PAU VC receives Padma Shri
Ludhiana: PAU Vice Chancellor, Dr B.S. Dhillon, has been with conferred with the prestigious award ‘Padam Shri’, the fourth highest civilian award by the Government of India. Dr Dhillon received the award from the President, Ram Nath Kovind at the Rashtrapati Bhawan in New Delhi on March 11, 2019. Dr Dhillon was conferred with the Padma Shri in the category of Science and Engineering.
Major contribution of Dr B. S Dhillon
He is an illustrious scientist in Plant Breeding and Genetic Resources and an able administrator. He has served as PAU Director of Research and Maize Breeder and the Indian Council of Agricultural Research, as Assistant Director General, and Director, ICAR-National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources, ICAR-NBPGR. He was also Director of Research, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar. Just prior to joining PAU as Vice Chancellor, he was working in University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany. Earlier, he served at the University of Birmingham, UK and International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center, Mexico.
As Vice Chancellor since 2011 and Director of Research during 2005-07, He took numerous initiatives, as a result of which, PAU won Sardar Patel Outstanding ICAR Institution Award – 2017, and is identified as a ‘Special Institution in Agriculture’ having great potential to reach national and global prominence by the Empowered Expert Committee of MHRD.
Under Dr Dhillon’s guidance, PAU has developed outstanding crop varieties and their production-protection technologies. Farm machinery developed at PAU provides a complete solution for paddy straw management besides catering to improvement in spray technology and drying of produce. Dr Dhillon led the Joint Inter-State Campaign in Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan that successfully managed the cotton whitefly resulting in record productivity of 756 and 750 kg per ha of lint as compared to 197 kg per ha during 2015 and saving of pesticides worth 2589 and 2808 rupees per ha during 2016 and 2017, respectively, in Punjab.He developed 16 maize varieties and hybrids including ‘Paras’, the first single cross in India, 1995, and thereby, gave a new direction to maize breeding in the country.
He has outstanding academic credentials and obtained his Doctorate from Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi. He has bagged many prestigious scholarships and post-doctoral fellowships including German Academic Exchange Service, DAAD Fellowship and Alexander-von-Humboldt Fellowship, and University of Hohenheim Fellowship to work in Germany and Alexander-von-Humboldt Europe Fellowship University to work at University of Birmingham, UK. He was awarded JC Bose National Fellowship by DST, India.
Dr Dhillon has been recognized with several awards such as: Dr BP Pal Memorial Award, and Recognition Award by National Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Rafi Ahmed Kidwai Memorial Prize by ICAR, Om Parkash Bhasin Award for Science and Technology and Gold Medal by IARI. He is Fellow of several academies, such as Indian National Science Academy, National Academy of Agricultural Sciences, National Academy of Sciences, India, Punjab Academy of Sciences.
He is a dedicated scientist and visionary administrator who has provided leadership in developing technologies for sustainable agriculture.