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|October 14, 1998||
Calcutta confirms association with Nobel laureates
The City of Joy is the city of Nobel laureates too.
For, Calcutta has either been home or the temple of work to at least five Nobel laureates from diverse fields.
If the city was the creative rendezvous for poet Rabindranath Tagore that inspired some of the greatest works of art of the age, it could turn itself into a laboratory for Dr C V Raman. If Job Charnock's city could bare its injured soul to Mother Teresa for that touch of solace, it could evolve into an economic problem for Amartya Sen to solve.
The city did different things to them. Yet, seen in its entirety, the 300-year-old city bound them together in the glory of the Nobel prize.
Calcutta's romance with Nobel owes its origin to poet Rabindranath Tagore who was honoured with the Nobel prize for literature in 1913 for his celebrated work Geetanjali. The city's association with the coveted honour continued when Dr C V Raman was awarded the Nobel prize for physics in 1930. The association flourished with Mother Teresa being selected for the Nobel peace prize in 1979. Nearly two decades later, economist Amartya Sen again did the city proud bagging the highest honour yesterday.
Even Ronald Ross, discoverer of the malaria vaccination who was given the Nobel prize in medicine, stayed in Calcutta and worked at the SSKM hospital. Pakistani nuclear physicist Abdus Salam, who was awarded the Nobel prize in physics, also owes it partly to Calcutta in that he did his masters in science from Calcutta University.
While Tagore hailed from Jorasanko in north Calcutta, Dr C V Raman came to the city in the twenties for research work at the Indian Institute for Cultivation of Science. For Mother Teresa it was the adopted home for more than half a century. Professor Amartya Sen took up economics as a subject for the first time when he joined Presidency College under Calcutta University. Perhaps, hardly had he dreamt then that the Nobel prize would come his way.
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