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My Uncle DR. C.V.S. Ratnam

Birth and Childhood :

My uncle, Dr.CVS Ratnam was born in a small town Cumbum, Prakasham District, Andhra Pradesh in a financially poor Arya Vysya family.

He topped in school & university at all times. Once a Mathematics teacher told his parents that he wished to give him more than 100 marks in SSLC Mathematics paper but could not do so as the board rules would not permit. Such was the standard of solving and presenting Mathematics paper.

He made his own pen by gathering different parts of the pen out of thrown away waste and wrote his SSLC examinations.

My father once said that he used to read Hindi and English news from the newspapers used for packing provisions.

He was a real-life hero of our town. Whenever he visited our hometown, several people used to gather in our house to meet him. He was the first person to go abroad from our village and do MS in Oregan State University, U.S.A. Govt. of India sponsored his studies abroad. He completed MS and Ph. D in the shortest possible time and won SIOUX Award – an award given by the university to their alumni in recognition of their outstanding contribution in their own field- from North Dakota University.

Dr. Ratnam and his life

After returning from USA, he was the first engineer to work for a government-owned-fossil fuel mines and thermal power plant under the Ministry of Coal, Government of India. He was instrumental in building the Briquetting & Carbonisation plant, and was involved right from the inception and ensured that both plants were operational.

Knowing his knowledge and expertise, Shri. Abid Hussain who was an Indian economist, Civil Servant and a Diplomat invited him to join United Nations. He served several years a Scientist and played a pivotal role in Technology transfer from developed Nations to developing Nations.

He visited 50+ countries while he was working for NRDC ( National Research & Development corporation) and ESCAP an UN organisation.. Some of his achievements are noteworthy.

*Actively participated in Indian Institute of Engineers till his demise.

* Actively participated in Asian Institute of Rural Development activities.

* Worked closely with Mr. M.V. Rajasekharan, Former Union Minister of State for Planning,

Government of India.

* Given guest lectures in several institutes such as Indian Institute of Science .

* Financially assisted to improve the Infrastructure of a Telugu school in Bangalore and gave

a generous donation for the betterment of the School in the memory of his parents

Chaluvadi Venkata Subbaiah and Narayanamma.

* Encouraged his wife, Smt. Sarojini Ratnam to write several thousand poems on Lord Rama

through her failing eye sight.

* Organised Bhajans at his home every year to promote his wife’s lyrics.

* Offered financial support to Cumbum Govt Library to get more books and newspapers .

* He sponsored Gold, Silver & Bronze Medals for meritorious students in Cumbum

Government Junior College till his demise.

Once the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh invited him to join Telugu Desam Party. For some reasons, he did not show any interest to join TDP.

Final Moment:

He had an issue with his heart. His left Ventricle was mal- functioning. He knew his end was nearing. He preferred to have peaceful death without major surgeries. Very few people would be so clear about their old age and death. It was indeed a painful day when he passed away right in front of my eye, as doctors were battling to save him. I would never forget that moment which broke my heart.


Truly a self-made man who shined professionally and personally. Proud to say that he served our country as a Scientist, Entrepreneur, Philosopher, and guide for me and many. We truly miss you uncle.

Medal and certificate given in the name of Chaluvadi Venkatasubbaiah and Narayanamma Trust

Government Junior College, Cumbum, Andhra Pradesh.


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