He went from distributing newspapers after school during childhood to become the President of our country. He was awarded Padma Bhushan, Padma Vibhushan and Bharat Ratna – the highest civilian honour. Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam made every day of his life count for all it’s worth.
The 11th president of our country was 83 when he passed away. Doctors reportedly said that he suffered from a cardiac arrest.
Though he was known by many tags –‘People’s president’, ‘Missile Man’, ‘The man behind Vision 2020’; he will not only be remembered for the immeasurably remarkable achievements and marks he left behind, but surely as a great human being, for his determined character, for his love, for his patriotism, for he could ignite our minds.
We recapitulate some of the well known bits and parts of his life on his fourth death anniversary:
• Dr. Kalam was born in Rameswaram in Tamil Nadu on October 15, 1931, to a humble boat owner. A determined soul since childhood, he started working at an early age to contribute to the family income. He was brought up in a multi-religious, tolerant society; one with a progressive outlook. He overcame all odds and carried on to pursue graduation in physics and later study aerospace engineering on a scholarship.
(Dr Kalam’s Home in Rameshwaram || Image: colorlibrary)
• His first mark for our country was his accomplishments as a Scientist. Late Dr. Kalam joined Aeronautical Development Establishment of Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) in 1960.
(Dr Kalam with Friends || Image: pinterest)
• Nine years later he was transferred to Indian Space Research Organization. Late Dr. Kalam claimed that joining ISRO was one of his biggest achievements in life.
( Young Dr Abdul Kalam With Vikram Sarabhai || Image: isro)
He said he found himself when he started to work on the Satellite Launching Vehicle (SLV) project. Dr. Kalam made significant contribution as Project Director to develop India’s first indigenous Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV-III) which successfully injected the Rohini satellite in the near earth orbit in July 1980 and made India an exclusive member of Space Club. Dr. Kalam took up responsibilities for developing Indigenous Guided Missiles at the DRDO which led to the development of AGNI and PRITHVI missiles.
(SLV – III Review meeting, with presence of Sathish Dhawan || Image: www.jagran.com)
He also led the Pokhran-II nuclear tests that made India a nuclear weapon country. His remarkable contributions to the space and defense programs of our country would be one of the reasons for the country’s success.
(Then PM AB Vajpayee and Dr. Kalam at Pokhran Nuclear test Site || Image : www.images99.com)
• In 2002, both the ruling party, Bhartiya Janta Party, and the Opposition Party, Congress came together to elect him as the 11th President of India. After serving a term of 5 years, he returned to civilian life of education, writing and public service. He has written a number of books and documentaries, the best known being Wings of Fire and Ignited Mind. A recipient of a number of awards, he topped them all by Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian honor in 1997.
(Image : hdwallpaperswala.com)
He saw a dream for our country known as Vision 2020. He wanted to see our nation standing amongst the developed countries of the world. The only real tribute to him would be when we manage to achieve that goal as a united country. “A dream is not that which you see while sleeping, it is something that does not let you sleep,” as he famously said.