This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed.Find sources: "K. G. Ramanathan" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR (May 2022) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)

K. G. Ramanathan
Born13 November 1920
Died10 May 1992 (aged 71)
Alma materPrinceton University
SpouseJayalakshmi Ramanathan
AwardsPadma Bhushan
Scientific career
FieldsNumber theory
Doctoral advisorEmil Artin
Doctoral studentsC. P. Ramanujam
Kanakanahalli Ramachandra

Kollagunta Gopalaiyer Ramanathan (13 November 1920 – 10 May 1992) was an Indian mathematician known for his work in number theory. His contributions are also to the general development of mathematical research,[1] and teaching in India.

K. G. Ramanathan's early life and his family

K. G. Ramanathan was born in Hyderabad, South India, on 13 November 1920[2] to Sri Kollagunta Gopal Iyer and Smt. Anantalakshmi, and was one of three children in the family.[3]

Ramanathan received his early education from Wesleyan Mission High School in Secunderabad. He further pursued his academic interests in mathematics and obtained a BA degree from Nizam College, Hyderabad, in 1940. Later, in 1942, he completed his Master's degree in mathematics from Loyola College in Chennai (then known as Madras). Sources state that Ramanathan's academic journey was also influenced by mathematics teacher and Jesuit priest, Rev Fr. C Racine, who was a former student of the renowned French mathematician E Cartan.[3]

With a keen passion for teaching and research in mathematics, Ramanathan worked as an assistant lecturer at Annamalai University in Chidambaram, Tamil Nadu from 1945-1946. He then joined Osmania University, Hyderabad as a lecturer for the following two years. In 1948, he became a research scholar at the University of Madras, where he had the opportunity to work alongside esteemed mathematicians including Professors R Vaidhyanathaswamy and T Vijayraghavan. In the same year, Ramanathan received an invitation to attend the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) at Princeton. Whilst there, Ramanathan worked alongside Hermann Weyl and Carl Siegel,[4] and is said to have sung Carnatic songs of Tyagaraja to the legendary physicist Albert Einstein, who was Ramanathan's neighbour at the University. Until 1951, along with Emil Artin, Siegel supervised Ramanathan in his PhD studies in mathematics.[3]

Following the successful completion of his PhD, Ramanathan returned to India to team up with K. S. Chandrasekharan at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) at Colaba in 1951.[5]

Ramanathan was married to Jayalakshmi Ramanathan. He had two sons. His mother died at an early age.


At TIFR, he built up the number theory group of young mathematicians from India. For several years, he took interest to study Ramanujan's unpublished and published work. He was an Editorial board member of Acta Arithmetica for over 30 years. He retired from TIFR in 1985.


Ramanathan was given numerous achievements during his more than 30 years service at TIFR.

Selected publications


  1. ^ Mahbubani, Kishore (2010). The New Asian Hemisphere: The Irresistible Shift of Global Power to the Eas., Limited. p. 3. ISBN 9781458759610.
  2. ^ Indian National Science Academy (1994). Fellows of the Indian National Science Academy N-Z. The Academy. p. 678.
  3. ^ a b c Athreya, K. B. (February 2010). "K G Ramanathan". Resonance: Journal of Science Education. 15 (2): 98–101. doi:10.1007/s12045-010-0022-8. S2CID 120777703.
  4. ^ Narasimhan, M. S. (February 2010). "Reminiscences". Resonance: Journal of Science Education. 15 (2): 101.
  5. ^ Bhatia, Rajendra, ed. (2011). Proceedings of the International Congress of Mathematicians: Hyderabad, August 19-27, 2010 · Volume 1. India: Hindustan Book Agency. p. 187. ISBN 9789814324359.
  6. ^ "Padma Awards" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 October 2015. Retrieved 21 July 2015.