Suman Sahai

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Suman Sahai
EducationPh.D., 1975
Alma materIndian Agricultural Research Institute
OccupationFounding director
OrganizationGene Campaign
AwardsOrder of the Golden Ark, Borlaug Award, Padma Shri

Suman Sahai is an Indian activist and the founder of Gene Campaign.


Sahai got a Ph.D. from the Indian Agricultural Research Institute[1] in 1975. She then worked at the University of Alberta, University of Chicago, and the University of Heidelberg, where she did her habilitation in human genetics.[2] The Web of Science shows that Sahai has published over 40 articles. They are mostly on policy issues dealing with genetically-modified organisms. Her articles have been cited over 150 times and she has an h-index of 7.[3] She is director of the non-governmental organization, Gene Campaign.[4][5][6]



In April 2013 it was shown that Sahai committed plagiarism in her habilitation thesis.[9] She had submitted this thesis to the University of Heidelberg in 1986.[10] She was also accused of presenting herself as being or having been a professor at that University. She never actually had such a position.[9] The University of Heidelberg confirmed on 14 April 2013, that plagiarism had taken place. The university also said that Sahai has no right to call herself a professor of the University of Heidelberg. Her habilitation has been revoked.[9][11]


  1. 1.0 1.1 "How I made it: Suman Sahai : Aspire". India Today. 2010-04-29. Retrieved 2013-03-29.
  2. "Dr Suman Sahai: Curriculum vitae". World Academy of Art and Science. Archived from the original on 2013-04-12. Retrieved 2013-04-12.
  3. Web of Science, accessed 2013-03-29.
  4. Basu, Paroma; Qiu, Jane; Powell, Kendall (2008). "Making a difference". Nature. 455 (7215): 1002–3. doi:10.1038/nj7215-1002a. PMID 18938259.
  5. Jayaraman, K.S. (2002). "Poor crop management plagues Bt cotton experiment in India". Nature Biotechnology. 20 (11): 1069. doi:10.1038/nbt1102-1069. PMID 12410241.
  6. Dickson, D (1993). "Indians protest against US-led gene bank". Nature. 361 (6410): 291. doi:10.1038/361291a0. PMID 8426645.
  7. "Subba Rao, Suman Sahai get Borlaug award". The Hindu. 2004-01-31. Retrieved 2013-03-29.
  8. "Press Information Bureau English Releases: Padma Awards Announced". Government of India. Retrieved 2013-03-29.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Köppelle, Winfried (2013-04-09). "Heidelberger Habilitations-Humbug". Laborjournal (in German) (4): 14–17. ISSN 1612-8354. OCLC 85726582. Archived from the original on 2013-04-18. Retrieved 2013-07-07.CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link) English translation
  10. "Sahai, Suman: Elucidation of the role of neurotransmitter glutamate in normal and abnormal mental function". HEIDI. University Library Heidelberg. Retrieved 2013-04-12.
  11. "Stellungnahme der Medizinischen Fakultät der Universität Heidelberg". UniversitätsKlinikum Heidelberg. Archived from the original on 2013-04-29. Retrieved 2013-04-29.