Navalpakkam Parthasarathy did his PhD (1938) from University of London, UK. He worked as Geneticist and Head, Division of Botany, Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI), New Delhi; Geneticist and Second Cane Breeding Officer, Sugarcane Breeding Institute, Coimbatore; Director, Central Rice Research Institute, Cuttack; Rice Expert, FAO, Indonesia; Rice Improvement Specialist for the Far-East and Executive Secretary, International Rice Commission; and Rice Adviser, Governments of Liberia and Thailand.
Academic and Research Achievements: Dr Parthasarathy’s significant research achievements related to induction of mutations for the first time in X-irradiation. The cytology and genetics of sugarcane and rice were his fields of interest to which he made substantial contributions. He and his coworkers isolated and studied haploids and polyploids in rice and obtained twin plants with different chromosome numbers. This piece of research opened up a series of studies on other twin plants.
Other Contributions: Parathasarathy served as Member of the INSA Council (1976-78).
Awards and Honours: Dr Parathasarathy won Padma Shri Award (1958), and also the Gold Medal by Rural Development Agency of South Korea. He was elected Fellow of the Tamil Nadu Academy of Sciences; President, Indian Society of Genetics and Plant Breeding (1953, 1970), Agricultural Section, Indian Science Congress (1953); and working President, Madras Science Foundation.