Padma Vibhushan & Atomic Energy Guru Dr MR Srinivasan and Science Historian Dr Jahnavi Phalkey discuss the rich story of India’s nuclear programme and its development over 70 years.

India’s first research reactor, Apsara, went critical in 1956 and today, there is a network of nuclear power generating reactors across the country, forming a critical part of India’s power grid. Srinivasan and Phalkey discuss India’s journey from the early days under Homi Bhabha, through the Geopolitics of the Cold War, Sanctions, the 2005 Indo-US nuclear deal, all the way through till today.

Dr MR Srinivasan is Former Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission and former Secretary of the Department of Atomic Energy, retiring in 1990 – and continue to contribute to nuclear energy policy in the country, including playing a key role in the Indo-US nuclear deal. He was awarded the Padma Vibhushan for his services to the nation. He also received the first Homi Bhabha Gold Medal from the Indian Science Congress and of the Karnataka Rajyotsava Award. He is the author of the book From Fission to Fusion: The Story of India’s Atomic Energy Programme.

Dr Jahnavi Phalkey is the Founding director of the Science Gallery Bengaluru. She is a historian of science and technology, and the author of the book Atomic State: Big Science in 20th Century India, and co-edited Science of Giants: China and India in the Twentieth Century.