Dr. Manju Sharma
Dr. Manju Sharma trained as a Plant Scientist; she took a first class M.Sc. from Lucknow University in 1961, with first rank, and received the Birbal Sahni Memorial Gold Medal. Her well-known work on the detailed ontogeny, development and distribution of sclereids in organs other than leaves, like stem and floral parts, brought out, for the first time, the taxonomic and phylogenetic significance of sclereids. Her Post-doctoral research at Purdue University, USA, on latex bearing plants with Prof. A.C. Leopold led to the understanding that etheral can stimulate the yield of latex and rubber by 100%; this found direct commercial application in rubber plantations in Malaysia. She was offered the position of a visiting scientist at the Institute of Plant Anatomy and Cytology at the University of Copenhagen. She did extensive work on plant idioblasts resulting in very good publications. Her extensive studies at the Forest Research Institute, Dehradun on silica content in a large number of woody species established a co-relation between silicon content and the hardness of wood, a character used as an indicator of quality of wood. She co-authored a monograph entitled “Indian Medicinal Plants”, an ICMR publication. She has many research publications to her credit and has prepared a number of special papers, policy reports and documents on various aspects of science and technology.