The present festschrift on Professor Ashok Parthasarathi, a physicist, electronics engineer, S&T policy researcher and S&T policy maker, is a tribute to a great visionary and true scientist from his colleagues, associates, students and professional friends from academia, public policy making, practitioners and the media.
The volume recollects many interesting facets of the illustrious career of Professor Parthasarathi. His commitment to the promotion of S&T and their application to the development of security of the nation have been acknowledged by one and all and has led him to hold important positions in the Government of India?former Secretary in the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research, the Department of Electronics and the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy. What puts him in a unique category is the fact that he was, for almost a decade, S&T Adviser to late Prime Minister Mrs Indira Gandhi, working from the Prime Minister?s Secretariat on a 24x7 basis. That was a position no one else has held either before him or after him. He built 14 public sector companies in electronics making hi-tech electronic products ranging from microchips to optic fibre and satellite-based communication systems. Professor Parthasarathi?s contribution to the development of the defence electronic sector has been monumental as has been his contribution to solar electric systems. His seminal work to build up the Centre for Studies in Science Policy at the Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi?the only such centre in South Asia?was path breaking in establishing teaching and research capacity in the country in this key area.
This festschrift is a collection of comprehensive reminiscences by a range of persons and documents Professor Ashok Parthasarathi?s contributions in diverse fields over almost half a century, particularly in formulating policies in S&T and getting them implemented for meeting the needs of the development and security of the nation. At the same time, the volume is highly relevant for both policy researchers and policymakers.