Three faculty members receive Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize 2022

Akkattu T Biju
Associate Professor, Department of Organic Chemistry

Akkattu T Biju has received the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize 2022 in Chemical Sciences for his work on transition-metal-free carbon-carbon and carbon-heteroatom bond-forming reactions using aryne chemistry and carbene-based organocatalysis. His research group has utilised aryne chemistry for the synthesis of biologically important 1,2-disubstituted arenes, and employed nucleophilic heterocyclic carbene-based catalytic techniques for the construction of various heterocyclic compounds as a single enantiomer. The unconventional carbon-carbon bond-forming reactions using carbene catalysis have opened up new avenues for the synthesis of valuable heterocyclic compounds and drug-like molecules.

“I am very excited and happy to receive this prestigious recognition. Indeed, a joyful occasion that two chemists working in catalytic techniques are selected for the award for 2022. Very happy to share this award with Prof Maiti at IIT Bombay,” says Prof Biju.

Apoorva Khare
Associate Professor, Department of Mathematics

Apoorva Khare has received the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize 2022 in Mathematical Sciences. He works in several subfields of mathematics. In matrix analysis, he has obtained new links between analysis, and symmetric functions in algebraic combinatorics, extending the results of Loewner, Cauchy, and Frobenius. He has also shown novel characterisations of (weak) majorization via Schur polynomials, and improved fundamental results of Schoenberg and Rudin on entrywise preservers of positive semidefinite matrices. These have led to novel analysis applications of Schur polynomials (characters of irreducible representations). In representation theory, he has found weight formulas for all highest weight modules over Kac-Moody Lie algebras, and Weyl character formulas for universal objects in Category O.

“I am delighted and honoured to receive this prestigious national award,” says Prof Khare.

Anindya Das
Associate Professor, Department of Physics

Anindya Das has received the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize 2022 in Physical Sciences. His group specialises in experimental condensed matter physics, focusing on transport phenomena in emerging quantum nano-devices. Their key achievements include uncovering new collective phases and quantum phenomena in two dimensions, employing cutting-edge techniques such as thermal transport in van der Waals hetero-structures involving graphene and layered materials. These findings have profound implications across condensed matter physics and hold potential for applications in quantum technology.

“I am deeply honoured to receive the SSB award and extend my gratitude to my institution, IISc, for its support. I dedicate this recognition to my dedicated students and my supportive family,” says Prof Das.