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Born - 15 October 1931

Achievements - This eminent scientist and engineer has also served as the 11th President of
India from the period 2002 to 2007. APJ Abdul Kalam is a man of vision, who is always full of
ideas aimed at the development of the country. He firmly believes that India needs to play a more
assertive role in international relations.

Apart from being a notable scientist and engineer, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam served as the 11th
President of India from the period 2002 to 2007. He is a man of vision, who is always full of ideas
aimed at the development of the country and is also often also referred to as the Missile Man of
India. People loved and respected Dr APJ Abdul Kalam so much during his tenure as President
that was popularly called the People's President. Read more about the biography of Dr APJ Abdul
Kalam here.

APJ Abdul Kalam was born on 15 October 1931 at the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu and
received honorary doctorates from about 30 universities globally. In the year 1981, the
Government of India presented him the nation's highest civilian honor, the Padma Bhushan and
then again, the Padma Vibhushan in 1990 and the Bharat Ratna in 1997. Before Kalam, there
have been only two presidents - Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan and Zakir Hussain - to have received
the Bharat Ratna before bring appointed to the highest office in India.

Read on about the life history of Dr APJ Abdul Kalam, who's also the first scientist and bachelor
to occupy the seat of the Rashtrapati Bhavan. His perspectives on important topics have been
enunciated by him in the book 'India 2020'. It highlights the action plans that will help develop the
country into a knowledge superpower by the time 2020. One thing for which he received ample
kudos is his unambiguous statement that India needs to play a more assertive role in international

And Dr APJ Abdul Kalam regards his work on India's nuclear weapons program as a way to
assert India's place as a future superpower. Even during his tenure as President, APJ Kalam took
avid interest in the spheres of India's science and technology. He has even put forward a project
plan for establishing bio-implants. He is also an ardent advocate of open source software over
proprietary solutions to churn out more profits in the field of information technology in India.
Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam Maraikkayar born October 15, 1931, Tamil Nadu, India,
usually referred to as Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam is the former President of India. He is supposed to
be India`s 12th President of India from the perios 2002 to 2007. A notable scientist and engineer,
he is often referred to as the Missile Man of India for his work and is considered a leading
progressive, mentor, innovator and visionary in India. he has been a role model for several

He graduated from St.Joseph`s college, Thiruchirapalli and received his degree in aeronautical
engineering from the Madras Institute of Technology in 1958. After graduation he joined India`s
Defence Research and Development Organisation to work on a hovercraft project. In 1962,
Kalam moved to the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), where his team successfully
launched several satellites. He made a significant contribution as Project Director to develop
India`s first indigenous Satellite Launch Vehicle which successfully placed the Rohini space
satellite into near earth orbit in July 1980. In 1982, Kalam returned to DRDO as Director, focusing
on Indigenous guided missiles. He was responsible for the development and operationalisation of
the AGNI and PRITHVI missiles. This earned him the sobriquet "India`s missile-man". He also
helped in the formulation of healthcare products using technology developed for missiles.

In July 1992, Kalam became a Scientific Advisor to India`s Defence Minister. As the Principal
Scientific Advisor to the Indian government, he held the rank of a Cabinet Minister. His work led
to the successful Pokhran-II nuclear tests in 1998, which reiterated India`s position as a nuclear
weapon state. Kalam was also the Chairman, Ex-officio, of the Scientific Advisory Committee to
the Cabinet and piloted the "India Millennium Mission 2020". Kalam later took up academia as a

Professor of Technology & Societal Transformation at Anna University, Chennai from November
2001 and was involved in teaching and research tasks. Above all, he took up a mission to ignite
the young minds for national development by meeting young school students across the
country.Kalam was elected the 11th President of India and took office on July 25, 2002.

Kalam has the unique distinction of having received honorary doctorates from at least thirty
universities, as also India`s three highest civilian honours the Padma Bhushan in 1981, the
Padma Vibhushan in 1990 and the Bharat Ratna in 1997. He has recently refused an honorary
doctorate from a University, stating he is satisfied with the ones he has earned with his hard work
and determination.

Political views
Book of A.P.J. Abdul Kalam - India 2020Something of Kalam`s probable views on certain issues
can be speculated from positions choosen by him in the past. His book "India 2020" strongly
advocates an action plan to develop India into a knowledge superpower and into a developed
nation by the year 2020. Kalam is credited with the view that India ought to take a more assertive
stand in international relations, he regards his work on India`s nuclear weapons program as a
way to assert India`s place as a future superpower. Kalam continues to take an active interest in
other developments in the field of science and technology as well. He has proposed a research
programme for developing bio-implants. He is a supporter of Open source software over
proprietary solutions and believes that the use of open source software on a large scale will bring
more people the benefits of information technology.

Kalam`s belief in the power of technology to resolve society`s problems and his views of these
problems as a result of inefficient distribution of resources is modernistic. He also sees science
and technology as ideology-free areas and emphasizes the cultivation of scientific temper and
entrepreneurial drive. In this, he finds a lot of support among India`s new business leaders like
the founders of Infosys and Wipro who began their careers as technology professionals much in
the same way Kalam did.

