It is the 125th birth anniversary of legendary statistician Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis on 29 June 2018, and today’s Google Doodle is dedicated to him.
Born on 29 June, 1883, Prasanta Chandra Mahalanobis, popularly known as PCM, is regarded for his pioneering work in establishing study of statistics in India. Largely self-taught, statistician PCM was one of the founders of the Indian Statistical Institute that came into being in 1931, when he taught at the Presidency College in Kolkata.
He went on to strengthen the statistical system of India by launching the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) and the Central Statistical Organisation (CSO), and was also a member of the first Planning Commission of India.
PCM is credited with introducing the world to “Mahalanobis distance”, a measurement used in population studies, which is depicted in the doodle by UK-based illustrator Nishant Choksi.
Mahalanobis, who was a scientist too, had interest in diverse scientific disciplines. Working in the field of population studies, he combined anthropology, economics and physics to develop better approaches.
He worked with top economists and mathematicians across the world to leave a legacy for the generations to come.
The multi-faceted personality was very close to Rabindranath Tagore too. The Nobel laureate gave a Bangla word for statistics – Rashivigyan.
Mahalanobis died on 28 June, 1972, a day before he was to turn 79.