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Prithviraj Chavan condoles passing away of Homi Nusserwanji Sethna

By Abdul Nisar

New Delhi, Sep.7 (ANI): Minister of State (Independent charge) for Science and Technology Prithviraj Chavan on Tuesday expressed grief at the sad demise of Dr. Homi Nusserwanji Sethna.

In his condolence message, Mr. Chavan said, "In the passing away of Dr. Sethna, the country has lost a great scientist and the void left by Dr. Sethna would be hard to fill."e also said that due to the pioneering work of personalities like Dr. Sethna, India proudly stands upright in the field of nuclear energy.

Chavan recalled that Dr. Sethna was responsible for developing the first spent fuel reprocessing plant in Asia and played a major role in India's first successful nuclear tests at Pokhran in 1974.

omi Nusserwanji Sethna, the former Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission and an important figure in India's nuclear programme breathed his last at his home in Mumbai on Sunday night. He was 86.

Dr. Sethna was suffering from lung fibrosis.

He played a key role in the country's first peaceful nuclear explosion of May 18, 1974, called the Smiling Buddha, or Pokhran-I.

Born on August 24, 1923 and he did his B.Sc. (Tech) from the University Department of Chemical Technology, University of Bombay, in 1944 and did his M.S. in the University of Ann Arbor, Michigan. After working with Imperial Chemical Industries in the U.K., he returned to India in 1949, inspired by Dr. Bhabha's call for Indian scientists to return.

Dr. Sethna pioneered reprocessing technology in India and played a crucial role in the designing and setting up of the first plutonium separation plant at BARC.

This plutonium went into the making of the nuclear device that was tested in on May 18, 1974 at Pokhran. India's first nuclear explosion, the Peaceful Nuclear Experiment, took place when Dr. Sethna was AEC Chairman. (ANI)

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