Personal life
Kalam observes strict personal discipline, practicing vegetarianism, teetotalism(abstinence from
intoxicating drinks) and celibacy. Kalam is a scholar of Tirukkural; in most of his speeches, he
quotes at least one kural. Kalam has written several inspirational books, most notably his
autobiography Wings of Fire, aimed at motivating Indian youth. Another of his books, Guiding
Souls: Dialogues on the Purpose of Life reveals his spiritual side. It has been reported that there
is considerable demand in South Korea for translated versions of books authored by him. He is
an idol for all, including children. His love of children is well known, he encourages their
audiences with him.

On Tuesday, 19 February, 2006, he created history by becoming the country`s first President to
undertake an undersea journey. Abdul Kalam boarded the INS Sindhurakshak, a Russian-origin
kilo class submarine, from the Visakhapatnam Naval dockyard. The duration of the journey was
around three-and-half hours during which Kalam had lunch with the crewmembers. While
studying at the Madras Institute of Technology, he used to head the vegetarian mess despite
being a Muslim himself. Initially he wanted to become a pilot, but was rejected and then opted for
aeronautical engineering later.

On 8 June, 2006, he created history by becoming the first president to undertake a military ship in
a fighter aircraft, a Sukhoi-30 MKI, from Lohegaon (Pune) airbase. As a 74-year old, he created a
record by becoming the oldest Indian co-pilot to do so. The president donned a G Suit before
boarding the aircraft. The flight, flown by Wing Commander Ajay Rathore, lasted 30 minutes flying
at a height of six to eight kilometers in the air at a speed of 1500 Km/h. His popularity among
Indian youth is evident from the fact that the request to his re-election as president petition in
Petition Online site is the one of the Top 10 petitions. As President, he donated his income from

During 1963-82. All of them were really frustrated due to the pressure of work and the demands of their boss but everyone was loyal to him and did not think of quitting the job. BHU and others. He reached home.30 PM. He continued his work after lunch.P. The successful launching of 'Agni' surface-to-surface missile is a unique achievement which made India a member of an exclusive club of highly developed countries. His boss replied "OK. He has published two books. He was not there. as Director. I have promised to my children that I will take them to the exhibition going on in our township. He looked for his boss. As a crowing glory to all his achievements. An inspiration story of apj: There were about 70 scientists working on a very hectic project. was entrusted with the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme. Honoris Causa. qualification and flight testing of 44 major sub systems. one scientist came to his boss and told him . Awards * He has been Awarded with the India's Highest civilian Award "The Bharat Ratna" in 1997. Nag. during 1954-57. A.J.Sc. The development and successful flight test of Prithvi. MTV-India recently nominated him as one of the prospects for its MTV India Youth Icon for the year 2006 Award. 1931. Astronautical Society of India and many other professional bodies. he has received many such including the one given by IIT.Sc.Biren Roy Space Award. DRDO. at Rameshwaram in TamilNadu. Industries etc. Having told him in the morning itself. As a sign of his popularity among Indian youth. * Other prestigious awards include Dr. SLV-3. Akash. through SLV and Guided Missile Programme a solid foundation has been created in the indigeneous testing and development of high technology Aerospace Projects. * Starting with Anna University's first D. Joseph's College. He conceived the programme cnstituting 5 major projects for meeting the requirements of the defence services and for establishing re-entry technology. he was feeling guilty for having disappointed his children. Tiruchi. Abdul Kalam * Achievements Dr. His wife alGandhian Missile Man Dr. called Research Centre Imarat has also been established by Dr. In 1982. and DMIT in Aeronautical Engineering at the MIT.J. development.P. Abdul Kalam as an extension of DRDL to undertake development in futuristic missile technology areas. at the St.. Children were not there. Avul Pakir Jainulabhudin Adbul Kalam. The time was 8. Deep within himself. You're permitted to leave the office early today".his first 10 months in office to the NGO created and managed by Mata Amritanandamayi. he served the ISRO in various capacities. He is a member of Indian National Academy of Sciences. he was appointed Scientific Advisor to Raksha Manthri and Secretary. Suddenly he remembered of the promise he had given to his children. he closed everything and left for home. One day. Madras. As Project Director. An Advanced Technology Research Centre. He has also established a unique 3 tier management structure to integrate and commit technologists. He joined the DRDO in 1958. academic institutions. he was responsible for carrying out design.Sir. Dept. was born on the 15th October. Thus. So I want to leave the office at 5 30 pm. Bombay. of Defence Research and Development. He did his B. The Scientist started working. Om Prakash Basin Award for . Trishul. A. As usual he got involved to such an extent that he looked at his watch when he felt he was close to completion. and Agni established the indigeneous capability towards self reliance in defence preparedness.

