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Dr.P.C.RAY

The Gilchrist Prize

At the Metropolitan Institute, Prafulla Chandra came under the influence of great
teachers like Surendranath Banerjee and Prasannakumar Lahiri. They instilled in him a burning desire to achieve the freedom of India and to improve the condition of the
people. While pursuing his studies in the Metropolitan Institute, Prafulla Chandra used to attend lectures by Alexander Pedlar on Chemistry, in the Presidency College. Pedlar was an inspiring teacher and a skilful experimentalist. His lectures influenced Prafulla Chandra to take up Chemistry for his higher studies in B.A., although his first love was literature. However, he continued to take interest in literature, and taught himself Latin and French at home. Sanskrit was compulsory in the college. Thus, he learnt several
languages very well.

The London University used to conduct competitive examinations in those days for the ‘Gilchrist Prize Scholarship’. The successful candidate could go abroad for higher studies.

What a chance-if only he could get the scholarship!

Prafulla Chandra started preparing for the examination secretly. He was born in a very rich family, but now all the wealth had disappeared. This was only chance to go abroad. His knowledge of languages was very helpful in this, since one of the requirements was knowledge of Greek, Latin, Sanskrit and French or German. But he had to compete with thousands of others.

Only his brother and a cousin knew about this at first. By and by the secret was leaked out by a classmate, who stood high in the University examinations, He taunted Prafulla Chandra saying "Oh, this very intelligent man's name will soon appear in the special edition of the London University Calendar!"

A few months after the examinations the results were published in the 'Stateman'.
Prafulla Chandra and a Parsee of Bombay by name Bahadurji had won the scholarship. The Principal was overjoyed and showered praises on Prafulla Chandra.

Prafulla Chandra now decided to go abroad. His father readily gave his consent, but Prafulla Chandra was worried about his mother's feelings. He wrote to a cousin of his in Raruli and requested him to convey the news to his mother gently. But his mother quite understood. She did not object to his going abroad. When Prafulla Chandra went to Raruli to bid her good - bye, she was overcome by grief as she thought about the long separation she would have to endure. Prafulla Chandra loved his mother very much. He consoled his mother saying, "When I return from England, I will get a high position. My
first duty will be to repay the debts and to repair our ancestral home."

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Dr.P.C.Ray - An Indian Scientist Who won fame in many countries
About Dr.P.C.Ray
Introduction
The Disappearance Of A Treasure
Harish Chandra, The Father
Interruptions In Education
You are Here! The Gilchrist Prize
In England
For His Country
The Professor - Scientist
Why Should Our Patients Depend On Other Countries?
Scientist - Author
A 'Doctor Of Floods'
For The Sake Of Science
A Great Scientist A Great Man
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