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125th Birth Anniversary of Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis Rs.5
125th Birth Anniversary of Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis Rs.5

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PRASANTA CHANDRA MAHALANOBIS (1893- 1972) Professor Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis was a renowned Indian scientist and applied statistician who founded the Indian Statistical Institute and devised the Mahalanobis distance, a statistical measure. He is also known for his key role in formulating India's strategy for industrialisation in the Second Five-Year Plan. Born to an academically oriented family on 29th June 1893 at Calcutta, Mahalanobis pursued his early education in Calcutta (now Kolkata). After graduating with honours in physics from Presidency College, Calcutta, in 1912, he moved to England to study physics and mathematics. After obtaining 'Tripos' in Mathematics and Natural Sciences from Kings College, Cambridge, he joined Presidency College at Calcutta as a faculty. Although famously associated with various statistical theories, he contributed immensely to human welfare and national development. Mahalanobis pioneered the use of randomization for data collection, an approach used in large scale sample surveys on a national scale. He was instrumental in the construction of Hirakud Dam in Odisha and the Durgapur Barrage in West Bengal, both based on his systematic statistical studies on rainfall and floods in Eastern India. In 1945, he became a Fellow of the Royal Society of London. He established national sample survey which subsequently became a separate organization of the Government of India. He also helped in setting up the Central Statistical Organization and introduced the concept of statistical quality control in India. Prof. Mahalanobis was the architect of the Second Five Year Plan. He was awarded Padma Vibhusan in 1968.