Radhakrishnan As A Diplomats and A Vice President

The Biography of Famous Personalities of India will tell you about the controversies, the dark sides of a person that you may have never heard of.

Radhakrishnan As A Diplomats and A Vice President

Radhakrishnan As A Diplomats

Dr. Radhakrishnan was an excellent academician and his becoming a politician was an accident. In the days of the British Raj, he never took special interest in politics. He did not play any role in the freedom struggle of India. But he had patriotism and nationalism ingrained in him and despite the fact that he did not directly involve himself in power politics, he always showed interest in world politics. That is why when the first Prime Minister of free India Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru decided to improve relationship with Soviet Union, he began to find a new Ambassador to assume the office in Moscow.

He wanted a person who was well known internationally but was not a politician, who held broad nationalist and humanist views and also was outspoken on the necessity in India of Social aid economic change. He had deep faith in Indian tradition but had a modern mind. Dr. Radhakrishnan at that time, seemed to be the best choice. So, on 16 April 1949, Nehru requested Radhakrishnan to take up the Moscow post. Although many people considered this appointment odd and undesirable as Dr. Radhakrishnan was a idealistic philosopher and a tea- tottaler and seemed to be unfit. In a land of “dialectical materialism”, Pt. Nehru was inclined to appoint him.

Dr. Radhakrishnan accepted the appointment but he wanted to retain his Professorship of comperative religion at Oxford along with Ambassadorship. The Government of India readily agreed to it and Nehru said at one of the farewell functions: “Radhakrishnan goes as the symbol of India.”

As Russians were keen to have friendship with India, Radhakrishnan was welcomed wholeheartedly in Moscow and was received by Kalinin, the Head of the Soviet State after his arrival in Moscow. As an Ambassador, Dr. Radhakrishnan met Marshal Stalin and impressed him at their very first meeting. Later on, Stalin said, about Dr. Radhakrishan. “He is not a narrow patriot. His heart bleeds for the suffering humanity.”

Radhakrishnan had not visited the Soviet Union earlier and the authorities there were clearly intrigued by Radhakrishnan. He was quite different from any other diplomat ever sent to Moscow. Although he could very easily blend the Eastern and Western thoughts, he was “essentially an Indian to the tips of his fingers.” In Moscow he continued to wear Indian dress except for a fur coat, fur cap and fur boots to suit the climate of Moscow.

His life at Moscow, was well-organized and self-sufficient life. The Russians were undoubtedly impressed as he was the most unconventional diplomat. He was reluctant in attending many parties which were an unavoidable part of a diplomat’s life. Dr. Radhakrishnan never compromised with his routine and used to go to bed at exactly ten o’clock. He always said,”

Early to bed and early to rise, make a man healthy, wealthy and wise.” Yet he proved to be very successful as an Ambassador in Moscow. The secret of his success was his personality. He was an intelligent philosopher who had courage to be truly himself. His sincerity and detachment made him very popular among the Russians. He clarified that he had come to Moscow to convey his government’s desire to strengthen good relations between the two countries. He worked hard to understand Soviet policies and made the Soviet authorities understand India’s policies. As a diplomat, he conducted his office efficiently and did full justice to his post. While in Moscow, he visited Oxford thrice a year and he very successfully combined Oxford and Moscow philosophy and diplomacy.

Dr. Radhakrishnan created the atmosphere for the free growth of Indo-Soviet relations. Although he did not have the usual graces and poses of professional diplomat, his personality “proved irresistible, because it reflected the personality of India herself, at once old and young, ancient and modern, secular and spiritual, conservative and revolutionary, blending the knowledge of our nuclear era with the wisdom of the Vedic age.”

Radhakrishnan’s arrival in Moscow coincided with a new phase in the cold war. At that time both superpowers were suspicious about the other countries and found it difficult to distinguish their friends from foes. But Russia welcomed India’s independence and Radhakrishnan, by his gracious personality, strengthened the relations between the two countries. Pt. Nehru appreciated Radhakrishnan’s success in Moscow and requested him to stay on for another year.

He said, “I think you (Radhakrishnan) are performing a great service there and it would be a great pity if you come away at this critical juncture.” Thus, Radhakrishnan completed his term of office as the Indian Ambassador in April 1952. The Soviet Administration always recognized his crucial role in developing Indo-Soviet understanding and so did Pt. Nehru. According to Pt. Nehru, Radhakrishnan had carried the job assigned to him “with marked success.”

Radhakrishnan As A Vice President

When Radhakrishnan returned to India, he was chosen as the Vice-Presidental nominee. He was reluctant to accept the Vice-Presidentship as the office required no more than presiding over the Rajya Sabha, the upper house of Parliament and discharging the functions of the president when he was ill or absent or the post was vacant. To Radhakrishnan, the post was not worthwhile and he did not want to give up the chair at Oxford for such a limited role. But on Ft. Nehru’s assurance that the role of Vice-President would be expanded, he accepted the nomination and was elected unopposed. He held his
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office with great dignity. Although he stressed that “he was no more than a member of the government on the decorative side,” Pt. Nehru was to provide him extra powers to exercise influence on the domestic scene. When a person assumes a high office, he achieves fame but the office of the Vice-President became famous when Radhakrishnan assumed it. During his tenure as a VicePresident, he became very close to Pt. Nehru and their association was based on appreciation of each other’s achievement. There was no tension or rivalry between them and they enjoyed each other’s company.

On education, Nehru regarded Radhakrishnan as the greatest authority of India. Radhakrishnan was also of service to the Prime Minister in internal politics. In 1952, he visited Kashmir twice to talk to Sheikh Abdullah and conveyed to the Prime Minister Abdullah’s fears and hopes. He was a peace lover and peace maker. In the South, when an agitation for a separate province developed in the Andhra districts, Radhakrishnan suggested solution of the problem to Nehru and thus the formation of an Andhra Province out of the Telugu areas took place. Being an able administrator, he was able to provide effective leadership to the Rajya Sabha.

On January 3, 1953, the University of Harvard awarded him with the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Laws which was recommended by the University Council representing all faculties of the University. While awarding him the degree, the President of the University said,” you are today the world’s most distinguished and inspiring example of the philosopher who has become a statesman and in your exercise of function of philosopher statesman, you have become a world peace-maker of the highest human significance.”

Radhakrishnan was elected the Vice-Chairman of the Sahitya Academy set up in 1954 of which Nehru was the Chairnman but he always sought Radhakrishnan’s opinion. He was conferred the Honorary Degree of German in 1955, Master Wisdom in 1957 in Mangolia and Goethe Plaguette in 1959. Radhakrishnan was also awarded Bharata Ratna, the highest Civil decoration in India in 1954.

One of the major duty of Vice President was to preside the sessions of the Rajya Sabha which Radhakrishnan disliked but still he attended all the sessions and during his ten years as the Chairman, he hardly missed the session even when running high temperature. He was a great success as Chairman although he didn’t quite like the job. Thus Radhakrishnan was busy while representing as Vice-President of the Government of India.

Still he found time for creative writing and in 1955, two works of Radhakrishnan were published, “Recovery of Faith” and “East and West”. In both these books, he asserted that “the fundamental need of the world, for deeper than any social, political or economic readjustment, was a spiritual reawakening.” The religion, according to him, could give which science and humanity could not but religion should not be based on dogma or historic events.

Radhakrishnan also went on a two month’s goodwill tour of European countries and also African countries between June-July 1956, as the Prime-Minister Pt. Nehru was keen that as Vice-President, he should travel almost as much abroad as in India. He said, “With his broad outlook and his general understanding both of the position in India and the world situation, his visit should prove helpful.”
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In 1956, he received the Honorary Professorship of Moscow University. He visited Singapore, Indonesia, Japan and China during September-Qctober, 1956. In 1 957, he went on a three week tour of China, Mangolia and Hong-Kong. He visited U.S.A and also attended East- West Philosopher Conference in Honululu. In July 1959, he attended P.E.N Congress in Germany. In January 1960, he went to England and Scandinavia. He attended UNESCO Conference in Paris in November, 1960.

His visits to foreign countries helped in renewing India’s friendship with those countries. The Prime Minister was very pleased with the results of his visits. Everywhere Radhakrishan went, he stressed that “with faith, forbearance and flexibility, the world could be made a better place.” His speech at UNESCO made the people realize that he was a “great transition figure,” with a highly developed spiritual sense and an equally developed social sense. Thus his missions abroad received standing ovations and triggered the hope that his speeches would have some influence on the world at large.

Within India there was the same routine-working on the translating of the Brahma Sutra;* presiding over the Rajya Sabha, speeches in various parts of country stressing higher levels of thought and conduct. In 1956, his wife died which was a great shock for him. But soon he immersed himself in official life again.

