SHILLONG: Former President A P J Abdul Kalam had thanked a securityman in escort vehicle for the trouble he had taken to guard him, minutes before he died at the Indian Institute of Management here last night.
"The former President thanked a SOT (special operation team) personnel for being alert throughout the road trip from Guwahati to Shillong last evening," East Khasi Hills SP M Kharkrang said.
The personnel had at first got scared after Kalam summoned him but then the VVIP acknowledged him for doing his duty properly, Kharkrang said.
Kalam's aide Srijan Pal Singh, who was accompanying him, said they were travelling in a convoy and ahead of them was an open gypsy which was carrying three security personnel and one among them was standing atop with a gun.
"He kept on insisting that the securityman must sit down and we had even sent a radio message but nothing worked out.
After reaching our destination he asked me to find him out so that he could thank him. And he did thank him and even said 'sorry' for he had to stand for so long because of him," Singh told PTI.
Meghalaya government has declared a state holiday today as a mark of respect to Kalam who breathed his last in the city.