ACTION PUNJAB NEWS Desk: The announcement of the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian award, for Mankombu Sambasivan Swaminathan, reverberated across the nation as Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled this prestigious honour. Renowned as the father of the ‘Green Revolution’ in India, MS Swaminathan’s groundbreaking contributions to agriculture and farmers’ welfare have left an indelible mark on the nation’s history.
A distinguished agricultural scientist, MS Swaminathan’s visionary leadership and innovative strategies propelled India towards self-reliance in agriculture during tumultuous times. His pioneering efforts in modernising Indian agriculture and fostering technological advancements have been instrumental in ensuring the nation’s food security and prosperity.
In a heartfelt tribute shared on social media platform X, Prime Minister Modi reminisced about his personal connection with MS Swaminathan, underscoring the deep admiration and respect he held for the late scientist’s values and insights.
“It is a moment of great pride for our nation as we confer the Bharat Ratna upon Dr. MS Swaminathan Ji. His monumental contributions to agriculture and farmers’ welfare have reshaped the landscape of Indian agriculture. Dr. Swaminathan’s unwavering dedication to innovation and mentorship has inspired countless students and researchers, paving the way for a brighter future for Indian agriculture,” PM Modi’s post on X resonated with gratitude and reverence for the eminent scientist.
It is a matter of immense joy that the Government of India is conferring the Bharat Ratna on Dr. MS Swaminathan Ji, in recognition of his monumental contributions to our nation in agriculture and farmers’ welfare. He played a pivotal role in helping India achieve self-reliance in… pic.twitter.com/OyxFxPeQjZ
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) February 9, 2024
Through his visionary leadership and unwavering commitment to the well-being of farmers, MS Swaminathan has not only revolutionised Indian agriculture but also nurtured a legacy of progress and prosperity for generations to come. His invaluable contributions continue to serve as a beacon of hope and inspiration, illuminating the path towards a sustainable and prosperous future for Indian agriculture.
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Who is MS Swaminathan, the father of India’s green revolution?
1. Born on August 7, 1925, MS Swaminathan was a multifaceted personality, renowned as an agronomist, agricultural scientist, plant geneticist, administrator, and humanitarian. His significant contributions earned him the title of the ‘father of the Green Revolution’ in India.
2. Swaminathan embarked on his career in 1949, delving into research on the genetics of various crops such as potatoes, wheat, rice, and jute. His groundbreaking work in developing high-yielding varieties of paddy revolutionised agricultural practices, particularly for low-income farmers in India.
3. Recognised as the ‘father of economic ecology’ by the United Nations Environment Programme, Swaminathan collaborated with key figures in Indian agriculture, including C Subramaniam and Jagjivan Ram, during the 1960s and 70s. Together, they spearheaded the Green Revolution, leveraging chemical-biological technology to enhance wheat and rice productivity.
4. Swaminathan held esteemed administrative roles in numerous agricultural research institutions, serving as the Director General of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research and the International Rice Research Institute. He also served as the Principal Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture in 1979 and later assumed the presidency of the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. Additionally, he chaired the National Commission on Farmers in 2004.
5. Throughout his illustrious career, Swaminathan garnered several accolades for his contributions, including the Ramon Magsaysay Award in 1971, the Albert Einstein World Science Award in 1986, and the inaugural World Food Prize in 1987. His commitment to agricultural research led to the establishment of the MS Swaminathan Research Foundation in Chennai. Swaminathan’s remarkable achievements were further recognized with the Padma Shri, Padma Bhushan, and Padma Vibhushan awards, among others.
6. Beyond his national acclaim, Swaminathan made significant global contributions to agricultural and environmental initiatives, earning recognition as one of Time magazine’s “20 most influential Asians of the 20th century.”
7. MS Swaminathan passed away in September last year at the age of 98, leaving behind a profound legacy of agricultural innovation and humanitarianism. He is survived by his three daughters Soumya, Madhura, and Nitya, following the passing of his wife Mina in 2022.
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(Inputs from agencies)