The Unsung Heroes of India

Often, we marvel at the creation presented before us without appreciating the hands that moulded it. In this line of work, our students Himanshu Sangrola and Harshvardhan Pandey (B Tech CSE II Year) present the stories of some “ Unsung Heroes of India ”.

India is the motherland of hundreds of heroes who brought laurels to her with all their might. While some of her sons were known and acknowledged for their great work, some have been forgotten with time. This article is about those “Unsung Heroes” who shaped the lives of thousands of Indians. They have worked with the best in the world and proved their mettle on the international stage. These “Unsung Heroes”, through untiring perseverance, have passed the torch of India’s glory from one generation to the next, thus yielding the results with which we are familiar today. Let’s meet some of them.

M. S. Swaminathan

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M. S. Swaminathan was born in Kumbakonam, Tamil Nadu on August 7,1925. He is an Indian geneticist and international administrator, renowned for his role in India’s “Green Revolution”. He was educated in India and at the University of Cambridge (Ph.D., 1952) as a geneticist. During the next two decades he held a number of research and administrative positions. From 1972 to 1979 he was the Director General of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research, and from 1979 to 1980 he was the Principal Secretary of the Indian Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation. He served as the Director General of the International Rice Research Institute from 1982 to 1988 and as the President of the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources from 1984 to 1990. He has been honored with many awards such as Padma Bhushan in 1972 and Padma Shri in 1967.

Verghese Kurien

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Verghese Kurien was born in Kozhikode, Kerala in November 26, 1921. He was an Indian engineer and entrepreneur who was regarded as the architect of India’s “White Revolution”.

He attended Loyola College of the University of Madras (B.Sc., 1940), and he earned another Bachelor’s degree, in Mechanical Engineering, from the same university in 1943. Kurien received a Master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering at Michigan State University. When he returned to India, he worked at the Government Research Creamery in Anand, Gujarat state.

Later, Kurien became manager of the Kaira District Co-operative Milk Producers Union which later came to be called ‘Amul’ and became one of the largest food producers in India. Under him, the organization acquired equipment to process and store dairy products and proved to be a reliable supplier. In 1965, Kurien became the first chairman of the new National Dairy Development Board. He instituted the “White Revolution,” a long-range program with the objective of increasing milk production. He also established the Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation in 1973. Kurien received numerous honors such as the Ramon Magsaysay Award for community leadership in 1963 and the World Food Prize in 1989. He died in Nadiad, Gujarat on September 9, 2012

Homi Jehangir Bhabha

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Homi Jehangir Bhabha was born in Bombay on October 30, 1909. He was an Indian physicist who was the principal architect of that country’s nuclear energy program.

He went to the University of Cambridge in 1927, originally to study mechanical engineering, but once there he developed a strong interest in physics. He started his research in 1930 at the Cavendish Laboratories in Cambridge and in 1935 obtained a doctorate. After World War II broke out in 1939 Bhabha realized that the development of nuclear energy was crucial for the future industrial growth of the country. Funded by businessman J.R.D. Tata, Indian nuclear research began with the inception of the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research in 1945. He was appointed the Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission by the Government of India in 1948. He served as the President of the United Nations Conference on the Peaceful Uses of Atomic Energy in 1955 and as the President of the International Union of Pure and Applied Physics from 1960 to 1963.

He died in Mont Blanc, France on January 24, 1966.

Rajagopala Chidambaram

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R. Chidambaram is the Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India and the Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Committee to the Cabinet. He is also the Chairman of the High-Level Committee for the National Knowledge Network. He is one of India’s distinguished physicists and has made outstanding contributions to fundamental science and nuclear technology. After receiving his Ph.D. from the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore in 1962, he joined the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre in 1962 and became its Director in 1990. He was the Chairman of Indian Atomic Energy Commission from 1993-2000, the Chairperson of the Board of Governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) during 1994-1995,and was a member of the Commission of Eminent Persons appointed by the IAEA in 2008 to prepare a report on the “Role of the IAEA to 2020 and Beyond”. He was a member, and later Vice-President, of the Executive Committee of the International Union of Crystallography during 1990-1999.

