Justice Oak Award for Outstanding Thesis in Astronomy

1. About the award
The society gives the Justice V. G. Oak Award for outstanding Ph.D. thesis in Astronomy submitted to an Indian institution. The objective of the award is to encourage excellence amongst research students in India. The prize consists of a plaque and cash prize of Rs. 20000/-.

2. Nomination criteria
The thesis should have been formally defended in the period from 01-August-2019 to 31-July-2021 (both days included) for the award in 2022. The candidate should have successfully defended the thesis and all formalities for award of degree must be completed at the time of nomination.

Please note that the norms for this award are being updated from specifying a range for the date of submission of the thesis to the date of thesis defense. The earlier norms required the thesis to have been submitted during the award period, and defense to be completed prior to the last date for submission of nomination. This criterion put at a disadvantage those who had submitted the thesis during the nomination period, but had not defended their thesis prior to the deadline for submission of nomination.

The award period is revised to match the nominal definition of the academic year (Aug-Jul), rather than the calendar year in order to make it practical to go through the nomination and selection process in time for the annual ASI meeting which is typically held in February/March.

Keeping in mind there would be eligible candidates who may be affected by the changes in the award period and nomination criteria, this year the nominations are being invited for the period from 01-August-2019 to 31-July-2021. The candidates who had been nominated previously are not eligible for re-nomination.

Next year onwards, the period of the award will correspond to the duration of one year from 01-August to 31-July.

3. Application
All nominations for the award must be received by the ASI, by the deadline indicated on the website of the ASI. The nominations should be sent as a single pdf document to the Secretary, ASI at astron.soc.india@gmail.com. Nominations can be made by the heads of the institutions and other eminent members of the ASI.

Nominations must include the following material:
1. Name
2. Affiliation
3. Address for correspondence
4. Date of birth
5. Academic qualifications
6. Summary of the scientific work constituting the thesis
7. A statement regarding why the nominator considers the thesis outstanding
8. List of publications
9. Reprints relevant to the recommendation
10. Citations of relevance
11. Curriculum vitae of the candidate
12. A signed letter by the nominator
13. Name and designation of the proposer along with the address for correspondence

4. Selection Process
A panel of five judges duly appointed by the executive council of the society in consultation with the scientific organising committee of that meeting, shall select the outstanding thesis. The panel of judges will communicate the result of its deliberations to the ASI council.

5. Announcement of the Award
The Justice V. G. Oak Award for outstanding Ph.D. thesis will be given at the ASI meeting and will be asked to make a short presentation of their thesis work.

This award was instituted in the year 2002, and the following is the list of awardees:

2010 Dr. Sanjiv Kumar Tiwari The softcopy of thesis is here
2011 Dr. Girjesh Gupta & Dr. Manash Samal The summary of thesis by Dr. Girjesh Gupta is here

The summary of thesis by Dr. Manash Samal is here

2012 Dr. Arunima Banerjee The summary of thesis is here
2013 Dr. Bidya Karak The summary of thesis is here
2014 Dr. Vemareddy Panditi The summary of thesis is here
2015 Dr. Rupal Basak The summary of thesis is here
2016 Dr. Pallavi Bhat -
2016 Dr. Tanmoy Chattopadhyay The summary of thesis is here
2017 Dr. Vaidehi Sharan Paliya The summary of thesis is here
2018 Dr. Rajeshwari Dutta The summary of thesis is here
2019 Dr. Saurabh Singh -
2020 Dr. Prantika Bhowmik The summary of thesis is here
2020 Dr. Panini Singam The summary of thesis is here
2021 Dr. Swagat Saurav Mishra -
2021 Dr. Anshu Kumari (Honorable Mention) -
2021 Dr. Surajit Mondal (Honorable Mention) -