Tributes to Sir Visvesvaraya

Er. P.K. Nanda
September’15 is celebrated as Engineer’s Day all over the country under the aegis of The Institution of Engineers (India) in the memory of Sir Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya as a tribute to one of the greatest sons of India, who was an engineer by profession, a genius, a great philanthropist, a fearless patriot, a soul of great conviction and an architect of many a mighty and magnificent creation but the man was far mightier and more magnificent than his creations.
151 years ago in 1861 on 15th September to a Sanskrit scholar and Ayurvedic practitioner Srinivasa Sastry and a religious lady Venachamma in Muddernahalli village in the Kolar district of erstwhile princely state of Mysore was born M. Visvesvaraya a man who stayed in the world for 101 years 6 months and 12 days to leave an indelible mark to be emulated and followed by all particularly the engineering fraternity. Sir M. Visvesvaraya an engineer and statesman played a key pivotal role in the building of Modern India.
Honoured with the country’s highest civilian award “Bharat Ratna” in 1955, he passed Matriculation in 1876, did graduation in 1880, passed engineering and got a guaranteed appointment as an assistant engineer in Public Works Department in Bombay Presidency. He earned quick promotions by virtue of his merit and dent of hard work and rose to the highest position occupied by an Indian during the British rule.
Sir Visvesvaraya laid down his office in Bombay in 1908 only after 24 yrs of service. Immediately after this his services were requisitioned by the Nizam of Hyderabad for preparation of complete scheme for drainage of Hyderabad city as the city was reeling under floods. He was asked to advice and to assist the Government in the reconstruction of Hyderabad City to frame proposals for future protection of city from floods and to prepare a complete scheme for drainage for Hyderabad city.
This showed how his services were valued not only in Bombay where he served, but also in other parts of the country. He served the state of Hyderabad first as a Chief Engineer and then as an administrator. He improved administration by introducing the system of efficiency, audit and monitoring. This audit did useful service in systemizing works in Government offices and Departments. He was known as Strong Monitoring Officer because he used to monitor each and every work personally by following it to the last detail.
Several schemes were framed and implemented in Mysore during his tenure as an Engineer and administrator. To mention a few of the famous works are Krishna Sagar Dam on river Krishna and world famous Vrindavan Gardens in Mysore are his brain Child. He also implemented the “JOGFALL Hydro-electric scheme” in Karnataka on the pattern of Niagra fall Hydro-electric power project which he had visited during one of his visits to U.S.A./Canada.
Sir M. Visvesvaraya’s personal life was an example of elegance, integrity, austerity and discipline. His aim was to enable people to work well, earn well and live well. It was a stupendous task but he made a start in that direction. Mysore hummed with new life and activity in the court of his Dewanship. But Sir M. Visvesvaraya, an architect of many a housing scheme had no house of his own.
On this Day, let all engineers resolve to strive to make a better tomorrow working on the path of the ideas of Sir M. Visvesvaraya. He once said, ” Remember, your work may be only to sweep a railway crossing but it is your duty to keep it so clean that no other crossing in the world is as clean that as yours.” This quote is a reflection of his obsessions for perfections and excellence.
The learning in this is that we all engineers have to aim and strive for perfection and excellence for whatever we do and if we take care of our own work in our sphere with committed dedication the nation shall progress on its own. The progress of any nation depends on the engineers of the nation and in this hour of challenge particularly the challenge of reconstruction of the state of Jammu & Kashmir, engineers have to play an important role and all should take a pledge on the 45th engineers Day to rededicate ourselves with greater zeal and selfless enthusiasm to the cause of the rebuilding of the state of Jammu & Kashmir and that shall indeed be our best tribute to our great visionary Sir M. Visvesvaraya.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here