B’luru scientist strives to break 100 world records

Dr S Ramesh Babu, a retired metallurgical scientist and world record holder poses in his home points to shuttle cocks used in record-breaking attempt. DH Photo

At first glance, Professor S Ramesh Babu might be mistaken for a quiet academic. Since 1989, however, the Bengaluru-based scientist has been attaining so many world records that he has become the number one record-holder in the country.

A metallurgist by training, Babu (63) said he caught the record-breaking bug while living in Canada in 1988. While watching a TV programme showcasing heroes of the recently concluded Seoul Summer Olympics, he realised that none of the “heroes” were Indians.

“I kept wondering why no Indians were represented, and this motivated me to try and break a world record,” he said.

His first attempt in 1993 involved carrying out the longest uninterrupted shuttle badminton rally in the world. He smashed the existing record of 3,000 strokes in one hour with 3,060 strokes in 54 minutes.

It was a feat which earned him plaudits from the Guinness World Records and the Limca Book of Records. Since then, Babu has accumulated 72 world records (according to documents) — including two in October, during which he skipped and performed non-stop Vrikshasanas, to leap back into the record books.

Some of his feats include driving from Kanyakumari to Kashmir and back in eight days, crafting and launching 264 paper planes in one hour, flying a kite to an altitude of six km, and one of his most recent achievements: carrying out 32 jump-rope skips in 30 seconds on October 5, which broke a Japanese record of 26 skips in 30 seconds.

“I became passionate about breaking records because I want to test the limits of human endurance,” he said. He explained that he is also prepared to attain or break at least 100 world records before old age puts an end to his endeavours.

“The intention is to inspire young people,” he added.

However, not everyone is impressed with his projects.

Babu’s wife, Usha, who was initially supportive of his projects, has since become apathetic.

“This record-breaking has become never-ending. I don’t see any point to it, primarily because it cannot inspire poorer segments of the population as it is too costly for them to indulge in,” she said.

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