says soft-spoken Kalam." After a pause. "Friends. computer products and design. A. aviation. He has himself written poems in Tamil. the man who built biting molars and awesome muscles into India's missile programme outlined the vision he has of India of tomorrow. he fires another missile: "Most importantly. his views on technology and life make him the copy book saint of science armed with Brahmastras and the power to heal wounds.Science and Technology. Abdul Kalam. Laxman. He is one of those scientists who aims at putting technology created by him to multiple use. dream and dream and convert these into thoughts and later into actions. defence research and space technology and chemical engineering. you now have the fire to torch the Agni" turns out to be extremely shy." No wonder he advices the youth of the country to "dream. Can we ignite our young minds? These are the thoughts that frequently 'fire' the mind of India's missile man-." * As a humanitarian and with his extreme simplicity. determined youngsters. the dynamics of performance changes. Only then can we become big. Homi Jehangir Baba. Technology is the economical strength of the nation". after the late Dr. the highest civilian award.this year (1998) Bharat Ratna awardee Dr. The only thing required is more facilities in our labs. government funding and good leadership in scientific areas. according to him. is praised as a welder of people and a Gandhian Missile Man by R.J. He feels there are a few areas where India can develop its core competence. Arya Bhatta Award. That is another passion of Kalam-using missiles that maime and kill to give a fresh hope to the disabled. is a global phenomenon. National Nehru Award. He used the light weight carbon-carbon material designed for Agni to make calipers for the polio ." Kalam's advice to the youngsters of the nation is to "think big" . The man who said. In fact." says Kalam.K. "Whenever there is a goal. Return to Home Page Dreams To Ignite Young Minds India has to have vision to become a developed nation. These areas are software engineering. Science. "This will lead to a highly beneficial economic and social progress for the nation. he has become a National Hero." Dr. * Dr. agriculture and food. easy access. Abdul kalam. His love for the Bhagavad Geetha and the long mane almost gives the missile man the halo of a saint.P. He adores his Gurus of MIT and cherishes his education and training at MIT. in his cartoon in "Times of India. He loves Tamil poetry and is interested in carnatic music. In a U turn. Scientific Advisor to the Defence Minister and Secretary. This genius attributes his success to his parents and the team which worked relentlessly to achieve the goal. "We are a nation of a billion people and we must think like a nation of a billion people. Kalam's. Defence Research and Development is the second scientist to receive the Bharat Ratna. "India has people of high calibre and intelligence. A good dream for our young people is the vision. In an interview to Science Express. Kalam has not shied in using the technology behind fire-spewing missiles to build artificial limbs and spring-like coils called stents to keep the heart vessels open.

the development of the five indigenous missiles under the IGMDP is progressing as per schedule. He is of the opinion that a mission oriented programme should be chalked out where in medical equipments and their maintenance should grow out of indigenous technology. remembers Kalam. According to a status report of major ongoing projects of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) headed by Kalam. "Agni" missile. DMRL (Defence Metallurgical Research Lab) and the RCI (Research Centre Imarat). the third generation 4Km range anti-tank "Nag" missile . The technology used for defence imaging systems can be used for medical imagery which is yet another value product.the Remotely Piloted Vehicle (RPV) or a one- time-use missile that can thumb its nose at even sophisticated radars. the crown of the IGMDP. thus making us self reliant. But personally.affected. "It was a great experience to see. Indian Air Force (IAF) version." he adds.) Nizam's Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS.the 9 Km short range low level quick reaction Trishul for the three services. he says. Like the space shuttles. the reusable missiles can carry war- heads to a pre-determined target. deliver the fire power and return for another run. Kalam is now striving to make the reusable missiles dream a reality. This carbon-carbon composite material reduced the weight of the calipers to 400 grams (from its original weight of 4kgs. Another important event that took place in Hyderabad is the development of the Cardiac stent." says Kalam in a matter-of-fact tone. the 25Km medium range surface to air missile "Akash" with multiple target handling capability. given a chance would he rather opt to use technology solely for social purposes or continue with his missile programmes? "If India has to become a developed nation it has to have overall development. are poised for a quantum leap next year. Hyderabad) was the birthplace for the defence technology spin offs from Kalam's labs via the DRDL (Defence Research and Development Laboratory). That includes the field of medicine. "The stent developed by us costed much less (he is modest not to say that the cost is less than half) than the ones imported.were slated to commence next year. . defence technology and everything else. UNI quoting Defence Minisry sources said production of 150-Km range "Prithvi" missile for the Army had already commenced and two flight trials of the 250-Km range. Having rolled out sophisticated missiles at regular intervals. Kalam says there are many more avenues wherein defence technology can be used for a social cause. how the light weight caliper could bring happiness to the polio affected". in the orthopaedic Department of NIMS. The clogged arteries are opened up using a balloon and stents are inserted to prevent the vessels from collapse. "Prithvi" had also been completed. The reusable missile's close 'cousin' is Nishant . is being given top priority and DRDO scientists have been able to indigenously produce carbon-carbon composite material which could withstand temperatures upto 3500 degrees celsius during the flight of the missile. User trials of the other three missiles under the IGMDP ." explains Kalam. Cardiac stents are used during a Balloon Angioplasty. Many of Kalam's pet projects like the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP) and several other defence ventures under his command. "We are also working on a cost-effective lighter substitute for the Jaipur foot.