His first term of office came to an end in August 1957 and Pt. Nehru wanted him to continue as VicePresident for a second term. Although Radhakrishnan was tired of being minor royalty, he accepted the second term as he could not refuse Pt. Nehfu to whom he was quite close. The Prime-Minister expressed his happiness and gratitude at the decision.

During his second term, he visited many countries and there were invitations also from other countries “where, whatever the state of official relations with India, Radhakrishnan was an acceptable personality.” He also welcomed foreign delegates and was a perfect host for the delegation visiting India. During his tenure, the Chinese delegation accompanying Chou-En-Lai arrived in New Delhi on April 19, 1960.

In 1961, President Brezhnev visited India. As Dr. Rajendra Prasad, President of India, was not available at that time, Radhakrishnan welcomed him on behalf of India and further consolidated the relations between India and Soviet Union. He said in his speech, “We are working so hard for the purpose of building up a human society where each human individual will have the liberty to grow to his fullest extent.”

Thus Dr. Radhakrishnan successfully completed his two terms as the Vice-President with rare dignity and reputation. With his wit and good nature, he always made otherwise dreary proceedings in Rajya Sabha, very interesting. As someone said about him, ” …………….. we know the House has its own dignity. But then for the creation of that prestige and dignity, the present Vice-President has played an important role.”

Radhakrishnan as a Vice Chancellor

The Biography of Famous Personalities of India will tell you about the controversies, the dark sides of a person that you may have never heard of.

Radhakrishnan as a Vice Chancellor

Radhakrishnan as a Vice Chancellor

Andhra University was established in 1926 and the first Vice Chancellor was C.R. Reddy. Again Election was held in 1931 and Radhakrishnan also contested the election against his will as he never aspired for wealth or power. He was a man of simple wishes and wanted to serve his country without being involved in any power politics. But his friends pressurised him, the reason being that he was from Andhra and also by then had become internationally famous.

Radhakrishnan won the election and his winning was welcomed by all. The British owned Madras Mail wrote: “Under his influence this young University, whose infancy has been so sorely troubled with political and factious strife, may develop into a true home of learning, a place where character is developed and knowledge is increased.”
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When Radhakrishnan became Vice Chancellor of the Andhra University, he had virtually to start from scratch.

The university had no building of its own and only few subjects were taught. It was more like an examination centre. Radhakrishnan took more buildings on rent and started instruction in several other subjects such as History, Political Science, Economics and Telugu and within two months after he took charge of the office, the College of Arts came into existence. Within two years, the new buildings were constructed and All Arts departments were shifted into them. Hostel building was also constructed and meals were served for students of different castes on the same tables.

Radhakrishnan began recruiting permanent staff and during the next five years, he attracted the best available persons. He recruited distinguished Indians like Hiren Mukherjee and Humayun Kabir from Bengal, Damle and Vulvakar from Maharashtra and Chawla from Punjab. He invited Ludwig Wolf to occupy the professional seat at chemistry.

He also persuaded Rabindranath Tagore, C.Y. Chintamani, Yare Naguchi, Kavya Kantha Vasishta, Ganpati Muni to deliver special lectures. Thus within two years, Radhakrishnan made the Andhra University, one of the most exciting academic centers in India. He transformed it into seat of learning, truly national but having international outlook.

In 1932, departments of Philosophy, Mathematics, Economics, Politics and Foreign languages were added. In the same year, University College of Science and Technology was establish with the help of an Honorary Professor (C.V. Raman) and four lecturers. In 1933, honours courses in Technology started and in 1934, Commerce courses started. In 1935, Radhakrishnan received a letter from Indian Medical Council that the Andhra Medical College could not be recognized since there was no adequate medical and surgical equipment in the Medical College and Hospital at Vishakhapatnam. But due to sincere efforts of Radhakrishnan, the Medical College was saved from closure.

Radhakrishnan also gave much importance to the library. A special feature of this library was its collection of Marxist literature. Thus by 1934, the two colleges and one hostel had been completed; two more hostels were ready the next year and by 1936, the library and Clock tower had been completed. As is said by C.V. Raman that it was “like a story from the Arabian nights, Radhakrishnan had waved his wand and a university complete with buildings and staff had sprung up.”

Because of his administrative and organizational talents, Radhakrishnan laid the foundations in every sense of the Andhra University. He asserted that with the help of staff of a superior quality, he planned to produce “well trained men and women much above the average.” In I his address to the convocation of Andhra University in 1935, he said, “Democracy can save itself only by becoming aristocratic. Its leaders must be men of integrity and independence, of discernment and devotion to truth.”

In 1934, Radhakrishnan was unanimously re-elected and continued working till 1936 and in February 1936, he informed the senate of the Andhra University that he would leave in May as he accepted the chair at Oxford, which was of more than professional significance. He shifted his base to Britain and there he remained for the next three years till September 1938. Therefore during his tenure as Vice Chancellor of Andhra University, he worked hard to make it a place of learning provided with facilities for advanced study and research.

In Britain, he was a well known figure because of his learning and lucid eloquence. He worked hard in educating the people of England about India. He proved to be very good lecturer and was able to draw students from various disciplines. One of his colleague Edward Thomson wrote, “I admire his intellect, scholarship, spirit. His mind is alive at every moment. His lectures at Oxford, by universal admission, have been astonishingly clear and vivid.”

In August 1937, Radhakrishnan was invited by the British Academy to deliver the Master Mind Lecture on the Buddha. He was the first Asian to be selected and the lecture proved to be very successful, delivered without any notes or single hesitation. Because of this lecture, Radhakrishnan was awarded fellowship of the Academy and he became once again, first Indian to be so honoured.

Along with these achievements, Radhakrishnan continued to take active part in struggle of India for attaining freedom. He was very much impressed with Gandhiji’s attitude and tried to convince the British that Gandhiji was their best friend. Radhakrishnan had his first meeting with Mahatma Gandhi in the house of G.A. Natsen in Madras, when Gandhiji was returning from South Africa.

Radhakrishnan made a profound impact on Gandhiji. Radhakrishnan in turn, also came close to Gandhiji and to him, Gandhiji was a political worker with a religious outlook. He recognized Gandhiji’s deep spiritual force by which he was activated.

Radhakrishnan went to South Africa and talked to Indian Societies. He urged Indian community to work together with Africans against common humiliation and to stand up. He told them to follow the path shown by Gandhiji. About this, Gandhiji wrote in “Indian opinion” that, Radhakrishnan’s short visit to South Africa was like “a flash of light” from heaven.

With the outlook of war in September 1939 Radhakrishnan pressed Britain to transfer the self-government immediately because it was the right thing to do. However, all the talks with Government failed and Radhakrishnan was forced to recognize that the British were not serious about immediate self-government.

In 1939, the founder Vice-Chancellor of Banaras Hindu University Pandit Madan Mohan Malaviya nominated Radhakrishnan as his successor. Radhakrishnan was already dividing the year between Oxford and Calcutta and he was happy at Calcutta but he decided to leave Calcutta and planned to be Vice-Chancellor at Banaras Hindu University. His achievements in Banaras Hindu University were dazzling like “the hues of a rainbow” and he never mixed education with politics. Also he isolated religion from politics. In his own words, “A University is a seat of learning, not a centre of worship.

It believes in the pursuit of knowledge and not in the establishment of a cult. As University men, it is our privilege and honour to seek for truth.” Under his guidance the Banaras University progressed and became a place to develop the higher mind of the country, its conscience and its ideals. While the University had been set up at Banaras to promote the Hindu culture and religion, Radhakrishnan gave a wide definition to religion, which was to promote spiritual values independent of doctrine.

According to him, a good Hindu respected all religions as much as his own. Thus he made efforts to convert the University into a home of liberty “whose ideal was the promotion of liberty of mind or freedom of thought.”

His tenure of Vice-Chancellorship lasted for less than three years. In 1942 he was invited by the Senate of the Calcutta University to deliver Kamala Lectures and these lectures were published in the form of his famous book “Religion and Society.”

Radhakrishnan, therefore, proved to be a successful Vice-Chancellor of Andhra and Banaras Hindu University. When the Government decided to take over the University in 1942 for the conversion of the university buildings into a base hospital, he boldly opposed the Government of India and saved the Universities. He made sincere effort to maintain discipline in the University and for this, he used to pay surprise visits to the University buildings.

Because of his untiring work, he also suffered from typhoid for several weeks.

Radhakrishnan made it a point that politics should not enter into the administration of the University. He always extended the best possible co-operation to others and his good nature and generosity won him many friends In 1945, Radhakrishan was amongst those invited by Sapru. He was also made the Honorary Fellow of Calcutta University in 1946. In 1948, he was elevated to the office of the Chairman of the University Education Commission. He was also member of the Constituent Assembly from 1946 to 1949.

