Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam has nominated M.S. Swaminathan, India's best-known agricultural scientist, and Kapila Vatsyayan, writer and scholar of Indian arts and a creative thinker, to the Rajya Sabha.

While Prof. Swaminathan has been nominated against the vacancy caused due to the retirement of a nominated member, Dr. Vatsyayan has been re-nominated against the casual vacancy caused by resignation in her earlier capacity as member of the Rajya Sabha, till the remainder of her term that will come to an end on February 15, 2012, an official release said here on Tuesday.

Prof. Swaminathan, widely hailed as the `Father of Green Revolution,' has been honoured with a number of prizes and awards, including the World Food prize in 1987, the Tyler-Honda prize in 1991 and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Sasakawa award in 1994. He was Director-General of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (1972-78) and headed the International Rice Research Institute (1982-88). Recently, he also chaired the National Commission on Farmers.

Kapila Vatsyayan is founder and former academic director of the Delhi-based Indira Gandhi National Centre of the Arts. Soon after her nomination to the Rajya Sabha last year, she had resigned in the wake of controversy over the office of profit issue.

In Chennai, Prof. Swaminathan said he was grateful to the Government for thinking of him for the nomination. He said he was hoping to contribute whatever was possible.

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