What had really happened was . control law for unstable aircraft. Thiruvananthapuram and a Hyderabad-based defence research laboratory.. In his hour of glory. the second LCA was under integration along with the simultaneous development of technology demonstrator TD-1.In many ways. The situation was explosive." Elaborating on his future plans. digital fly-by-wire control system and advanced computing system. It was his father who wanted him to take up science in the college.00 PM. but if he has promised his children they should enjoy the visit to exhibition. They included carbon fibre composite structure. believes Kalam. He later re-entered DRDO at the Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL). The boss who granted him permission was observing him working seriously at 5. Your manager came here at 5. Kalam was born into a family of modest means in Rameshwaram. Hyderabad. Several new technologies had been established with regard to the LCA. besides teachers who collectively contributed in various ways towards this achievement. Its integration with LCA was expected in early 1999.. An important aspect of "the integrated guided missile development programme was identification of critical technologies and their indigenisation as the missile technology control regime was primarily directed at India. 'Akash' is the key in the sense that ram rocket technology is also to be employed by India for the futuristic reusable missile systems. this person will not leave the work. So he took the lead in taking . he joined the Madras Institute of Technology (MIT) to specialise in Aeronautical Engg. the missile man remembered his parents. After graduating from St. The Kaveri engine had been developed and was undergoing evaluation. he developed the Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV-3) which put the Rohini Satellite into orbit. I too will have but what about Children ??" . he joined the Indian Space Research organisation (ISRO) in 1963. one was sitting in the hall and reading magazines. co-workers especially at the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre. The man replied "If you would like to have coffee. Tiruchirapalli. While at the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre.15 PM and has taken the children to the exhibition ". After a brief stint in the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). This was indeed his launching pad for this promising young man who was destined to become the father of Indian missile programme. As far as the current status of India's ambitious Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) was concerned.. No country can throttle India's missile programme despite technology denial regimes. any talk would boomerang on him. the "Akash" missile is emerging as a key weapon which is being developed by the DRDO as it employs ram rocket propulsion to facilitate carrying of bigger pay loads. He also spoke about working on a 10 year self-reliance programme in defence technologies. the senior most serving defence scientist referred to the Technology Mission 2020 which proposes to change the national status from a developing one to a developed one and involve 500 people from academia. a small town in TamilNadu. industry and government. He thought to himself.Wife replied "You don't know?? .Joseph College. as the director and this is where most of the research and development of his missile programmes were conceived and created. His wife asked him "Would you like to have coffee or shall I straight away serve dinner if you are hungry.

And nobody is going to help us reach there. A P J Abdul Kalam Web Album As a child.them to exhibition The boss does not have to do it every time. The dreamer of these oceanic frontiers is also one of India's frontiersmen in technology. Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam remembers being fascinated by the flight of seagulls. can you hazard a guess as to who the boss was ???????? He was none other than Dr. From the sea frontiers and space frontiers. The dreams of the next 20 years were mostly conjured up on the shores of the Bay of Bengal at Chandipur where he test-launched missiles and checked on vehicles that re-enter the atmosphere from space. heads the mammoth Department of Defense Research and Development. published by Viking-Penguin India. APJ Abdul Kalam . . "I remember the earth shaking under our feet. Perhaps all frontiersmen are like that. Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam has spent all his life near the three water frontiers of India. Dr Kalam and Rajan believe that as a nation India should aim to reach at least the fourth position by 2020. provide foods to the starving. A First World dream for a third world nation." he recalls of that fateful experience. an instrument similar to the sitar. 67. the department of space contributing significantly to the communication satellite programme. Today Kalam. Along the way. the remote sensing programme and satellite metorology and mapping systems. That is why all the scientists at Thumba continued to work under their boss even though the stress was tremendous. Dr Kalam even otherwise seems to have the perfect 20-20 vision. ignited Prithvis but also can green the barren lands. Indian Legends >> Dr. A Vision for the New Millennium. there is also simultaneous denial of technologies. Kalam's interest in flight led to a degree in aeronautical engineering. By the way. A technology that not only fired Agnis. They see infinite energy that can be released not only from thermonuclear explosions but also from the human resource latent in the ordinary people of India. loyalty is established. (Incidentally. But the same sense of purpose that made Pokharans and Prithvis possible can propel whole populations into prosperity. As the globe is shrinking into a village. In the book India 2020. It is a dream he shares with Yagnaswami Sundara Rajan. In this they are inspired as much by the grain-rich fields of the green revolution as by the successes of remote-sensing satellites and re-entry vehicles. . The newspaper boy of Rameswaram coast on the Indian Ocean spent 20 years dreaming of space frontiers at Thumba space centre on the Arabian Sea. another technologist who had his stints in the Indian Space Research Organisation. and eventually to his supervising the development of India's guided missiles. He played a key role in the nuclear tests at Pokharan in the Rajasthan desert on May 11 and 13. he found time to write Tamil poetry and learned to play the veena. the duo are now dreaming up frontiers of technology- driven prosperity for one billion people. where his father was a boat builder. and profit in world commerce. who is India's best known scientist. But once it is done. He grew up on the island of Rameshwaram in south India. except ourselves. they identify exactly the bricks of technology that could build the dream.

