Distinguished physicist and former ISRO chief M.G.K. Menon passed away at his residence in New Delhi on Tuesday. He was 88. Menon spearheaded the Kolar Gold Fields experiment on cosmic rays in the 1960s, reported IANS.
Professor Menon, who was awarded the Padma Vibhushan, worked with noted scientists, including his mentor Homi Jehangir Bhabha, with whom he pioneered Tata Institute of Fundamental Research.
Menon served as a minister of state for science and technology and education in the V.P. Singh government. He had earlier worked as secretary in the departments of science and technology and environment in the Union government.
He became the Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) in 1972, and was the Director of the TIFR at the age of 35 years.
Menon was a member of the Planning Commission (1982-1989), Scientific Adviser to the Prime Minister (1986-1989), Vice President, Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR) (1989-1990), and member Rajya Sabha during 1990-96.
He was also a Fellow of the Indian Academy of Sciences and the Royal Society of London.