Fellows Elected for 2024

Dr. Harbans Singh Bariana (b 07 Sep, 1960) Adjunct Professor, School of Science, Western Sydney University, Australia

Dr. Harbans Singh Bariana is globally recognized for his contributions in wheat rust resistance and its extension into modern molecular biology. He has made significant contributions in the cutting-edge domain of plant-pathogen interface. He led the identification of more than 20 rust-resistant genes and has cloned more than 5 of these. Dr. Bariana’s work is published in most reputed scientific journals and cited widely.

Dr. Bijay Kumar Behera (b 18 Apr, 1969) Dean, College of Fisheries, Rani Lakshmi Bai Central Agricultural University, Jhansi, U.P.

Dr. Bijay Kumar Behera identified an emerging fish pathogen, tilapia lake virus for the first time in India and developed one step PCR diagnostic kit. He developed induced breeding technology of Osteobrama belangeri, cage culture technology for Ompok bimaculatus and characterized the genetic stock of three Indian major carps from different major rivers of India using Mitochondrial genes. His contribution includes development of low cost tissue embedding machine for histopathological studies; identification of 92 bioremediating and 242 probiotic bacteria; 89 Bacteriophage, and 139 AMR genes in River Ganga and Yamuna using metagenomics. He has also characterized five highly salt tolerant marine bacteria and identified 90 salt stress tolerant genes from the transcriptome of halotolerant bacterium. He developed ultrasensitive colorimetric method for detection of murine norovirus using nanozyme aptasensor and nanobiosensor for detection of Metalloides in water.

Dr. Sanjib Kumar Behera (b 19 Apr, 1976) Head, Division of Soil Chemistry and Fertility, ICARIndian Institute of Soil Science, Bhopal, M.P.

Dr. Sanjib Kumar Behera made significant contributions in the areas of micro- and secondary nutrient fertility delineation, plant nutrition and nutrient management for restoration of soil health. He played a critical role in developing micro- and secondary nutrients status/deficiency maps using geographical techniques, and specified nutrient management zones for different regions. He also standardized optimum soil and leaf nutrient concentrations under oil palm plantations using DRIS and other novel techniques for efficient nutrient management strategies in oil palm. The research carried out by Dr. Behera has been widely adopted by the farmers and other stakeholders. The e-Atlas developed by his team showing block-level micro- and secondary nutrient status of 640 districts is of immense use to fertilizer industry and policy makers to guide judicious application of fertilizers.

Prof. Chandranath Chatterjee (b 28 Nov, 1969) Professor, Department of Agricultural and Food Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur, West Medinipur, W.B.

Prof. Chandranath Chatterjee has made significant contribution in the field of flood inundation modeling, hazard and risk assessment including the impact of climate change with a specific focus on development of methodologies to address data scarcity issues in the developing countries. He has developed real time flood forecasting techniques using satellite-based rainfall products and integration of artificial intelligence tools with physically based models for reliable river flow forecasting and contributed significantly in the development of image based analytics using unmanned aerial vehicle for crop conditions’ monitoring. He has received several awards and is a fellow of Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Germany.

Dr. Mridula Devi (b 15 Jul, 1970) Director, ICAR-Central Institute for Women in Agriculture, Bhubaneswar, Odisha

Dr. Mridula Devi made significant contribution in the area of food fortification, and value addition to foods for maximizing nutritional benefits. She worked on value addition to food grains ranging from staple cereals to nutri-cereals for development of quick cooking products, convenience foods, ready to eat, ready to cook nutritious foods; sattu (a traditional food), and antioxidant-rich products. Many technologies developed by her have been patented. More than ten technologies developed by her have been licensed and commercialized to entrepreneurs and industries. She is a recipient of ICAR Team Research Award.

Dr. Dnyaneshwar Madhukar Firake (b 09 May, 1983) Senior Scientist (Agricultural Entomology), ICAR Directorate of Floricultural Research, Pune, Maharashtra

Dr. Dnyaneshwar M. Firake has contributed significantly to the field of entomology and pest management in Northeast India. He developed and popularized a low-cost fruit fly trapping kit/package; characterized many highly invasive pests, new crop pests and bioagents, and contributed to the development and release of 1 each of rice and soybean, and 4 of guava varieties. He identified a brinjal genotype resistant to shoot and fruit borer and reported its antixenosis mechanism and associated compounds and genes. A novel biocontrol product (Hypocard), an eco-friendly and cheap technique for reducing bird damage, and a technique for rapid sex differentiation in parasitoid wasps were also developed by him. He contributed to the sequencing of India’s first mitogenome, and developed insect DNA bar codes and PCRbased tests for pest diagnosis.

