December 22nd: The National Mathematics Day

by Shiwani Pandey August 29, 2022

What is Mathematics Day in India?

Mathematics is the overall group of sciences and studies that deal with numbers, shapes and structures, patterns, and the relationships between them. Everywhere we go and everything we do, math is all around us. It is known for being the building block of our daily life. It involves pure reasoning and logic behind the discoveries and verifying properties of various abstract objects.


Mathematics helps grow better problem-solving skills in every individual. It enhances the ability to think critically and logically about the situation and solve problems easily. Mathematicians all around the globe seek out patterns and approaches, formulate new speculations, and set up the truth after meticulous deductions from perfectly chosen principles and definitions. In this article, you will learn about Mathematics Day and the famous mind after whom the day is celebrated.



National Mathematics Day


National Mathematics Day


Why Do We Celebrate Mathematics Day?

December 22nd is the National Mathematics Day every year in India, but why do we celebrate Mathematics Day? It is celebrated to pay tribute and commemorate the birthday of the honorary mathematician, Srinivasa Ramanujan. This day was declared by the former Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh at the Madras University in 2012. His announcement came during one of his visits to this university on Srinivasa Ramanujan’s 125th birth anniversary. This auspicious day marks the importance of Mathematics in everyone’s life and inspires people to grow their self-learning skills and think more rationally.


Celebrating National Mathematics Day


Celebrating National Mathematics Day


How is the Ramanujan National Mathematics Day Celebrated?

To celebrate Ramanujan National Mathematics Day, the National Academy of Sciences, India (NASI), the oldest scientific academy in India, conducts a workshop every year on various applications of mathematics and Ramanujan. Well-known lecturers and specialists in Mathematics from all over the nation attend this workshop.


Spokespersons from various parts of the country and even at the world level keep their speeches in front of others and discuss Ramanujan’s immense contribution to mathematics. A two-day workshop was arranged at the NASI headquarters at Prayagraj on December 30th and 31st, 2019, on the topic ‘History of Indian Maths before 16th Century’. The workshop covered discussions on the following topics:

  • India’s contribution during the Vedic period

  • India’s assistance during the Classical period

  • India’s offerings during the Medieval period

All schools and universities throughout the country celebrate this day with many educational events, including mathematical quizzes and competitions, every year on 22 December, to respect the legendary mathematician. In 2017, Ramanujan Math Park was inaugurated in Kuppam, in Chittoor, Andhra Pradesh, to intensify the significance of this day.


Who was Srinivasa Ramanujan?

Now that you have learned a lot about the celebration of National Mathematics Day, it’s essential to know a few details about this genius mind which encouraged generations to practise mathematics.


Srinivasa Ramanujan Aiyangar was born to a Tamil Brahmin family on December 22, 1887, in the district of Erode in Tamil Nadu. He had significantly less interest in other non-mathematical subjects, which was the cause for his failure in college exams held in the year 1903. In 1912, while Ramanujan was working in the Madras Port Tryst as a clerk, he was discovered by one of his colleagues, who also happened to be a mathematician. He introduced Ramanujan to Professor GH Hardy of Trinity College, Cambridge University.


In 1916, he earned his degree of Bachelor of Science (BSc), and a year later, he was elected to the London Mathematical Society. He was also voted as a Fellow of the esteemed Royal Society for his in-depth research on Elliptic functions and his theory of numbers. He was the first Indian chosen as a Fellow of Trinity College in the same year.


He returned to his country in 1919, but unfortunately, a year later, he passed away at age 32.


Srinivas Ramanujan’s Contribution to Mathematics

Srinivas Ramanujan, a spontaneous mathematical brilliant mind, reshaped Mathematics in the twentieth century through his enormous contributions to various Mathematics domains. His discoveries vastly impacted several areas of mathematics, such as infinite series, mathematical analysis, number theory, continued fractions and even game theory.


Although Ramanujan left the world aged only 32, not many could compete with his remarkable contributions to Mathematics in their lifetime. Unexpectedly, he was never formally trained in Mathematics.

  • Most of his discoveries were established based on his instincts, which were proven correct in the end.

  • In 1911, his papers were published in the Journal of the Indian Mathematical Society.

  • He assembled almost 3900 results, mainly equations and identities, without anyone else's assistance.

  • Some of his results are even indigenous and novel, like the Ramanujan theta function, partition formulae, mock theta functions, and the Ramanujan prime. All these outcomes encouraged various other research and opened new paths of work.

  • Ramanujan also discovered his theory of divergent series and executed the Reimann series, hypergeometric series, elliptic integrals and even the functional equations of the zeta function.

  • The most fascinating among Ramanujan’s discoveries is the number 1729, popularly known as the Ramanujan-Hardy Number.

  • Based on Ramanujan’s biography, ‘The Man Who Knew Infinity,’ written by Robert Knaigel, once GH Hardy visited Ramanujan at a hospital and told him that the taxi number in which he came in was 1729, which seemed to be an ordinary number.

  • Ramanujan disagreed with the fact, and later 1729 was termed the Ramanujan-Hardy number.

According to his theory, the smallest number can be expressed as the sum of two different cubes in two different ways. These conclusions can be summed up as below:

  • 10³ + 9³ = 1000 + 729 = 1729

  • 12³ + 1³ = 1728 + 1 = 1729


Conclusion

December 22nd marks the birth anniversary of the legendary mathematician Srinivas Ramanujan. Whenever we talk about Mathematics Day, the only thing that comes to mind is how genius Ramanujan impacted the world with his groundbreaking discoveries and theories. To pay him tribute, this day was declared the National Mathematics Day and is celebrated throughout the nation to accentuate the importance of Mathematics among every individual.