Engineer's Day: M. Visvesvaraya's birthday Celebrated as the Engineer's Day
Every year India celebrates Engineers' Day in honour of Bharat Ratna Sir Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya, one of India's most notable engineers. Born on September 15, 1860, Sir MV, as he was popularly known, was knighted as a Commander of the British Indian Empire by King George V for his myriad contributions to the public good.
Upon graduating as an engineer, Visvesvaraya took up a job with the Public Works Department (PWD) of Mumbai and was later invited to join the Indian Irrigation Commission. He implemented an extremely intricate system of irrigation in the Deccan area.
He also designed and patented a system of automatic weir water floodgates that were first installed in 1903 at the Khadakvasla Reservoir near Pune. These gates were employed to raise the flood supply level of storage in the reservoir to the highest level likely to be attained by a flood without causing any damage to the dam.
Based on the success of these gates, the same system was installed at the Tigra Dam in Gwalior and the Krishnaraja Sagara (KRS) Dam in Mandya/ Mysore,Karnataka. In 1906-07, Government of India sent him to Eden,(Africa) to study water supply and drainage system and the project prepared by him was implemented in Eden successfully.
Visvesvaraya achieved celebrity status when he designed a flood protection system for the city of Hyderabad. He was instrumental in developing a system to protect Visakhapatnam port from sea erosion.
Visvesvaraya supervised the construction of the KRS Dam across the Cauvery River from concept to inauguration. This dam created the biggest reservoir in Asia when it was built. He was rightly called the "Father of modern Mysore state" (now Karnataka): During his period of service with the Government of Mysore state, he was responsible for the founding of, (under the Patronage of Mysore Government), the Mysore Soap Factory, the Parasitoide Laboratory, the Mysore Iron & Steel Works (now known as Visvesvaraya Iron and Steel Limited) in Bhadravathi, the Sri Jayachamarajendra Polytechnic Institute, the Bangalore Agricultural University, the State Bank of Mysore, The Century Club, Mysore Chambers of Commerce and numerous other industrial ventures.
He encouraged private investment in industry during his tenure as Diwan of Mysore. He was instrumental in charting out the plan for road construction between Tirumala and Tirupati. He was known for sincerity, time management and dedication to a cause
A recipient of India's highest honor, the Bharat Ratna, in 1955, he was knighted as a Commander of the British Indian Empire by King George V before Independence. He died on April 14, 1962.