1925 – ‘Father of India’s Green Revolution’ Dr.M.S. Swaminathan was born. Under his leadership India implemented a successful program of developing high-yielding varieties of wheat seedlings.He dreams to vanquish hunger and poverty in this world. He became the director general of the International Rice Research Institute in 1982 and also served as President of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources in 1988. In 1999, he figured in TIME magazine’s list of 20 most influential Asian people of the 20th century. The Government of India bestowed on him the Padma Shri (1967), the Padma Bhushan(1972) and the Padma Vibhushan (1989). Dr.Swaminathan also won the World Food Prize in 1987 and the Ramon Magsaysay Award for community leadership in 1971.
1941 – Poet, Philosopher and Educationist ‘Gurudev’ Rabindranath Tagore passed away. Gurudev gave the country its national anthem which is the first of the five stanzas of a poem composed in highly Sanskritized Bengali.He founded the Viswa-Bharti University at Shantiniketan. His ‘Geetanjali’, a collection of 103 poems became highly popular and was widely translated in the West.It has an invigorating preface by W.B.Yeats.In 1913, the Swedish Academy awarded him the prestigious Nobel Prize. In 1915, Gurudev was knighted though he renounced the title in 1919 in protest of the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre. The literary genius’s noted works include ‘Geetanjali’, ‘Gora’, ‘Ghare-Baire’, ‘Jana Gana Mana’, ‘Amar Shonar Bangla’ etc. The day (30th July 1941) before his scheduled operation Gurudev dictated his last poem to Ashoke Kumar Sen, former Cabinet Minister and brother of Sukumar Sen-India’s first chief election commissioner. His Words:
I will take life’s final offering, I will take the human’s last blessing.
Today my sack is empty. I have given completely whatever I had to give.
In return if I receive anything—some love, some forgiveness—then I will take it with me when I step on the boat that crosses to the festival of the wordless end.”
1942 – The Session of the Indian National Congress that passed the Quit India Resolution began at Gowalia Tank Maidan (Kranti Maidan) in Mumbai.
1947 – The Bombay Municipal Corporation(now Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai) took over the management of Bombay Electric Supply and Transport Company (now Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport).