Published: 17th May 2018
CMS College pays homage to its distinguished alumnus E C G Sudarshan
Former CUSAT vice-chancellor K Babu Joseph said Sudarshan was a philosopher rather than a scientist
Ennackal Chandy George Sudarshan - better known as E C G Sudarshan, the renowned theoretical physicist and an alumnus of CMS College - was given a befitting homage by his alma mater on Friday. The commemoration programme organised by the Department of Physics at the Great Hall turned out to be a gathering of Sudarshan's colleagues, classmates, family members, and admirers.
Delivering the commemorative address, Sudarshan's close associate K Sreenivasa Rao - a former director of the Institute of Mathematical Sciences, Chennai - recalled the human face of the ace physicist who was caring enough to always lend a helping hand to others.
"One such incident was the financial assistance provided to Janakiammal, wife of eminent mathematician Sreenivasa Ramanujan, in association with the Hinduja Group. One day, Sudarshan called me and asked for the whereabouts of Janakiammal, who was in some trouble then, as the Hinduja Group wanted to donate Rs 20,000 and offer her a monthly pension of Rs 1,000 during 1986-87," Rao said.
He said the incident was a turning point in his life with Sudarshan inspiring him to take up more responsibilities at the Institute of Mathematical Sciences.
"That was his characteristic," Rao said. He also remembered the way he was asked to give a lecture at CMS College, when Sudarshan came back to Chennai after attending a programme, in which he was honoured, at CMS College.
"He said the college principal and another person would contact me and I should 'go and do something there.' This was the only direction to me and I was invited shortly to this college," he said.
Rao also gifted a gonfalon written with the bio-data and achievements of E C G Sudarshan to the college, where Sudarshan had completed his intermediate studies during 1946-48.
Former CUSAT vice-chancellor K Babu Joseph said Sudarshan was a philosopher rather than a scientist. According to him, Sudarshan's former students did not do him justice, which was one of the reasons he was denied a Nobel Prize.
"It's a fact that a teacher's achievements are known to the world through his former students. However, his former students, who should have projected Sudarshan's achievements, turned a blind eye towards them," he said.
College principal Roy Sam Daniel presided over the function while Physics Department head Rajagopal welcomed the gathering.