The Indian government officially declared May 11 as National Technology Day to mark the anniversary of the Pokhran nuclear tests of 1998. This day is to commemorate the achievements of Indian engineers and scientists. This year, India is observing its 30th National Technology Day.
Pokhran nuclear tests were a series of five nuclear bomb test explosions that were conducted at the Pokhran Test Range. India successfully test-fired Operation Shakti missile on May 11, 1997, the first among five nuclear tests in Pokhran.
The test was headed by former President Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam. Following the success of the operation, then Prime Minister Atal Bihar Vajpayee declared India a nuclear state, making it the sixth country to join the ‘nuclear club’ of nations. Since 1999, May 11 is observed as ‘National Technology Day’.
The nuclear tests were carried out in collaboration with scientists from the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC), Atomic Minerals Directorate for Exploration and Research (AMDER).
The theme of the National Technology Day 2021 is ‘Science and Technology for a sustainable future’.
A look at India’s biggest achievements in Science & Technology:
Pokhran-II was the first Indian test of a nuclear weapon since 1974. On May 11, ‘Operation Shakti’ had been initiated and two day later Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee announced India’s new status as the world’s sixth nuclear weapons armed power.
India’s space program came of age in 2008, with the first remote-controlled space mission, Chandrayaan-1, reaching the moon.
INS Arihant (2009):
India formally launched its first indigenously designed and constructed ballistic missile submarine (SSBN), the INS Arihant on 26th July 2009, a project that began in the 1960s.
Polio-free India (2014):
On March 27, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared India free from polio. Bill Gates described it as “the greatest global health achievement that I have witnessed”.
On January 5, the GSLV-D 5 rocket, which launched the GSAT-14 communications satellite, was powered for the first time by an Indian-made liquid-fuelled cryogenic engine.
India’s first ever indigenous supercomputer was a major milestone in modern India’s technological journey.
Brahmos is the world’s fastest and most formidable anti-ship cruise missile.