Ram Chand Paul obtained ScD (1968) from Cambridge University, UK. He became Professor and Head, Chemistry Department (1959-74), and later Vice-Chancellor (1974-84), Panjab University, Chandigarh.
Academic and Research Achievements: At Cambridge, Paul worked on fluorine chemistry. He started research on non-aqueous solvents, then a new field in India, and also standardized the solution chemistry of a large number of solvents such as acid halides, amides, and strongly protonic acid media. The study included the quantitative determination of the solubilities of a number of organic and inorganic solutes, formation of solvates, solvolytic reactions, acid-base neutralization reactions, conductometric and visual titrations, infrared spectral studies on the solvates and determination of heats of solution of acid and bases in the solvents. This laid the foundation of a strong school of nonaqueous chemistry at the Panjab University. He worked on the chemistry of uranium and other elements. He authored the book Non-aqueous Solvents (in Hindi, Rajasthan Academy); contributed chapters on `chemistry of non-aqueous solvents’ to two volumes (Academic Press) and authored a book on Fluorine Chemistry (Wiley Eastern).
Other Contributions: Paul contributed to modernize of the chemistry curriculum at school and college levels under the sponsorships of NCERT and COSIP. He was Member of the INSA Council (1971-73, 1981), Indian Agriculture Research Review Committee, Executive Council of Association of Commonwealth universities (1978-79, 1983-84) and Governing Body of CSIR and IARI.
Awards and Honours: Professor Paul was conferred the UGC National Lecturer Award (1970-71). He was elected Fellow of the Indian Academy of Sciences, Bangalore; National Academy of Sciences (India), Allahabad (Vice-President, 1976-77); Royal Institute of Chemistry, London; and Indian Chemical Society (Vice-President, 1976-77). He was also elected President of the Association of Indian Universities (1983) and General Secretary, Indian Science Congress Association (1971-73).