It has been a year of transitions for the Chemistry Department. Dr. Freddy Havaldar retired as the HoD on 30th November 2018 and Dr. (Fr.) Roy Pereira, S.J. took over as the HoD on 1st December, 2018. He had put in 34 years of service. A few months before that was the retirement of Dr. Gulshanara Shaikh [Vice-Principal (Academics)] who gave 32 years of service to the college. A few months before that Ms. Mangala Potnis retired as HoD after 37 years of service. More recently on 30th June, 2018 Dr. Dionysia Coutinho [Former Vice-Principal (Science)] retired after 31 years of service. Their distinguished teaching career has influenced the lives of thousands of students. We thank them for their many contributions to the department and to the college and wish them well for the future. This past year Dr. Milind Shreykar and Mr. Onkar Lotlikar also served in the department for which we are grateful. In their place, we welcome Dr. Sandip Kale and Dr. Nikhila Bhat. Another transition was the graduation of 55 Chemistry students. As one batch crosses the threshold, we are also excited to welcome the new batch of ‘Class of 2019’, the 150th batch. 


A lot of innovative ideas were implemented by our faculty and students for generating interest in the field of Chemistry by reaching out to schools and other institutes. At the same time, the intellectual requirements of  our Chemistry students were taken care of by various events on our college campus.

A workshop on ‘Mass Spectrometry’wasorganized by ‘The Indian Chemical Society’ (ICS) in collaboration with St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai on 19th August 2017. The workshop which included a lecture, hands-on practical session and a session for problem-solving was conducted by Dr. R.K. Vatsa, Professor and Senior Research Scientist, BARC. It was very well appreciated by students from St. Xavier’s College and other colleges as well. 

The Xavier’s Association of Chemistry (XAC) continues to expand and flourish and has hosted a number of lectures and events throughout the year to increase interest and appreciation of chemistry in students, under the enthusiastic guidance and mentorship of our faculty- in-charge, Dr. Ashma Aggarwal. 

  • As part of our Chemistry Outreach Programme, third year Chemistry students went to Municipal Schools at Colaba and Chembur and taught chemistry to 8th standard students. 

To emphasize the fun aspect of Chemistry, the XAC volunteers organized an exhibition which was attended by students from the Colaba Municipal School.

  • Remedial classes and study sessions on spectroscopy, stereochemistry and electro-chemistry were conducted by our ex- students: Kyle, Neha and Aditya. Three of our third year students Neha, Dipanshu and Anshuman delivered talks on interdisciplinary topics which were much appreciated by the students.

  • Workshop on Lab safety was conducted by Borosil. 

  • A series of three workshops on ’How to memorize the periodic table and the significance of elements’ was also held.

  • Lectures and talks by eminent scientists helped to bring exciting new developments in science to the students. Some of the noteworthy lectures were:
    ‘Chemistry of Cooking’ by Joshua D'costa
    ‘Probing Materials: Journey through a sliding window of  Space and Time Scales’  by S Basu from BARC
    ‘Better Living through Green Chemistry’ by Dr. Ram Mohan, Illinois Wesleyan University, USA 
    ‘Career guidance talk for students in the fields of Chemistry and Physics’ by Dr. R.K.Vatsa, President, ICMAS & ICS (Mumbai Branch), Prof., Department of Chemistry, BARC
    ‘Molecular machines’ by Dr Roop Mallik, Prof., TIFR

  • The Annual Intercollegiate Chemistry competition ‘Alchemia’ was hugely successful and saw participation of students from eight colleges from Mumbai. The annual Chemistry Department Magazine ‘Elemental’ was also released.

Khandala Seminar:

The annual Khandala seminar was organized from 24th January to 26th January 2018 by Mr. Marazban Kotwal and Dr. (Fr.) Roy Pereira. 

The group had seventy enthusiastic students and encouragment from the HOD persuaded ten faculty members to join in for the first time ever. It was truly an experience of ‘chemical bonding.’ 