Dr. Girish Kumar Jha (b 29 Dec, 1972) Head, Division of Agricultural Bioinformatics, ICAR- Indian Agricultural Statistics Research Institute, New Delhi

Dr. Girish Jha has developed different variants of neutral network model for agricultural price forecasting and for modelling pest pollution dynamics. He exploited the potential of particle swarm optimization and empirical mode decomposition techniques for improving the price prediction ability of neutral network model. He has published several packages of machine learning based time series methodologies at the comprehensive R archive network. He constructed a non-linear principal component based fuzzy clustering based on both qualitative and quantitative traits for genotypes grouping. He also contributed significantly to the development of sampling methodology for estimation of production as well as losses of different commodities and has quantified economic incentives by reflecting environmental benefits for sustainable pulse production in India, Using data analytics on energy-use pattern and oilseeds situation in Indian agriculture, he projected demand supply scenario of energy and edible oils in the country.

Dr. Puja Khare (b 03 Oct, 1973) Principal Scientist, Crop Production and Protection Division, CSIR-Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants, Lucknow, U.P.

Dr. Puja Khare made significant contribution towards the safe and sustainable cultivation of medicinal and aromatic plants. She evolved innovative technologies for recycling of crop residues as biochar and distillery wastes. She standardized mechanisms of metal and pesticide immobilization, and perfected the technologies for reclamation of acidic mine-affected soils. She developed a soil enhancer named CIM-Mridashakhi. Her scientific contributions have been widely recognized by professional societies/academies and other stakeholders.

Dr. S.L. Krishnamurthy (b 16 Jun, 1980) Senior Scientist (Plant Breeding), Department of Plant Breeding, ICAR-Indian Institute of Rice Research, Rajendranagar, Hyderabad, Telangana

Dr. S. L. Krishnamurthy has contributed immensely to the yield improvement of rice in saline areas by developing and releasing salt tolerant varieties such as CSR 46, CSR 49, CSR 52, CSR 60, CSR 66 and CSR 76 using conventional and molecular breeding approaches. He has developed and registered genetic stocks for salt tolerance at seedling stage/reproductive stage. He has also identified the Novel QTLs qGY-2 and qSSIGY-6 for reproductive stage salinity tolerance, identified 22 Marker trait associations (MTAs) through genome wide association studies for salinity tolerance at reproductive stage. The donors and QTLS/MTAs are being used in breeding programme to develop new salt tolerant rice varieties. He made significant contribution in the establishment of the passport data of 9000 rice accessions for 30 qualitative and quantitative traits for further breeding programme.

Dr. Rajesh Kumar (b 25 Feb, 1974) Project Coordinator, All India Coordinated Research Project on Vegetable Crops, ICAR-IIVR, Shahanshahpur, Varanasi, U.P.

Dr. Rajesh Kumar has been instrumental in biotechnological and classical breeding of chilli, tomato and peas and has developed 14 varieties, including 6 each in tomato and chilli and 2 in garden peas. Seven of these varieties are in the breeder seed production chain and 9 in the TL seed chain. Two of these have been licensed to seed companies. He has developed 5 genetic stocks of tomato with higher TSS, Lycopene and carotenoid contents and a jointless mutant and tomato leaf curl virus disease resistant line. Kashi Sinduri was the first variety in paprika group of chilli released and notified in India which has industrial applications. His contribution in developing CMS-based chilli hybrids, resistant to pepper leaf curl virus, is noteworthy.

Dr. Sunil Kumar (b 22 Jul, 1968) Director, ICAR-Indian Institute of Farming Systems Research, Modipuram, Meerut, U.P.

