Dr. Verghese Kurien: The Taste of India
Did you know that India’s very own ‘doodhwala’ (milkman) Dr. Verghese Kurien never drank milk! Were he alive now, he would have been highly tickled to have a doodle of him leisurely milking a buffalo presented to him by Google on his 94th birthday.
Single-handedly catapulting India into the world map as the largest milk producer, the father of the ‘White Revolution’ in India, Kurien was one helluva proponent of the cooperative movement of small-scale farmers, which went on to contribute to the success of Operation Flood, as he himself termed it.
Shyam Benegal’s highly acclaimed 1976 movie Manthan (signifying deep contemplation) traces this very journey of how a gradual churning of facts and circumstances with diligence and dedication, can bring about a mighty revolution without a single drop of blood being shed.
This movie is also a celebration of the grit and determination of over five lakh members of the Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation who contributed Rs.2 each to cover the film’s production cost – an instance of crowd-funding, which is the latest fad among new-gen film makers. We Indians sure do know how to lead the way!
Our very own Amul (an acronym for Anand Milk Federation Union Limited) is Dr. Kurien’s baby and nourished over the years into a trusted brand name in its own right.
He firmly believed that true development lay in nurturing men and women –humans first and not restricting it to merely looking after the land or cattle.
Though born a Keralite, he preferred to spend his last days in Nadiad near Anand district in Gujarat, the state which brought his dreams to fruition… a trans-Indian truly!