Image Courtesy: Kaushik Choudhary
Dr Kalam, 84, collapsed at the Indian Institute of Management-Shillong while delivering a lecture to the students of the B-school. He was admitted to a private hospital in Shillong in Meghalaya in a critical condition.
This was his last tweet before leaving this world:
APJ Abdul Kalam was born on 15 October 1931. A student of physics, he was obsessed with aerospace engineering. In a career that spans from scientific excellence to political heroism, he was India’s icon.
There is no word in the English language that can possibly praise Mr Kalam enough. A man of the highest integrity, he was revered and adored by one and all. He was someone who commanded respect with his deep knowledge. But in spite of his high intellect, Mr Kalam was soft-spoken, always pictured with a kind smile.
He spearheaded India’s missile development efforts. For 4 decades he played a pivotal role in the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) and the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO). He also played a major role in the Pokhran-II tests. Scientifically, Mr Kalam put India on the map.
In 2002 he was elected as India’s 11th President. He was an icon who commanded respect from everybody, from across the political spectrum, as signified by the unanimous endorsement of his election by all political parties. In an age of a thousand scams Mr Kalam was the one ray of light for a disillusioned nation. After stepping down as President Mr Kalam wrote extensively on his vision for India, inspiring multitudes of youth along the way.
Today, India lost one of her most influential sons. We have lost a flame that inspired millions with a message of hope and excellence.
“I appeal to political leaders, religious leaders, opinion makers, media personnel and all Indian citizens to place a moratorium on all issues which are impediments to the development for the nation, from now and pledge ourselves to make the missions of developed India a reality.
This will be the greatest legacy that we can proudly leave behind for our next generation. Let us sacrifice our today so that our children can have a better tomorrow.”
-APJ Abdul Kalam.