APJ Abdul Kalam is regarded as the “Missile Man” of India and his contributions will inspire us for eons. He passed away in IIM Shillong, leaving an unbeatable legacy behind him. Despite belonging to a poor family, he became the 11th President of India.
He was the true embodiment of every Indian ideal. “Praiseworthy” would be a massive understatement to describe his life and his contributions. As a student, preacher, teacher, president and the aficionado of classical music, he was the true Indian.
1. Coming from a poor family in Rameshwaram, he used to deliver Tamil local newspaper to support his family and finance his education when he was young.
What’s worth noting is the fact that his interest in aeronautics began while stumbling upon an article on Super marine Spitfire in the newspaper.
2. He studied in a village that had no access to electricity. He pursued his graduation from Madras Institute of Technology.
Such was the zeal for Science and thirst for knowledge that he spent the next four decades as a Scientist and Science administrator in DRDO and ISRO.
3. His passion paved a path for the development of the nation’s first nuclear bomb – The Pokran test.
Which helped India immensely to register herself in the books of nuclear progress.
4. His tenure as the 11th President of India was highly revered because of his immense contributions and the simple lifestyle.
5. He was one of the rare politicians and the following points are a long lasting proof of that.
a. He used to accept gifts from people and put it in the museum.
b. He was never interested in throwing an IFTAR party. Instead, he donated his salary to orphanages.
c. His 50 relatives stayed over at Rashtrapati Bhavan once and he paid all the expenses after enquiring about it. (no politician has done this. EVER.)
6. While we complain and crib about the vacations, he never took one. Instead, he used this time efficiently to keep in touch with the Indian Army and most importantly, the students.
7. He was the new Chacha for the students: he loved them as he believed they were the future of the nation.
He motivated them to see the nation as a developed one by 2020.
8. He could quote Sanskrit teachings and with equal ease, could recite Quran too.
9. He was a fan of Indian classical music and loved playing the veena.
10. But more than any of these, he was revered because of his love for the nation. He never gathered wealth but only wishes from loved ones.
On this day, let’s not say that he is no more. Instead, let’s take a pledge that his teachings will inspire us in our day to day lives.
India might produce finer minds, but there are very few like Kalam who are remembered for their contributions. But beyond his contributions and his tenure as the President, he knew how to touch people’s hearts.