Radhakrishnan played a vital role in the formative years of the Indian Republic. He believed that Civilization had reached a stage when the world had to become one. In achieving this, Radhakrishnan stressed that UNESCO had a vital role to play. He was India’s Chief delegate to the new organization, and from 1945 to 1952, he worked for UNESCO, as a member. He twice become the Chairman of the Executive Board of UNESCO in 1948. His British Colleague, Lord Redeliffe-Maud, said that as Chairman he never lost his temper and was respected by everybody. He was one of the best suited persons to hold that office as he had already done a lot for the culture and thought of the world.

He said that the main objective of UNESCO was to re-create re-education and re-habilitation of man in order to create a new world community. He said, “We are a priesthood of the spirit. Thus he expressed the ideals of UNESCO better than any one else and was applauded by other members also. Jacques Maritain, a member of French delegation in 1948, said, “I have followed with the utmost interest all your interventions, as I think that you represent the very spirit’ of philosophy.” Because of his noble ideas, he was elected president of the general conference in 1952 and after six years was invited to open the new buildings in the place de Fontenoy in Paris.

Along with these milestones set by Radhakrishnan, he continued with his literary works and his edition of the Bhagvad Gita was published in the spring of 1948. He told people in this book that one must carry out one’s duties with detachment and with no enmity towards anybody. According to him, the aim of religion was the establishment of a brotherhood upon earth. After this, he started translating the Dhammapada, the Buddhist work, and the other two major works of the Hindu canon, the Upanishads and the Brahma Sutra.

Along with his achievements abroad, he also worked for his country who had recently attained freedom. In 1948, he was asked to head a commission to study the working of Indian universities with a view to recommending measures for their improvement. This Commission asserted that every student should be encouraged to take spiritual training along with academics.

The commission headed by Radhakrishnan also proposed the establishment of a University Grants Commission (UGC) which should be autonomous and in charge of distribution of funds provided by the Government of India. It stressed to raise the salaries of teachers in order to raise their social status and improve their quality. The establishment of University Grants Commission was the biggest achievement of Radhakrishnan Commission. He rendered valuable services in the cause of philosophy and international goodwill.

Radhakrishnan’s Growing Popularity And International At Oxford

The Biography of Famous Personalities of India will tell you about the controversies, the dark sides of a person that you may have never heard of.

Radhakrishnan’s Growing Popularity And International At Oxford

Radhakrishnan’s Growing Popularity And International

After returning to Calcutta, Radhakrishnan was in very much demand. He got himself involved in extensive activities. He began to organize meetings of the Philosophical Society and along with this, he supervised research and went along with lecturing for eight hours a week. He encouraged the postgraduate teachers and students from various colleges to get together for discussions.

In 1927, due to his growing popularity, he was elected President of All Bengal College and University Teacher’s Association. In 1928, the University of Andhra Pradesh honoured him with the title of D.Litt. at its second convocation. Thus, he was being recognized by his native University as one of the most distinguished sons of the soil.

Meanwhile, he continued with his writing and completed his two small works— The “Religion We Need” and “Kalki or the Future of Civilization.” In 1929, Radhakrishnan worked for the publication of a cultural monthly entitled “The New Era” published from Madras. Although its publication stopped after the thirteenth issue, “The New era” enjoyed a great success and it was all due to Radhakrishnan’s sincere efforts.
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At Oxford

In 1929, Radhakrishnan went to Oxford on the proposal of Lord Haldane for the post of Principal at Manchester College. He succeeded Principal J.E. Carpenter. The acceptance of the post enabled him to lecture on Comperative Religion to the students of Oxford. In 1930, he was invited to give Hibbest lectures in which the students shared keen interest. In all of his lectures, he further emphasized the corporative method adopted in his Indian Philosophy. These lectures were published In 1932 titled “An Idealist view of life.”

These lectures were widely appreciated and received favourable reviews. Many philosophers appreciated his technique of lecturing. He was extremely fluent and his style was vivid which captured the audience attention. Even the Vice Chancellor of London was surprised at the mastery of Radhkrishnan over English which was not his mother tongue. He said, “India has always been the home of religion and philosophy and it has been a great pleasure to us to hear a great Indian teacher on these subjects.”

He was also invited to deliver Jowett Lectures for the year 1930. The subject of his lecture was “The East and the West in Religion.” He successfully assimilated the philosophies of the East and West and was able to bring the people of Europe and Asia more closely together. During his stay in England, he was highly appreciated by writers and philosophers like Bertrand Russel and H.N, Spalding.

Thus his Western tour proved to be very successful as he was able to propagate the idea that India was “a country not to be ruled but a nation seeking its soul.” He was happy and commenting on his experience of delivering lectures, Radhakrishnan wrote,” ……………… It heartened me to know that my addresses was liked by Christian audience.”
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On his way back to India, he delivered lecture in Ceylon in 1931 and the topic was the “Legacy of Buddha.” He lectured for an hour without a note in his hand and was able to hold his audience spell bound.

Radhakrishnan As a Teacher and His First Visit Abroad

The Biography of Famous Personalities of India will tell you about the controversies, the dark sides of a person that you may have never heard of.

Radhakrishnan As a Teacher and His First Visit Abroad

Radhakrishnan As a Teacher

Radhakrishnan’s intelligence and physical appearance were best suited for his being in a teaching profession and he opted for that only. He was a disciplinarian with a heart full of warmth and affection for his fellow beings. He was tall slim and well dressed man. After obtaining a letter of introduction from William Skinner (Professor at the Christian College) to the Director of Public Instruction, he was appointed Lecturer in Philosophy in the Presidency College, Madras in 1909. Teaching philosophy enabled him to be close to his students and he educated young pupils to belief in a spiritual universe.
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Radhakrishnan possessed abundant knowledge of philosophy, so he never carried books to classroom and the students attending his classes were deeply impressed by his knowledge. He was able to simplify the most abstract philosophical doctrines so that all the students were able to understand the subject easily. After working in the Presidency College for some time, he was deputed to the teacher’s training college at Siadapet for the Licentiate in Teaching (L.T.) in order to qualify for a permanent post of Assistant Professor.

His proficiency in lecturing was remarkable. Because of his balanced oratory, most of the students appearing for L.T. examination, requested him to deliver a few lectures on Psychology as they were not well prepared to take the examination. These lectures were later published in the form of book named “Essentials of Psychology” by Oxford University Press, London.

After completing the L.T. Course in 1911, he returned to Presidency College and served there for the next five years. First, he was appointed as additional assistant professor and later was promoted to the post of assistant professor of philosophy. Radhakrishnan was an ideal teacher possessing all the qualities of a noble man. His style of English was simple yet effective. His dressing was according to his personality and figure and he used to wear long silk coat, a white dhoti with a black border, black slippers and turban of white colour. This was his dress for the rest of his life and it never changed even when he rose to the position of the head of a state.

In 1917, Radhakrishnan got transferred to Rajahmundry and joined Government Arts College. He became popular among the students there without much effort because of his arresting personality and profound knowledge. He made friends who were all intellectuals. Thus his brief stay in Rajahmundry had great impact on his life as he himself said that those days spent there, were the happiest years of his life. During this period he wrote journals like “The International Journal of Ethics” “Monist” and “Quest”.

He studied, the works of Rabindanath Tagore which led to the publication of a book on “The Philosophy of Rabindranath Tagore” in 1918. He stayed in Rajahmundry till 1918 and joined Mysore University in July, 1918 as Professor of philosophy. He stayed at this post for a period of three years. During this period, he worked on his next publication. “The Reign of Religion in “Contemporary Philosophy” and the book came out in 1920. His second book was quite different from his first book on Rabindranath Tag ore.

In his first book he had elaborated the philosophies of Rabindranath Tagore so effectively that even the poet himself was more than satisfied with the interpretation. But his second book was quite different and was a very professional effort. In this book, he made a serious attempt to understand western philosophy and asserted that religion must not influence philosophy “Instead of trying to make philosophy religious, we should if possible make religion philosophical” was the basic idea.

According to Radhakrishnan, beliefs should not influence our thoughts. He was of the view that only true philosophy would result in true religion. When published, this book was widely appreciated. During this time he also published a series of articles in “Mind”, “Moist”, “The Guest” and “The international Journal of Ethics”. These articles established his unopposed intellect and his power to grasp the truth. Thus during his years in Mysore, his creative energy was at its best and his works were widely recognized. He also completed his work on “Indian Philosophy” which was one of his greatest books and was considered to be his “magnus opus”.

Radhakrishnan was so popular among students that they never missed any opportunity to attend his classes. His language was simple yet full of meaning with a touches of humour. His personality was such that he was respected and loved by all. He was very much familiar with his students and because of his sharp memory, always remembered their names. This habit is very good as far as teachers are concerned as the students feel close to that teacher.

He used to encourage his students by patting lightly on their backs and shaking hands with them warmly. He was gently noble yet full of confidence. He always laid stress on spiritual values along with intellectual thoughts and also used to teach a lot about Indian Culture. In the words of Professor M.V. Krishna Rao, “He captivated us by his elusiveness and one could never understand him fully;…………. he was uncommon in everything.”

