National Technology Day is celebrated to commemorate the quest for scientific inquiry, technological creativity and translating them into meeting the needs of the people and connecting science, society and industry.
On 11 May 1998, India successfully conducted operation “Shakti” at Pokhran and joining the elite club of countries with nuclear capabilities. “Smiling Buddha” in May 1974, laid foundation for these. Becoming the world’s sixth nuclear state wasn’t the only feat India achieved on that day. The first indigenous two-seater aircraft Hansa-3, developed by the NAL (a CSIR lab) was flown in Bangalore. DRDO completed the final test-fire of the “Trishul” missile, a short-range, quick-reaction, surface-to-air missile, leading to its induction into the services. What a month of May has been!
To remember all these scientific achievements and to encourage all the scientists, engineers, and technicians of the country, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the then PM announced May 11 as the National Technology Day and ever since celebrated every year across the country. The day is also commemorated by honouring the technological innovations that have positively impacted society.
The celebration is much more than being a historical event as the technology itself is the gateway to the future. It highlights the importance of science in daily life and encourages the younger generation to consider pursuing science as a career option.
Indian civilisation has a rich scientific and technological tradition and amongst one of the oldest civilizations of the world, which were scientifically laden. Indus Valley Civilization is known for efficient town planning such as interlinked drainage system, dwelling houses built with bricks and wastewater system, giving a unique feel to the science and technology of those times. Scientific achievements in the fields like medicine, astronomy, metallurgy, physics, chemistry have been going on since ancient times. The great minds of India like Yajnavalkya, Aryabhata, Varahamihira and more from the recent past, Ramanujam, have contributed the fields like mathematics, astronomy and physics.
We are currently going through a time when the whole world is forced to kneel to the threat of COVID-19 pandemic. The speed with which it is spreading, almost leaving no country on the globe untouched, has shaken even the most powerful countries. Researchers, health professionals and many have taken the battle to the boundary of containing and conquering.
To fight this epidemic in India, our scientists, young innovators, scientific institutions, the central and state governments are working 24/7 by enduring physical discomfort, putting their personal lives in the background and their safety at stake. There are more than 200 new technologies, research activities have been created to fight against coronavirus. Economical and rugged Ventilators, personal protective equipment, repositioned drugs, appreciable progress towards getting a vaccine into trial, the whole R&D personnel are working relentlessly to protect the people of the country. India is completely independent and the whole world is looking towards to celebrate its emergence.
Celebrations like “National Technology Day” would be reassuring to the people that we could do in the past and gives hope that we can and will do it now.
Let us celebrate and look through the prism of these successes with hope to conquer the COVID pandemic.
Take this opportunity to welcome Reema Jaiswal, a science communication enthusiast to the team. The Toons are the contributions of Reema Jaiswal.
– Sai Baba.