Address by Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu, Honourable Vice President at an event to release the book titled “Dr Y. Nayudamma: Essays, Speeches, Notes & Others” at Swarna Bharat Trust in Vijayawada on April 18, 2022.

Vijayawada | April 18, 2022

“Distinguished invitees, brothers and sisters !
The humankind across the world has inherited various ancient civilizations like the Egyptian, Mesopotamian, Babylon, Greece, Chinese and the Indus valley. These civilizations have evolved since the time humans first decided to give up their nomadic, hunter gatherer life style in favour of settling down at one place. It has been a long long journey of thousands of yeasr till we became members of what is called the modern civilization, with it’s common features and aspirations across the globe. What has characterized this journey is the accumulation of knowledge and more knowledge and pursuit of higher standards of living. The driving force of this modern journey is the rapid strides in the fields of science and technology, particularly, during the last two centuries.
So much so, a human being has now to be called as the ‘technological animal’, ever looking for new tools that further his growing ambitions. This relentless quest for a better living has thrown up some serious issues. The rapid evolution and growing application of science and technology to every aspect of our lives has thrown up some serious concerns about the purpose, relevance, values and consequences of the blind folded pursuit and application of science and technology.
As we meet here today commemorating the birth centenary of renowned scientist Dr.Yalavarthi Nayudamma garu, the son of the soil, it is appropriate to reflect on these concerns.
I am happy to release a publication titled, “Dr.Y.Nayudamma: Essays, Speeches, Notes & Others” on this occasion. Preparatory to this occasion, I have gone through some essays contained in this publication.
I am amazed by the vision of Dr.Nayudamma garu about the future of science and technology and various and concerns that revolve around it’s application. He had proposed a philosophy that should guide the application of science and technology for the common good, propelled  by societal values. He had outlined a clear set of goals and objectives and the values that should guide their applications as tools of betterment of lives of the people and as catalysts of change for socio-economic development. He elaborated on his concerns and various issues in a very simple and easily understandable manner.
The founding principles of his philosophy are so appealing and convincing that they are very much relevant for today. In view of the strength of his arguments and the light offered by his philosophy for science and technology, I propose that it should be made part of the curriculum for students of higher classes. This helps in promoting proper understanding about the objectives of the rapidly expanding domain of science and technology so that the budding and aspiring scientists get the right understanding and orientation at an early stage of their learning.
The essays on ‘Management of Science : Challenges and Perspectives’, ‘Social Values and Technology Choice’ and ‘Trinity : In the Service of the Society’ are particularly, illuminating. I advise all concerned to read them for proper understanding of various issues and concerns about the pursuit and application of the tools of science and technology.
I compliment Dr.K.Chandrahas and Dr.K.Seshagiri Rao, Editors of this publication for their painstaking effort in collecting and presenting such illuminating views of Dr.Nayudamma garu that would serve as a  guide to posterity.
Dear brothers and sisters !
The main issues are  whether science and technology should adapt to the people or people should adapt to them? Whether they should emerge from the felt needs and concerns of the people or should be driven from the top? What are the values that should guide and govern the pursuit of science and  technology and their applications? How to contain and handle the undesirable consequences of indiscriminate application of these powerful tools? Whose interests should these tools be serving? Dr.Nayudamma garu offered answers to these questions during his life and works. So, it is worth knowing those answers.
The works and contributions of Dr.Nayudamma garu in themselves held mirror to the objectives of science and technology. He was clearly an agent of social change and demonstrated how scientists and technologists could be effective agents of such change. Science pursued in ivory towers may not by itself serve the humanity. It should be taken to the people in the form of effective technological tools that people could use to solve their problems. Science should be for the society and the people. People’s aspirations and goals should set the agenda for science and technology development.
To further illustrate this point from the works of Dr.Nayudamma garu, he had made pioneering contribution to change the face and nature of tannery industry in the country. The profession of collecting hides and skins of dead animals, pursued by some traditional communities used to be looked down by others. It was because of the bad odour that comes from such activities and the unclean nature of the work. Dr.Nayudamma made a deep analysis of such issues and reflected on how a difference could be made through use of science and technology for making this profession widely acceptable. He succeeded in it by enabling the removal of stench, improving the skills  of those involved in it. He promoted the leather products to improve the incomes of tannery workers. In the process, he proved that application of science and technology should help in enhancing the economic viability of the activity to which these tools are sought to be applied. Science and technology should enable more gainful employment.
