Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Monday said that surgeons in ancient India were capable of performing complex procedures like plastic and cataract surgeries, reported PTI. Naidu was addressing an event after conferring awards at the Adi Shankara Institute of Engineering & Technology in Kerala’s Kalady town, reported Manorama Online.

“We knew how to make steel alloys and smelt zinc,” he said, according to PTI. “Our ancient surgeons could conduct many complicated surgeries, including plastic surgery and cataract surgery.” He said scientists, mathematicians, physicians, astronomers and innovators in ancient India had significantly advanced human knowledge.

The vice president said along with gross national income, the focus must be on how science and technology can foster greater happiness and better quality of life. Naidu said youngsters in the country should draw inspiration from the best of India’s traditions and revitalise the nation.

“Advancement of human knowledge has occurred in our country because of the spirit of enquiry, the ability to question, the ability to research and the ability to arrive at the truth,” he said.