Has National Mathematics Day served its purpose in India?

India will celebrate their 10th National Mathematics Day on 22nd December 2024 - an event which is used to promote Mathematical approach amongst students and to enhance their interest towards Mathematical Sciences.

It’s celebrated to mark the birth anniversary of Srinivasa Ramanujan who is acclaimed to be one of the most advanced minds in Mathematics. Ramanujan was in fact a genius and no other equivalent has ever been seen to match his level and there may not be another one like him. National Mathematics Day, which was first celebrated on 22nd December 2012 – is a tribute to his genius and is also an attempt to laud existing mathematical talents & to raise new talents in the country.

In case you want to know more about National Mathematics Day, feel free to read an article that I wrote in 2011 on the occasion of the announcement of National Mathematical Year 2012. 2012 was termed National Mathematical Year and it was supposed to help build a good vibe around mathematics amongst other subjects. After 9 years in process, neither the National Mathematical Year not the National Mathematics Day, has made the impact – making my earlier predictions that I made in 2011 true. But there are some good things that has happened in past and has made maths a more fruitful career option.

I had talked about in the article about the different toughness level of mathematics syllabi and that hasn’t changed even bit. In fact, in some states – maths has gone tougher at entry level schools as well. So, instead of reducing pressure at higher & senior secondary levels, schools have put more pressure on primary & secondary levels. Mathematics related events are limited and serve only the purpose of formality. Only Olympiads & mathematical quizzes, e.g., National Mathematics Olympiad, like monetary events serve the real purpose of building mathematical approach in students. Government’s contribution to this, is limited only to fund allocation and formal events while at the ground level not much change is happening.

It’s time for government to understand what is needed and what is not and then new policies are required to be made & implemented.

National Mathematics Day 2024 – Important Facts

  1. It was announced on 22nd December 2011 that 2012 will be National Mathematical Year & 22nd December onwards will be celebrated as National Mathematics Day.
  2. S. Ramanujan was born on December 22, 1887 and he’s the reason this event is celebrated.
  3. Ramanujan has important works related to numerical analysis, number theory, infinite series & continued fractions.
  4. 1729 is known as Hardy-Ramanujan number. It is the smallest number expressible as the sum of two cubes in two different ways. 1729 = 13 + 123 = 93 + 103
  5. Ramanujan’s home state, Tamil Nadu celebrates 22 December as ‘State IT Day’, to celebrate him as a native of Tamil Nadu.