Project Summary: Your speech will be more effective if you can support your main points with statistics, testimony, stories, anecdotes, examples, visual aids and facts. You can find this material on the Internet, at a library and in other places. Use information collected from numerous sources and carefully support points with specific facts, examples and illustrations, rather than just your own opinions.
- Collect information about your topic from numerous sources.
- Carefully support your points and opinions with specific facts, examples and illustrations gathered through research.
Time limit: 5 to 7 minutes with a minimum qualification time of 4 minutes 30 seconds and maximum time of 7 minutes 30 seconds.
What have we done?
November 5. The time was 2:38 PM. I was standing beside the window of my office with a few other colleagues… feeling proud to be an Indian. We all were awaiting to see Mangalyaan, the Mars orbiter mission cruising through the sky. As the rocket was sailing through the atmosphere, I asked my friend with a lot of excitement, “We are the first country to send a rocket to mars, right?” He looked at me with a grin on his face and said, “Develop your general knowledge Gautam. We are the 4th. ISRO is the 4th space agency to send a probe to mars after the Soviet Space program, NASA and Europe space agency. I started wondering why we aren’t first. Has India discovered anything or contributed anything to the world of science, technology, mathematics or astronomy? I started digging for answers and found a lot of interesting facts which I am going to share with you.
Let us begin by looking into what Indians have done to the field of mathematics. We all know that there are four Vedas namely Rig, Yajur, Sama and Atharvana Vedas and among all these Rig is the oldest Veda that was written during 1700 BC. The tenth verse of Rig Veda appears to be written in praise of Lord Indra. But the technical translation of this verse gives the mathematical value of pi upto 28 decimal digits. Until the invention of computers, western mathematicians could find the value of pi only up to 16 decimal digits. But we Indians have done a much better job in 1700 BC itself.
Another interesting fact is that, we Indians have made a wonderful contribution to the field of mathematics by inventing the number zero. The Romans never knew this number. We have mathematical texts by Arya Bhatta which contain numbers as large as one followed by 62 zeros, which the Indians called as Mahogam in those days.
Now let us take a look at what we have done to the field of medicine. Imagine you are a love story writer. If you had been in the 1980s, you would write love stories which involve sending love letters. If you are in the present generation, you would write love stories which involved sending love e-mails. So the concept is that you would write stories based on the technologies and developments around you at that period. Right? Now keep that in mind when I present to you another amazing fact. Mahabharata, one of the two great Indian epics was written during 400 BC. So Rishi Vyas, who is believed to have written the epic would have written it based on the technologies and developments during those days. Mahabharata says that Gandhari had 100 sons called Kauravas and the story of their birth made me feel awestruck. Gandhari actually gave birth to a large piece of lifeless meat, but she wanted a hundred sons. Rishi Vyas told her that it is still possible to get 100 sons. He asked Gandhari to arrange for 100 large jars. The piece of meat was cut into 100 pieces and kept in the jar with some ghee, oil and some herbal preservatives added to it. Finally 100 babies were formed. Now what does this sound like? <short pause> Yes, the concept of test tube babies. If he had written about this, it means that the concept of test tube babies was prevalent in our country way back in 400 BC.
Now coming to the field of science, starting from the invention of wheel, we Indians have done a humongous contribution to science. People believe that the first person to discover the velocity of light was Ole Roemer, a Danish astronomer in 1676 AD. But, once again, the rig veda which was written way back in 1700 BC contains a verse written in praise of the sun god. It gives the velocity of light which is much closer than the value given by the Danish astronomer.
Whatever I shared with you so far is just one percent of what the Indians have done. If I keep speaking about this, I think the timer will stop flashing cards and start flashing shoes and slippers indicating me to stop. One speech is not enough for me share the whole thing. And one life is not enough for me to know completely about what Indians have done. From today, if someone asks u what the Indians have contributed, feel proud to say that in every known field, we have launched rockets, we have rocked and ruled. Proud to be an Indian!!!
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