Mankombu Sambasivan Swaminathan & Abanindranath Tagore

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Mankombu Sambasivan Swaminathan & Abanindranath Tagore

Mankombu Sambasivan Swaminathan

Born: 7 August 1925

  • He is an Indian geneticist and administrator, known for his role in India’s Green Revolution, a program under which high-yield varieties of wheat and rice were planted.
  • He has been called the “Father of Green Revolution in India” for his role in introducing and further developing high-yielding varieties of wheat in India.
  • He is the founder of the MS Swaminathan Research Foundation.
  • His stated vision is to rid the world of hunger and poverty.
  • He is an advocate of moving India to sustainable development, especially using environmentally sustainable agriculture, sustainable food security and the preservation of biodiversity, which he calls an “evergreen revolution.”
  • From 1972 to 1979 he was director-general of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research. He was Principal Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture from 1979 to 1980.
  • He served as Director-General of the International Rice Research Institute (1982–88) and became president of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources in 1988.
  • In 1999, Time magazine placed him in the ‘Time 200’ list of most influential Asian people of the 20th century.

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Abanindranath Tagore

Born: 7 August 1871

Died: 5 December 1951

  • He was the principal artist and creator of the “Indian Society of Oriental Art”.
  • He was also the first major exponent of Swadeshi values in Indian art, thereby founding the influential Bengal school of art, which led to the development of modern Indian painting.
  • He was also a noted writer, particularly for children.
  • Popularly known as ‘Aban Thakur’, his books Rajkahini, Budo Angla, Nalak, and Khirer Putul are landmarks in Bengali language children’s literature.
  • He sought to modernize Mughal and Rajput styles to counter the influence of Western models of art, as taught in art schools under the British Raj and developed the Indian style of painting, later known as Bengal school of art.
  • Such was the success of his work that it was eventually accepted and promoted as a national Indian style within British art institutions under the epithet of Indian Society of Oriental Art.
  • However limited Rothenstein’s experiments with the styles of early Modernist Indian painting were, the friendship between him and Abanindranath ushered in a crucial cultural event.
  • This was Rabindranath Tagore’s sojourn at Rothenstein’s London home, which led to the publication of the English-language version of Gitanjali and the subsequent award to Rabindranath in 1913 of the Nobel Prize for Literature.
  • The publication of Rabindranath Tagore’s Gitanjali in English brought the Tagore family international renown, which helped to make Abanindranath’s artistic projects better known in the west.

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