Faculty Member Achievements:


Dr. Abhilasha Jain published a chapter on Fenton and Photo-Fenton Processes in a book titled: ‘Advanced Oxidation Processes For Wastewater Treatment Emerging Green Chemical Technology’ (ISBN-13: 978-0128104996).


Dr. Freddy Havaldar, Dr. Ashma Aggarwal and Dr. Pralhad Rege published a paper titled: ‘Stability indicating RP-HPLC method for simultaneous determination of Beclomethasone Dipropionate and Clotrimazole from dosage form’ in International Journal of Chem Tech Research Vol.,10(9): 437-442(2017)


Dr. Geeta Kotian attended IQAC workshop ‘The Revised NAAC Approach: Some Salient Features’ on 21st December 2017 at KES Shroff College, Kandivli.


Dr. Geeta Kotian, Dr. Ashma Aggarwal and Ms. Saima Khan attended ‘NAAC – Revised Assessment and Accreditation Framework’ workshop on 11th April 2018 at Royal College, Mumbai.


Dr. Geeta Kotian, Dr. Ashma Aggarwal and Ms. Saima Khan participated in a two- day faculty Development Programme ‘Innovative Methods in Teaching and Learning: ICT Tools’ on 20th and 21st April 2018 at Sterling College of Pharmacy, Nerul. 


Dr. Pralhad Rege participated in a/an:

  • One day national symposium titled “Towards Formulation of An Alternative Democratic Education Policy” on 17th June 2017 at University of Mumbai.

  • Interdisciplinary national workshop on ‘Electron Microscopy of Nanoparticles’ organized by S.I.W.S college of Science, Wadala Mumbai in association with NCNNUM , University of Mumbai, on 23rd September, 2017

  •  “BIOWAVES 2018” organized by Dept of Life Science & Biochemistry St. Xavier’s College on 22nd January, 2018.


Dr. Abhilasha Jain participated in a/an:

  • Workshop: Microanalysis Depart. Of Chemistry, Thakur College of Science and Commerce, Kandivli.(E) 12th August 2017 

  • International Symposium on Recent Developments in the Neurological Sciences & the New Interpretation of the Spiritual Aspects in Humans on 9th, 10th, 11th February 2018 at St. Xavier’s College (Autonomous), Mumbai and IISR, Delhi.


Dr. (Fr.) Roy Pereira, S.J.

  • Presented a paper titled ‘Neuroscience, Mindfulness and Creativity’ at Symbiosis School of Liberal Arts, Pune on 24th March 2018

  • Presented a paper titled ‘Recent Developments in Neuroscience and Understanding our  Spiritual Nature’ at International Symposium on Recent Developments in the Neurological Sciences & the New Interpretation of the Spiritual Aspects in Humans, on 10th February 2018 at St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai. 

  • TEDxDJSCE Talk on ‘Why we remember and why we forget: A Metaphor for life’ on 20th January 2018.

  • Conducted a talk for Life Sciences Department at Khandala Villa on 1st December 2017

  • Presented a paper on ‘Networking and Collaborations: Are we resisting it? Why is it an uphill start?’ at XIDAS, Jabalpur on 3rd November 2017 

  • Attended the UGCC-MHRD Institutions of Excellence meet at AICTE, Delhi on 27th October, 2017.

  • Gave a full day Seminar to 200 Staff of St. Joseph’s Arts & Science College, Bengaluru 9th October 2017

  • Appointed as a member of CDC, Nirmala Niketan College froom the Academic Year 2017.


Mr. Marazban Kotwal continues to serve as the Controller of Examinations, Dr. Ashma Aggarwal serves as the Staff Coordinator for Extra Curricular Activities and Dr.. Geeta serves on the Scholarship Committee. We also appreciate the contributions of Dr. B.D. Bonde and Mr. Himanshu Gupta in small and big ways.

As we enter the 150th year of St. Xavier’s College we look forward to taking the department and the college to greater heights. 


Dr. (Fr.) Roy Pereira, S.J.

Head, Department of Chemistry

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