About BPR

B. P. Radhakrishna (BPR)

Chronology of B.P. Radhakrishna's Life

30 April 1918   Born as the third son of Smt Venkamma and Sri B. Puttaiah in Bangalore
1937               Graduated in B.Sc. (Hons) securing first class and a Gold Medal
                      Joined Mysore Geology Department as Field Assistant
11 May 1944    Marraige with Subhadramma
1949               Nanna Thande - biographical account of his father in Kannada released
1954               Awarded PhD degree from Mysore University
1956               Elected Fellow of the Indian Academy of Sciences
1958               Formation of the Geological Society of India
1965               Appointed as Director of the Department of Mines and Geology
1966               Started the Chitradurga Copper Company
1967               Appointed as Chairman Mysore Minerals Limited
1971               Recepient of the National Mineral Award
                      Death of his wife Smt Subhadramma
1972               Elected Fellow of the National Academy
1974               Relinquished from the office as Director of Mines and Geology
                      Elected Chairman and Managing Director Chitradurga Copper Company
                      Received Rajyotsava Award for service rendered to the Karnataka State
1975               To London to attend a conference at University of Leicester
                      Appointed advisor to Government of Karnataka Groundwater Resources
1976               Appointed Chairman and Managing Director of Karnataka Copper Consortium
1977               To North Carolina University at Chappel Hill to attend the Seminar on
                      Geology of Southeast Asia
1979               Retired from all active government service
1984               New mineral from KGF named by Russian scientists as Radhakrishnaite
1985               Biography of BGL Swamy released
1986               Elected Honorary Fellow of the Geological Society of London
1987               Geological Society gets a new office in Basappa Layout
1988               Biography on C.V. Raman in Kannada released
1991               Awarded Padma Shri by the Government of India
1992               Elected President of the Geological Society of India
1994               Textbook on Geology of Karnataka released
                      Volcanism - 75th birthday volume released
1995               Biography on Darwin in Kannada released
1996               Sir M. Visweswaraya Award
1997               Sahitya Academy award for biography on Darwin
1999               Biography on Madam Curie in Kannada released
2000               Biography on Einstein in Kannada released
2001               Sahitya Academy award for biography on Madam Curie
2002               National Mineral Award for Excellence - 2000
2006               Reliquinshed as President of the Geological Society of India
2007               Jawaharlal Nehru Centenary Award
2008               Golden Jubilee Celebrations of the Geological Society of India
2011               Nanna Thande – Second Edition released

The passing away of Padma Shri Dr. B.P. Radhakrishna on 26.01.2012 at the ripe age of 94 marks the end of an era in Indian Geology. BPR, as he was affectionately known, strode the scene of Indian Earth Sciences like a colossus for a span of nearly five decades. The void left by his demise will be well nigh impossible to fill for a long time to come. He was a single-man institution dedicated to the cause of Earth Sciences in this country, who guided, inspired, advised and also admonished at times all those who came under his influence and also those who, in his opinion, had a potential to contribute to the growth of the earth sciences in this country. He steered them on to the path of self-reliance and originality in all their endeavours. He lived a full and active life till the end and died in harness, as he had always wanted to.

Early Years

BPR was born on 30th April, 1918 at Bangalore as the third son of Shri Bangalore Puttaiah, a well known public figure of Bangalore and the erstwhile princely State of Mysore. Shri Puttaiah, who was himself a graduate in geology, was an expert in printing technology (with his training in UK) and rose to occupy the position of the Superintendent of the Government Printing Press of the Mysore State. Shri Puttaiah was associated with several progressive public institutions and causes like the Civic and Social Progress Association, the Kannada Sahitya Parishad, the Mythic Society, the Nonentities Club (NC), the Brahmosamaj and the Ramakrishna Mission in addition to being the founder of the Vokkaligara Sangha along with his close associate Shri K.H. Ramaiah.

It is no accident that BPR imbibed at an early age several qualities in the aesthetics and art of printing and publishing from his father that would stand him in good stead later in his life, as he set about developing the Journal and other publications of the Geological Society of India. Many outside Karnataka may not be aware that BPR’s biographical account of his father in Kannada, entitled Nanna Thande (My Father) is rated as a masterpiece in Kannada literature in the genre of biographical narratives. This account of his father is interwoven with great finesse with the social and cultural history of the period. BPR’s sympathies with the suppressed and backward sections of our society and his ardent desire that all our scientific work and activities should in the ultimate analysis be of some help in the social and material uplift of the rural poor of this country, were ideals he acquired early from the life and activities of his father. Shri Puttaiah, was one of the harbingers of modernity in his home State of Mysore, and understandably left an indelible impact on the young Radhakrishna in many ways. Reminiscing about the father-son relationships of that period, BPR would often recollect with a tinge of sadness that he rarely communicated directly with his father as a result of a mistakenly forbidden custom in a large patriarchal family.

Dr. Radhakrishna had his schooling at Fort High School, not very far from his Chamarajpet residence. He was a favourite student, particularly of his Kannada teachers, reflecting his early interest in Kannada language and literature. Radhakrishna obtained his B.Sc. (Hons) degree in the year 1937 securing a first class and a Gold Medal.