their culture. never took off. 1998 : Adorning a Gorkha hat in the Rajasthan deserts. The Greeks. Takes charge of India's integrated guided missile development program. May 11. APJ ABDULKALAM I have three visions for India. people from all over the world have come and invaded us. We have not conquered anyone. he sold newspapers to enhance his family's income? That he is so modest about his achievements that at every felicitation ceremony he gives full credit for India's success to his colleagues? Childhood and Career Oct 15. From Alexander onwards. all of them came and looted us. 1931 : Born at Dhanushkodi in Rameswaram district. The program envisaged the launch of five major missiles.Things you didn't know about kalam That Dr. Joseph's College in Tiruchi. 1997 : Kalam honoured with "Bharat Ratna". 1980 : Rohini put into orbit in the month of July 1981 : Kalam honoured with the Padma Bhushan 1982 : Kalam returns to DRDO as its Director. near Trivandram and soon became Project Director for SLV-3. Abdul Kalam is a bachelor and a teetotaler? That he recites the Holy Quran and the Bhagvad Gita daily and is equally at home with both Holy Scriptures? That Dr. We have not grabbed their land.Tamil Nadu. Kalam moved out of DRDO and joined Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) 1963-82 : Kalam joined the satellite launch vehicle team at Thumba. heading a small team that developed a prototype hovercraft. the French. he enrolled for Aeronautical Engineering at the Madras Institute of Technology in 1954. he orchestrated India's underground nuclear tests. 1958 Kalam joined the Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO) and served as a senior scientific assistant. took over what was ours. the British. Abdul Kalam has gone abroad for studies only once in 1963-64 to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in the United States? That as a young boy. 1954-58 : After graduating in science from St. the Dutch. captured our lands conquered our minds. In 3000 years of our history. His father had to rent boats to pay his school fees. But the project. india's highest civilian award. their history and tried to enforce our way . He studied at the Schwartz High School in Ramanathapuram. the Portuguese. 1992 : Kalam takes over as the Scientific Advisor to Union Defence Minister. WINGS OF FIRE by Dr. The scientist from a small hamlet in Tamil Nadu who had dreamt of India as a nuclear power many years ago had finally achieved it! 2002 : Kalam takes over as the President of India. 1962 : Following the lukewarm response to his hovercraft program. Yet we have not done this to any other nation.

dragging their feet around. Professor Satish Dhawan. If we are not free. The one that launched Rohini. We are number one in Remote sensing satellites. no one will respect us. But the front page of the newspaper had the picture of a Jewish gentleman who in five years had transformed his desert land into an orchid and a granary. FOUR : One day an orthopaedic surgeon from Nizam Institute of Medical Sciences visited my laboratory. It was his inspiring picture that everyone woke up to. self reliant and self assured. were inside in the newspaper. In three weeks. Because I believe that unless India stands up to the world. He said to me: Please remove the pain of my patients. i joined DRDO and got a chance to be the part of India's guided missile program. Why? We are the second largest producer of wheat in the world. He lifted the material and found it so light that he took me to his hospital and showed me his patients. when we started the war of independence. we made these Floor reaction Orthosis 300 gram calipers and took them to the orthopaedic center. The Hamas had struck. self driving unit. That is why my first vision is that of FREEDOM. Brahm Prakash. each. for which we have developed this new material. father of nuclear material. our achievements? We are such a great nation. It was the day after a lot of attacks and bombardments and deaths had taken place. We are the second largest producers of rice. The children didn't believe their eyes. Sudarshan. Only strength respects strength. TWO : After my ISRO years. For fifty years we have been a developing nation. Why? Because we respect the freedom of others. of Atomic Energy and DRDO had this tremendous partnership in the recent nuclear tests. Look at Dr. SLV3. they could now move around! Their parents had tears in their eyes. THREE : The Dept. Yet we lack the self-confidence to see ourselves as a developed nation. I see four milestones in my career: ONE : Twenty years I spent in ISRO. We have 10 percent growth rate in most areas. Our poverty levels are falling. We are among top 5 nations of the world in terms of GDP. A Very light material called carbon-carbon. of space. The joy of participating with my team in these nuclear tests and proving to the world that India can make it.oflife on them. It was my second bliss when Agni met its mission requirements in 1994. who succeeded him. We have so many amazing success stories but we refuse to acknowledge them. bombardments. This was the third bliss. These years played a very important role in my life of a Scientist. It made me feel very proud as an Indian. Vikram Sarabhai of the Dept. The India must stand up to the world. no one will respect us. Isn't this right? I have third vision.It is this freedom that we must protect and nurture and built on. From dragging around a three kg. My second vision for India is DEVELOPMENT. My good fortune was to have worked with three great minds. he has transferred the tribal village into a self-sustaining. our achievements are being globally recognized today. We are the first in milk production. That we are no longer a developing nation but one of them. Dr. buried among . Both must go hand-in-hand. That was my fourth bliss! Why is the media here so negative? Why are we in India so embarrassedto recognize our own strengths. I was given the opportunity to be the project director for India's first satellite launch vehicle. on May 11 and 13. I was in Tel Aviv once and I was reading the Israeli newspaper.I was lucky to have worked with all three of them closely and consider this the great opportunity of my life. It is time we see ourselves as a developed nation. The gory details of killings.deaths. I believe that India got its first vision of this in 1857. load on their legs. and Dr. There were these little girls and boys with heavy metallic calipers weighing over three Kgs. We must be strong not only as a military power but also as an economic power. The fact that we have now developed for Agni a re-entry structure. There are millions of such achievements but our media is only obsessed with the bad news and failures and disasters.

