Sekhar Basu

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Sekhar Basu
Former Chairman Atomic Energy Commission

Former Secretary

Department of Atomic Energy
In office
October 23, 2015 – September 17, 2018
Former Director Bhabha Atomic Research Centre
In office
June 19, 2012 – February 23, 2016
Personal details
Born (1952-09-20) September 20, 1952 (age 66)[1]
Muzaffarpur, Bihar, India
ResidenceMumbai, India
Alma materVeermata Jijabai Technological Institute, Mumbai BARC Training School
ProfessionMechanical Engineering
Nuclear Energy
Nuclear Reprocessing and Waste Management
Known forReprocessing facilities
Nuclear Waste Management
Nuclear Submarine Propulsion
PortfolioChairman, Atomic Energy Commission of India
Secretary, Department of Atomic Energy,[2]
Former Director, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre[3]
AwardsPadma Shri (2014)
Indian Nuclear Society (INS) Award (2002)
Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) Award (2006 and 2007)

Sekhar Basu is a well known nuclear scientist. He had served as the Chairman, Atomic Energy Commission and Secretary to the Government of India, Department of Atomic Energy (DAE),[4] October 23, 2015 to September 17, 2018. Prior to his assumption of charge as Secretary, DAE, he has served as the Director of Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC),[5] India’s premier multi-disciplinary R&D centre. He has also worked as the Project Director of Nuclear Submarine Programme and later as the Chief Executive of the Nuclear Recycle Board in the same institute.[6]

Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KKNPP)
Second 1000 MWe nuclear reactor of Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KKNPP) attained 100% power generation capacity in January, 2017

Education and Career[edit]

Conceptual drawing of Arihant 1

Sekhar Basu did his schooling from Ballygunge Government High School, Kolkata[7] and graduated in Mechanical Engineering from Veermata Jijabai Technological Institute, University of Mumbai in 1974.[8]

After completion of one year of BARC Training School programme in nuclear science and engineering, he took up the responsibility of the development of nuclear submarine propulsion plant. He continues to guide the Indian nuclear propulsion programme for the sea-going versions.

Kalpakkam Reprocessing Plant
Reprocessing Plant at Kalpakkam Tamil Nadu

He had also been proactively engaged in the design, development, construction and operation of nuclear recycle plants at Tarapur, Maharashtra and Kalpakkam, Tamil Nadu, involving reprocessing and nuclear waste management.[9] His efforts are credited with bringing perfection in technology, which provided major boost to the Indian nuclear power programme.

Augmentation of Nuclear Power in India[edit]

Indigenous PHWR under-construction at Kakrapar, Gujarat, India
The construction of new indigenous PHWRs symbolise DAE’s emphasis on MakeInIndia programme

Sekhar Basu has accelerated the pace of Nuclear Power deployment in India. In May 2017, the Government of India has given approval to DAE’s plan for construction of 10 Pressurized heavy-water reactors (PHWRs) and 2 Pressurized water reactors (PWRs).[10] This move will significantly augment the nuclear power generation capacity and India has taken up simultaneous construction of 21 reactors.[11] Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor (PFBR) at Kalpakkam is in advanced stage of commissioning.[12]

Under his supervision, DAE has initiated actions for multi-fold rise in uranium exploration and mining in India.

He has overseen the launch of various important projects of the Department of Atomic Energy including the commercial power production of the second 1000 MWe nuclear reactor of Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant.[13] The construction of two more nuclear power plants, KKNPP Units 3&4, of the same capacity has been started in June 2017.[14]

Thrust to Healthcare and Societal Applications of radiation[edit]

Homi Bhabha Block at Tata Memorial Hospital Mumbai
Homi Bhabha Block at Tata Memorial Hospital Mumbai
Under his supervision, construction/up-gradation of six hospitals has been initiated for serving about 1.5 Lakh new patients every year. Major thrust has been imparted for the development of indigenous cancer care drugs.

