied at Forman Christian College, Lahore, Stanford University, US and the University of Delhi.

P V Indiresan passes away in Pune

NEW DELHI : Top educationist and a professor of electronics and electrical engineering Dr P V Indiresan passed away in a Pune hotel room on SundayP V Indiresan February 24, 2014 morning. He was 84, but quite active.

His son-in-law in Vasant Vihar here said that he had gone to Pune to chair the Election Commission’s technical committee meet on EVMs. He is survived by his wife Jayalakshmi, two daughters and a son.

His last rites were performed on February 26 at Delhi, family sources said.

Former director of IIT Madras, he fought and won a couple of landmark cases in country's technical education history and headed some of the most important committees in higher education.

Indiresan taught for forty years in the IIT system and was Director, IIT Madras. He was a past President of the Institution of Electronics and Telecommunication Engineers and of the Indian National Academy of Engineering. Among his several awards are the Padma Bhushan, Honarary Member ship of the Institute of Electronics and Electrical Engineers, US, and the Honorary Doctorate from the Karnataka Technical University.

A graduate from the Indian Institute of Science, Indiresan did his doctorate from Birmingham University and began his teaching career at Rourkee University (now an IIT). After serving as Director, IIT Madras, for five years (1979-84), he stayed on as a Professor at this IIT for a year, before going to Germany on a teaching assignment for another year. He then moved to IIT Delhi where he retired at the age of 65 after teaching for 40 years.
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