Basanta Kumar Das specialized in zoology and fisheries with a degree of DSc in 1926 from the University of London. He became Professor of Zoology (1926-31), University of Calcutta; Professor and Head of the Department of Zoology (1931-52) at the Osmania University, Hyderabad and was subsequently appointed the Research Director of Fisheries (1953-57), Government of India.
Academic and Research Achievements: Das was an internationally reputed zoologist, having made wide-ranging contributions to the discipline, particularly the bionomics of air-breathing fishes with an account of the development of their air-breathing organs. He displayed such exceptional brilliance in the dissection and preparation of air-breathing organs that all of them were taken for a permanent exhibition in the galleries of the British Museum.
Other Contributions: Profesor Das was appointed the chief architect of the Fisheries Department of the then Hyderabad State in 1941. The present Nehru Zoological Park and the Indira Garden at Hyderabad owe their inception to the master plan Das submitted to the erstwhile Nizam Government.
Awards and Honours: Basanta Kumar Das was elected as the President of Zoology Section, Indian Science Congress in 1940. The Huxley Memorial Prize was bestowed on him by Imperial College of Science and Technology, London in 1931. The Zoological Society of India has instituted a gold medal in his memory.