Chandra received degrees from a university in Lahore and from Cambridge University. From 1934 to1941 he was chairman of the Students’ Union in Lahore. He became a member of the CommunistParty of India (CPI) in 1939, of the Central Committee of the CPI in 1952, of the National Council of theCPI in 1958, and of the Central Executive Committee in 1958; from 1963 to 1967 he was a member ofthe Central Secretariat of the National Council of the CPI. From 1963 to 1966, Chandra was editor ofthe central organ of the CPI, New Age. He served as general secretary of the All-India Peace Councilfrom 1952 to 1963. In 1953 he joined the World Peace Council, and in 1966 he became the council’sgeneral secretary and a member of its presidium; in 1977 he was elected president of the organization.
Chandra was awarded the F. Joliot-Curie Gold Peace Medal in 1964. He received the InternationalLenin Prize for Strengthening Peace Among Nations in 1968, and he was awarded the Order ofFriendship of Peoples in 1975.