Punjab Agricultural University Opens Dr GS Khush Museum, Punjab
Image Credit: Punjab Agricultural University

A museum and institute at Punjab Agricultural University dedicated to the work of Dr. Gurudev Singh Khush was inaugurated on the occasion of World Food Day in Ludhiana. Dedicated to the man who was fondly known as the ‘Father of the rice revolution’ or ‘Paddy Daddy’, he is best known for developing some of the world’s vastly cultivated varieties of rice. A graduate of PAU, Dr. Khush was present at the special event that was instrumental in opening up the Gurudev Singh Khush Institute of Genetics, Plant-Breedig and Biotechnology, and the Gurudev Singh Khush museum.

A native of Rurkee village located in Jalandhar, Khush moved to the USA after his education, Khush’s contributions to plant-breeding technology has been some of the most effective means to combat food shortage. Also present at this event was Punjab’s agriculture and farmers welfare minister – Gurmeet Singh Khuddian – who also inaugurated a few projects dedicated to the agronomist. His work in developing a variety called ‘super rice’ – which produced high yields with low resources like water and pesticides, earned him the 1996 World Food Prize for improving the global supply of rice.

As the guest of honour at this landmark event, Dr. Khush talked about the institute’s focus being on advanced sciences that entail genomics and biotechnology, as well as developing high-yielding, pest and disease resistant crop varieties. He also hoped that the museum would allow the future generations to draw inspiration, and paid a tribute to the agricultural biotechnologist – Dr. D.S. Brar. Khush also made a generous contribution of 35 million in order to leverage research studies and faculty.

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The man who went on to develop about 300 varieties of rice, including the IR36 and IR64, making them two of the most cultivated varieties on area around the world. The food scientist was seen to be smiling as he also received a dedication of his work in literary form in a biography authored by Dr. Sheetal Thapar, called Rice Revolutions and Legacy: The Story Of Dr. Gurudev Singh Khush.