“India launches record-breaking 104 satellites from single rocket” This news was such a hot topic and why shouldn’t it be? India is gaining a reputation in science and technology world. Everyone was talking about ISRO and how great India is. Such a proud moment for every Indian.
Though it was such a proud moment for us, what surprised me was why world was so surprised? Indian culture is one of the oldest culture. We discovered so many things in ancient times, then why should this record comes as a surprise? We all saw the comic of New York Times making fun of ISRO. That’s just give us the view of foreigners about India. Why should be country so old has an impression so bad?
Let’s discuss timeline of all inventions in India. In 7000 BC, Indians started practicing dentistry. Ayurveda can be traced back to 5000 BC. ‘Buttons’ were used in India in 2800 BC. ‘Flush toilet system’, ‘Diamond mining’ and ‘Stepwell’ can be traced back to 2500 BC. ‘Ruler’ and ‘weighing scale’ were used in 2400 BC. ‘Plastic surgery’ in 2000 BC, ‘Pythagorean Triplets’ in 700 BC and ‘High quality steel’ in 200 BC are the proofs of advance Indian society. In later years, Decimal system, Cataract Surgery, Zero, Bramhagupta’s theorem, Interpolation and many more inventions were made till 1300.
After that there was a dark age for Indian science. Few inventions in next few centuries didn’t justify the name of Indian science. Till 1900 India and other countries had forgotten the level of science in India. After 1900 many inventions took place but as compared to Indian population, we need to ask ourselves few questions? Do we really deserve that respect?
We have a great concept – जगत मिथ्या mean world is a mystery. Now there are two ways to look at this statement. First is, world is a mystery so why bother? Second is, World is a mystery so let’s solve it. That ‘Why bother’ attitude has kept us suppressed for too long.
India ranked 20th in number of Nobel prizes. Now one can argue that India became independent in 1947 before that British ruined our technology. It’s true in some aspects. But if you look at countries having more Nobel prizes than India, most of them were on losing side in World War 2. Some were invaded and destroyed. Still their technology is better, why? Now some might argue that Nobel Prize is not the best judgement of technology advancement. India was ranked 22nd in Global high tech exports, behind countries like Mexico, Netherlands and Vietnam. So what’s our excuse?
Almost 0.7 to 1.5 million engineers graduates per year in India, which is far more than other countries. But we lack in one very important field, which is curiosity. Second important thing is our tendency to stay in the past. Yes, our past was glorious and yes, we should be proud of it. But our comeback for every questions against technology in India is ‘We invented number zero’.
It’s a high time. We need to develop curiosity for anything and everything. We need to teach new generation to ask question. Sure learn history. Know that ‘Shampoo’ was discovered in India but don’t use that as an excuse for not inventing further. Some will say that they are not scientists, how can they contribute? Literacy rate in India is 74.04%. If you are literate, teach to those who need it. You might not be a scientist or technological expert but you can create one.
It’s funny how today we have all these facilities and yet we have so many excuses to achieve what we really want. New generation is supposed to be the leader of new tomorrow, but if we didn’t prepare ourselves for the cause how are we going to achieve our dreams? Books are uncool now, so new generation bought tablets & big screen phones and still they are more close to Zara than Quora. We have all the instruments we need and all the opportunities we want, what we lack is initiative.
So an institute from the grounds of same ancient India, IIT Ropar has taking one such initiative – ‘Advitiya’. We know people have knowledge and skills, Advitiya will give you a perspective about how to channel those knowledge and skills for betterment of everybody. One step at a time. Many workshops, talks and competitions are being conducted just to give everyone an opportunity to be free to affect others with their knowledge. They say miracles happen when great minds come together, let’s make some miracle happen. They say if you are the smartest person in the room, it’s time to change the room so we bring you the whole campus filled with people from all fields and skills, just to meet, talk, invent and dream.
Dr. Abdul Kalam had the vision 2020. We can still achieve that. It’s never too late to start. It’s never too late to achieve.
Links : http://advitiya.in/