Dr. we want foreign shirts. For her. see Abul Kalam Azad. In India we only read about death. as a nation so obsessed with Foreign things? we want foreign TVs. You must proclaim. sickness. Abdul Kalam 11th President of India .terrorism. we will have to built this developed India. APJ Abdul Kalam.other news. A. for you. This article is about the former President of India. We want foreign technology. P. when a 14 year old girl asked me for my autograph. crime. J. For the freedom fighter. Why this obsession with everything imported? Do we not realize that self-respect comes with self-reliance? I was in Hyderabad giving this lecture. Why are we so negative? Another question: Why are we. I asked her what her goal in life is: She replied: I want to live in a developed India.

Manmohan Singh Vice President Bhairon Singh Shekhawat Preceded by K. [edit] As an aerospace engineer . Narayanan Succeeded by Pratibha Patil Born 15 October 1931 (1931-10-15) (age 78)[1] Rameshwaram. A. the first since the original nuclear test by India in 1974. J. Republic of India Alma mater Madras Institute of Technology Profession Aerospace Engineering Religion Muslim Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam (Tamil: அவுல் பகீர் ைஜனுலாப்தீன் அப்துல் கலாம்) born 15 October 1931 in Rameshwaram. Madras Presidency. a professor at Anna University (Chennai) and adjunct/visiting faculty at many other academic and research institutions across India.[7] He is chancellor of Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology(Thiruvanthapuram).[4][5] Before his term as India's president. He has proposed a research programme for developing bio-implants. Contents [hide] * 1 Political views * 2 As an aerospace engineer * 3 Honours * 4 Books and documentaries * 5 References * 6 External links [edit] Political views In his book India 2020 APJ Abdul Kalam strongly advocates an action plan to develop India into a knowledge superpower and into a developed nation by the year 2020. technical and political role in India's Pokhran-II nuclear test in 1998. he worked as an aeronautical engineer with DRDO and ISRO. British India (now Tamil Nadu.[3] During his term as President. India). Abdul Kalam . was the 11th President of India. he was popularly known as the People's President. Kalam played a pivotal organisational. serving from 2002 to 2007. under prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Kalam continues to take an active interest in other developments in the field of science and technology. He is popularly known as the Missile Man of India for his work on development of ballistic missile and space rocket technology. He regards his work on India's nuclear weapons program as a way to assert India's place as a future superpower. He is a supporter of Open source software over proprietary solutions and believes that the use of open source software on a large scale will bring the benefits of information technology to more people [9].In office 25 July 2002 – 24 July 2007 Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.[2] he was elected during the tenure of the National Democratic Alliance (India) coalition government.[6] In India he is highly respected as a scientist and as an engineer. usually referred to as Dr. It has been reported that there is considerable demand in South Korea for translated versions of books authored by him [8]. Dhanuskodi. R. P.

