Dr. K.L. Chadha
Born at Bhopalwala, District Sialkot (now in Pakistan) on 15th November, 1936, Dr. K.L. Chadha obtained M.Sc. (Agri.) in 1960 from Punjab University and Ph.D. in Horticulture in 1963 from the Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI), New Delhi.
Dr. Chadha served at Head, Dept. of Agriculture at the Regional Fruit Research Station, Mashobra, and was at the ICAR Headquarters for nearly 2 years before joining as Assistant Horticulturist at IARI in February 1963. He served as Fruit Specialist at Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana (8.5.1964 to 4.1.1969); Senior Horticulturist at IIHR, Bangalore (8-1-1969 to 3-9-1972) and as Project Coordinator (Mango, Grape, Guava, Apple, Stone Fruits and Walnut) and Head, Central Mango Research Station, Lucknow (4-9-1972 to 19-6-80). He was Director, IIHR , from 20.05.1981 to 21.01.1986. Thereupon, he was appointed as the first Horticulture Commissioner, Govt. of India, New Delhi, followed by his appointment as the first Deputy Director General (Horticulture) at ICAR headquarters in New Delhi.
Dr. Chadha has published over 100 scientific papers. His leadership is visible through identification of effective policies and programme initiatives for national development, influencing public funding pattern (1,500 times between VII to XI Five Year Plan); promoting new, potential crops like oil palm for commercial cultivation;; bringing focus on hi-tech horticulture; promoting a large number of professional organizations as President (9) & as Vice President (6); chairing several important national committees; adding wealth of his experience through a number of publication (30 books and bulletins) including 'Advances in Horticulture' - a monumental publications in 13 volumes covering 9410 pages; introduction of superior indigenous and exotic production technologies in apple and mushroom. He has brought horticulture to a national focus raising India's esteem in the sector at international level. Today the growth of India's horticulture is recognized as phenomenal globally and India is the second largest producer of fruits and vegetables. Dr. Chadha has also provided international consultancy to 12 countries and four international organizations and had been Vice Chairman, Board of trustees of International Potato Centre, Lima , Peru.
He has also guided 14 Post-graduate students and taught courses in Viticulture and Plant propagation. His research pertains to nutrition, use of plant growth regulators and variety improvement in important fruit crops like mango, grape, pineapple, citrus and stone fruits. He is also credited with establishing the Central Mango Research Station at Lucknow from scratch and he gave a new direction to research programmes under the All-India Coordinated Fruit Improvement Project.
Being the doyen of horticulture, Dr. Chadha is aptly referred to as the 'Father of Modern Horticulture'. In the words of Dr. M.S. Swaminathan "Dr K.L. Chadha has provided outstanding leadership to horticultural renaissance of India - he has rendered invaluable service for which we are all very grateful" a phenomena which has led to the Horticulture (Golden) Revolution in India. He has been recognized by various R&D organizations, Food Processing industry and Farmers Organizations through 20 awards, including Borluag Award, Om Prakash Bhasin Award, B.P. Pal Memorial Award, H.S.I.-Shiv Shakti Life Time Achievement Award, etc.He has also been honoured with the degree of D.Sc. (Honoris Causa) conferred by Chandra Shekhar Azad University of Agriculture and Technology, Kanpur.