National Mathematics Day is celebrated to honour Ramanujan’s contributions to the field of mathematics. (Representative image: Shutterstock)
Srinivasa Ramanujan’s contributions to mathematics were revolutionary and astounded esteemed English mathematicians like Godfrey Harold Hardy, or G. H. Hardy who remained his friend till death
NATIONAL MATHEMATICS DAY 2022: December 22 is celebrated as National Mathematics Day to mark the birth anniversary of Indian mathematical genius, Srinivasa Ramanujan. Ramanujan attributed his mathematical theories and solutions to his family goddess, Namagiri Thayar, or Goddess Lakshmi.
His contributions to mathematics were revolutionary and astounded esteemed English mathematicians like Godfrey Harold Hardy, or G. H. Hardy who remained his friend till death. Below, we look at the history and significance of National Mathematics Day.
National Mathematics Day: History
On December 26, 2011, former Prime Minister of India, Dr Manmohan Singh, declared December 22 as National Mathematics Day, while attending the 125th birth anniversary celebration of Ramanujan at Madras University, the latter’s alma mater. The day was first celebrated in 2012. A postage stamp with Ramanujan’s image was also issued in 2012 by the then Government of India, to mark National Mathematics Day.
“As a tribute to the great mathematician, our government has decided to declare [Ramanujan’s] birthday, that is December 22, as the National Mathematics Day and the year 2012 as a whole as the National Mathematical Year. India has a long and glorious tradition of mathematics that we need to encourage and nurture. I hope these steps will help in providing the additional impetus to the study of mathematics in our country, apart from making our people more aware of the work of Ramanujan,” Dr Manmohan Singh had said.
Ramanujan died when he was only 32, due to complications from various illnesses during his London stay. Yet, in that short life, he developed new mathematical formulas, such as infinite series, number theory, continued fractions and game theory; all without having ever received any formal training in mathematics.
Ramanujan was inducted into the Royal Society of London and is the first Indian to become a Fellow of Trinity college, Cambridge. More than nine decades after his death, scientists discovered that one of Ramanujan’s formulas can explain the behaviour of black holes.
National Mathematics Day: Significance
National Mathematics Day is celebrated to honour Ramanujan’s contributions to the field of mathematics. The day reminds not just Indians, but people all over, to chase their passions and discover new things that may change the world, like Ramanujan did.
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