Saha was born on 6 October 1893 in Sheoratali village near Dhaka in
present day Bangladesh. His father Jagannath Saha was a grocer in the
village. After primary education, he was admitted to a middle school
that was seven miles away from home. He stayed with a doctor near the
school and had to work in that house to pay for his boarding and
lodging. Overcoming all these difficulties, he stood first in the
Dhaka middle school test, thus securing a Government scholarship and
joined the Dhaka Collegiate School in 1905.
political unrest was prevailing in Bengal, caused by the partition of
the province by the British against strong popular opinion. Meghnad
Saha was among the few senior students who staged a boycott of the
visit by the then Governor, Sir Bampfylde Fuller and as a consequence
forfeited his scholarship and had to leave the institution. He then
joined the Kisori Lal Jubilee School where he passed the entrance
test of the University of Calcutta standing first among students from
East Bengal. He graduated from Presidency College with mathematics as
his major. He then joined the newly established Science College in
Kolkata as a lecturer and pursued his research activities in physics.
By 1920, Meghnad Saha had established himself as one of the leading
physicists of the time. His theory of high-temperature ionization of
elements and its application to stellar atmospheres, as expressed by
the Saha equation, is fundamental to modern astrophysics; subsequent
development of his ideas has led to increased knowledge of the
pressure and temperature distributions of stellar atmospheres. In
1920, Saha went to Imperial College, London and later to Germany. Two
years later he returned to India and joined the University of
Calcutta as Khaira Professor. He then moved to the University of
Allahabad and remained there till 1938, establishing the Science
Academy in Allahabad (now known as the National Academy of Science).
In 1927, he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of London.
He returned to the University of Calcutta in 1938 where he
introduced nuclear physics into the post-graduate physics curriculum.
In 1947 he established the Indian Institute of Nuclear Physics (now
known as the Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics). Later in his life,
Saha played an active role in the development of scientific
institutions throughout India as well as in national economic
planning involving technology. Source: Tata Institute of Fundamental