PM urges youth to take up maths

PM urges youth to take up maths

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh here on Monday expressed concern that for India ’s size, “the number of competent mathematicians we have is badly inadequate.”

Singh declared 2012 as “the National Mathematical Year” as a tribute to the great mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan.

The Centre has also decided to declare the birthday of the genius, December 22, “National Mathematics Day,” Singh said while inaugurating the year-long celebrations at the Madras University Auditorium  to mark the 125th birth anniversary of Ramanujan.

He also expressed concern over a slide in the number of students pursuing higher studies in mathematics. He also rued the sharp decline in the number of quality mathematics teachers in schools and colleges.

He rebuffed perceptions that pursuing mathematics does not end up in a rewarding career. The mathematicians now have a wide array of attractive careers to choose from, with “the teaching profession itself becoming much more attractive.”

He was hopeful of a revival of mathematics in the ensuing “National Mathematical Year.”
Singh spoke highly of Ramanujan, whose “whose extraordinary genius so very brightly lit up the world of mathematics in the second decade of the last century. Though Ramanujan came from an economically disadvantaged background and had only minimal training in mathematics, his genius overcame formidable difficulties to reach the pinnacle of greatness.”

Union Human Resource and Development Minister Kapil Sibal said the ace mathematician’s life shows how discoveries were beyond formal education. He also emphasised the role of the education system in nurturing students.

Black flag demonstration

Meanwhile, Black flags and high decibel protests marred the second day of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s maiden visit to the state.

Over 1,200 members of different political parties, including the DMDK activists led by Vijayakant, were arrested in Chennai and at Karaikudi, where the Singh attended functions.

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