Ashoka Jahnavi Prasad was born in India in a very highly distinguished family-one of his forbears,Dr.Rajendra Prasad was one of the fathers of the Indian constitution,a foremost follower of Mahatma Gandhi and later First President of the Indian Republic!A great uncle Jayaprakash Narayan lead the movement against Mrs.Indira Gandhi's dictatorship.
He had his primary education at the ultra elitist Colvin School in Lucknow and went on to study medicine.Soon after graduation he specialised in paediatrics,psychiatry,internal medicine,public health,medical anthropology,history of medicine and philosophy and obtained doctorates from Oxford,St.Andrews ,Cambridge,Chapel Hill and was called to the Bar at Lincoln's Inn.
He has a syndrome called Prasad's syndrome named after him and his admirers included Sir Derek Barton and Abdus Salam.
He was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences,one of the foremost honours in the US!Then he was awarded and Honorary doctorate.
However despite his considerable achievements,he was an unfortunate victim of a very unethical smear campaign against him by his colleagues, David Copolov and his doctoral supervisor John Funder who were subsequently suspected to have malicious motives and suggestion was made that racist behaviour and racism was behind this persecution, something that both David Copolov and John Funder strenuously denied.These unscruplous attacks were later infamously labelled Copolovian Mischief.They falsely questioned his PhD and claimed his DSc-obtained from St.Andrews one of the oldest universitites in UK-as purchased and accused him of fabricating scientific data when not even the most preliminary draft of the alleged study existed, amongst many other false allegations and to avoid libel had them tabled in the legislature under legislative immunity.They persited with this malicious campaign for years.
He dispalyed enormous grace while scurrilous allegations were being levelled against him by politically politically powerful foes for several years which affected him both personally and professionally, went on to hold several important positions in several countries and was called upon to serve on the Governing society of Indian Institute of Advanced Study-India's apex body for humanities for three years,a topmost honour in Asian academia.
He introduced valproate as a safer treatment for mania on basis of anecdotal evidence.Later on he wrote a treatise on biological basis of neuroses on which he later wrote a book called Biological Basis and Therapy of Neuroses!