He has D.Sc. degrees from more than twenty Universities in India and abroad. He has more than 200 research publications in refereed journals and has guided the Ph.D. work of many individuals who have themselves become outstanding scientists. Dr. Chidambaram is a recipient of numerous outstanding awards, including the Padma Vibhushan, the C. V. Raman Medal, Life Time Contribution Award in Engineering, the Homi Bhabha Lifetime Achievement Award, the Meghnad Saha Medal, the R.D. Birla Award, the Distinguished Materials Scientist of the Year Award and the Jawaharlal Nehru Birth Centenary International Visiting Fellowship by the Indian National Science Academy.

Vikram Sarabhai

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Vikram Sarabhai was born in Ahmadabad on August 12,1919. He was an Indian physicist and industrialist who initiated space research and helped develop nuclear power in India. He attended Gujarat College, Ahmadabad, but later shifted to the University of Cambridge, England. World War II forced him to return to India, where he undertook research in cosmic rays under physicist Sir Chandrasekhara Venkata Raman at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. In 1945 he returned to Cambridge to pursue a doctorate and wrote a thesis, “Cosmic Ray Investigations in Tropical Latitudes,” in 1947. He founded the Physical Research Laboratory in Ahmadabad on his return to India.

Sarabhai founded the Ahmedabad Textile Industry’s Research Association in 1947 and looked after its affairs until 1956. He also helped in setting up the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmadabad in 1962.

Establishing the Indian National Committee for Space Research in 1962, which was later renamed the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), Sarabhai also set up the Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station in southern India. After the death of physicist Homi Bhabha in 1966, Sarabhai was appointed the Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission of India. Carrying forward Bhabha’s work in the field of nuclear research, Sarabhai was largely responsible for the establishment and development of India’s nuclear power plants. He laid the foundations for the indigenous development of nuclear technology for defense purposes.

Sarabhai initiated programs to take education to remote villages through satellite communication and called for the development of satellite-based remote sensing of natural resources. Sarabhai was awarded two of India’s highest honors, the Padma Bhushan and the Padma Vibhushan. He died in Kovalam on December 30, 1971.

Sam Pitroda

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Sam Pitroda was born in Titlagarh, Odisha on 4th May 1942. He is a telecom engineer, inventor, entrepreneur and policymaker. He went to Chicago to study electrical engineering. In early 1970’s , he was involved in technology research work in telecomunnication and handheld computing . He is regarded as one of the pioneers of handheld computing as he invented electronic diary in 1975. In 1974, he joined Wescom Switching which was the first digital switching company in the world. When he returned to India in 1984, he started the centre for Development of Telemetics. In 1987, he became the advisor of Rajiv Gandhi. In 1990’s he returned back to Chicago to resume his business interests. In October 2009, he became the advisor of Indian Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh.

Alluru Seerin Kiran Kumar

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Shri A. S. Kiran Kumar was born on October 22, 1952 in Hassan, Karnataka. He is the current Chairman of the Space Commission. Shri Kiran Kumar obtained his Honours Degree in Physics from National College, Bangalore in 1971. He did M.Sc. in Electronics from Bangalore University in 1973 and M.Tech. in Physical Engineering from Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore in 1975.

A. S. Kiran Kumar has contributed to the design and development of more than 50 Electro-Optical Imaging Sensors flown on Space borne platform, the latest one being Mars Orbiter Mission. He also played a crucial role in Chandrayaan-1 mission. He has been the Chair of the Committee on Earth Observation Satellites (CEOS) in 2012. He has valuable contributions to Coordination Group of Meteorological Satellites (CGMS), Expert Team on Satellite Systems – World Meteorological Organisation (ETSAT of WMO) and Indo- US Joint Working Group on Civil Space Cooperation.

Shri Kiran Kumar is a Fellow of Indian National Academy of Engineering, Indian Society of Remote Sensing, Institution of Electronics & Telecommunications Engineers, Indian Meteorological Society, Gujarat Science Academy and Andhra Pradesh Akademi of Sciences and an elected member of International Academy of Astronautics. He was conferred the Padma Shri award by the President of India in 2014. The Government of Karnataka honored him with Rajyostava Award for the year 2015 and ‘Sir M. Visvesvaraya Senior Scientist State Award’ for the year 2013.

Tessy Thomas

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Tessy Thomas was born in Alappuzha, Kerela in April 1963. She is an Indian scientist and Project Director for Agni-IV missile in Defence Research and Development Organisation. She is also known as ‘The Missile Woman of India’.

She studied engineering from Government Engineering College in Thrissur and also has an M.Tech in Guided Missile from the Institute of Armament Technology, Pune. She also pursued MBA in Operations Management and Ph.D in guidance missile under DRDO. She joined DRDO in 1988. She was placed in the department of design and development of the new generation ballistic missile, Agni. For the Agni Programme, she has been appointed by Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam. She was awarded the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Award for her contribution in the field of missile technology. She was also awarded D.Sc. by ITM University, Gwalior in 2016.

Satish Dhawan

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Satish Dhawan was born in Srinagar on 25 September 1920. He was an Indian aerospace engineer and was also known as ‘The Father of experimental Fluid Dynamics Research in India’. He studied in University of Punjab where he completed B. Sc. in Physics and Mathematics, Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering and M.A. in English Literature. Later in 1947, he completed M.Sc. in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Minnesota, an Aeronautical Engineering Degree from the California Institute of Technology and a double PhD. in Mathematics and Aerospace Engineering. In 1972, he became the Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organisation and Secretary to the Government of India at the Department of Space. He was awarded with many honors such as the Padma Bhushan and the Padma Vibhushan in 1971 and 1981. He died on 3 January 2002 in Bangalore.

Vinod Dham

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Vinod Dham was born in 1950 in Pune, India. He is widely known as ‘The Father of the Pentium chip’ for his significant contribution in developing the most successful Pentium Processors for Intel. He did his Bachelors in Electrical Engineering from Delhi College of Engineering in 1971 after which he worked for a Delhi-based semiconductor company Continental Devices. In 1977, he completed his Masters in Electrical Engineering from the University of Cincinnati. He worked for National Cash Register at Dayton, Ohio before being hired by Intel. In 1990, he led the team that developed the 586 or Pentium processor, which became an instant hit in the market.

In 1995, he joined a startup called NextGen as Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President. Dham did important contributions in developing AMD’s famous and world’s fastest K6 Processor. After this, he opened a small startup and a communications technology development firm Silicon Spice.

In 1993, Vinod Dham was quoted one of the top 25 executives in the US computer industry and in 1999 he was among the top 100 most influential Asian Americans of the decade. In 2011, he was awarded the People Choice Award and Special Jury Award in the category of Science and technology.

 

69th Republic Day Celebrations at Amrapali Group of Institutes

26th January or ‘The Republic Day of India’ is the day when the Constitution of India came into being in 1950. Our Constitution provides several Fundamental Rights and Duties to the citizens of India. It ensures that the basic principles of Equality, Sovereignity, Liberty, Secularism, Socialism and Fraternity are respected throughout the nation. This year we are celebrating our 69 th Republic Day.
The 69th Republic Day was celebrated joyfully at Amrapali Group of Institutes today i.e. 26th January 2018. The Celebrations started with the Flag Hoisting Ceremony. The Flag was jointly hosted by Shri R. Monga, Vice Chairman AGI, Shri Narendra Dhingra Secretary AGI and Col. R. C. Bhandari, Guest of Honour on the occasion.
In his address to the students, Col. R. C. Bhandari reminded the students about the supreme sacrifices given by our Freedom Fighters. He discussed the importance of Cleanliness in our lives and how the youth of today can contribute in fulfilling the dream of a “Swatch Bharat”.  Care for the Elderly was another important issue raised by Col. Bhandari. He urged the students to stand up against social evils such as Casteism, Communalism, Nepotism, Gender Inequality, Poverty, Corruption and Intoxication.
Prof. (Dr.) Ritvik Dubey Director FCBM AGI talked about the making of the Indian Constitution. He discussed the salient features of the Constitution focussing upon the Fundamental Rights and the Fundamental Duties.
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The Celebrations concluded with Musical Performances by the students of different departments. Ms. Mandeep Kaur, Asst. Prof. AIHM did a wonderful job as the Anchor during the celebrations.
Contributed By :
Navneet Rautela ( BHM III Year )
Harshvardhan Pandey ( B Tech CSE II Year )

The Making of the Indian Constitution

Ever wondered why our Republic day is celebrated on 26th January despite the fact that it was adopted on 26th November 1949 ? What is the historical significance of this date ? What were the events that led to the formation of the world’s lengthiest constitution ? Read this article by our ex student Siddharth Dwivedi, ME 2016 Batch.