P. * Scientist to President by Abdul A. * India 2020: A Vision for the New Millennium by A.[12] On 13 September 2009. ISBN 81-7758-245-3 * Indomitable Spirit by A. Arun K Tiwari. Kalam is the third President of India to have been honoured with a Bharat Ratna before being elected to the highest office. * India-my-dream by A.J. Excel Books. As the Project Director. Gyan Publishing House. he also played a major part in developing many missiles of India including Agni and Prithvi. by K. 2009. [edit] Books and documentaries Kalam's writings * Wings of Fire: An Autobiography of APJ Abdul Kalam by A. Abdul Kalam. Katyal. Abdul Kalam. 2005. it added. Padma Vibhushan in 1990. He has agreed to deliver a minimum of four lectures every year. for his outstanding contribution to public service.J Abdul Kalam. and have been associated with Kalam although he was not directly involved with the nuclear programme at the time. 2004. Although the entire project has been criticised for being overrun and mismanaged[11]. Corp. He is also the first scientist and first bachelor to occupy Rashtrapati Bhavan After his tenure as the president he is now a visiting guest professor at JSS university.P.J. Kalam. Pokhran-II nuclear tests were conducted during this period.After graduating in Physics from St. 2003. the other two being Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan and Zakir Hussain. * Guiding Souls: Dialogues on the Purpose of Life by A. 2004.J Abdul Kalam. Arun Tiwari. and a true visionary.P. 2006 * The Scientific Indian: A Twenty-first Century Guide to the World around Us by APJ Abdul Kalam and YS Rajan Biographies . he was a recipient of the International von Kármán Wings Award [13]. he was heavily involved in the development of India's first indigenous Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV-III). a gifted engineer. 2003. Bhushan. Pearson Education. TATA McGraw-Hill Publishing Company Ltd.j.P. The citation said that he is being recognised for making state-of-the-art healthcare available to the common man at affordable prices. Rajan. Mysore.P.P. A. 2002.P. America's top engineering prize. Abdul Kalam. A pre-eminent scientist. [edit] Honours On April 29. * Ignited Minds: Unleashing the Power Within India by A.J.J. Abdul Kalam.P.J.J. G.P.P. Y. Penguin Books India. 2003. Ocean Books. He was the Chief Scientific Adviser to Prime Minister and Secretary. he became the first Asian to be bestowed the Hoover Medal. The Government of India has honoured him with the nation's highest civilian honours: the Padma Bhushan in 1981.S. he is also a humble humanitarian in every sense of the word. and the Bharat Ratna in 1997 for his work with ISRO and DRDO and his role as a scientific advisor to the Indian government. using spin-offs of defence technology to create state-of-the-art medical equipment and launching tele-medicine projects connecting remote rural-based hospitals to the super-specialty hospital.J Abdul Kalam. Abdul Kalam. Joseph's College in Tiruchirapalli. Abdul Kalam graduated with a diploma in the mid-1950s from Madras Institute of Technology specializing in Aeronautical Engineering [10]. As Chief Executive of Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP). Pub. * Children Ask Kalam by A. Department of Defence Research & Development from July 1992 to December 1999. Penguin Books. bringing quality medical care to rural areas by establishing a link between doctors and technocrats. * Envisioning an Empowered Nation: Technology for Societal Transformation by A..

* President A. Chandra. K. Nair. my Lord? I ploughed and ploughed. Bhushan. George. 2008. “O my sons and daughters. armed with technology. Where is the island of peace. [14] * The Kalam Effect: My Years with the President by P. bless my nation With vision and sweat resulting into happiness A. 2002. * A. 2008. G. You have nursed us and grown us. Happiness and good health blossom in our bodies. Pruthi.P. Abdul Kalam Song Of Youth As a young citizen of India. Katyal. Where is the knowledge treasure. my Lord? Almighty. Harper Collins.M. I pray the Almighty: "May the divine peace with beauty enter into our people. powered by economic strength with value system I am one of the citizens of the billion. Dhanapal. knowledge and love for my nation. Abdul Kalam: The Visionary of India' by K.P. And gave us a parting mission And an eternal message. small aim is a crime.A. 2002. 2009 The Vision I climbed and climbed Where is the peak. It has entered into me . 2002. the vision of transforming India into a developed nation. J. The ignited soul compared to any resource is the most powerful resource on the earth. Abdul Kalam by R. * 'My Days With Mahatma Abdul Kalam' by Fr. Anmol Publications. . Only the vision will ignite the billion souls. A. P.J.K. my Lord? I sailed and sailed. Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam by S. I realize. * A little Dream (documentary film) by P.H. * Eternal Quest: Life and Times of Dr. Publisher: Novel Corporation. the transformation leading to the birth of vibrant developed India will happen. I will work and sweat for a great vision. ISBN No:978-8190452953. Mother India. Pentagon Publishers. minds and souls". Minveli Media Works Private Limited. Corp. Pub.J. Wherever you go. I will keep the lamp of knowledge burning to achieve the vision . MY SONG PIOs tribute to Mother India O Mother.P. above the earth and under the earth.Developed India If we work and sweat for the great vision with ignited minds.

" "My worthiness is all my doubt His Merit. discharge your trust. Withhold your hands from striking. and vex my soul no more! Work claimed my wakeful nights... It could perhaps help such children liberate themselves from the bondage of their illusory backwardness and hopelessness?. O Mother. and from taking that which is unlawful and bad. We will always be children yours!. Wherever you live enrich that land. perform when you promise. O... Knowledge and name. but some poor child living in an obscure place in an underprivileged social setting may find a little solace in the way my destiny has been shaped. Sweat and sweat to acquire. Quotes "Thinking should become your capital asset. no matter whatever ups and downs you come across in your life. my busy days Albeit brought memories of Rameswaram shore Yet haunt my dreaming gaze!" "I will not be presumptuous enough to say that my life can be a role model for anybody. Mother India. Remember my children." "Thinking is progress. to feed the hungry. We made knowledge as the way of life Sweat as the way of life and We give and give to honour you What we do is for honoring you... Whatever we do. We made new lands prosperous. to help the afflicted to lighten the sorrow of the sorrowful and to remove the wrongs of injured. Knowledge with action. Wherever we are. Non-thinking is stagnation of the individual.Contrasting which my quality Does however appear " . Mother we crossed the oceans and seas With many generation of yours with your blessings.Whatever mission you do. speak the truth. organisation and the country. My three advices golden! Always be truthful even in danger. We will always be children yours. Knowledge without action is useless and irrelevant.all my fear. Thinking leads to action. converts adversity into prosperity.." "Away! Fond thoughts." "What actions are most excellent? To gladden the heart of a human being." "When you speak.

