Patna: Super 30 founder mathematician Anand Kumar on Wednesday hailed the announcement of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, declaring eminent mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan’s 125th birth anniversary as the National Mathematics Day and 2012 the National Mathematics Year.

Talking to media here, Kumar said that by doing so, the Prime Minister had not only accorded 'belated honour' to the great mathematician, but also provided much needed encouragement to all those associated with mathematics in the country, which would go a long way in popularising mathematics as an academic discipline.

Kumar said it was heartening to see a Prime Minister expressing concern over 'waning interest' in mathematics despite its huge potential in both pure science and social sciences.

“I hope the government will now initiate concrete measures to popularize mathematics, which can happen only through competent teachers. It is important to use technology and have a system for preparing quality teachers by acquainting them with new techniques and methodologies,” he added.

The Super 30 founder said that the Prime Minister’s concern that India was not producing enough mathematicians was valid and it needed a concerted approach to reverse the trend.

“Nothing can substitute a good teacher. It is therefore important to accord respect to teachers and create an environment so that the talented ones felt encouraged to make a career in the subject – be it as a teacher or a researcher,” he said.