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Sir Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya

Sir Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya

Expertise

Water, Environmental Management

Location

India
Career highlights

Inventor of the Block System

Built a flood-protection and drainage management system, safeguarding Hyderabad from flooding

Chief engineer of the life-saving Krishna Raja Sagara (KRS) Lake and dam project

Why you might have heard of Sir Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya

Sir Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya was a civil engineer, statesman and the 19th Diwan of Mysore.

He was responsible for significant engineering projects in India, including the Krishna Raja Sagara dam in Mandya, which helped convert nearby wasteland into fertile land and became the primary source of drinking water for many neighbouring cities.

The dam itself continues to draw thousands of visitors every year. 

Beyond his astonishing achievements in engineering, Sir M. Visvesvaraya is credited for his extraordinary work in accelerating industrialisation and education in India.

He was appointed a Companion of the Order of the Indian Empire (CIE) in recognition of his achievements and contribution to Indian society.

Personal life

Visvesvaraya was born in Bangalore, India, to a Telugu Brahmin family.

His family instilled strong principles in the young Visvesvaraya, which he demonstrated through his personal and professional conduct throughout his life.

He died on 14 April 1962 at the age of 102 years old.

Image credits

Profile image: Wikimedia Commons

Banner image: Shutterstock

Fascinating facts

On his 100th Birthday, 15 September 1960, India Post issued a postage stamp of Visvesvaraya.

He was knighted as Knight Commander of the British Indian Empire (KCIE) by King George V for his contribution to public good. 

Every year, his birthday marks the celebration of Engineer’s Day in India.

He received the Indian Republic's highest honour, the Bharat Ratna, in 1955.

Visvesvaraya founded the Government and Engineering College, which was later re-named University Visvesvaraya College of Engineering (UVCE) in his honour.

Notable projects

Hyderabad City flood-protection scheme

The Krishna Raja Sagara (KRS) lake and dam project.

Membership of societies

Visvesvaraya was an honorary member of ICE.