NEW DELHI: President Ram Nath Kovind on Sunday remembered, India’s Missile Man, former President APJ Abdul Kalam on the latter’s 86th birth anniversary and said the country would continue to be inspired by him. Describing Kalam as one of the greatest visionaries who ignited young minds, Kovind said India will never forget the remarkable contributions of Kalam in different fields ranging from science to academics.
Kovind was talking to a group of children who arrived at the Rashtrapati Bhavan from Rameswaram by the bus ‘Dr Kalam Sandesh Vahini Vision 2020’. These children had called on the president. Stating that Kalami was among India’s finest personalities, Kovind said the country would always remember Kalam fondly for as the People’s President. He said, “One of the best ways of building the character of the youth of any country is to inspire them to read biographies of great personalities.”
The President also recalled his predecessor’s momentous contribution to India's scientific heritage through his involvement in varied fields ranging from nuclear technology to designing low cost stents for the heart or lightweight calipers for polio victims. “India will never forget the remarkable contributions of Kalam. He had a great passion for teaching and education and truly ignited young minds with the power to think and innovate,” Kovind said. Born on October 15, 1931, former President of India Kalam died on July 27, 2015. He was a popular head of state between 2002 and 2007.
The President also remembered how Kalam enjoyed spending time with people. Kovind said, “He (APJ Abdul Kalam) was adored by people and youngsters. He loved students and spent his final moments among them.” Appreciating the Kalam Sandesh Vahini bus which gives a glimpse into Kalam’s life and his achievements, President Kovind said the bus is spreading the former President’s vision in a very interesting manner. Kovind said he was sure that a large number of Indians, especially the young people have benefited by seeing the mobile exhibition on the life, works and the vision of Kalam.
The Kalam Sandesh Vahini was launched by House of Kalam and Chinmaya University. The Vahini depicts various incidents from Kalam’s life as well as key highlights of India’s scientific achievements, with an aim to educate and inspire the masses. It was flagged off by Prime Minister Narendra Modi from Rameswaram on July 27, 2017, during the inauguration ceremony of Kalam's memorial.
The Vahini has travelled from Rameswaram, through various states, to finally arrive at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi. Earlier in the day, Kovind paid floral tributes at the portrait of Kalam at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. Officers and staff of Rashtrapati Bhavan along with family members of Kalam also paid floral tributes on the occasion.