Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya received the Bharat Ratna in 1955 for his work in engineering and education.(ILLUSTRATION: Rushikesh Tulshiram Gophane)
Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya received the Bharat Ratna in 1955 for his work in engineering and education.(ILLUSTRATION: Rushikesh Tulshiram Gophane)

Engineers Day 2021: Remembering M Visvesvaraya on his 160th birth anniversary

  • Engineers Day 2021: M Visvesvaraya is also known as ‘VM Sir’ due to his various contributions to the field of engineering and being a pioneer of education.
Written by Susmita Pakrasi | Edited by Meenakshi Ray, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON SEP 14, 2021 11:28 AM IST

Every year September 15 is celebrated as Engineers’ Day in India to commemorate one of India’s finest engineers, Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya. M Visvesvaraya is considered one of the foremost nation-builders, creating marvels upon which modern India was built. He was referred as the ‘precursor of economic planning in India’, according to the Institution of Engineers India (IEI). M Visvesvaraya is also known as ‘VM Sir’ due to his various contributions to the field of engineering and being a pioneer of education.

Born on September 15, 1861, in a small village called Muddenahalli in Karnataka, Visvesvaraya received a degree in civil engineering from Pune College of Engineering. His expertise was in the fields of irrigation and flood disaster management. He rose to fame with his groundbreaking works in these fields with modern irrigation techniques as well as flood control and mitigation.

He designed the ‘automatic barrier water floodgates’ which was installed in Pune in 1903 at the Khadakvasla reservoir. He was the chief engineer responsible for the construction of the Krishna Raja Sagar dam in the Mandya district of Karnataka and the chief engineer of the flood protection system for Hyderabad. He also established the famous Government Engineering College, now known as University Visvesvaraya College of Engineering in 1917.

He was knighted as a Knight Commander of the British Indian Empire (KCIE) by King George V for his contributions towards public good. M Visvesvaraya received India’s highest honour, the Bharat Ratna, in 1955.

Greeting engineers on Engineers Day last year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, “…We remember Sir M. Visvesvaraya on his Jayanti. India is proud of the contribution of our engineers towards nation building." In 2019, PM Modi said engineers are synonymous with diligence and determination. "Human progress would be incomplete without their innovative zeal. Greetings on #EngineersDay and best wishes to all hardworking engineers. Tributes to the exemplary engineer Sir M. Visvesvaraya on his birth anniversary,” he added.

In 2018, PM Modi commended the engineers of the country. He took to Twitter to honour engineering genius M. Visvesvaraya. "On #EngineersDay, I congratulate our hardworking engineers and appreciate their dexterity as well as dedication. Their role in nation building is extremely vital. I also pay tributes to the noted engineer, Shri M Visvesvaraya, on his birth anniversary," he wrote.

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