Dehradun: Urging the younger generation to be mindful of the country's glorious history, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Saturday that Aryabhatta had discovered that the earth is round and rotates on an axis much before Copernicus.
Addressing the Uttarakhand's 20th Foundation Day event here as the chief guest, Singh described the youth as the most effective agent of positive change in the country who has the ability to revive old Indian values and its glorious past. He said India is a diverse country but a common cultural thread constituted by its faith in values like generosity, universal brotherhood and equality of religions runs through its different parts and binds them together. It is the only country which has believed for centuries in the philosophy of "Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam (the world is one family)", he said.
"There is no country in the world except India which regards the entire universe as its family," he said. Describing India as a country which treats all religions equally, he said it had a history of embracing and giving due respect to followers of different faiths when they were forced by circumstances to leave their respective homelands. "The jews who suffered persecution everywhere for thousand years finally got acceptance only in India. Even Islamist countries don't have as many sects of Muslims as in India where all 72 sects of Muslims reside," he said. Reminding the audience, which consisted of students from the city's different educational institutions, of ancient India's achievements in the field of science and innovation, he said Aryabhatta had discovered that the earth is round and rotates on an axis much before Copernicus.