Indian Scientist Jagdish Chandra Bose Biography

Jagadish Chandra Bose was an Indian physicist considered as the father of Bengali science fiction and was the first Indian to get a US patent. Though Jagadish Chandra Bose worked in other fields of science, he is best known for his research into the life of plants.

Jagadish Chandra Bose was a famous biologist, botanist, physicist and archaeologist. Jagadish Chandra Bose was also a writer of science fictions. He discovered that plants, too can feel in their own way. Jagadish Chandra Bose is considered as the `Father of Radio Science`.

His major achievement was to demonstrate the similarity of responses to stimulation between the living and the non-living as well as the fundamental similarity of responses in plant and animal tissues.

Early Life of Jagadish Chandra Bose

Jagadish Chandra Bose was born on the 30th of November, 1858 in Mymensingh now in Bangladesh. His father Bhagawan Chandra Bose was the Deputy Magistrate of Faridpur and also a respected leader of Brahma Samaj.

As Bhagaban Chandra Bose believed that before studying English one must know his or her mother tongue, Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose was admitted to a vernacular school at the early stage of his education.

Then after he went to Kolkata to began a new chapter in his life at the very tender age of nine. At Kolkata he joined the Hare School in 1869 and then St. Xavier`s school. He was admitted to St. Xavier`s College to study B.A. It was father Eugene Lafont of that college who inspired Jagadish Chandra Bose in the study of natural science of Physics.

Jagadish Chandra Bose went to England for studying medicine at London University after receiving his B.A in science from University of Calcutta in 1879. But he repeatedly fell ill. So he had to discontinue the course.
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Through the recommendation of Ananda Mohan Bose, his brother-in-law, he then studied Natural Science in Christ Church College, Cambridge. He received the natural science Tripos from Cambridge. He passed the Bachelor of Science Examination of London University also.

Personal Life of Jagadish Chandra Bose

In 1887, Jagadish Chandra Bose got married to Abala. She was the daughter of Brahmo reformer Durga Mohan Das. Earlier, Abala was denied admission to Calcutta Medical College as female students were not accepted in the college then.

She went to Chennai in 1882 on Bengal government scholarship to study medicine but had to give up because of ill health. Abala Bose was a social worker well-known for her efforts in the field of women`s education and for her contribution towards the poor condition of widows.

Career of Jagadish Chandra Bose

Jagadish Chandra Bose was back in India. He joined as the professor of Physics of the Presidency College, Kolkata. At that time, the Indian teachers in the college were paid one third of what the British teachers were paid. So Jagadish Chandra Bose refused his salary but worked for three years. He could not even get the scientific instruments that were required for research. This did not continue for long.

Jagdish Chandra Bose was acknowledged and given the full salary. His was an alert mind, always on the look out for new ideas. To widen his knowledge and discover new things, he wanted to do research. Jagadish Chandra Bose had no laboratory and he did not have the instruments. Even the college did not have a suitable laboratory. He had to perform his researches in a small 24 square foot room.

Sister Nivedita writes, “I was horrified to find the way in which a great worker could be subjected to continuous annoyance and petty difficulties. The college routine was made as arduous as possible for him; so that he could not have the time he needed for investigation.” During the British Period nobody was expected to be favoured with a research laboratory or research grants. Bose confronted the circumstances and dominated over them.

Researches of Jagadish Chandra Bose

The first remarkable aspect of Jagadish Chandra Bose`s microwave research was that he reduced the waves to the millimetre level about 5 mm wavelength. That was within a few octaves of visible light. He knew that long waves were advantageous because of their great penetrative power but realised their disadvantages for studying the light like-properties of those electric waves.

One year after Nikola Tesla made the first public demonstration of radio communication in 1893; Jagadish Chandra Bose ignited gunpowder and rang a bell at a distance using microwaves in wavelength in milimetre of range. This was held in a public demonstration in the Town Hall of Calcutta in November 1894, in the presence of Sir William Mackenzie, the Lieutenant Governor.
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Jagadish Chandra Bose is also considered as the inventor of wireless telegraphy. Bose was the first in the world to fabricate and demonstrate in public this. Next contribution of Jagadish Chandra Bose to science was in plant physiology. His various experiments showed that plants grow faster in pleasant music and its growth delayed in noise or harsh sound.

In May 1895, his first scientific paper `On polarisation of electric rays by double-refracting crystals` was communicated to the Asiatic Society of Bengal. In October 1895, his second paper was communicated to the Royal Society of London by Lord Rayleigh.
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Further, in December 1895, published Jagadish Chandra Bose`s paper, `On a new electro-polariscope` was published by the London journal the Electrician. In 1896, Bose wrote `Niruddesher Kahini` in 1896.

It was the first major work in Bengali Science Fiction. Jagadish Chandra Bose was not in favour of patenting his invention. The Chairman of the Board of Governors of IIT Delhi Dr V S Ramamurthy stressed the attitude of Bose towards patents at a seminar. He was the first Indian to get a US Patent in 1904.

Awards for Jagadish Chandra Bose

Jagadish Chandra Bose was honoured with `Knighthood` by British governance in the year 1916. He was also honoured with the fellowship of the Royal Society in 1920 and has been the member of the Vienna Academy of Science. Bose has been the founding fellow of the National Institute of Sciences of India now known as the Indian National Science Academy.

The Jagadish Bose National Science Talent Search Institute scholarship programme was started in West Bengal to honour the memory of Jagadish Chandra Bose`s birth anniversary in 1958.

Till the very end of his life Jagadish Chandra Bose was busy with his numerous researches. He died in November 1937. His place in the history has now been re-evaluated. He is now credited with the invention of the first wireless detection device and electromagnetic waves. Jagadish Chandra Bose is considered as forerunner in the field of biophysics.

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