Who Invented Atomic Theory in India?


Diego Sanchez

India has a rich history of scientific discoveries and advancements. One of the most significant contributions made by Indian scientists is in the field of atomic theory. The concept of atoms has been around for centuries, but it was only in the early 20th century that atomic theory gained widespread recognition.

Who invented atomic theory in India?

The credit for introducing atomic theory in India goes to an ancient Indian philosopher named Kanada. Kanada is believed to have lived between the 6th and 2nd century BCE. He was a part of the Vaisheshika school of philosophy, which focused on understanding the nature of reality.

Kanada’s work, called Vaisheshika Sutra, contains a detailed explanation of atomic theory. According to Kanada, everything in the universe is made up of small particles called “anu.” These anu are indivisible and indestructible, and they combine to form all matter.

The concept of atom in ancient India

Kanada’s idea of atoms was different from what we know today. He believed that atoms were invisible to the naked eye and could not be perceived through any sense organ. However, he also believed that these atoms had certain properties that could be inferred through logical reasoning.

Kanada’s ideas about atoms were later expanded upon by other Indian philosophers such as Jaina and Buddhist scholars. They developed their own theories about atoms based on their respective philosophies.

Modern Atomic Theory

The modern understanding of atoms is based on the work of John Dalton, who proposed his atomic theory in 1803. Dalton’s theory stated that all matter is made up of small particles called atoms, which are indivisible and indestructible.

Dalton’s theories were further refined by other scientists such as J.J Thomson, Ernest Rutherford, and Niels Bohr. They discovered that atoms are not indivisible but are made up of even smaller particles such as protons, neutrons, and electrons.

Despite the advances made by modern science, Kanada’s ideas about atoms are still highly respected in India. His work is considered a significant contribution to Indian philosophy and science.


In conclusion, Kanada was the first person to introduce the concept of atomic theory in India. His ideas about atoms were ahead of their time and have stood the test of time. While modern science has refined our understanding of atoms, Kanada’s contribution to atomic theory cannot be denied.