Iconic agricultural scientist and father India's 'Green Revolution', MS Swaminathan passes away in Chennai
M S Swaminathan passed away: India mourns the loss of one of its most eminent scientists, Professor Monkombu Sambasivan Swaminathan, who passed away on Thursday (September 28, 2023) in Chennai at the age of 98. Fondly known as the "Father of the Green Revolution in India," Dr. Swaminathan's pioneering work in agriculture and his dedication to improving food security have left an indelible mark on the nation's history.
Dr. Swaminathan's lifelong commitment to agriculture and sustainable farming practices revolutionised the way India produced and consumed food. His research and advocacy played a pivotal role in transforming India from a food-deficient nation to one that not only meets its food requirements but also contributes significantly to global food production.
Born on August 7, 1925, in Kumbakonam, Tamil Nadu, Dr. Swaminathan's journey began as a geneticist.
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Deeply saddened by the demise of Dr. MS Swaminathan Ji. At a very critical period in our nation’s history, his groundbreaking work in agriculture transformed the lives of millions and ensured food security for our nation. pic.twitter.com/BjLxHtAjC4
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) September 28, 2023
He earned his doctorate in genetics from the University of Cambridge, and from there, his career took a trajectory that would eventually make him a household name in India and beyond.
कृषि एवं किसान कल्याण मंत्रालय हरित क्रांति के जनक डॉ. एमएस स्वामीनाथन (98) को भावपूर्ण श्रद्धांजलि अर्पित करता है
7 अगस्त 1925 को तमिलनाडु के कुम्भकोणम में जन्मे कृषि वैज्ञानिक डॉ. एमएस स्वामीनाथन को 'फादर ऑफ ग्रीन रेवोल्यूशन इन इंडिया' के नाम से जाना जाता है।#MSSwaminathan pic.twitter.com/hw6WaoauJH
— Agriculture INDIA (@AgriGoI) September 28, 2023
His groundbreaking work in developing high-yielding varieties of wheat and rice, particularly during the 1960s and 1970s, is considered the cornerstone of the Green Revolution in India.
The demise of Dr M S Swaminathan, internationally renowned agricultural scientist, saddens me no end. A visionary who worked endlessly to achieve food security, he was rightly called the Father of Green Revolution that ensured our country’s self-reliance in food grains. He…
— President of India (@rashtrapatibhvn) September 28, 2023
By introducing these high-yielding crop varieties, he helped India overcome food scarcity and significantly increase agricultural productivity.
This accomplishment not only ensured food security but also played a role in India's economic growth.
Dr. Swaminathan's contributions extended beyond the laboratory.
He was a tireless advocate for farmers' rights, sustainable agriculture, and rural development.
His commitment to social justice led him to emphasise the importance of providing access to technology and knowledge to small and marginal farmers.
In addition to his scientific work, he served as a member of the Indian Parliament and held various key positions, including director general of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR).
He was also the first World Food Prize laureate from India, receiving the prestigious award in 1987.
Following this honour, he established the MS Swaminathan Research Foundation in Chennai, an institution dedicated to furthering his vision of sustainable agriculture and rural development.
The passing of Dr. MS Swaminathan leaves a void in India's scientific community, but his legacy lives on in the millions of farmers who continue to benefit from his research and vision.
His work transcended scientific boundaries and touched the lives of countless people, making him a true icon in the fields of agriculture and food security.
As the nation pays tribute to this great scientist, his work will continue to inspire future generations to strive for excellence and contribute to the betterment of society.
Funeral arrangements for Dr. Swaminathan are being made in Chennai, where he will be laid to rest with full honours.
India has lost a visionary scientist, but his impact on agriculture and food security will endure as a testament to his dedication, intellect, and unwavering commitment to the nation.
What PM said about MS Swaminathan
"Deeply saddened by the demise of Dr MS Swaminathan Ji. At a very critical period in our nation's history, his groundbreaking work in agriculture transformed the lives of millions and ensured food security for our nation," Modi said in a post on X (formerly Twitter).
The prime minister further said,"Beyond his revolutionary contributions to agriculture, Dr. Swaminathan was a powerhouse of innovation and a nurturing mentor to many. His unwavering commitment to research and mentorship has left an indelible mark on countless scientists and innovators."