Published: 12th April 2022
What happened on April 12: The first man on the moon and when polio vaccine was tested safe
Yuri Gagarin was a Soviet cosmonaut and industrial technician you should know about. Also, the polio vaccine tests safe! Here's how it all started...
Have you heard about Yuri Gagarin? He was the first human to journey into outer space and the space flight took off on April 12, 1961. The then 27-year-old Soviet cosmonaut and industrial technician became the first man to orbit planet Earth on the Vostok 3KA spacecraft. This feat was accomplished by his space capsule in 108 minutes. The capsule orbited Earth at a maximum altitude of 187 miles and was guided entirely by an automatic control system.
This started a new chapter in the history of human endeavour in outer space. On April 14, 1961, Yuri was awarded the Order of Lenin and also given the title of Hero of the Soviet Union. This mission, in general, was a great blow to the United States which had scheduled its first space flight in May 1961.
Since then, the International Day of Human Space Flight is observed globally on April 12. Yuri was widely celebrated in Russian Space museums, with numerous artefacts, busts and statues displayed in his honour. A part of his spacecraft is displayed at RKK Energiya Museum in Korolyov, Russia.
Dr Thomas Francis Jr, Director of the Poliomyelitis Vaccine Evaluation Center at the University of Michigan's School of Public Health, announced that the Salk Polio vaccine was safe and effective on April 12, 1955. Guess what? He was the former colleague of Jonas Salk, the man behind the vaccine.
The vaccine became a standard part of childhood immunisations in America. The field trials for the vaccine involving 1.8 million children began on April 26, 1954. It was also stated that the polio vaccines would wipe out the highly contagious disease in the Western Hemisphere.
Birth of Cricket’s Hall of Fame
Have you heard about Mulvantrai Himmatlal 'Vinoo' Mankad? He was an Indian cricketer known for setting a world record in 1956 for an opening partnership of 413 runs with Pankaj Roy. The world record stood for 52 long years! He was also known for appearing in 44 Test matches for India between 1946 and 1959.
Vinoo Mankad was born on April 12 ,1917.
If his surname is ringing a bell, here's why. It is after this cricketer that the term 'mankading' was named. This is the term used when a bowler runs out the non-striker batsmen when the latter steps out of the crease as the bowler is about to release the ball. It was back in 1948 when he did it to Australian cricketer Bill Brown after duly warning him.