In May, 2017, under the supervision of Sekhar Basu, a Litchi Treatment Plant has been set up at the National Litchi Research Centre, Mushahari, in Muzaffarpur district of Bihar. The plant, based on the technology developed at BARC, can preserve Litchi for 60 days and has opened new export avenues.

He has supervised setting up of first plant in India being commissioned to treat 100 tons/day sludge and produce manure using a fully automatic process at Ahmedabad, Gujarat. The plant uses radiation technology to hygienise the sludge reliably and affordably and protects health and environment. Action for setting up similar plants in other cities has also been initiated.

Contributions to Strategic and Mega-Science Projects[edit]

Sekhar Basu signs the LIGO cooperation MoU with Director, NSF, USA
Sekhar Basu signs the cooperation MoU with Director, NSF, Dr. France A Córdova to build a state-of-the-art LIGO in India
Sekhar Basu and CERN Director-General sign agreement for India to be an Associate Member of CERN
Sekhar Basu and CERN Director-General Dr. Fabiola Gianotti sign the agreement for India to be an Associate Member of CERN

Mega science projects involving high energy Superconducting Accelerators, Laser Interferometer Gravitational wave Observatory (LIGO), International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) have got major boost under the leadership of Sekhar Basu. While pursuing basic research in science and engineering, he is currently pursuing enrichment and other strategic programmes on priority.

Societal Outreach Initiatives[edit]

LED Lamps made by ECIL, DAE being distributed as a part of CSR activity
Sekhar Basu distributing LED Lamps made by ECIL, DAE as a part of CSR activity

Sekhar Basu has strengthened the public outreach activities for spreading awareness about the technologies fostered by DAE among the general public. On 26 January 2017, on the occasion of Republic Day (India), he launched the maiden campaign of DAE on the popular micro-blogging platform Twitter. In sync with the Startup India Skill India programme, he has put special thrust on deliverables for making spin-off technologies available for emerging entrepreneurs across the country.

Professional Affiliations, Awards and Honours[edit]

He has several publications to his credit and has been conferred Indian Nuclear Society Award 2002 and DAE Awards in 2006 and 2007. He is also a Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE) and Indian Society for Non-Destructive Testing (ISNT). He has been awarded Honoris Causa Doctorate degrees by 8 universities and was awarded Padma Shri by the Government of India in 2014.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Press Information Bureau Oct 23, 2015, 04:44 PM IST. "Sekhar Basu Writeup - Press Information Bureau" (PDF). Press Information Bureau. Retrieved 2017-08-09.
  2. ^ BARC February 23, 2016, 11.13 AM IST. "Dr. S. Basu Chairman and Secretary DAE". Retrieved 2017-08-09.
  3. ^ "Sekhar Basu Director BARC". Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  4. ^ "Dr Sekhar Basu takes charge as Chairman, AEC and Secretary, DAE". Retrieved 2017-07-07.
  5. ^ "Sekhar Basu Director BARC". Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  6. ^ "Sekhar Basu".
  7. ^ "Padma Shri Award for Shri Sekhar Basu, Director, BARCBARC" (PDF). Retrieved August 9, 2017.
  8. ^ "Padma Shri Award for Shri Sekhar Basu, Director, BARC" (PDF). BARC. Retrieved August 9, 2017.
  9. ^ "Dr Sekhar Basu" (PDF). Press Information Bureau. Retrieved August 9, 2017.
  10. ^ "Government Approves Mega-Project for 10 Indigenous Reactors | Department of Atomic Energy". Retrieved 2017-08-09.
  11. ^ "PIB's Press Release on Cabinet's decision to transform domestic nuclear industry | Department of Atomic Energy". Retrieved 2017-08-09.
  12. ^ "BHAVINI :: Welcomes You". Retrieved 2017-08-09.
  13. ^ "PIB - DEPARTMENT OF ATOMIC ENERGY" (PDF). Retrieved August 9, 2017.
  14. ^ "Year End review: Department of Atomic Energy". Retrieved 2017-08-09.

External links[edit]