Raja Ramanna (28 January 1928– 24 September 2004) was an Indian nuclear scientist, best known for his leadership directing the research integral for the development of Indian nuclear programme in its early stages. Having started and joined the nuclear programme in 1964, Ramanna worked under Homi Jehangir Bhabha, and later directed this program in 1967. Ramanna expanded and supervised the scientific research on nuclear weapons and was the first directing officer of the small team of scientists that supervised and carried out the test of the nuclear device, under a codename Smiling Buddha, in 1974.
Ramanna associated and directed the India’s nuclear weapons for more than 4 decades, and also initiate industrial defense programmes for the Indian Armed Forces. Because of his directing role and leadership for the developing the Indian nuclear programme for 4 decades, Ramanna is often considered as the “Father of the Indian nuclear programme”, and also was a recipient of highest Indian civil decorations for honoring his services to build the nuclear programme. Ramanna died in Mumbai in 2004 at the age of 79. As a physicist and scientist, Dr. Raja Ramanna received great respect in India as well as from academics and scientists of Pakistan. He is remembered as a leading figure in the development of nuclear physics.