Dr. Sunil Kumar contributed significantly in the development and extensive validation of five livestock-based IFS models for different farming situations, with the concept of higher income, sustained livelihood, and efficient use of energy and other local resources that helped reduce risks and vulnerabilities in Bundelkhand region. He developed Aonla and Guava-based hortipasture systems for ecological restoration of degraded lands along with suitable soil moisture conservation measures. The technology is being upscaled through state line departments as an integral part of State Fodder Plans in different states. He standardized the technology of spineless cactus as a non-conventional fodder in the degraded lands, perfected its production package for use as a supplementary feed during lean periods. His climate resilient food-forage production models are being upscaled extensively through KVKs. Various eco-friendly and cost-effective technologies developed by him have found wider adoption by dairy farmers in different states.

Dr. Sheshu Madhav Maganti (b 24 Aug, 1972) Director, ICAR-Central Tobacco Research Institute, Rajahmundry, A.P.

Dr. Sheshu Madhav Maganti contributed significantly to the area of application of biotechnological tools in molecular breeding for rice improvement. He cloned rice blast resistance genes Pi54 and Pi68(t), and mapped a BLB resistance gene Xa33, which are extensively used globally in marker assisted improvement of rice. He developed and released six rice varieties and improved varieties of IR64 and BPT5204 with disease resistance. He has identified novel genetic resources for rice blast, sheath blight, strong culm, high temperature stress tolerance. He has used transgenic approach to demonstrate the potential of host derived silencing of pest genes through RNAi for management of yellow stem borer (YSB) in rice. He has sequenced the genomes of YSB and Rhizoctonia solani and identified key genes for infestation, pathogenicity and miRNAs involved in sheath blight disease development. The nuclear, chloroplast and mitochondrial SSR markers in tobacco developed by him are widely used by tobacco researchers.

Prof. Yashpal Singh Malik (b 14 Oct, 1973) Dean, College of Animal Biotechnology, Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences, University, Ludhiana, Punjab

Prof. Yashpal Singh Malik has contributed significantly to the understanding of animal virus detection, characterization and evolution. Using synthetic biology approach, he developed a kit for rotavirus detection. His pioneering work includes authentic automatic milk recording using artificial intelligence and internet-of-things. He is the chairman for Picobirna virus family group of World Health Organization.

Dr. M.R. Manikantan (b 15 Jun, 1969) Principal Scientist, PB&PHT Division, ICAR-Central Plantation Crops Research Institute, Kasaragod, Kerala

Dr. M.R. Manikantan has contributed significantly in the field of agricultural process engineering. He has developed numerous commercially viable machinery and protocols for processing of food products. The nanocomposite film for food packaging, drying kinetics of food grains and determination of their textural and engineering properties, and extrusion and organoleptic characteristics of oilseeds, horticultural crops, course cereals, millets and fish are major research outcomes of Dr. Manikantan. He has licensed/commercialized 23 technologies

Dr. Bimlesh Mann (b 19 Jun, 1963) Assistant Director General, Agricultural Education Division, Indian Council of Agricultural Sciences, New Delhi

Dr. Bimlesh Mann has developed nano-encapsulated functional food ingredients of curcumin, clove oil, minerals and bioactive peptides using milk proteins and granted patents for these products/ processes. She has also developed and commercialized paper based strips for detection of neutralizers, added urea, hydrogen peroxide, glucose, sucrose and malto-dextrin in milk.

Dr. Rajiv Arvind Marathe (b 28 Nov, 1965) Director, ICAR-National Research Centre on Pomegranate, Solapur, Maharashtra

Dr. Rajiv Arvind Marathe made valuable contribution in the geo-referenced soil resource mapping and land use planning in the tribal areas of Mizoram, Amravati and Gadchiroli districts of Maharashtra and 27 Aspirational Districts of India. He developed much desired soil suitability criteria, drainage plans, irrigation schedules, and organic production protocols for fruit crops, especially pomegranate and citrus. He standardized water and nutrient management schedules for nurseries, orchards and high density plantations, and developed new plantation methods for marginal lands, manure application as slurry and designed a new lateral geometry for drip irrigation. Disseminations of these impactful technologies and their extensive adoption by the farmers led to significant enhancement in productivity.