In 1920, the Government of Madras appointed him in the Indian Educational Service which was the highest grade in the educational service under Government. In 1921, Sir Ashutosh Mukherjee, Vice Chancellor of Calcutta University, decided to appoint Radhakrishnan as he was very keen on getting the best man. Ashutosh Mukherjee had read Radhakrishnan’s two books and was impressed by his creative genius. This appointment was recognition of his star quality. He was thirty years old and he.had come a long way. His intellectual capacity and remarkable knowledge of his subject had carried him through very hard times.

At first Radhakrishnan was busy in teaching and writing but following the advice given by Ashutosh Mukherjee, he started participating in executive and deliberative bodies like the University’s Board of Higher Studies, Free Scholarships, Research Fellowship Awards Committee. In 1922, the “All India Oriental Conference” was held at Calcutta and Radhakrishnan actively took part in it and invited all members, attending the conference, to his house and gave a dinner. He also founded the Arts Faculty Club in Calcutta University.

After the publication of Radhakrishnan’s “Indian Philosophy”, the teachers and the students of philosophy in the country urged Radhakrishnan to form a National Forum for the promotion of philosophy. Even Radhakrishnan had been feeling for some time the need for the philosophers of the country to meet and exchange ideas. So keeping this in mind, he established Indian Philosophical Congress in 1925 and its first session was held in Calcutta in December of the same year. The first president of Indian Philosophical Congress was Rabindranath Tagore. Thus due to sincere efforts of Radhakrishnan, Indian Philosophy came to be recognized as an important branch of study.

His First Visit Abroad

In 1926, Radhakrishnan was nominated by Calcutta university as its representative at the Congress of Universities of the British Empire to be held at London. Although he was not much interested in going out of India, he could not refuse the invitation sent by L.P. Jacks, the Principal of Manchester College at Oxford, to deliver the Upton lectures. “The Social Reformer”, wrote about this incident; “Today the University of Calcutta has really honoured itself in picking up a genius like Prof. Radhakrishnan, who has been sent as a delegate to the Congress of the Universities of the British Empire. When he came in that capacity, Oxford, the oldest and the best of the Universities has availed itself the opportunity in choosing Prof. Radhakrishnan and broke a tradition by calling an Indian for the first time to deliver the Upton lectures at Manchester College.”

Radhakrishnan delivered the Upton lectures which consisted of fair lectures and these lectures were published under the title “The Hindu view of life”. This book, when published, sold widely. In this book, Radhakrishnan’s aim was to represent Hindu religion as a positive and progressive movement. He wanted to show to the Western audience that Hinduism was more a way of life than a form of thought and it was not static; Hinduism was still evolving. He asserted that those who followed Hindu religion were ‘torch-bearers of enlightenment.”

Thus Radhakrishnan came to be recognized as the spokesman for Indian Philosophy as well as Hinduism. After this he was in much demand elsewhere. He also delivered a lecture on Bradley and Samkara at Moral Sciences Club in Cambridge, England and gave three lectures in London on philosophic basis of Hinduism.

In September, 1926, he was deputed by the University of Calcutta to represent it at the Sixth International Congress of Philosophy held in America. He delivered the Haskell Lectures at the University of Chicago and also lectured in other universities. He was greatly appreciated there and his world wide reputation as a philosopher was established during this period. He came back to India in the following year in December.

Childhood And Early Education of Dr. S. Radhakrishnan

The Biography of Famous Personalities of India will tell you about the controversies, the dark sides of a person that you may have never heard of.

Childhood And Early Education of Dr. S. Radhakrishnan

Childhood And Early Education

Dr. Radhakrishnan was born on September 5, 1888 at a small place, Tiruttani, 40 miles north-west of Madras City in a middle class Niyogi Brahmin family as the second son of his parents. Dr. Radhakrishnan is an ideal representative of the Niyogi sect of Andhra Brahmins who are known for their intelligence and modern culture. As is said by P. Rajesware Rao.” It takes centuries of life to create a little history and centuries of history to create enduring tradition. There is no denying the fact that certain communities in our country established traditions of character and capacity, service and sacrifice,” and Dr. Radhakrishnan belonged to this community of Niyogi sect who had produced many great poets, administrators, dewans and commanders.

His father was Sarvepalli Veerasamaiah and his mother’s name was Sitamma. Most of the details about his parents are uncertain except that his father was a subordinate revenue official in the service of a local zamindar. His family was highly religious and had conventioned outlook. Radhakrishnan was quite different from his four brothers and sister in physical appearance as well as on intellectual level. His captivating extraordinary personality suggested that he belonged to different stock.

His father had a meager income and it was hard for him to maintain his large family. Radhakrishnan spent his first twelve years in Tiruttani and Tirupati. Both these places are famous pilgrim centres. He learnt elementary English, geography, arithmetic, Indian history and geography. At Tirupati, he joined Hermansburg Evangelical Lutheran Mission School which was run by German missionaries. Thus Radhakrishnan was influenced by the Christianity during his early days. Along with this, due to his family’s bent of mind towards Hindu religion, he regularly practised rituals and visited temples. Though he was not opposed to any religion, as his religious sensibilities developed, he was drawn to the values of the Vedanta.

When Radhakrishnan was a schoolboy, he was ordinary child with no exceptional qualities. Although he won many scholarships, he was not studious. He was not interested in sports also and he loved loneliness. Due to his withdrawn nature, it was difficult to know Radhakrishnan. He had very few friends and his favourite pastime was to walk around the village in a meditation frame of mind. He had infinite patience because of his firm faith in God.

He believed that the invisible hand of God was responsible for ail that was happening in the world. This belief made him strong and he was not perturbed by the grave difficulties. Due to his love of solitude, he felt himself close to God and developed perception of seeing the world with the mind, not with the senses. This nature made him intellectual as well as spiritual.

Radhkrishnan’s father knew no English and was opposed to his learning this language but because of his extraordinary talent, he was sent to missionary schools. In 1900, he left Missionary School at Triputi and joined the Voorhee’s College at Vellore when he completed his B.A. in 1904 and won scholarship. He also got certificate of merit for his proficiency in Scriptures.

During this period, he developed reading habit and started buying books. As he was a shy and a lonely man, books became his best friend. But slowly he became social and started enjoying good company with a few familiar friends. His social side become evident during Vellore days and he liked entertaining friends but he himself never smoked or tasted liquor. He was purely vegetarian and remained so throughout his life.

In May 1903, while still a student at Vellore, he was married to a distant cousin, Sivakamu, at the age of sixteen. She was an ideal Hindu wife, religiously following the footsteps of her husband. Although she did not share his intellectual interests and ambitions, she provided him intimate companionship full of warmth and love. She was happy in poverty and accepted struggles as the part of life. She was like rock and provided stable home life which enabled Radhakrishnan to be engrossed in his own work. Their first child, daughter was born in 1908 and afterwards six more children out of which one son died. He always regarded himself happily married and felt that his wife was a devoted wife by all standards.

In 1904, he joined the Christian College, Madras. For his B.A. degree, he was confused and unclear about the subjects he should choose. His inclination was towards physical sciences but ultimately he opted for philosophy which proved very fruitful later in his life. As in his own words, “The subject of philosophy which I happened to take up by sheer accident has been of considerable help to me in giving me a goal to work for.”

He asserted that the study of philosophy helped him immensely in understanding the deeper meaning of life. He further said; “To all appearance this is a mere accident. But when I look at the series of accidents that have shaped my life. I am persuaded that there is more in this life than meets the eye…………… Chance seems to form the surface but deep down other forces are at work.”

This clearly indicates that Radhkrishnan was convinced that his life was being shaped by God himself.

In 1906, he obtained the B.A. degree in first class and was the best student of that year in philosophy. From then onwards, his days of hardships started and he opted for the studentship of Rs. 25 per month and joined M.A. classes in philosophy. For his M.A. degree examination, he prepared a thesis entitled, “Ethics of the Vedanta”. This thesis was later published in a book form in 1908 and can be rightly considered the first creative work of Radhakrishnan. The Department of Philosophy at Madras Christian College was headed by Principal William Skinner and consisted of William Meston and Alfred Hogg as Professors.

Radhakrishnan was greatly influenced by Professor Hogg and considered him as “distinguished teacher” who was, according to him, “one of the greatest Christian teachers of his generation” who ” left a permanent mark on the minds of those who came under his influence.” Professor Hogg, in turn, recognised the potential of Radhakrishnan and appreciated his thesis. Thus Radhakrishnan impressed his Professors a lot and successfully obtained his M.A. degree in January, 1909. In April, he joined the Madras Provincial Education Service and began his teaching career. He was already familiar with teaching profession as during his post graduation itself, he started taking up private tution classes for students to earn some money for himself and his family. Thus his educational career was outstanding.

