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Saturday, November 27, 2021

Ousted ‘Agni man’ Avinash Chander oversaw many key projects

Ousted DRDO chief led design, development of Agni missiles.

Written by Pranav Kulkarni | New Delhi |
Updated: January 15, 2015 6:45:55 am
DRDO, Avinash Chander, Narendra Modi Avinash Chander with Narendra Modi in 2013. Express archive.

Avinash Chander, 64, joined the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in 1972 after completing his graduation in Electrical Engineering from IIT Delhi. He is popularly known as the ‘Agni man’ for developing the Agni series of missiles.

Chander was associated with the Integrated Missile Development Program since its inception, and led the design and development of the Agni project of Long Range Ballistic Missile Systems, the latest being the 5,000 km-plus range Agni-5. He was awarded the Padma Shri in 2013. It was during his time that the agency successfully developed the indigenous Inertial Navigation System.

chandarChander was appointed DRDO chief after the retirement of former chief V K Saraswat in May 2013. As per the original contract, Chander’s appointment was for three years. A part of the tenure was on contract, which began on November 30, 2014, and he was to occupy that position till May 2016.

Known to keep a low profile, Chander stays in a small accommodation, which he prefers over a government bungalow. He is a fan of Indian classical music and ghazals, and is known to be a “technical man” who usually works till 8-9 pm. His family stays in Hyderabad. He also has a fully functional office in the Advanced Systems Laboratory, Hyderabad, from where he works during his visits to the city.

A post-graduate in Spatial Information Technology from JNTU Hyderabad, Chander is a fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineers, Systems Society of India, and vice president of the Astronomical Society of India. He has won several awards in the field of science and technology.

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