December 22 is celebrated as National Mathematics Day every year in India, to mark the birth anniversary of famous mathematician, Srinivasa Ramanujam.

Born in 1887 at Erode, Srinivas Ramanujam belonged to a Tamil Brahmin Iyengar family. He enormously contributed to mathematical analysis. By the age of 13, Ramanujam used to solve trigonometry exercises and developed own theorems.

Ramanujam was not able to complete his pre-university course due to lack of knowledge in other subjects, although he excelled in mathematics.

In 1903, while searching for a permanent job, Ramachandra Rao, a government official, was impressed by Ramanujam’s mathematical skills during an interview. Therefore, Ramachandra Rao helped Ramanujam for his research. Later, Ramanujam managed to become a clerk at Madras Port Trust.

In 1914, Ramanujam travelled to England under Prof. GH Hardy’s insistence, and published more than 20 research papers between 1914 and 1919. He was also awarded a doctorate and was elected the Fellow of Royal Society. Ramanujam then returned to India in 1919, and took his last breath at the age of 32 on April 26, 1920.

In 2012, the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh declared December 22 as National Mathematics Day to honour Ramanujam. ‘The Man Who Knew Infinity’, a movie released in 2015, was based on the mathematician’s biography.