The Down To Earth Man, A Fruitful Life and Different Perspectives of Dr. Raman

The Biography of Famous Personalities of India will tell you about the controversies, the dark sides of a person that you may have never heard of.

The Down To Earth Man, A Fruitful Life and Different Perspectives of Dr. Raman

Raman – The Down To Earth Man

Dr. Raman was greatly studious. He kept in touch with the latest developments in science in the world around him. He had personal contact with many scientists. He used to read new books and research papers from different centres. On one occasion he was addressing the students of Presidency College, Madras. Like an elder brother he told them, “How much can you learn in an hour’s lecture? Spend more time in the library.” Studying and experimenting, he remained a student throughout his life.

“The equipment which brought me the Nobel Prize did not cost more than three hundred rupees. A table drawer can hold all my research equipments,” he used to say with pride. It was his conviction that if the research worker is not inspired from within, any amount of money cannot bring success in research.

He hoped that scientists of free India would win worldwide fame by their discoveries. “If there are no facilities here, what is wrong with their going abroad and spreading the fame of India? Did not the workers of the East India Company come and rule India?” he used to say.

Raman was not conservative in his outlook. He used to spell out his opinions boldly. When he was called ‘India’s illustrious scientist’,! he would correct the description with humility—“I am just a man of science.” When scientists were criticized, he would retort with confidence that they were the salt of the earth.

His greatness lay not just in his specialized field of research but in his extent of knowledge, his eagerness to collect and read books on other subjects in literature, music, science, and technology. His lectures to a lay audience made him especially noteworthy. He could capture the attention of school children, college students, and town people equally well. Possessing in a rare measure the extraordinary gift of making the most difficult problems in physics appear simple and with a keen and irresistible sense of humor, he would have the audience roaring in laughter every few minutes.

Raman – A Fruitful Life

Raman possessed the curiosity of a little boy to know new things, and the intuition of a great genius in understanding the secrets of Nature. The life of this great scientist was truly the life of a great seer.

Without much encouragement, Raman had entered the field of science in his early years. Deeply attracted by the secrets of sound and light, he marched ahead in the world of science. By his achievements and self-respect he earned a honored place for India in the world of science. He laid „ the foundations of a scientific tradition in India by building up institutes for research, by publishing science journals and by encouraging young scientists.

Raman exhibited remarkable independence in choosing to work in areas that exited his curiosity. Further, when faced with lack of infrastructure, he always improvised and built up whatever he needed from scratch. C.V. Raman’s determination, spirit, and contributions indeed remain special within the context of the practice of science in India.

Raman took over Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore as a Director and he stayed there until 1948. He spent equal amount of time on research and organizational work.

He not only conducted research but also mentored many students.

Raman dedicated his final years from 1948 to 1970, to set up of the Raman Research Institute in Bangalore and the running of the Indian Academy of Science. Despite his busy schedule, he edited journals ‘Current Science’ and the ‘Proceedings of the Academy’.

A few days before his 83rd birthday, Raman suffered a mild heart attack. But there was quick recovery. He never dreamt of a life without work. When advised rest, he told his doctor, “I wish to live a hundred-per-cent active and fruitful life.”

Dr. C.V. Raman died on 21 November, 1970. By a special arrangement, according to his wish, his mortal remains were consigned to flames in the institute campus itself, amidst the surroundings he loved, without any religious ceremonies. Today, a solitary tree is all that marks that spot in the grounds of the Raman Research Institute.

Dr. Raman In Different Perspectives

Raman’s Delight in Colour and Light
Raman collected rocks and precious stones. His invaluable collection included hundreds of objects such as sand that melted due to lightning, rock indicating the lava flow during a volcano and diamonds, rubies and sapphires. Many fluorescent minerals were kept in a dark room. There he could create a small twinkling world by switching on the ultra-violet light. Thin layers of some crystals were prepared for study. No colour was seen when they were viewed perpendicularly. But the viewer had only to change the angle—and blue, green and yellow colours delighted the eye. After a deep study of diamonds Raman explained many of their characteristics.

Once in Paris, he went shopping for diamonds and crystals. There two beautiful butterflies with blue wings in a shop window attracted him. He bought them and later collected thousands of specimens.

Raman loved flowers for their colours. He grew many flower plants. He used to visit flower exhibitions to examine flowers.

Raman’s Interest in Music
Raman was a great lover of music. He used to say, “I should live long, because I have not heard all the music I want to hear.” He was a frequent visitor to a shop selling musical instruments in Balepet, in Bangalore. He collected a variety of musical instruments like the Mridangam, the Tabla, the Veena, the Violin and the Nagaswaram.

‘The Catgut Acoustical Society’ of America is devoted exclusively to the study of violins. It elected Raman as its honorary member.

Raman — ‘A General Practitioner in Science’
When Raman stepped into the field of research, Modem Physics was in its infancy. It developed numerous branches by the time he began working in his own Institute. Then research workers had access to modem equipment and methods, which were not available six decades earlier. They tended to study a small field and to specialize in it. But Raman never limited his activities and interests to a narrow field.

Raman once inaugurated the ‘General Practitioners’ Conference’ in Bangalore. A general practitioner is a doctor who treats common illnesses. Raman humorously commented on that occasion that he was a general practitioner in science. He liked all scientific problems whether they were small or big. His interest and satisfaction lay in finding a solution to the problem.

In 1969, the daughter of Nagendranath (who had been a research student under him thirty years earlier) was married; Raman and his wife attended the reception. Raman drew Nagendranath aside and explained his new problem; he was trying to find a theory of earthquakes taking into account the actual shape of the earth and the wave-like nature of the quakes. Raman was not a person to be satisfied with his past achievements. He was always seeking new and vaster fields of study.

Raman was a delightful speaker. Sprinkled with good humor, his talk was usually focussed on realities. Raman used to say that the colour of the sea interested him more than the fish, which lived in it. He thought that we should have our own ships for oceanographic research. He often said that India lost her freedom because she took no interest in the seas.

Raman had A Lion’s Heart
Friends and admirers organized a special function at the Annual Session of the Academy at Ahmedabad to honour him on his eightieth birthday. Many people expressed warm sentiments. Raman never took much interest in birthday celebrations. Still, at the end, He thanked the organizers; and with a twinkle in his eyes, he said, “I wish some one had said that I had a lion’s heart!” All who had spoken forgot to make mention of his great asset, namely courage.

Raman’s God and Religion
Raman would not speak much about God and religion. Science was his God and work his religion. He believed that new discoveries confirm the existence of God; if there is God we have to find Him in this universe.

A journalist once asked him, “What do you feel about the long and eventful period of your scientific work and achievements?” Raman replied promptly, “I have no time to think of the past and I am not inclined to do so. I spend my life as a scientist. My work gives me satisfaction.”


Birth of C.V. Raman : 7 November, 1888
Done Matric : 1902
Done B.A. : 1905
Done M.A. : 1907
Joined the FCS at Calcutta : 1907
Marriage : 6 May, 1907
Joined LACS at Calcutta : 1907
Transferred to Rangoon : 1909
Father Passed Away 1910
Became Palit Professor at Calcutta University : 1917
Became Honorary Secretary of IACS : 1919
Went to England to represent Calcutta University : 1921
Honoured as fellow of the Royal Society : 1924
Visited Canada & America : 1924
Went to Russia : 1925
Found Raman-Effect : 16th March, 1928
Attained Knighthood : 1929
Received Nobel Prize : 1930
Joined Tata Institute, Bangalore : 1933
Established the Indian Academy of Science : 1934
Established The Raman Research Institute : 1948
Conferred Bharat Rama : 1954
Passed Away : 21 Nov., 1970


The Down To Earth Man, A Fruitful Life and Different Perspectives of Dr. Raman 1
The Down To Earth Man, A Fruitful Life and Different Perspectives of Dr. Raman 2

Raman At Tata Institute, Effect On Brain Drain and Encouraging Original Thinker

The Biography of Famous Personalities of India will tell you about the controversies, the dark sides of a person that you may have never heard of.

Raman At Tata Institute, Effect On Brain Drain and Encouraging Original Thinker

Raman At Tata Institute

Dr. Raman came to Bangalore as the Director of the Tata Institute (the Indian Institute of Science) in 1933. The Tata Institute soon became famous for the study of crystals. The diffraction of light (the very slight bending of light around comers) by ultrasonic waves (high-frequency sound waves which we cannot hear) in a liquid was elegantly explained by Raman and Nagendranath. This became known as the ‘Raman-Nath Theory’.

Raman was an early riser and used to take morning walks regularly. The sight of tall trees against the sky at dawn delighted him. By six in the morning, he would be in the chamber where he worked. Up to 9 a.m., he would devote his time to discussing with students who were experimenting and to the study of research papers. At 10 o’clock he would be in the Director’s office. He would complete the office work and return to the laboratory. He would be immersed in research till 8.30 p.m. He used to arrange two or three seminars every week. At these seminars all the workers would come together to discuss various problems of their research.

