Biography of Shanti Swarun Bhatnagar

Biography of Shanti Swarun Bhatnagar


Born:21 February 1894 in Shahpur, British India (now Pakistan).

Died :1. January 1955, New Delhi (India)

Education: Doctorate of Science, University College London, Punjab University

Scope: Scientist who made invaluable contributions to the establishment of Indian National Laboratories

Awards: OBE (1936), Padma Bhushan (1954), Knighthood (1941).

Indian scientist Dr. Shanti Swaroop Bhatnagar played an important role in the establishment of Indian national laboratories. He is often referred to as the “Father” of Indian National Laboratories. For 19 years, he was a professor of chemistry. Dr. Bhatnagar was a significant contributor to the creation of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). He also served as its first Director General. He was also the first Chairman of the University Grants Commission (UGC).

In 1958, the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Award was established by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). It recognizes his contributions to science and research in India. This award is for scientists who have made exceptional contributions to science.

The first step is life

Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar, a Hindu Kayastha couple, was born on 21 February 1894, in Shahpur District, British India. When he was eight months old, his father Parameshwari Shai Bhatnagar passed away. After that, his childhood was spent at the home of his maternal grandfather. Bala Shanti was naturally drawn to technology and science because his maternal grandfather, Parameshwari Sahai Bhatnagar, was an engineer. He was a keen maker of electronic batteries, toys, and wired phones since childhood. He developed a love for poetry, and poetry was a hobby he learned from his maternal grandfather.


He completed his primary education at Secunderabad’s Dayanand Anglo-Vedic Secondary School. He joined the Dyal Singh College, Lahore in 1911. He was an active member of the ‘Saraswati Stage Society. Bhatnagar is a well-known artist in this area. He was the author of the Urdu play, ‘Karamati’. He won the award for ‘Best Play’ and the medal of the “Saraswati Stage Society” for his English translation. This play was published in 1912.

Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar was awarded the first division in the intermediate examination at Punjab University in 1913. He then joined Foreman Christian College in Lahore where he received his B.Sc. in 1916 and M.Sc. in 1919. Passed the exam.



Biography of Shanti Swarun Bhatnagar

Higher education and early research

Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar was awarded a scholarship by ‘Dayal Singh Trust for studying abroad. He left England to go to America, but fate had other plans and he couldn’t get a place on the ship to America due to the first world. All seats on the ship were reserved by American troops during the war.

He was made even happier by the appointment of Professor Frederick G. Professor in Chemistry at University College by the trustee. Permission was granted to Donnan. He also received the Doctor of Science (D.Sc.), in 1921. degree. The Department of Scientific and Industrial Research awarded him a Fellowship of PS250 per year during his time in London.

He returned to India in August 1921 and was named Professor of Chemistry at Banaras Hindu University. He taught there for three years. He composed the university anthem.

After nearly three years spent at BHU U.S., Dr. Bhatnagar relocated to Lahore where he was a Professor of Physical Chemistry and Director of the University’s Chemical Laboratories. He conducted fundamental scientific research during this period, which was his most significant in scientific life. He worked on industrial chemistry, colloids, and emulsions during this period, but his greatest contribution was in the field of magnetic chemistry.


Biography of Shanti Swarun Bhatnagar

He discovered the “Bhatnagar Mathur Magnetic Interference Bala” in 1928 with KN Mathur. It is the most sensitive instrument for measuring magnetic nature. It was displayed at the “Bhoj Of The Royal Society” in 1931. It was later built by another British company.

Dr. Bhatnagar, Homi Jahangir Bhabha, and Prashant Chandra Mahalanobis played a significant role in establishing the science and technology infrastructure in India and influencing policies. Many promising young scientists were encouraged and guided by him. These included Shamdas Chatterjee, Shantilal Banerjee, and Ashutosh Mukherjee. His CV on the ‘Raman Effect. Raman and K.S. Krishnan also sat watching him do what he was doing.

He was the Secretary of the Ministry of Education, and also the Education Advisor to India’s Government. He was a key player in the discussion and formulation of the 1948 ‘Scientific Manpower Committee Report’.

His important contributions to the field of applied chemistry were instrumental in the creation of the National Research Development Corporation (NRDC). Its purpose is to bridge the gap between NRDC development and research. He was a key figure in the promotion of the “Industrial Research Movement” in the country.

He established a one-member commission in 1951 to negotiate with oil companies for the setting up of ‘oil refining plants. This led to the establishment of many such refineries across the country.


Biography of Shanti Swarun Bhatnagar


Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar was appointed the first Director General of CSIR after the country gained independence in 1947. He is often referred to as the “Father of Research Laboratories”. He was instrumental in the establishment of many large chemical laboratories in India. Dr. Bhatnagar founded 12 national laboratories in India. The most important ones are as follows:

Mysore Central Institute of Food Processing Technology

National Chemical Laboratory, Pune

National Physics Laboratory, New Delhi,

Jamshedpur National Metallurgy Laboratory

Central Fuel Institute, Dhanbad

The CSIR introduced the ‘Bhatnagar Prize’ in recognition of his outstanding contributions to science development in India. This award is for scientists who excel in all areas of science.

In 1954, the Government of India awarded Dr. Shanti Swarun Bhatnagar the Padma Bhushan for her contributions to science and engineering.


On January 1, 1955, Dr. Shanti Swarup Bhagnagar succumbed to a heart attack.

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