Ramakrishnan's teacher says the spark was there even during college days

      Even as a student, Venkatraman Ramakrishnan, who won the 2009 Nobel Prize in chemistry, had the spark in him to climb great heights, his former teacher N.S Govindaraj said. Ramakrishna's former teacher recalled that the Nobel laureate was a bright and sincere student who would reach great heights like Sir C V Raman, who won the Nobel for physics in 1930. "Even when he was a student, I knew that he would reach great heights, even more than Sir C V Raman. He used to study and was very sincere in his duties," said 82-year-old Govindaraj. In Chennai, academics and students expressed happiness over the selection of Ramakrishnan for the top award. "It's a very happy news. We should be proud of one of ours has got the Nobel Prize for science. Indians were known like C.V Raman was famous and was the first one to receive the Nobel Prize for physics from India. Later on there were other scientists who went abroad and then made names for themselves," said P. John, Vice Principal, Loyola College. Saran Rajkumar, a college student, said: "I am very proud that Ramakrishnan has got a Nobel Prize in chemistry." Ramakrishnan is the ninth person of Indian origin to bag the award. Venkatraman along with Israeli Ada Yonath and American Thomas Steitz won the Nobel Prize for producing atom-by-atom maps of the mysterious, life-giving ribosome that has allowed researchers to develop powerful new antibiotics. The Nobel prizes are given annually for achievements in chemistry, physics, medicine, peace, literature and economics. They were first awarded in 1901 in accordance with the 1895 will of Swedish millionaire Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite. Presently, Ramakrishnan is a U.S. scientist at the Medical Research Council's Molecular Biology Laboratories in Cambridge. Venkatraman Ramakrishnan was born at Chidambaram in Tamil Nadu in 1952. He had his early schooling in Chidambaram and later did B.Sc (physics) from the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, in 1976.

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