As a result, the leather products have come to be more and more acceptable. Indian leather products are in great demand in international markets. In fact, the situation today is that possession of a good quality leather product like shoes, handbags etc have come to be statements of status. People from various communities are now involved in leather industry breaking the traditional barriers and prejudices.
Dr.Nayudamma garu had fervently desired that such socio-economic transformation should flow from the application of science and technology and demonstrated how it could be done. As a scientist, he was an agent of social change.
Values guide the choice of technology. The focal value guiding the people across the globe is ‘materialism and consumerism’. There should be a limit to such values guiding technological development. Such materialistic pursuits for comforts in the name of quality living do not help people living in peace with themselves. Indian philosophy and thought hence, lays stress on spiritual pursuit for internal peace for living in harmony with the society and nature. Competitive pursuit of materialism should not be the goal and serving such ends should not be the agenda for science and technology.
I am struck by the vision of Dr.Nayudamma garu as some of his stated views are now reflected in some major initiates of the Government led by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. I would like to briefly touch upon schemes like Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana, Sab Ka Saath-Sab Ka Vikas-Sab Ka Prayas and Atmanirbhar Bharat, in this regard.
Talking about the need for empowerment of all sections of the society, Dr.Nayudamma garu in a context stated that if a woman has a bank account, she would be treated differently and respected in the family. This helps in her emancipation. This is clearly at the core of the launch of Pradhan Mantri  Jan Dhan Yojana under which about 50 crore bank accounts have been opened to enable financial inclusion and empowerment. Cleary, he was ahead of the times and hence, a visionary.
Self-reliance was the core of the philosophy of Dr.Nayudamma garu. He opined that colonial past and  western training,  orientation and education have made us look to the west for import of technology and solutions and western remedies may not solve India’s problems, which are different and context specific. He strongly advocated self-reliance in science and technology. This is the essence of the Atmanirbhar Bharat initiative of Prime Minister Shri Modi.
Referring to the provisions of the United Nations Charter, Dr.Nayudamma garu had emphasized on enabling all to live in dignity, worth, equality of rights, better standards of life, security etc with the participation of all in national endeavors. This is the underlying principle of the philosophy of ‘Sab Ka Sath-Sab Ka Vikas-Sab Ka Prayas’.
It is rare to find such far sighted and visionary scientists like Dr.Y.Nayudamma garu. We pay tributes to such a legend. It was very unfortunate that he died in a plane crash in 1985 when he was only 63 years of age. He rose to become the Director General of Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, the apex body for promotion of science and technology in our country at the young age of 49 years in 1971 and was honoured with Padma Shri in the same year. Had he lived longer, our country would have benefitted much more.
Dear brothers and sisters !
Dr.Nayudamma garu was a link in the chain of great scientific heritage of our country. Thousands of years ago, we had great scientists like Baudhayan, Aryabhat, Brahmagupta, Bhaskaracharya, Mahaviracharya, Varahamihira, Kanad, Susruta, Charak, Patanjali etc who made pioneering contributions to various field of knowledge. This tradition had dimmed during the medieval period marked by the onslaught of foreign invasions.
Concerted efforts are now being made to restore the pride of being ‘Vishawaguru’ that India was in the past. All of us need to participate in this effort by streamlining our systems of education, modes of science and research.
We are living in times when knowledge  is the real power. We need to empower all with the knowledge that is the best resource of every individual. We need to provide such kind of knowledge that enables resolution of problems of our nation collectively.
Dr. Nayudamma garu stressed that education is not to provide relief and it should release the inner potential of all for making everyone self-reliant and self-confident. We need such systems of knowledge providers in all domains.
An individual flourishes to her best only with a sense of community participation  and in an environment of collective endeavour. Such an eco-system is best provided when we are guided by the spirit of nationalism. Nationalism, accordingly is a positive force for rapid progress of our nation by realizing the full potential of every individual. It is not a negative factor as is being sought to be propagated by some.
The developmental strategies followed globally based on modern scientific and technological advances are resulting in rapid resource depletion, ecological imbalance and inequities. What is needed is alternative development models for sustainable and harmonious development. Environment is not a piece of real estate. It is a heritage to be held for future generation and is a serious responsibility of all.
Science and technology should serve the people and should not turn the people into it’s slaves.
Dr.Nayudamma garu had reflected on all these issue with utmost clarity and vision. We need to be guided accordingly. Science and technology should serve the cause of the people and not of a few elite. They need to be handled with care for common good.
I compliment the Nayudamma Foundation for Education and Rural Development, operating out of the Nadimapalli village to perpetuate the vision and philosophy of Dr. Y.Nayudamma garu. Thank you all!”