Raman Effect On Brain Drain

One event shows the extra-ordinary pride Raman felt as an Indian. Very many years later, when Raman had received worldwide recognition, there was an event. This was around 1933, when Raman was in Bangalore as the Director of what is now the Indian Institute of Science, then known as the Tata Institute. At that time, several German Physicists were fleeing their country to escape the atrocities committed by Hitler. Raman, who was opposed to young Indians going abroad for education, rather believed in getting great international stalwarts here. So he approached several of the German Physicists who were fleeing Germany and tried to attract them to take up permanent jobs in India.

Amongst the persons he approached are distinguished Physicists like Erwin Schrodinger and Max Bom, both Nobel laureates. Unfortunately, as Schrodinger himself wrote in a letter, he had already accepted a job at Dublin when Raman’s invitation reached him. Schrodinger also wrote in that letter, that he regretted that he could not settle in India, the land of the Upanishads.

Encouraging Science & Research

After retirement from the Indian Institute of Science in 1948 he started an Institute of his own with the sponsorship of the Indian Academy of Sciences which he had founded in 1935, in the hope that it would “become an international cultural center that would shown India’s greatness in the field of exact sciences.” The Raman Institue, besides being well equipped for research in the fields of spectroscopy, optics, X-rays, crystal physics and mineralogy, houses an outstanding museum attached to the Institute containing a magnificent collection of rocks and minerals, and possibly the largest collection in the world today of diamonds for experimental investigations.

The Government of Mysore granted 24 acres of land to promote the activities of the Academy. It was his earnest desire ‘to bring into existence a centre of scientific research worthy of our ancient country, where the keenest intellectuals of our land can probe into the mysteries of the Universe’. He fulfilled his wish by establishing a Research Institute at Hebbal, Bangalore. He did not seek help from the Government but gave away all his property to the Institute. The Executive Committee of the Academy named the centre ‘Raman Research Institute’.

In 1948, this great scientist entered on one more active phase of life when he became the Director of the Raman Research Institute. The Institute became the centre of all his activities. A garden and tall eucalyptus trees surrounded it. He used to say, “A Hindu is required to go to the forest in old age, but instead of going to the forest, I made the forest come to me.” At the Institute he could concentrate on things that interested him. He was alone with his work and was happy.

He did research on sound, light, rocks, gems, birds, insects, butterflies, sea shells, trees, flowers, atmosphere, weather and physiology of vision and hearing. His study covered such different fields of science as Physics, Geology, Biology and Physiology. Among them sound and colours particularly attracted him. Once he even went round shops to select sarees of different colour designs.

His interests in later years were mainly focused on finding a satisfactory explanation of the floral colours and the physiology of human vision. For his continued and relentless pursuit of science, honours continued to pour in. In 1941 he was awarded the Franklin medal, the title ‘Bharat Ratna’, the highest honour by India is 1954, the Lenin Prize in 1957, elected as an honorary fellow of the Optical Society of America, foreign Associate of the French Academy, corresponding member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, member of the Pointificial Academy of Sciences by the Pope in 1961, fellow of the Mineralogical Society of America, and memberships in numerous other scientific societies throughout the world.

Raman : Original Thinker & Reader

Dr. C.V. Raman was one of the world renowned scientists of India. He was a brilliant, industrious and disciplined student. He was also an original thinker. During his youth, India was not a free country, and there were hardly any institutions or libraries to encourage for higher education. Despite these hurdles, Raman was able to contribute so greatly to Indian science. It was possible only because of his deep and genuine passion for physics and his commitment to finding answers to questions that puzzled him.

Raman was an intelligent and voracious reader and pored eagerly over all the books in his father’s collection. Some among those were the original writings of the outstanding scientists. He once said, “out of this welter of subjects and books, can I pick anything really mould my mental and spiritual outlook and determine my chosen path? Yes, I can and shall mention three books.”

“They are Edwin Arnold’s ‘Light of Asia’ which is the life story of Lord Gautama Buddha. Second is ‘The Elements of Euclid’, is a treatise on Classical Geometry. ‘The Sensations of Tone’ is the last one and is authored by German scientist Helmholtz, on the properties of sound waves.”

Nobel Prize Presentation Speech of Dr. C.V. Raman

The Biography of Famous Personalities of India will tell you about the controversies, the dark sides of a person that you may have never heard of.

Nobel Prize Presentation Speech of Dr. C.V. Raman

Nobel Prize Presentation Speech

Presentation Speech by Professor H. Pleijel, Chairman of the Nobel Committee for Physics of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, on December 10, 1930.

Your Majesty, Your Royal Highnesses, Ladies and Gentlemen.

The Academy of Sciences has resolved to award the Nobel Prize in Physics for 1930 to Sir Venkata Raman for his work on the scattering of light and for the discovery of the effect named after him.

The diffusion of light is an optical phenomenon, which has been known for a long time. A ray of light is not perceptible unless it strikes the eye directly. If, however, a bundle of rays of light traverses a medium in which extremely fine dust is present, the ray of light will scatter to the sides and the path of the ray through the medium will be discernible from the side. We can represent the course of events in this way; the small particles of dust begin to oscillate owing to electric influence from the ray of light, and they form centres from which light is disseminated in all directions.

The wavelength, or the number of oscillations per second, in the light thus diffused is here the same as in the original ray of light. But this effect has different degrees of strength for light with different wavelengths. It is stronger for the short wavelengths than for the long ones, and consequently, it is stronger for the blue part of the spectrum than for the red part. Hence if a ray of light containing all the colours of the spectrum passes through a medium, the yellow and the red rays will pass through the medium without appreciable scattering, whereas the blue rays will be scattered to the sides. This effect has received the name of the “Tyndall effect”.

Lord Rayleigh, who has made a study of this effect, has put forward the hypothesis that the blue colours of the sky and the reddish colouring that is observed at sunrise and sunset is caused by the diffusion of light owing to the fine dust or the particles of water in the atmosphere. The blue light from the sky would thus be light-scattered to the sides, while the reddish light would be light that passes through the lower layers of the atmosphere and which has become impoverished in blue rays owing to scattering. Later, in 1899, Rayleigh threw out the suggestion that the phenomenon in question might be due to the fact that the molecules of air themselves exercised a scattering effect on the rays of light.

In 1914, Cabannes succeeded in showing experimentally that pure and dustless gases also have the capacity of scattering rays of light.

But a closer examination of scattering in different substance solid, liquid, or gaseous form showed that the scattered light did not in certain respects exactly follow the laws which, according to calculation, should hold good for the Tyndall effect. The hypothesis which formed the basis of this effect would seem to involve, amongst other things, that the rays scattered to the sides were polarized. This, however, did not prove to be exactly the case.

This divergence from what was to be expected was made the starting point of a searching study of the nature of scattered light, in which study Raman was one of those who took an active part. Raman sought to find the explanation of the anomalies in asymmetry observed in the molecules. During these studies of his in the phenomenon of scattering, Raman made, in 1928, the unexpected and highly surprising discovery that the scattered light showed not only the radiation that derived from the primary light but also a radiation that contained other wavelengths, which were foreign to the primary light.

In order to study more closely the properties of the new rays, the primary light that was emitted from a powerful mercury lamp was filtered in such a way as to yield a primary light of one single wavelength. The light scattered from that ray in a medium was watched in a spectrograph, in which every wavelength or frequency produces a line. Here he found that, in addition to the mercury line chosen, there was obtained a spectrum of new sharp lines, which appeared in the spectrograph on either side of the original line. When another mercury line was employed, the same extra spectrum showed itself round it. Thus, when the primary light was moved, the new spectrum followed, in such a way that the frequency distance between the primary line and the new lines always remained the same.

Raman investigated the universal character of the phenomenon by using a large number of substances as a scattering medium, and everywhere found the same effect.

The explanation of this phenomenon, which has received the name of the “Raman effect” after its discoverer, has been found by Raman himself, with the help of the modem conception of the nature of light. According to that conception, light cannot be emitted from or absorbed by material otherwise than in the form of definite amounts of energy or what are known as “light quanta”. Thus the energy of light would possess a kind of atomic character. A quantum of light is proportionate to the frequency of rays of light, so that in the case of a frequency twice as great, the quanta of the rays of light will also be twice as great.

In order to illustrate the conditions when an atom emits or absorbs light energy, we can. according to Bohr, picture to ourselves the atom as consisting of a nucleus, charged with positive electricity round which negative electrons rotate in circular paths at various distances from the centre. The path of every such electron possesses a certain energy, which is different for different distances from the central body.

Only certain paths are stable. When the electron moves in such a path, no energy is emitted. When, on the other hand, an electron falls from a path with higher energy to one with lower energy-that is to say, from an outer path to an inner path-light is emitted with a frequency that is characteristic of these two paths, and the energy of radiation consists of a quantum of light. Thus the atom can give rise to as many frequencies as the number of different transitions between the stable paths. There is a line in the spectrum corresponding to each frequency.

An incoming radiation cannot be absorbed by the atom unless its light quantum is identical with one of the light quanta that the atom can emit.

Now the Raman effect seems to conflict with this law. The positions of the Raman-lines in the spectrum do not correspond, in point of fact, with the frequencies of the atom itself, and they move with the activating ray. Raman has explained this apparent contradiction and the coming into existence of the lines by the effect of combination between the quantum of light coming from without and the quanta of light that are released or bound in the atom.

If the atom, at the same time as it receives from without a quantum of light, emits a quantum of light of a different magnitude, and if the difference between these two quanta is identical with the quantum of light which is bound or released when an electron passes from one path to another, the quantum of light coming from without is absorbed. In that case the atom will emit an extra frequency, which either will be the sum of or the difference between the activating ray and a frequency in the atom itself.

In this case these new lines group themselves round the incoming primary frequency on either side of it, and the distance between the activating frequency and the nearest Raman- lines will be identical with the lowest oscillation frequencies of the atom or with its ultrared spectrum. What has been said as to the atom and its oscillations also holds good of the molecule.

In this way we get the ultrared spectrum moved up to the spectral line of the activating light. The discovery of the Raman-line has proved to be of extraordinarily great importance for our knowledge of the structure of molecules.

So far, indeed, there have been all but insuperable difficulties in the way of studying these ultrared oscillations, because that part of the spectrum lies so far away from the region where the photographic plate is sensitive. Raman’s discovery has now overcome these difficulties, and the way has been opened for the investigation of the oscillations of the nucleus of the molecules. We choose the primary ray within that range of frequency where the photographic plate is sensitive. The ultrared spectrum, in the form of the Raman-lines, is moved up to that region and, in consequence of that, exact measurements of its lines can be effected.

In the same way the ultraviolet spectrum can be investigated with the help of the Raman effect. Thus we have obtained a simple and exact method for the investigation of the entire sphere of oscillation of the molecules.

Raman himself and his fellow-workers have, during the years that have elapsed since the discovery was made, investigated the frequencies in a large number of substances in a solid, liquid, and gaseous state. Investigations have been made as to whether different conditions of aggregation affect atoms and molecules, and the molecular conditions in electrolytic dissociation and the ultrared absorption spectrum of crystals have been studied.

Thus the Raman effect has already yielded important results concerning the chemical constitution of substances; and it is to foresee that the extremely valuable tool that the Raman effect has placed in our hands will in the immediate future bring with it a deepening of our knowledge of the structure of matter.

Sir Venkata Raman, the Royal Academy of Sciences has awarded you the Nobel Prize in Physics for your eminent researches on the diffusion of gases and for your discovery of the effect that bears your name. ‘The Raman Effect’ has opened new routes to our knowledge of the structure of matter and has already given most important results.

I now ask you to receive the prize from the hands of His Majesty.

Raman Effect, Honours and The Story of the Nobel Prize

The Biography of Famous Personalities of India will tell you about the controversies, the dark sides of a person that you may have never heard of.

Raman Effect, Honours & The Story of the Nobel Prize

The Raman Effect

Sometimes a rainbow appears and delights our eyes. We see in it shades of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet. The white ray of the sun includes all these colors. When a beam of sunlight is passed through a glass prism a patch of these color-bands are seen. This is called the spectrum. The Spectrometer is an apparatus used to study the spectrum. Spectral lines in it are characteristic of the light passing through the prism. A beam of light that causes a single spectral line is said to be monochromatic.

When a beam of monochromatic light passes through a transparent substance (a substance which allows light to pass through it), the beam is scattered. Raman spent a long time in the study of the scattered light. On February 28, 1928, he observed two low intensity spectral lines corresponding to the incident monochromatic light. Years of his labour had borne fruit. It was clear that though the incident light was monochromatic, the scattered light due to it, was not monochromatic.Thus Raman’s experiments discovered a phenomenon which was lying hidden in nature.

The 16th of March 1928 is a memorable day in the history of science. On that day a meeting was held under the joint auspices of the South Indian Science Association and the Science Club of Central College, Bangalore; Raman was the Chief Guest. He announced the new phenomenon discovered by him to the world. He also acknowledged with affection the assistance given by K.S. Krishnan and Venkateshwaran, who were his students.

The phenomenon attracted the attention of research workers all over the world. It became famous as the ‘Raman Effect’. The spectral lines in the scattered light were known as ‘Raman Lines’.

Is light wave-like or particle-like? This question has been discussed from time to time by scientists. The Raman Effect confirmed that light was made up of particles known as ‘photons’. It helped in the study of the molecular and crystal structures of different substances.

Investigations making use of the Raman Effect began in many countries. During the first twelve years after its discovery, about 1800 research papers were published on various aspects of it and about 2500 chemical compounds were studied. Raman Effect was highly praised as one of the greatest discoveries of the third decade of this century.

After the ‘lasers’ (devices that produce intense beams of light, their name coming from the initial letters of Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation) came into use in the 1960s, it became easier to get monochromatic light of very high intensity for experiments. This brought back scientific interest in Raman Effect, and the interest remains alive to this day.

Honours & Nobel Prize

Raman received many honours from all over the world for his achievement. In 1928 the Science Society of Rome awarded the Matteucci Medal. In 1929 the British Government knighted him; thereafter Professor Raman came to be known as Professor Sir C.V. Raman. The Royal Society of London awarded the Hughes Medal in 1930. Honorary doctorate degrees were awarded by the Universities of Freiburg (Germany), Glasgow (England), Paris (France), Bombay, Benaras, Dacca, Patna, Mysore and several others.
Raman Effect, Honours & The Story of the Nobel Prize 1
The highest award a scientist or a writer can get is the Nobel Prize. In 1930, the Swedish Academy of Sciences chose Raman to receive the Nobel Prize for Physics. No Indian and no Asian had received the Nobel Prize for Physics up to that time. At the ceremony for the award, Raman used alcohol to demonstrate the Raman Effect. Later in the evening alcoholic drinks were served at the dinner. But Raman did not touch them. He remained loyal to the Indian traditions.

Raman used to announce his new scientific discoveries at the annual sessions of the Academy. At the Madras session (1967) he discussed the influence of the earth’s rotation on its gaseous envelope. Next year he put forward his theory of the physiology of vision. Many countries and institutions continued to honour him. The membership of the American Optical Society (1941), the National Professorship of India (1948), the Franklin Medal of the Franklin Institute (1951), the International Lenin Prize (1957), the Membership of the Pontifical Academy of Science (1961)—these were some of the honours conferred on him.

The greatest honour the Government of India confers on an Indian is the award of ‘Bharat Ratna’. Raman became a ‘Bharat Ratna’ in 1954.

The Story of The Nobel Prize

The Nobel prize is one of the prizes known to a great part, of the non-scientific public and is considered as the highest honour to be awarded to scientists.

Raman received the Nobel prize in a record time of two years after his prize-winning discovery.

In 1929, C. Fabry from Paris recommended J. Cabannes (Montpellier) and C. V. Raman (Calcutta), whereas N. Bohr proposed that either R. W. Wood or R. W. Wood and Raman should be considered for receiving the Nobel prize for physics. In that year 48 nominators sent 97 proposals and proposed in all 29 persons. Out of these 29 persons, L. de Broglie. Cabannes, Raman and Wood were declared by the Committee as the persons who fundamentally deserved the prize: but it was L. de Broglie who finally received the Prize for that year.

For the year 1930, 39 competent persons were asked to submit proposals. Out of them, 37 persons sent proposals. There were 21 valid recommendations for a full or shared Prize. Most of the recommendations were concerned with atomic theory and atomic physics. The atomic theory proposals had been worked out by Oseen.

Out of the 21 nominations, Raman was the most suitable person; he was proposed 10 times, either as a single candidate for the Prize, or to share it with other physicists.

In that year some of the other scientists proposed included, M. Bom, A. Sommerfeld, E. Schrodinger, W. Heisenberg, H. F. Osborn, and M. N. Saha (an Indian astrophysicist).

Dr. C.V. Raman received the Nobel prize for his work on diffusion of light and for the effect named after him. The objections raised by some historians that Raman did not share the Nobel prize with others or that the Committee ignored Raman’s collaborators as well as Russian colleagues were baseless. As he was awarded the Prize not only for the Raman effect, but for other work in this field as well.

The Nobel Committee had to take the decision according to certain rules and regulations imposed on it by the Nobel Foundation. Raman was nominated 10 times and the nominators wrote convincing recommendations in favour of him; thus the Committee decided for Raman. He received the Nobel prize in record time due the practical significance of the discovery, as well as the good opinion of the famous contemporary scientists about his work.

