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Swatantrata ka Amrut Mahotsava
HKL Chaddha, to examine the urgent needs and problems of the institute and to report on them. They were favorably impressed by the work done at MACS Research Institute, by scientists working purely in an honorary capacity. They made suitable recommendations for meeting the urgent needs of the Research Institute of MACS. In pursuance, the Ministry of Education, government of India, provided it with an ad-hoc grant of Rs six lakhs during the Third-Five Year Plan to meet the expenditure on construction of a new building, main- tenance and development. Accordingly,
Image Courtesy: Agharkar Research Institute
Left and above: The premises of the Agharkar Research Institute in Pune
tire amount thus raised was do- nated by her to the MACS, which speaks volumes for the devotion, cour- age and sacrifice of this great lady who fully identified herself with Prof Agharkar’s dream. She breathed her last on 11 April 1981.
The MACS Research Institute was renamed as Agharkar Research Insti- tute in 1992 in honour and memory of its founder director, Prof SP Agharkar. Seventy-five years after its establish- ment, it is one of the prime autonomous research institutes of the Department of Science and Technology, government of India. It operates under the overall um- brella of MACS. The current research activities of the institute focus on six thematic areas, viz., Bioenergy, Biodi- versity, Bioprospecting, Developmental Biology, Genetics & Plant Breeding and Nanobioscience.
The MACS governing body contin- ues the legacy of Prof Agharkar and its founding members by serving the soci- ety with utmost dedication, a sense of purpose, and without remuneration. As such, it stands tall among similar organ- isations in the country.
*The writer is Former Director and Professor, Agharkar Chair MACS Agharkar Research Institute, Pune and Visiting Professor, Indian Insti- tute of Technology Bombay
    a project for constructing a building on
After the establishment of the piece of land given by the govern-
the Department of Science ment of Maharashtra was undertaken
and Technology (DST), the and soon completed. After the establish-
ment of the Department of Science and
Government of India placed Technology (DST), the government of
MACS on the permanent India placed MACS on the permanent
list of Autonomous
list of Autonomous Research Institu-
Research Institutions. It MACS owes so much to Prof
currently focuses research Agharkar’s devoted wife, who co-
in Bioenergy, Biodiversity, operated with him in his scientific
and social activities. By his will,
Prof Agharkar had provided for her
Developmental Biology, maintenance. Mrs Agharkar used
Genetics & Plant Breeding, this provision very frugally and set
aside her savings. These savings were
and Nanobioscience
augmented by the cash she realised by selling her ornaments. The en-

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