Dr. E.K. Janaki Ammal
Birth: November 4, 1897
Death: February 7, 1984
Achievements:Padma Shri in1977 .Eminent Botanist of international repute played a primordial role in organizing botanical research in India.
Dr. Edavaleth Kakkat Janaki Ammal was born on 4 November 1897 in Tellicherry, Kerala. Educated at the University of Madras, Dr. Janaki Ammal began her career as Lecturer in the Department of Botany, Women?s Christian College, Madras, in 1921. She was awarded Doctorate degree from the University of Michigan in 1931.
An eminent scientist and botanist of international repute. Dr. Janaki Ammal specialized in Cytogenetics, Plant geography and Taxonomy. She has a distinguished career in USA and UK before coming back to India at the request of the then Prime Minister, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, as special Officer to re-organise the Botanical Survey of India. Dr. Janaki Ammal played a primordial role in organizing botanical research in India. She made her mark as botanist of high order by her extensive research and writing.
Dr. Janaki Ammal was well known for her work on cytogenetical studies on sugarcane, egg plant, Cymbopogon, Terminalia, Datura and Dioscorea. She traced the evolution of these crops. She carried out valuable studies on the cytology of several species of medicinal and economic value. ?Jammu Mint? is one of the major contributions. In addition, she did cytological studies of number of plants. Collected plants of medicinal and economic value and carried out valuable studies on the cytology of several plant taxa. Studies in ethnobotany particularly in use of plants by tribals in Kerala are of great value.Her interests shifted to ethnobotany in later years when she studied the use of plants by tribals in Kerala. Source: PIB Press Release (http://pib.nic.in/release/release.asp?relid=21232)