Amrita Patel, Chairman of National Dairy Development Board, described the architect of India’s White Revolution Verghese Kurien as a titan and a visionary who promoted and established nearly 1.50 lakh village cooperatives with 1.50 crore members across the country, leading it to emerge as the largest milk producer in the world.

Paying glowing tributes to her predecessor, she said this was no mean feat and his dream would continue to inspire millions in the years to come. “It was his single-minded determination against odds that would have overwhelmed a lesser mortal and the vision that he steadfastly strove to achieve that made this possible.”

Patel said the doyen of Operation Flood strode like a titan across the bureaucratic barriers and obstacles that, at every stage of NDDB’s history, could have brought it to its knees. “Undaunted, he stood staunchly against all the machinations of those who beheld his achievement with envy and were affronted by the sheer tenacity of the man.

The sense of professionalism, integrity and his constant search for excellence in everything that he did, Dr Kurien set an example for those who followed him to live up to. He had an extraordinary ability to convert threats into opportunities, never letting an opportunity to pass him by that could be of advantage to the organisation or those it served, she added.

A large number of people gathered in and around his house on Sunday to catch a last glimpse of the man who was born in Kerala. His last rites were done, later in the day, in Anand, his adopted hometown.

It was on the Amul miracle that eminent filmmaker Shyam Benegal made the classic film “Manthan” (The Churning) in 1976, starring Smita Patil and Nasiruddin Shah, among others. For the first time in cinema history, over five lakh farmers had contributed Rs 2 each to this film-making and thus became its producers.

(This article was published on September 9, 2012)
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