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Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri Awardees 2013 from IIT Kapur

Four of our alumni have been conferred the Padma Bhushan and Padma Shri Awards for the year 2013, announced on the eve of the 64th Republic Day for their contributions in the field of Science and Engineering.

Press note of the Ministry of Home Affairs announcing the Padma Awardees can be read at:

Padma Bhushan
Prof Ashok Sen (MSc2/PHY/78) Dr Ashoke Sen is presently Professor in Mehta Research Institute, Allahabad. He is rated one of the most outstanding theoretical physicists in the world today.

Dr Sen was born on July 15, 1956 and obtained his Bachelors degree in Physics from Calcutta University in 1975. He completed his MSc from the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur in 1978. He was awarded PhD by SUNY at Stony Brook in 1982. He obtained his Post-doctoral Fellowship from Fermilab and SLA in USA.

Ashoke Sen made a number of major original contributions to the subject of string theory, including his landmark paper on strong-weak coupling duality or S-duality,[2] which was influential in changing the course of research in the field. He pioneered the study of unstable D-branes and made the famous Sen conjecture about open string tachyon condensation on such branes.[3] His description of rolling tachyons[4] has been influential in string cosmology. He has also co-authored many important papers on string field theory. One of his most recent contributions include the entropy function formalism for extremal black holes and its applications to attractors. His current research interests are centered around the attractor mechanism and the precision counting of microstates of black holes.

Padma Shri
Prof Sanjay G Dhande (PhD/ME/75) was the director of the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur for more than 11 years. Professor Dhande was the founder director of PDPM Indian Institute of Information Technology Design and Manufacturing Jabalpur. He served as a part-time member of Telecom Regulatory Authority of India. Presently, he is a member of the Scientific Advisory Council to the Prime Minister of India. He has also been appointed as a member of the prestigious National Security Advisory Board (NSAB) by government of India.

Prof Manindra Agrawal (BT/PhD/CSE/86/92) is a Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering and the Dean of Faculty Affairs of the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur. He joined IIT Kanpur for the B Tech in Computer Science and Engineering and subsequently obtained his doctoral thesis in Complexity Theory in 1991 also from IIT Kanpur. He then did a three-year stint at the Chennai Mathematical Institute in Madras before bagging the prestigious Humboldt fellowship at the University of Ulm in Germany. He returned to IIT Kanpur as a member of the faculty in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering in 1996.

He co-created the AKS primality test with Neeraj Kayal and Nitin Saxena, for which he and his co-authors won the 2002 Clay Research Award, the 2006 Fulkerson Prize, and the 2006 Gödel Prize. The test is the first deterministic algorithm to test an n-digit number for primality in a time that has been proven to be polynomial in. In September 2008, Agrawal was chosen for the first Infosys Mathematics Prize for outstanding contributions in the broad field of mathematics. He was a visiting scholar at the Institute for Advanced Study in 2003-04.

Prof K Vijay Raghvan (BT/CHE/75) is Distinguished Professor and Director of The National Centre for Biological Sciences. He has become the Secretary of Department of Biotechnology (DBT), India on January 28, 2013. He was conferred the honour of the Padma Shri by the Govt. of India on 26th January, 2013. He is also a recipient of the Infosys Prize in the life sciences category in 2009.

He graduated with a Bachelor of Technology degree in Chemical Engineering from IIT Kanpur in 1975.He completed his doctoral work in 1983 in the field of Molecular Biology and holds a Ph.D from the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research. During his post-doctoral work, from 1984 to 1985, he was a Research Fellow and then, from 1986 to 1988, a Senior Research Fellow at the California Institute of Technology.

His fields of specialization are Developmental Biology, Genetics and Neurogenetics. His research primarily focuses on the important principles and mechanisms that control nervous system and muscles during development and how these neuromuscular systems direct specific locomotor behaviours. This was achieved by using the fruit fly Drosophila Melanogaster as a model system. By patterning the segmental organization of the fly body plan, his research was able to shed more light on the functions of Hox genes in directing neuromuscular connectivity and motor behaviors.

He is on the Management Board of the International Centre for Theoretical Sciences(ICTS) of TIFR and of the TIFR Centre for Interdisciplinary Sciences, coming up in Hyderabad. VijayRaghavan is also a director of the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Platforms. He is a member of the Board of Governors of the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology , the Advisory Committee of the Janelia Farm Research Centre of the HHMI and a Senior Editor of the new journal eLife. On behalf of the Alumni Association and on behalf of the Board of Directors of the Alumni Association, we take this opportunity to congratulate the awardees and their families. We are proud of our association with them and wish them many more laurels and success.

Tarun Anand ( 5/7/2013 2:36:12 AM )
Congrats to Dr Dhande for the Padma Shri, an outstanding recognition
by the Govt of India.

Samir ( 5/8/2013 4:36:11 AM )
Wonderful to see Prof. Sen got recognized by Govt of India. Congratulation to all the awardees.

N C Agarwal ( 5/8/2013 11:36:11 AM )
Congrats to Prof Dhande. I personally feel, he deserved a higher award

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