Nayudamma Lecture - Click Here

Topic: Plant adaptations combating climate change

Dr. Paramvir Singh Ahuja is former the Director General, Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). He was the Director of the CSIR-Institute of Himalayan Bioresource Technology (IHBT), Palampur since 1998. Acknowledged as an inspiring institution builder, Dr. Ahuja is credited with raising CSIR-IHBT to an institute of international reckoning. He has an exemplary record in administrative capacity as a leader in science and academics. Dr Ahuja has an excellent academic record with a Ph.D. from the University of Nottingham as a Commonwealth Scholar during 1983. He was a Post-Doctoral NSERC (Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada) Fellow at the McGill University in Montreal, Canada and has been a Visiting Scientist to the Ohio State University, Columbus, USA. During his Ph.D. he has also worked at the Plant Breeding Institute, Cambridge, UK and Nuclear Research Institute at Julich in Germany. Dr. Ahuja developed a modernized tissue culture laboratory and was also able to successfully transfer tissue culture raised tea plants to the field, which was a unique achievement. Development of a transgenic tea with chitinase gene and low caffeine tea were some other achievements. Dr. Ahuja’s contribution to characterization of the Indian tea germplasm and his research on tea, rose and potato transgenics are landmark achievements that are globally acknowledged. His role in bioprospection of novel plants, genes from high altitudes and their validation and translation to adoption by the industry is noteworthy. He has played a pivotal role in introducing Stevia and several other medicinal plants as commercial crops thereby promoting diversified agriculture in the country. He has also made significant contribution in extending rural technologies to the remotest tribal locations in the Himalayas. He is a Fellow of the National Academy of Agricultural Sciences (NAAS), National Academy of Sciences, India (NASI) and the Indian National Science Academy (FNA) besides other professional bodies pertaining to his area of specialization. He has several prestigious national awards to his credit and has delivered reputed societal memorial lectures. Dr. Ahuja is currently J C Bose National Fellow.