IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


19th June, 2023 History

Disclaimer: Copyright infringement not intended.


  • Google Doodle, on June 18, featured Kamala Sohonie, which marks her 112th Birth anniversary.
  • She was an Indian biochemist and the first Indian woman who received a Ph.D in any science related field.

About Kamala Sohonie

  • In 1911, she was born in Indore city of Madhya Pradesh.
  • Influenced by her chemist parents he enrolled for chemistry and physics subjects in Bombay University.
  • She graduated with flying colors and topped her class in 1933.
  • She also had the distinction to be the first women to enter the prestigious Indian Institute of Science (IISc).
  • She went to Cambridge University in 1937 for further studies.

Awards and Achievements of Kamala Sohonie

  • In legumes she discovered various proteins and thus contributed to the nutrition in children.
  • During her stay at Cambridge University she discovered an enzyme in potato, named Cytochrome C, which was important for energy generation.
  • She also discovered a mitochondria protein which has a significant role in cellular respiration.
  • She also helped in development of an economic dietary supplement, a drink named Neera, which is made using extracts from Palm.
  • It contributed to the better health of malnourished tribal children and pregnant women, as this drink is a good source of natural vitamin C.
  • She was given Rashtrapati Award for the creation of Neera drink.
  • At Lady Hardinge College she was made the Department of Biochemistry head.
  • She was made director of Royal Institute of Science in Mumbai. Again she had the distinction of being the first female director.

Indian Institute of Science (IISc)

  • In 1909, IISc was established in Bangalore, India. The first director of this institute was Morris W. Travers, a chemist.
  • It is one of the world’s foremost academic institutions in field of science.
  • For last 8 years this is ranked as the country’s best university.
  • Its objective include -
    • Provide world-class higher education and research in science and engineering.
    • Use expertise for various science and technology initiatives in India.
    • To help industry and society grow.
    • To make a knowledge base for future use.

Significance of achievements

  • Indian Institute of Science (IISc) started accepting more women after Kamala Sohonie’s performance in the institute.
  • She bravely faced and conquered the challenges of gender bias present at that time.
    • Once CV Raman, a great scientist of India, also rejected her application just because she was a woman.
  • She served as an inspiration to hundreds of women to achieve higher education.
  • The perception about women education was altered positively due to her achievements.
  • She contributed to the promotion of scientific education in India.

Must read Article:



Kamala Sohonie, an women Indian scientist, served as an inspiration to hundreds of women in an era when education in science was male dominated. Elaborate. Also highlight the achievements and contribution of Kamala Sohonie to the field of Science. (250 words)