Indian scientists maintain this Indian-American physicist was wrongfully denied the Nobel prize at least twice — in 1979 and 2005.
Now, for the first time, ECG Sudarshan himself has broken his silence over the Nobel controversy. Speaking to HT, he expressed frustration at the way Indians are ignored for top science honours.
“The 2005 Nobel prize for Physics was awarded for my work, but I wasn’t the one to get it. Each one of the discoveries that the Nobel was given for were based on my research,” he said.
Kerala-born Sudarshan, professor at the University of Texas, Austin, is here to receive the Padma Vibhushan.
On October 16, 2005, HT was the first to report the outrage among Indian scientists when Roy J. Glauber of the US shared the Physics Nobel for his theoretical description of the behaviour of light particles. Stressing that Sudarshan, who had worked independently on the same subject at the same time, had produced more lucid results, these scientists had petitioned the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences over the “grave miscarriage of justice”.
About having been denied the Nobel in 1979 as well, Sudarshan said, “Steven Weinberg, Sheldon Glashow and Abdus Salam built on work I had done as a 26-year-old student. If you give a prize for a building, shouldn’t the fellow who built the first floor be given the prize before those who built the second floor?”
The 75-year-old also blamed compatriots with a “crab-mentality” who refused to support him. “A particular India-born laureate could have put in a word about me, but he remained indifferent,” said Sudarshan.