Engineers : The backbone of any Nation

Prabhat Kishore
In the year 1968, Government of India had declared 15th September as “Engineers Day” as a tribute to the greatest Engineer Bharat Ratna Mokshagundam Vishveshvaraiya. Born on 15th September 1860, Dr. Vishveshvaraiya went to become India’s most prolific civil engineer, dam & bridge builder, economist, statesman and can be counted among the last century’s foremost Nation-builders. Nation as well as society recalls the priceless and irreplaceable contribution of their engineers in nation building.
Engineer’s Day is observed in several countries on various dates having their own importance. UNESCO celebrates March 4th of every year as World Engineer’s Day at international level to feel proud of our engineer’s achievements in every field of Science & Technology.
The history of engineers is as old as civilisation. As civilisation developed people began reshaping their environment with villages, farms, watersheds, roads, ships and eventually towns. With each advancement came new challenges that required more complex and creative solutions, which were solved by experiments as well as experience. With the passage of time, there has been considerable overhauling in the system. The advent of computer & software has completely changed the scenario in infrastructure sector. Quality in construction, planning, scheduling, organising, co-ordinating, controlling, management etc has been improved and elapsed time minimised.
In religious scripture, Bhagwan Vishwakarma has been enshrined as an engineer & architect of the Devlok. In Treta Yug, during departure of Shri Ram to Sri Lanka, two warriors of the Vanar Sena-Nal and Neel showed their engineering expertise by constructing stone bridge “Shri Ram Setu” across the ocean between present day Dhanushkodi in Rameshwaram (Bharat)  and Mannar (Sri Lanka). The bridge, having approximately 30-35 Km length & 3 Km width, is the unique model of ancient engineering dexterity.  
Engineers play a very important role in every walk of life. They are technically skilled professionals, who are responsible for solving problems through the use of machines, devices, systems, materials and processes. They convert knowledge of basic sciences into products. Their main focus is on making things work efficiently and effectively by applying the theories and principles of sciences and mathematics to research, and develop economic solutions to technical problems. The engineer differs from scientist by the nature of their training. While the scientists try to explore the natural world and discover new knowledge about the universe and how it works, engineers apply that knowledge to solve real problems, often with an eye toward improving cost and efficiency.
Their works are the link between the perceived social needs and economic applications. They are the bridge between science and art.
(To be contd)