Numerous Indian scientists have made our country proud with their remarkable achievements.

One among them was Shankar Abaji Bhisey, who rose to fame in the 19th century when India hardly had any institutions inculcating scientific temper.


Recently, the BBC did an in-depth article on him which sheds light on his forgotten life.

Having 200 inventions to his credit, out of which 40 have been patented, Bhisey was also known as ‘Indian Edison’. But his is a forgotten name today.

In a bid to win a competition to design a grocery-weighing machine, he moved to London in late 1890s. And he won that competition, outperforming all the other British contestants.

His achievements were noticed and administrators in Bombay supported him in relocating to London.

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This turned out to be the golden phase of his career and he got patented several inventions.

He was also instrumental in inventing several kitchen gadgets, a telephone, a device for curing headaches, and an automatically flushing toilet. 


In 1905, he even patented a prototype push-up bra. But his most significant invention that had the capability of revoultionising the printing industry was the Bhisotype, a type-caster.

It could print books and newspapers quickly and cheaply as compared to the industry leaders of that time.


Freedom fighter and social reformer, Dadabhai Naoroji supported him in all his endeavours. He also helped Bhisey find investors in Britain, but things didn’t turn out as expected. In India too, Ratan Tata decided to fund his inventions, but the project could not take off.  

All this led to his downfall and probably that is why his name was tragically lost in history. If you’re interested in more of this forgotten Indian genius’ story, check out the full report on the BBC.