The true Ratna of Bharat, devoted son of Bharat Ma and a true patriot-that’s what APJ Abdul Kalam, the former President of India is. It is not possible to describe him in words I know, but I just want to pay him a tribute.
Born on Rameshwaram island in a Tamil-Muslim family, Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam has covered a great distance to become th 11th President of the Indian Republic. As he came from a poorhousehold, he used to distribute newspapers while he studied. crossing the hardships of his life, he got his ascent marked to the highest office of the country. His success defines his saying,”Thinking should become your capital asset, whatever ups and downs you may come across in your life.”
He left the nurturing security of his family at the age of 10, facing absence of any High school on his native island. He stopped eating non-vegetarian food at the age of 15 when he found the school mess bills unaffordale for him. He studied B.Sc. as there was nobody to guide on how to get admission into an engineering college after intermediate examination. He became an aeronautical engineeer in the pursuit of his passion of flying an aircraft. Rejected by the Indian Air-Force for a pilot’s job, he continued to remain close to flying machines in the defence aeronautical establishment. Till this point of time, his life had been like that of any other small town lower middle class Indian youth. The first turning point came when the National Committee for for Space Research (INSCOPAR) was formed and a talent pool of good aeronautical engineers was created to set-up what later became the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). From here started his perposeful contribution towards the Satellite Vehicle launching programmes. He was chosen to lead Satellite Launch Vehicles (SLVs) amongst many more distinguished peers. This experience shaped him into a formidable leader. He was decorated with the Padma-Bhushan in 1981 and was given the task of developing indeginous missile capabilities. His tireless journey into missile research gave fruitful results to the nation. He was a key personnel to develop Nag, Prithvi, Aakash, Trishul and Agni missiles to become the Missile-man of India.
Kalam imbibes the simplicity of Mahatma Gandhi in his personal life. He still remains unaffected and untainted by the temptations and privileges that the world has offered to him.He was and remains a traveller of life.
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