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Mr RD John at NCBS for an oral history interview with the Archives at NCBS. Apr 21 2017

In Memoriam: Shri R.D. John

It is with deep sadness that we acknowledge the passing of Shri R.D. John on the morning of 26 July 2020.


Shri. R.D. John joined NCBS in 1989 after retiring as chief engineer from the Department of Space (DoS) in 1987. He was a regular visitor to the campus until 2007 and was an active member until the completion of the Mandara Hostel Block. His last visit to campus was to see the inStem labs two years ago.


Several members of the campus have fond memories of working with him closely. His knowledge and experience was invaluable during the initial days of NCBS.


Mr Sahadevan, a close colleague shares an anecdote: “In a tender committee meeting, the work for a building site was to be awarded to the lowest bidder who had quoted 10% less than the estimated value. Shri. R.D. John pointed out that the other bidders, who were well-known contractors had submitted quotes that were much more than the estimated amount. He said that the lowest bidder, who was not a well known contractor, may raise issues to try and inflate the cost and thus delay the work."


The committee overruled his objection and awarded the contract to the lowest bidder in the interest of saving money for the institute. "John’s diagnosis of the problem the contractor was likely to create and in telling us at different times what is happening at the site were big lessons we learnt,” remembers Mr Sahadevan.


Jitu Mayor, Director of NCBS, offered his sincere condolences to Shri R.D. John’s family and added,

“I have very vivid memories of R.D. John and his yeoman contribution to the construction of the campus, including the legacy he has left behind us, namely Mr. Rengasamy (Head, I & CG of NCBS). We are indebted to his dedication and sincerity in taking ahead project NCBS to completion in its first phase.”


Many in the NCBS community will fondly remember him for his contributions to the construction of the campus and mentorship he provided. R.D. John is survived by his wife and two sons.