The Constitution of India was not prepared in just one or two days but the process of the formation of the constitution began many decades before India became independent. The process continued since the time it originated in the freedom struggle until a new constitution was drafted after long debates and discussions in the Constituent Assembly.

January 26th 1950 was chosen as the date on which the constitution was enacted and given to the citizens of India. Since 1930, 26th January was celebrated as the day of complete independence (Purna Swaraj) by the Congress throughout India after the Lahore Session held in 1929. It was in the same Lahore Session of 1929 that Jawahar Lal Nehru unfurled the Flag of India’s Independence on the bank of River Ravi. The Constitution of India was the lengthiest written constitution having the best elements of Parliamentary Democracy, Republicanism, civil liberties, social and economic justice, Equality, and Universal Adult Suffrage which are the most basic tenets of any constitution.

The formation of the Constituent Assembly and eventually the Constitution were merely the culmination of the series of constitutional initiatives made by Britishers in different act of parliament, viz. in 1773, 1784, 1793, 1813, 1833, 1858, 1861, 1892, 1909, 1919 and 1935.

“ Swaraj will not be a free gift of the British Parliament. It will be a declaration of India’s full self-expression. That it will be expressed through an act of Parliament is true. Swaraj can never be a free gift by one nation to another. It is a treasure to be purchased with a nation’s best blood. It will cease to be a gift when we have paid clearly for it”. This statement of Gandhi clearly proves why the saying about the British introducing constitutional reforms by their voluntary initiative is without doubt a myth.

There was a continuous battle between the demands of the national movement and the concessions granted through the Acts of 1909, 1919 and 1935. The leaders of the national movement started demanding for grant of self governance in India from 1890 onwards. And by 1916 they began to “espouse the doctrine of self determination or the right of the Indians to frame their own constitution”, very famously known as the Home Rule League led by Tilak and Anne Besant. Thus, the desire to have a constitution based on self-determination was as old as 1916.

In response to the continuous demand of the national movement, the British government appointed Simon Commission in November 1927 to recommend constitutional changes. Since there was no Indian in the Simon commission there was a wide spread protest against the commission. In response a committee was formed with Motilal Nehru as the Chairman in 1928 “to determine the principles of the constitution for India ”. The Nehru report was submitted on 10 August, 1928. It was an outline of a draft constitution for India. Most of its features were later included in the Constitution of India. It outlined a parliamentary system with full responsible government and joint electorates with time bound reservation of seats for minorities. The Nehru’s report laid special emphasis on securing fundamental human rights for the people of India. Of the nineteen rights listed in the Nehru report, ten were incorporated into the constitution.

 

This was followed by the declaration of complete independence as their objective and with the launching of the Mass Civil Disobedience Movement in April 1930 after the Lahore Session. In 1934, the Congress Working Committee rejected the white paper presented by the British government on further constitutional reforms and resolved that the “ only satisfactory alter­native to the white paper is a constitution drawn by a Constituent Assembly elected on the basis of adult suffrage or as near it is possible ”. In the 3rd Round Table Conference in which the Congress didn’t participate, the other participating delegates agreed on all issues. This then later became the Government of India Act 1935, most part of which was incorporated into our final constitution.

After 1934, the demand for the Constituent Assembly became very frequent and they included it in the Congress manifesto for the 1936-37 elections. The Congress won majority of states in 1937 elections and in its Faizpur session demanded the newly elected members of the assemblies to articulate the demand for a Constituent Assembly as soon as possible in the new legislatures.

