Indian scientists are elated at Venkatraman Ramakrishnan winning the Nobel Prize in chemistry and want him to tour the country to inspire young students towards studying science.
"It is a wonderful piece of news," said Thirumalachari Ramasami, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology. Ramasami, himself a renowned scientist, said Ramakrishnan's achievement needs to be showcased across the country to inspire the youth to take up science.
"It is a great day for Indian science," said Samir Brahmachari, director general of Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, pointing out that Ramakrishnan was a product of the Indian education system of the 1970s, when resources were scarce in the country.
"We all are very delighted," said M Vijayan, president of the Indian National Science Academy. Ramasami reminisced about the days when Ramakrishnan had visited Chennai in 2001 to deliver the G N Ramachandran lecture. He had impressed the scientific community who believed that he was 'high quality material', Ramasami said.
"He is more like a guy next door and more closer to home," the DST Secretary said, adding that it was notable that the Nobel Prize came at a relatively young age. "We can use his goodwill in the country to attract more students to science," Ramasami said.
Better known as Venky among his friends, Professor Venkatraman Ramakrishnana, an India-born US scientist, won this year's Nobel Prize for Chemistry jointly with Thomas E Steitz (United States) and Ada E Yonath (Israel).