Dr. Prabina Kumar Meher (b 08 Jun, 1982) Senior Scientist, ICAR-Indian Agricultural Statistics Research Institute, New Delhi

Dr. Prabina Kumar Meher has made substantial contributions to computational genetics and genomics over the last ten years. He has created AI-based computational methods for solving computational biology problems in agriculture and related fields. He has used the machine learning algorithms to predict antimicrobial peptides, nitrogen fixation proteins, heat shock proteins, miRNA and mRNA localization, circadian genes, gigantean proteins, insecticide resistant genes, herbicide resistant genes, DNA binding proteins, abiotic stress-responsive non-coding RNAs, and splice sites with higher accuracy. He has developed 24 online prediction tools based on AI-based algorithms that are freely available to the user community.

Dr. Gyan Prakash Mishra (b 03 Mar, 1978) Head, Division of Seed Science and Technology, ICAR-Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi

Dr. Gyan Prakash Mishra made significant contributions in the area of crop improvement of pulses and has developed four lentil and one mung bean varieties which are in breeder seed chain. He developed and commercialized an antioxidant rich microgreens kit named ‘TinyFields’. He has identified and registered six unique germplasm of lentil for multi-flowering, extended funiculus, bold seed and early maturity and a multi-flowering genotype in garden pea. He has contributed to the identification of a 5-methylcytosine DNA glycosylase/lyase in rice, which demethylates the retrotransposon Tos17 and promotes its transposition. He has also developed transgenic lines viz., defensin-peanut (for leaf-spots), mtlD- and atDREB1A-peanut (for drought & salinity tolerance), CP&NC protein- peanut (for virus) and Bt-potato (for tuber-moth).

Dr. Narayana H. Mohan (b 21 May, 1975) Principal Scientist, ICAR-National Research Centre on Pig, Rani, Guwahati, Assam

Dr. Narayana H. Mohan has developed a microarray for screening of animals for thermo-tolerance and contributed towards complete genome sequencing of four breeds of pigs, physical characterization and value addition to pig hair fiber, devices for animal and meat transport and development of pregnancy diagnostic test for pigs. Dr. Mohan has been granted three patents and two copyrights.

Dr. Ashok Kumar Mohanty (b 22 Jun, 1966) Director, ICAR-Central Institute for Research on Cattle, Meerut, U.P.

Dr. Ashok Kumar Mohanty has developed a buffalo mammary epithelial cell line which has been registered. He has also developed and commercialized lumpy skin disease vaccine, microfluidics device to enrich motile bovine spermatozoa (patent), cow side test for bovine pregnancy, recombinant clones of Buffalo pregnancy associated glycoproteins (BuPAG) and Buffalo interferon Tau. He designed aptamers to detect BuPAG in serum and Beta-casomorphin 7 in urine.

Dr. Tapan Kumar Mondal (b 03 Jan, 1968) Principal Research Scientist, ICAR-National Institute for Plant Biotechnology, IARI Campus, New Delhi

Dr. Tapan Kumar Mondal has identified novel QTLs in rice for salinity tolerance and anaerobic germination and has registered three elite rice genotypes for salinity tolerance and aroma. He has also reported a naturally occurring triploid species of Oryza i.e. Oryza coarctata with a potential for developing C4 rice and sequenced its genome. He also identified novel noncoding RNA based SSR markers (miRNA-SSRs) for genetic analysis. . He has also developed a R package to calculate the tissue specific gene expression, a software for calculating the miRNA and t-RNA derived non-coding RNA and 4 databases. Genetic and genomic resources and software developed are well used in genetic improvement of rice.

Dr. Suresh Kumar Paramasivam (b 23 May, 1978) Principal Scientist, ICAR-National Research Centre for Banana, Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu

Dr. P. Suresh Kumar has developed 22 technologies and commercialized these to 73 entrepreneurs. He was an active team member in developing the sea transportation protocol of banana, which boosted the export of both commercial and traditional banana varieties. He developed functional foods from overripe banana using foam mat drying technology, which is well -adopted by the bakery industry. Low glycemic index foods from banana have been developed by him using an innovative protocol of modification of starch.

