After a biopic on ISRO scientist Nambi Narayan, actor R Madhavan is expected to star in a drama based on the life of Gopalsamy Doraisamy Naidu.

Fondly remembered as the ‘Edison of India’, Gopalswamy Doraiswamy Naidu aka GD Naidu is credited for initiating the industrial revolution in the country.

The prolific inventor is renowned for path-breaking inventions such as a kerosene-run fan, projection tv, mechanical calculator, ticket vending machine, electric razor, and most importantly, the first electric motor of India.

Born on 23 March 1893 in a Telugu-speaking family, he was never interested in studies and hence chose to drop out in Class 3.  While working on his father’s farm, a 16-year-old Naidu laid eyes on a 1912 model Rudge motorcycle that belonged to a British revenue officer.

He was so smitten by the bike that he left his native village Kalangal and moved to Coimbatore. For almost three years, he worked as a waiter and saved enough money to buy the bike.

Finally, he purchased the bike for Rs 300. He dismantled the bike multiple times to study its design and structure. This is how Naidu learnt about automobiles.

Later with a loan of Rs 4,000, he bought a motor coach with which he began his transport business in 1920. By 1933, he owned a fleet of 280 buses.

A few years later, his transport business had a name — Universal Motor Service (UMS) – one of the largest public transport services in the country. UMS wasn’t the only company that Naidu started.

He founded New Electric Works in Coimbatore in 1930 to manufacture electric motors and it was this company that gave India its first electric motor.

Post-retirement in 1944, he dedicated himself to making society better. He would give grants to researchers who showed potential for inventions.

India’s Edison breathed his last on 4 January 1974. Despite his humble beginnings and being a school dropout, he was not afraid of dreaming big and taking risks at every step.