Professor Goverdhan Mehta, former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Hyderabad (UoH), has been conferred with Germany’s prestigious, ‘Cross of the Order of Merit’
Achim Fabig, the German Consul General in Chennai, conferred the prestigious ‘Bundesverdienstkreuz’ (the Cross of the Order of Merit) to Professor Goverdhan Mehta.
The Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany was instituted in 1951 by Federal President Theodor Heuss. It is the only honour that may be awarded in all fields of endeavour and is the highest tribute the Federal Republic of Germany can pay to individuals for achievements in political, economic, social or intellectual realm and for all kinds of outstanding services to the nation in the field of social, charitable or philanthropic work.
Professor Mehta is a leading researcher in the area of chemical Sciences and presently National Research Professor and Lilly-Jubilant Chair Professor at the University of Hyderabad. He obtained his PhD from Pune University and carried out postdoctoral research at Michigan and Ohio State University. He started his professional career at IIT Kanpur, then moved to University of Hyderabad where he became the Vice Chancellor during the period 1994-1998. Subsequently, he served as the Director of IISc, Bangalore for seven years (1998-2005). He remained attached with the Department of Organic Chemistry at IISc as CSIR Bhatnagar Fellow (2005-2010) following which he has taken up his present position at University of Hyderabad.
Professor Mehta has made wide ranging research contributions in organic chemistry that encompass synthesis of biologically active and architecturally challenging natural products, creation of new and aesthetically pleasing molecular entities and incisive probing of stereoelectronic effects. His forays into synthesis have been marked by brevity, conceptual novelty and originality and his flair for devising simple solutions to complex and challenging problems of contemporary interest in organic synthesis have drawn attention internationally. In addition, he has made significant contribution to science education, science policy and planning and management of higher education in India.
Professor Mehta is a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) and a Foreign Member of the Russian Academy of Sciences. He is also a Fellow of all the three Science Academies in India and Third World Academy of Sciences and was the President of INSA. He is a recipient of Padma Shri from the President of India and has been conferred with “Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur” by the President of France. He had been offered several Visiting and Guest Appointments in leading Universities, has received over 30 medals/awards and numerous Honorary Doctorate degrees. He is on the Editorial Boards of many leading international journals in Chemical Sciences/Organic Chemistry.