Dr. Shiv Om Prasher (b 12 Jan, 1955) Distinguished James McGill Professor, Department of Bioresource Engineering, Macdonald Campus of McGill University, Canada

Dr. Shiv Om Prasher has made significant contributions in the field of Soil and Water Engineering. He has been working on making farming activities more resilient under changing climate conditions by determining beneficial practices that can reduce non-point source pollution from conventional and emerging endocrine-disruptive contaminants, such as hormones, antibiotics and pesticides. Dr. Prasher has worked on many projects in India and facilitates Indian students and researchers for quality education in overseas universities and institutions. He has been recognized by scientific societies of many countries for his scientific contributions.

Dr. Aditya Pratap (b 18 Oct, 1976) Project Coordinator, AICRP on Kharif Pulses, ICAR-Indian Institute of Pulses Research, Kanpur 208024, U.P.

Dr. Aditya Pratap has made significant contributions for genetic improvement of pulses and other field crops. He has developed sixteen superior varieties including nine of mung bean, three each of chickpea and rapeseed-mustard, and one of facultative winter wheat. He developed world’s first extra early mung bean variety ‘Virat’ which accounts for 60% of the breeder seed indent of mung bean which is projected to cover >1.5 million ha area. He led the gene pyramiding network in chickpea for introgression of multiple stress resistance through molecular breeding. He also developed extra early mung bean donors and contributed to the identification of photoperiod/ thermo-tolerant Vigna genotypes; development of android based bilingual smartphone application tool “Mung Advisor”; establishment of useful marker-trait associations in mung bean; molecular and morphological characterization of wild Vigna, and deployment of doubled haploidy in wheat and triticale for development of improved breeding lines.

Dr. Thangavelu Raman (b 01 Jun, 1967) Principal Scientist, ICAR-National Research Centre for Banana, Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu

Dr. Thangavelu Raman identified germplasms/accessions resistant to FocR1 and Tropical Race 4 (TR4) and genotypes resistant to leaf spot disease of bananas. He developed diagnostics specific to Indian Foc races such as Race 1, Race 4, and Tropical Race 4 of India. Rapid LAMP diagnostics were developed for leaf spot pathogens. An effective consortium of bioagents has been developed for the management of Fusarium wilt in the field. He also developed a shipment protocol for the export of bananas through the sea and used it successfully to export the variety Grand Nain to the Middle East, and European countries for which he was awarded the CII Cold Chain Award.

Dr. Amalraj Ramesh Sundar (b 18 Dec, 1966) Principal Scientist, Division of Crop Protection, ICAR-Sugarcane Breeding Institute, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu

Dr. Amalraj Ramesh Sunder has made an outstanding contribution in deciphering disease resistance in sugarcane. He has worked extensively in decoding the molecular basis of sugarcanepathogen interactions involving Colletotrichum falcatum and Sporisorium scitamineum. His work on the identification of resistance inducers/PAMPs/effectors and establishing their role in inducing systemic acquired resistance (SAR) in sugarcane is well recognized. He has established a reference stalk proteome of sugarcane for the first time in the world. He was also involved in the development of commercial products such as sugarcane sett treatment device (STD) and soil moisture indicator (SM) for which he received National Water Award in 2019 from the Ministry of Jal Shakti, GOI. He has been granted 4 Indian design patents (SMI) and 1 product patent (STD).

Dr. Sanjay Singh Rathore (b 15 Dec, 1976) Principal Scientist, Division of Agronomy, ICARIndian Agricultural Research Institute, Pusa, New Delhi

Dr. Sanjay Singh Rathore developed promising integrated farming system (IFS) models and contributed significantly towards sustainable crop intensification for jhum areas in NEH region. His work on forage resource management ensured year-round green fodder cultivation in this region. He also developed maize-based crop diversification and diversified agri-horticultural systems for higher productivity and profitability with lesser environmental footprint. He played an active role in development and evaluation of three important varieties of Indian mustard viz., PM 30, PM 31 and PM 33, and developed agronomy of oilseed-based cropping systems involving efficient water management (especially drip laterals optimization), land configuration, use of nano-fertilizers, and other resource conservation technologies under both rainfed and irrigated ecosystems.

Dr. Uttam Kumar Sarkar (b 07 Feb, 1963) Director, ICAR-National Bureau of Fish Genetic Resources, Dilkusha, Lucknow, U.P.

