I take this Opportunity to wish every member of the Kumaraguru Institution a very Happy Independence Day 2023. This day assumes a significant milestone in the history of our Nation. Our struggle for Independence was not merely a chapter in history but a testament to the indomitable spirit of its people and their unwavering resolve to get free from the clutches of British colonial rule.
There were only a few educational institutions and a handful of industries in the country post-Independence. Manufacturing industries focussed on low technology products and textiles. That was the time, philanthropists like Dr Nachimuthu Mahalingam, established technical institutions, encouraged students to become entrepreneurs, and set up factories to create employment opportunities.
Consequent four wars with Pakistan and China from 1947 to 1971, depleted our resources. We were an import nation, most of the technical products, instruments, equipment, arms, ammunition, and defence platforms were imported from Russia and European countries.
After the liberalization of the Economy in the 1990s, several educational institutions, industries, and hospitals flourished. Information Technology boom generated more and more job opportunities and the service sector had seen rapid growth and contributed almost 50% of the economy. Private players were allowed in defence industries to manufacture components and systems and supply them to Defence Public Sector Units.
Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) labs have been given adequate financial power to focus on developing technologies for self-reliance. The country’s economy and purchasing power increased substantially along with technical capability. We started making our own ships, submarine, battle tanks, aircraft, and missiles. From an import nation, now we are moving towards an export nation. Make-in-India and Atmanirbhar Bharat becomes the order of the day.
Looking at our military might, economic power, stability, technical strength, young population, and robust policies, India become one of the attractive destinations for all global firms for investment, manufacturing and research and development. While we celebrate the achievements of the past, it is essential to acknowledge the challenges that lie ahead. We need to work hard towards economic development, social equality, and sustainable growth. The spirit of Independence Day serves as a reminder of our collective responsibility to address these challenges and secure a brighter future for the next generation.
This Century belongs to us. India would become a superpower and I am sure that all the students of our prestigious institutions would play a significant role, contribute substantially and be a part of the journey. Let the spirit of Nation First, நம் நாடு and Hamara Desh grow in us.
–Rear Admiral V Mohan Doss (Retd)
Former Assistant Chief of Naval Staff (Air Materiel)