Dr. Homi Jehangir Bhabha (center) with Jawaharlal Nehru (left, India’s first Prime Minister) and J.R.D. Tata, (Trustee, Sir Dorabji Tata Trust) at TIFR in 1962. These were the individuals whose vision led to the establishment of TIFR.
The Tata Institute of Fundamental Research was founded around the time of India’s independence from colonial rule to promote advanced scientific research in the country. It was established by the noted Physicist Dr. Homi Jehangir Bhabha with financial support from Sir Dorabji Tata Trust and the then Government of Bombay. It began its operations on 1 June 1945 at the Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, and later moved to Mumbai in December of the same year. In Mumbai, the institute operated out of the Kenilworth building and the Old Yacht Club, before moving to its present picturesque seaside campus in 1962.
At its inception, the institute’s research activities were focused on high energy physics, cosmic rays and mathematics. Over the years, activities at TIFR and its centres around the country steadily expanded to include all branches of basic sciences including physics, chemistry, biology, mathematics, computer science and also science education. The institute is the birthplace of India’s atomic energy program and several institutions of national importance. Institutions such as the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC), Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), Electronics Corporation of India Ltd. (ECIL), Society for Applied Microwave Electronics Engineering & Research (SAMEER) and Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (CDAC) trace their beginnings to TIFR.