The demand for the Constituent Assembly became more active and in the meanwhile the Second World War broke out in 1939. In order to secure the cooperation of the Indians in the Second World War, the British for the first time announced in August 1940  that the framing of the new constitution should be primarily the responsibility of the Indians themselves. It promised to give dominion status to India after the war is over. It also offered to set up “ a body representative of the principal elements in India’s national life, in order to devise the framework of the new constitution . ”

This offer, unfortunately, did not work out. It did not describe how the body was going to be constituted, and also which method was to be followed in deciding the members. This vague aspect proves that the British reluctantly agreed to this idea of Constituent Assembly and were not serious about its implementation.

Consequently, this offer of 1940 was rejected by all shades of Nationalists and the Congress Party started the Individual Civil Disobedience or Delhi Chalo movement  to register their protest. In 1942, the British government appointed Cripps Mission. The Cripps Proposals categorically stated that the constitution would be the sole responsibility of the Indians alone.

The idea of the Constituent Assembly was also accepted and they spelt out its modalities. But, once again there was confrontation between the Congress and the British, which resulted in the Quit India movement of 9 August, 1942. For the first time the nationalists openely demanded the British to ‘Quit India’ and exhorted the Indians to ‘do or die’ in this struggle. In between this, there were initiatives taken by individuals for the formation of the constituent assembly and to resolve the deadlock  between the Congress and the Muslim League which includes C Rajagopalachari Formula and Desai Liaqat Pact. The Government of India took all measures to suppress this Quit India struggle and at the end of the war in 1945, they issued a white paper, which was followed by the abortive Simla Conference.

After the war there was change in government in England and Labour government emerged victorious. It promised to make a constitution-making body as soon as possible. The Cabinet Mission was appointed to carry out this purpose and it visited India in 1946, on 24 March. After a lot of deliberation between the Congress, the Muslim League and the British, finally the Constituent Assembly came into existence.

The Constituent Assembly was to have 389 members. Of these, 296 were to be from British India and 93 from the princely Indian states. Initially, however, the Constituent Assembly comprised only of members from British India. Elections of these were held in July-August 1946. Of the 210 seats in the general category. Congress won 199. It also won 3 out of the 4 Sikh seats from Punjab. The Congress also won 3 of the 78 Muslim seats and the 3 seats from Coorg, Ajmer-Merwara, and Delhi. The total Congress tally was 208. The Muslim League won 73 out of the 78 Muslim seats. 207 members attended the first session. The Muslim League, having failed to prevent the convening of the Assembly, now refused to join its deliberations. Consequently, the seventy-six Muslim members of the League stayed away and the four Congress Muslim members attended the session. On 11 December, Dr Rajendra Prasad was elected the permanent Chairman; an office later designated as President of the Assembly.

The Constituent Assembly set up 13 committees for framing the constitution. On the basis of the reports of these committees, a draft of the Constitution was prepared by a seven-member Drafting Committee under the Chairmanship of Dr B R Ambedkar.

The draf of the Constitution was published in January, 1948 and people were given eight months. After the draft was discussed by the people, the press, the provincial assemblies and the Constituent Assembly,  the same was finally adopted on November, 26, 1949 in the light of the suggestions received. The Constitution was signed by the President of the Assembly. Thus, it took the Constituent Assembly 2 years, 11 months and 18 days to complete the task.

The Constitution of India was not an original document. The framers of the Constitution freely borrowed the good features of other constitutions. However, while adopting those features, they made necessary modifications for its suitability to the Indian conditions and avoided their defects. The constitutions which exercised profound influence on the Indian Constitution were that of UK, USA, Ireland, Canada etc.

The parliamentary system of government, rule of law, law-making procedure and single citizenship were borrowed from the British Constitution. Independence of Judiciary, Judicial Review, Fundamental Rights and guidelines for the removal of judges of the Supreme Court and High Courts were adopted from the US Constitution. The federal system with a strong central authority was adopted from Canada.

Directive Principles of State Policy were borrowed from the Constitution of the Republic of Ireland. The idea of Concurrent List was borrowed from the Australian Constitution. The provisions relating to emergency were influenced by the Weimer Constitution.

Finally on 26th January 1950 India declared itself a sovereign states and the very first article in Indian constitution states that ” India, that is Bharat, shall be a Union of States. “