The Sea Is Blue, Raman Effect Discovers and Raman Effect On The World

The Biography of Famous Personalities of India will tell you about the controversies, the dark sides of a person that you may have never heard of.

The Sea Is Blue, Raman Effect Discovers and Raman Effect On The World

The Sea Is Blue The Raman Way

The University of Calcutta conferred on Raman an honorary doctorate in 1921. Soon after, he made his first visit to overseas. It was a formal visit to attend the University Congress at Oxford, where he represented Calcutta University. During his return journey to India, Raman spent hours watching the sea from the deck of his ship and was awestruck by its colour. According to Lord Rayleigh, who had explained the blue colour of the sea, ‘The dark blue of the deep sea has nothing to do with the colour of water but is simply the blue of the sky seen in reflection’. Fascinated by it, Raman watched the sea intently and using the simple optical tools he usually carries. He did experiments to capture the colour of the sea. When ship finally docked at Bombay, Raman’s paper explaining his observations on the Mediterranean Sea was on its way to the journal Nature.

During his return journey, Raman discovered that water molecules could scatter fight just like air molecules. It was very important and radical in those days. It paves way for Raman to discovering the famous Raman Effect. He wrote a brilliant essay in 1922, titled, “The Molecular Diffraction of Light”, in which he speculated that fight may exist in quanta, that is, massless particles of energy. This is an accepted theory till today but considered as the mos radical in those days. This research further proved to be important in his later life and it brought laurels to hi: country. Raman had a hunch that if the light did not exis as particles, or quanta, then scattering experiments woulc show only a change in the light intensity and not in its frequency, or colour.

On the other hand, if light did exisi in particles, or quanta, then a scattering of the light could change its frequency as well as intensity. He moved forward, giving a deaf ear to what others say, directed all research at the institute towards finding evidence for the corpuscular theory of light through scattering experiments. However, in 1923, with the discovery of the Compton effect, the existence of light quanta was established beyond doubt. With this success, Raman directed his team to work on light scattering. Initially their research findings were weak, some of his students named their initial finding as ‘feeble fluorescence’.

Raman’s team had to work rigorously four more years to be sure of what experiment they were doing. It was in 1927, they were able to say confidently that the new effect was not ‘a type of fluorescence’ but a modified scattering. This led to the discovery made on 28 February of the fact that light can undergo a scattering through a liquid resulting in a change in its frequency – the famous Raman Effect. To commemorate this historic event, this date is celebrated today as National Science Day.

Professor Raman’s work on the scattering of x-rays by liquids was also a pioneering one, and formed the basis of molecular structure studies in liquids. His paper along with collaborator Ramanathan has become extremely famous, and was a pioneering contribution made as early as in 1923. In the same year, Professor Raman advanced a theory of viscosity which has been used to explain the viscosity of polymers.
The Sea Is Blue, Raman Effect Discovers and Raman Effect On The World 2
In 1924, Professor Raman was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society. At the meeting that was held to felicitate him, he expressed his appreciation for the honour he received. However, he went on to say that he did not consider this honour to be the ultimate and that he would, within 5 years, get the Nobel Prize for india. This confidence, determination, working toward specific goals, was characteristic of Raman’s personality. It can certainly be argued that after all it could have been a matter of the chance that he would not get the Nobel Prize, it may also be said that Raman had a fair idea of his research caliber.

In 1922, Professor Raman published a monograph entitled “The Molecular Diffraction of Light”. The seeds of his subsequent work can be found in this work. In this monograph, for example, he has considered in details how energy could be transferred between a quantum of light and a molecule of liquid. He had expressed his conviction in this celebrated monograph, that the quantum nature of light must manifest itself in molecular scattering.

Raman Discovers Raman Effect

In the month of April 1923, Professor Raman’s distinguished student, K.R.Ramanathan, initiated some experiments on the scattering of light by water. The experiment was done using sunlight, and the scattered light was seen as a track in the transverse direction, and using a system of filters, the scattered light was examined. The filters were arranged in such a way that when the incident light was passed through one of the two
The Sea Is Blue, Raman Effect Discovers and Raman Effect On The World 1
complementary filters and the scattered light was viewed through the other filter, no track should have been visible at all. Some track however could be observed, and was attributed to a weak fluorescence of the impurity molecules. Ramanathan himself wrote later that it was Professor Raman himself, and none other, who was not satisfied by the explanation based on the fluorescence model and that he (Raman) wondered if the track observed was due to some characteristic molecular scattering. The same effect was observed later in many organic liquids by K.S.Krishnan, another of Raman’s distinguished students.

There was a certain similarity in the explanation Raman had in mind with that of what is known as the Compton Effect. In the winter of 1927, Professor Raman went to Waltair for a short visit; he derived a formula for molecular scattering now known as the Compton-Raman formula.

In January 1928, another associate of Professor Raman, Venkateswaran, observed that in pure glycerin, the scattered light was greenish in color, instead of the usual blue. Moreover, the radiation was strongly polarized. In the last week of January, Professor Raman asked K.S. Krishnan to repeat these experiments under more carefully controlled conditions.

K.S. Krishnan was at that time doing completely theoretical work and Professor Raman advised him that it was not healthy for a man of science to stay out of touch with actual experiments for any significant length of time. Krishnan also reported the same type of findings as Ramanathan did, and Professor Raman personally verified all the observations.

Professor Raman was extremely excited about the findings, since he understood exactly what this just discovered phenomenon was. On 16th February, Raman sent a note to Nature, suggesting that the modified radiation observed in these scattering experiments could be due to certain molecular fluctuations. Yet, however, the phenomenon was not fully understood. On the 27th February, Raman set up an experiment in which he decided to view the track earlier thought to be due to fluorescence using a direct vision spectroscope. The experiment could not be completed that evening, as by the time the experiment was set up, the sun had set. Next morning, February 28th, 1928, when the experiment was done personally by Professor Raman, he found that the track contained not only the incident color but also another one separated by a dark region. This was the very first observation of what is known as the Raman Effect.

An announcement was made to the Associated Press on 29th February (in the leap year) and Professor Raman sent a note to Nature on March 8th announcing his discovery along with a complete explanation.

The Raman Effect, first announced in the Indian Journal of Physics in 1928, was named by the Royal Society of London as “among the best three or four discoveries in experimental physics of the decade.” The discovery not only opened up a new branch of spectroscopy, it has contributed enormously to our knowledge of the structure and dynamics of molecules and crystals. Recently, the Raman Effect has been exploited in the design of masers and lasers, to make available more frequencies than would otherwise be possible. The fact that nearly 10,000 papers have been published so far on Raman Effect and allied phenomena from all over the world speaks for itself of the importance of the discovery.

Raman : A World Class Scientist

Scientists of many countries appreciated the research papers of Raman and his colleagues. The Royal Society, the oldest and the most important science society of England, honoured Raman in 1924 by electing him as its ‘Fellow’ (that is, a member).

The annual session of ‘The British Association for the Cultivation of Science’ was held in the same year in Toronto (Canada). Raman inaugurated the seminar on the scattering of light. R.A. Millikan, the famous American Physicist, who also attended, was full of admiration for Raman. They became fast friends too.

At the Mount Wilson Observatory in California (U.S.A), a telescope of 100-inch width was in use. Those were the times when discoveries in the field of astronomy (study of stars and planets and their movements) filled people with wonder. Raman was always eager to learn new things. He spent a couple of days on Mount Wilson. During the nights he viewed the Nebula (bright or dark patch in the sky caused by distant stars or a cloud of gas or dust) through the telescope and was thrilled.

He went to Russia in 1925 to participate in the two hundredth anniversary of the ‘Russian Academy of Sciences’.

The Raman Effect On The World

Several laboratories in the world, on coming to know of this experiment, repeated such measurements and confirmed the findings. The recognition that followed in terms of the Nobel prize was almost inevitable, despite the fact that Raman was an Indian. The Nobel prize for Physics is given each year at Stockholm, Sweden, on the 10th of December, and the award is announced for that year about a month in advance. The Nobel committee meetings are held in great secrecy and between the time of announcement and the award ceremony, it would be very difficult to manage a journey to Sweden at such a short notice. Raman, however, made the trip, as even before the award was announced, he had already booked 2 tickets on a steamer, for himself and for his wife.

The Raman effect involves an exchange of a quantum of energy between a molecule and the electromagnetic radiation. Molecular energy levels are quantized, and this means that a molecule cannot possess an arbitrary amount of energy. The energy may be due to various reasons, and one may thus speak of the electronic energy, rotational energy or the vibrational energy of the molecule. A molecule may undergo transition from one energy state to another only by absorbing or emitting a discrete amount of energy. Raman Spectroscopy involves the study of such transitions. This is now an extremely specialized branch of spectroscopy and has undergone enormous developments. Raman spectroscopy is rarely done using sunlight as a source.

Now, Laser radiation is employed and it has very many fascinating applications, and the technique is known as the Laser-Raman Spectroscopy.