Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who arrives in India for his maiden visit as Head of Government, isn't just representing the world's second largest country but a nation which impacts the daily lives of several millions in India.
If there was no Canada, that would be bad news for the nearly 73 million diabetics in India, the second highest number of diabetics in the world after China. Thanks however, to Canadian Frederick Banting who discovered insulin, used to control diabetes, several of these diabetics live an easier life.
If there was no Canada, it would have been a tad difficult to gauge how fast you were driving your car, or how many kilometres the car had covered. However, thanks to the odometer, the modern version of which is credited to Samuel McKeen of Nova Scotia, who attached the first odometer to the wheels of his carriage, one can know how fast and how far has one travelled. Judging by the fact that last year saw some 90 million cars being sold, 3.2 million of which were in India, the odometer has certainly travelled far.
If there was no Canada, there would have been no walkie-talkies, invented in 1937 by Donald Hings and which really took off during the Second World War when the military used them for field communication. Even today, these contraptions are used for communication by police forces.
If there was no Canada, life for many of the painters of homes and commercial buildings would have been distinctly miserable. The paint roller was invented in 1940 by Manitoba native Norman Breakey and it certainly helps the Rs 50,000 crore Indian decorative and industrial paints market with greater application. The roller not only made for a smoother finish than the brush but also helped create the do-it-yourself industry for house painting.
If there was no Canada, there would have been no peanut butter, adversely affecting the 12,000 tonnes per year peanut butter production in India, much of it in Gujarat and 90 per cent of which is exported. Peanut butter was invented by Marcellus Gilmore Edson of Montreal in 1884.
If there was no Canada, it would have been one sweaty ride inside the metro coaches in Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru or any of the other cities - not to mention there would have been no air-conditioned coaches in the Rajdhani Express, Shatabdi Express or any other train. The air-conditioned railway coach owes its origins to Canadian businessman, inventor and legislator, Henry Ruttan, who invented it in 1858.
If there was no Canada, there would have been no kerosene, discovered by Abraham Gesner, a Canadian physician and geologist. It not only warmed the hearths of millions of Indians in cities and villages but also dispelled darkness, literally, in the absence of electricity. Kerosene-fuelled stoves and kerosene-fuelled lamps are still used in several parts of India - with some 380 million Indians using such lamps. In fact, the largest use of subsidised kerosene in the world is in India.
If there was no Canada, a lot of women would have been unhappy, due to the absence of the wonderbra - another Canadian invention and one that helps the Rs 19,000 crore bra market in India grow in double digits annually. Its invention is credited to Moses Nadler who designed the first wonderbra in 1939.