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Engineers’ Day 2021: Date, History and Significance

Engineers’ Day is observed in India on 15 September, the birth anniversary of Bharat Ratna Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya. Sir M Visvesvaraya made important contributions to engineering and education. He is regarded as one of India’s greatest nation-builders, having played a key role in the construction of dams, reservoirs and hydropower projects. As chief engineer, Sir M Visvesvaraya oversaw the building of numerous architectural marvels, including the Krishna Raja Sagar dam in Karnataka and the Hyderabad flood control system.


Engineers’ Day was established by the Indian government in 1968. Since then, this day has been observed to honour and recognise all engineers who have contributed to the development of a modern and developed India, as well as those who continue to do so.


Sir M Visvesvaraya invented and patented automated water floodgates in 1903. It featured automatic doors that closed in the case of a water overflow, and it was also known as Block System. It was initially erected at the Pune reservoir Khadakvasla.

Sir M Visvesvaraya was born in 1861 in a tiny hamlet near Chikkaballapur in Karnataka. He studied Bachelor of Arts at Madras University and civil engineering at Pune’s College of Science. He founded the Government Engineering College in 1917, which is today known as the University Visvesvaraya College of Engineering in Bengaluru.

Sir M Visvesvaraya as Role Model

Following a devastating storm in Hyderabad in 1908, the Nizam enlisted Sir M Visvesvaraya’s help in designing a drainage system to keep the city safe from flooding. To minimise contamination of the Musi river, which runs through Hyderabad, the engineer recommended the building of storage reservoirs as well as a sewage farm outside of the city.

In 1955, Sir M Visvesvaraya was awarded the Bharat Ratna as well as a British knighthood. From 1912 until 1918, he was the Diwan of Mysore. The country pays homage to Sir M Visvesvaraya on Engineer’s Day.


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