Dr. Uttam Kumar Sarkar developed a framework for assessment of ecosystem and species vulnerability in the context of climate change for implementation of climate-smart adaptation strategies. He made significant contributions in exploring, evaluating and characterizing the spatio-temporal pattern of fish biodiversity, biological traits of diversified fishes of the inland open waters. He discovered new fish germplasm, which possess unique biological attributes and developed Captive breeding (7 spp.), larval rearing protocols (7 spp.) and gene banking (5 spp.) of prioritized food fishes. He made innovations for the assessment and understanding of fish assemblages, spatial diversity patterns and habitat complexity of more than 30 Indian reservoirs and 50 wetlands covering different geoclimatic zones for developing region-specific management practices.

Prof. Birinchi Kumar Sarma (b 11 Sep, 1972) Professor, Department of Mycology and Plant Pathology, Institute of Agricultural Sciences, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, U.P.

Prof. Birinchi Kumar Sarma established that soil salinity induces a lifestyle shift in Fusarium spp. from hemibiotrophic to necrotrophic stage very rapidly, and intermittent drought weakens the WRKY transcription factor-mediated defense signaling in rice making the plants more vulnerable to the blast pathogen Magnaporthe oryzae. He developed microbes-based technologies and identified potential microbial strains for managing legume diseases in altered saline soils. The technologies, delivered through the seed encapsulation method, have helped farmers reduce the synthetic fertilizers and fungicides load in crops with enhanced productivity. Using global-level genomics, he demonstrated that soil types could differentially impact horizontal gene transfer in legume occupant soil bacteria. He also showed that the gene MtRopGEF2 is required for root hair development that affects legume-microbe symbiosis.

Dr. Rakesh Singh (b 11 Mar, 1971) Head, Division of Genomic Resources, ICAR-National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources, New Delhi

Dr. Rakesh Singh significantly contributed to the molecular characterization and DNA fingerprinting protocol of 14 horticultural crops. He has developed genomic library for mango and guava. He has developed novel genomic SSR and ESTSSR markers for giloi and kalmegh. He was instrumental in developing novel genomic SSR and hypervariable SSR markers for guava and mango through whole genome sequencing. He has also developed QTL maps in mango for fruit colour and firmness.

Dr. Mulpuri Sujatha (b 19 Sep, 1961) Former Principal Scientist, ICAR-Indian Institute of Oilseeds Research, Rajendranagar, Hyderabad, A.P.

Dr. Sujatha Mulpuri has made immense contribution in prebreeding, genetic enhancement and development of stable male sterile lines in important oilseed crops such as safflower, sunflower and niger for exploitation in hybrid development programmes. She has optimized tissue culture and genetic transformation protocols in oil seeds, and developed transgenic lines of castor for resistance to foliage feeders and sunflower for resistance to necrosis disease. She has mapped QTLs/MTAs for resistance to downy mildew and powdery mildew, fertility restoration in sunflower, and non-toxicity in jatropha, and contributed in the identification of candidate genes for capsule wall photosynthesis and in vitro recalcitrance in castor, and resistance to powdery mildew in wild Helianthus species. .

Prof. P.V. Vara Prasad (b 20 Jul, 1970) Distinguished Professor, College of Agriculture, Kansas State University, Kansas, USA

Prof. P.V. Vara Prasad has made outstanding contributions to the area of understanding the responses of food grain crops to changing environments and developing crop management strategies. He has quantified impacts of abiotic stresses particularly drought, high temperature stress, and elevated carbon dioxide on grain crops. He has devised physiological methods and screened germplasm collections for tolerance to drought and/or high temperature stresses. His also used crop simulation models to quantify impact of climate change, adaptation and mitigation strategies. He has developed and extended sustainable crop production practices for improving resource use efficiency and productivity of grain crops. Dr. Vara Prasad has contributed to the human resource development by mentoring and training several Indian students and scientists in his laboratory.

Dr. Takashi Yamano (b 10 May, 1967) Principal Economist, Asian Development Bank, Bangladesh

Dr. Takashi Yamano has established and led Rice Monitoring Survey: South Asia (RMS-SA) and significantly contributed to the Stress -Tolerant Rice for Africa and South Asia (STRASA). Both projects have contributed towards Indian government’s efforts to rapidly take the stress tolerant rice varieties to farmers in eastern India through NFSM & BGREI projects.