Dr APJ Abdul Kalam was born to a boatman father. His life is a living example that no matter where you come from, you can always make a difference. He has served the nation in numerous ways possible. Receiving the greatest civilian honour, the Bharat Ratna and being the man of his words. We can only hope that more people in our country, turn out to be legends like him.
Let the 2020 dream that he saw for our nation come true. That is only a little something we can do for him. May those wings be always on fire to make us strive for something bigger and better every time.
In honour of one of the most loved Presidents of India, here are some lesser known facts about him that will make you want to shed a tear.
We miss you, Sir!
P.S. This post was originally created in 2015.
He always had time for kids and youngsters who would request to meet him. He would not only meet them but listen to every single bit they had to say.
He rejected the idea of putting broken pieces of glass on the exposed periphery of the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO). The building needed protection, and he sat in the meeting to discuss the various ideas. He rejected the idea of broken glasses because that might hurt the birds.
Knowing that the government of India takes care of all Presidents, he donated all his life savings to the trust he founded. PURA is dedicated to provide urban living standards and facilities to the people living in the rural areas.
A fellow Quoran Naman Narain sent a hand made sketch of Dr Kalam. In return, Dr Kalam sent him a handwritten thank you card. Ain't that just the sweetest thing to happen!
Just when Dr APJ Abdul Kalam was announced the next President of India, he was asked to deliver a speech at a school. 400 students awaited his address. In the middle of the speech, the light went out. He stepped in the middle of 400 students and made sure that his voice reached each and every one of them.
This was back in the time when Dr Kalam was not the President of India. He was supposed to go and speak at an event. But instead, he dropped in the event space a night before to surprise his students, to encourage them. He said, "I wanted to meet the real hardworking people."
Quorian Himanshu Rai says that this one time when Dr APJ Abdul Kalam was at IIM Ahmedabad addressing a class of 60 students, they wanted a picture with him. But after lunch, Dr Kalam was running late. The organiser tried to tell students about the situation. But Dr Kalam was so humble to step forward and let the students click some pictures with him.
In one of the convocations at IIT Varanasi, Dr Kalam refused to sit in a chair that was designated for him. There were five chairs on the stage, one of them that had his name on it was bigger than all the other chairs and was kept in the middle. A similar looking chair was brought for the former President of India, thereafter.
Dr Kalam's subordinate wanted to get off work early that day because he promised his kids that he would take them to the museum. The work pressure was really bad those days at DRDO, but Dr Kalam allowed. But apparently, he got so engrossed in work that he forgot that he had to go early.
Dr Kalam has been observing him for days and knew what might happen. So he surprised his subordinate's kids at 5:15 in the evening and took them to the museum.
"What should we do to free our planet from terrorism?", asked Dr APJ Abdul Kalam to all the people out there. And Kiran Bedi, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and many people tried to help him. The nation would only progress when we all take part to make it a better place, and that is what Dr Kalam always wanted from us.
The least we can do is strive for each and every dream of his. Make sure that everything he ever wanted comes true. Let's make India the perfect nation he always wanted it to be.