Dr. J.S. Chohan (Jaswant Singh Chohan), a leading plant pathologist of our country, was born at Village Shambhu, District Patiala on 24th June, 1922 where he obtained his school education. He obtained his B.Sc. and M.Sc. from Agricultural College Lyallpur (Pakistan) and Ph.D. degree in Plant Pathology from Ohio State University, USA in 1964. On his return, he joined the Department of Plant Pathology, PAU Ludhiana and later served as Professor and Head of the Department from the year 1965 to 1978. Later he joined as Joint Director, Plant Disease Clinic, PAU from 1978 to 1982. Dr. Chohan retired from PAU, Ludhiana in 1982 and later served as Professor Emeritus at the University till 1985.
In his distinguished career spanning more than three decades, Dr Chohan did pioneering research work on aflatoxin problem in groundnut, maize and other crops and reported aflaroot problem in groundnut for the first time. His extensive studies helped in managing microbial spoilage of food grains. He has also contributed a lot in understanding etiology of viral diseases in oilseed crops, vegetables, fruit crops and reported tomato spotted wilt virus and bud necrosis of groundnut for the first time in Punjab. He also made significant contributions in understanding diseases affecting fruit crops like grape, pear and peach and devised suitable methods for their effective management.
Dr. Chohan is credited with starting the concept of ‘Plant Disease Clinic’ in India and the model developed by him was later adopted by several SAUs. The establishment of Plant Disease Clinic helped in quick diagnostic service to the farmers and provided on the spot solution to their disease problems.
On account of his several professional accomplishments, Dr. Chohan was elected President of Indian Phytopathological Society (1 977), Indian Society of Mycology and Plant Pathology (1979-80) and was later elected Honorary Fellow of Indian Society of Plant Pathologists.
Dr. Chohan breathed his last in North Carolina state of USA on 13th October, 2009.