Tan Chung
Born(1929-04-18)18 April 1929
Matubahar, Johore, Malaya
OccupationScholar, Sino-Indian relations specialist
Notable awards2010: Padma Bhusan
SpouseHuang I-Shu

Tan Chung (born 18 April 1929, in Matubahar, Johor[1]) is an authority on Chinese history, Sino-Indian relations and cultural exchange. He has been a doyen of Chinese cultural studies in India for nearly half a century.[2]

Early life

After initial education in China came to Santiniketan in 1955. On completing his Ph D from Visva Bharati University, taught in NDA, Khadakvasla, then joined Delhi University as professor of Chinese and became head of the department of Chinese and Japanese studies at Jawaharlal Nehru University. His wife, Huang I-Shu, taught Chinese at Delhi University.[3]


Tan Chung taught at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) and the University of Delhi for many years. His father, Tan Yun-Shan (1898-1983), was the founder of Cheena Bhavana at Santiniketan and a key figure driving Nationalist China's interactions with the Indian freedom movement during the 1930s and 1940s.[4] After Tan Chung's retirement from JNU in 1994, he worked as a Research Professor at Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, New Delhi and currently lives in Chicago, United States. He has been Honorary Director of the ICS/Institute of Chinese Studies, New Delhi.

A conference in his honor, at the occasion of his 80th birthday, was held in New Delhi in December 2008.[5]


In 2010, he was awarded the Padma Bhushan, the third highest civilian honour by the Govt. of India[6] and the China-India Friendship Award by the Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao in the same year.[7]

In June 2013, Yunnan Academy of Social Science conferred upon him the honorary Fellowship of the Academy.[8]

In December 2013, Visva-Bharati University conferred Deshikhottama (D. Litt and the highest honor of the University) upon Professor Tan Chung.

In August 2018, Sage Published his book on understanding China, China: A 5,000-year Odyssey and has received excellent reviews from leading scholars in the world.[9]


  1. ^ Chung Tan (ed.), In the Footsteps of Xuanzang: Tan Yun-shan and India (Gyan Books, 1999; ISBN 8121206308), p. 4.
  2. ^ "New Delhi News : A doyen of Chinese cultural studies". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 8 December 2008. Archived from the original on 3 November 2012. Retrieved 2 February 2009.
  3. ^ "In the Footsteps of Zuangzang: Tan Yun-Shan and India". Life sketch of Tan Yun-Shan by Tan Lee. Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts. Retrieved 17 August 2019.
  4. ^ Tsui, B. (2010). "The Plea for Asia--Tan Yunshan, Pan-Asianism and Sino-Indian Relations". China Report. 46 (4): 353–370. doi:10.1177/000944551104600403. S2CID 145420931.
  5. ^ The Hindu. Chennai, India http://blogs.thehindu.com/delhi/?p=8163. ((cite news)): Missing or empty |title= (help)
  6. ^ "This Year's Padma Awards announced" (Press release). Ministry of Home Affairs. 25 January 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2010.
  7. ^ "Karan Singh turns down China award". ndtv.com. 16 December 2010.
  8. ^ "我院授予谭中教授荣誉院士称号" (in Chinese). Yunnan Academy of Social Sciences. 13 June 2013. Retrieved 29 January 2019.
  9. ^ Chung, Padma Bhushan Tan (31 July 2018). China: A 5,000-year Odyssey. ISBN 978-9352807246.