Radhakrishnan. R. Zakeer Hussain. Venkataraman.We have made significant achievements in the last fifty years in food production. S. The unschooled wisdom of Jallauddin and Samsuddin was so intuitive. the son of a little educated boat-owner in Rameswaram. His vision is to make India a developed country. the task of changing the destiny of India. I do not recall the exact number of people she fed everyday. both materially and emotionally. national security has to be recognized by every Indian as a national priority. The names of the earlier Presidents of India are: Dr. To quote from his autobiography Wings of Fire: “I was born into a middle-class Tamil family in the island town of Rameswaram in Madras state. J. has become the 11th President of the Republic of India. making India strong and self-reliant— economically. He has given his plan of action and a road map for realizing his vision. all that was needed was provided for. Giri. Fakuruddin Ali Ahmed. Jainulabdeen. Rajendra Prasad. Kalam’s father commanded a high respect as a religious man. He is a man with a vision. a number of our people are below the poverty line.” It may be noted that Ahmed Jallaluddin was a close friend of Dr. media and mass communication. Indeed. Dr. industrial infrastructure. I inherited faith in goodness and deep kindness as did my three brothers and sisters. undernourished and lack primary education…Along with speedy development aimed at elimination of poverty and unemployment. information technology. health sector. 1931. socially and militarily—is our foremost duty to our motherland and to us and to our future generations. into a specific socio-economic and emotional environment. R. It was a fairly large pucca house. Kalam. I inherited honesty and self-discipline from my father. In fact. Wings of Fire: An Autobiography of A. he possessed great innate wisdom and a true generosity of spirit. My father. Narayanan. V. Shankar Dayal Sharma and K. Gyani Zail Singh. who has taken unto himself. But it was the time I spent with Jallaluddin and Samsuddin that perhaps contributed most to the uniqueness of my childhood and made all the difference in my later life.” Dr. I would say mine was a very secure childhood. V. higher education. Dr. popularly known as Dr.P. from my mother. Kalam was born on October 15. He has articulated his thoughts in his three books: India 2020: A Vision for the New Millennium. despite these disadvantages. in terms of food. . Dr. Some of our Presidents rose even from much humbler beginning than Dr. He had an ideal helpmate in my mother. Kalam for inspiration and guidance. Dr. made of limestone and brick. vibrant people and traditional value system. in certain ways by figures of authority. Kalam has acknowledged that his scientific accomplishment and his views are very much influenced by his parents and other well-wishers. Neelam Sanjeev Reddy. India has already started looking to Dr. A. To quote him from his autobiography : “Every child is born. Ashiamma. However. Kalam and Somesuddin was his first cousins. which was built in the middle of the 19th century. with some characteristics. He is a man one. and trained along the way. Tamil Nadu. He had a secured childhood both materially and emotionally. on the Mosque Street of Rameswaram. possessed neither much formal education nor much wealth. Abdul Kalam and Ignited Minds: Unleashing the Power Within India. Our nation is endowed with natural resources. P. science and technology and defence. It is very significant that he is the first scientist to occupy the Rashtrapati Bhavan. Kalam in his speech on the occasion of his assumption of office as President of India on July 25. 2002 Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam. Abdul Kalam. but I am quite certain that far more outsiders ate with us than all the members of our own family…We lived in our ancestral house. In spite of these resources. medicine or cloths.J. responsive to non-verbal messages that I can unhesitatingly attribute my subsequently manifested creativity to their company in my childhood. My austere father used to avoid all inessential comforts and luxuries.

His fourth phase started after he left the post of Principal Scientific Adviser. After initiating Fibre Reinforced Plastics (FRP) activities and spending some time with the aerodynamics and design group he joined the satellite launching vehicle team at Thumba.” short. Trishul (a quick- reaction surface – to – air missile) and Agni (an intermediate range ballistic missile). Kalam wrote: “This was my first stage. Kalam joined the Technical Centre (Civil Aviation) of the DTD&P (Air) as Senior Scientific Assistant on a basic salary of Rs. Before he became President of the country. About this phase Dr. Dr. Commenting on the first phase of his career Dr. He joined the Anna University at Chennai as Professor of Technology and Societal Transformation. Kalam was entrusted with the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP). From MIT. For this purpose he wanted to reach at least 100. As aeronautical engineer Dr. To us. also got involved with the creation of Technology Vision 2020 and the India Millennium Missions (IMM 2020). As Director of DRDO. Prof. Kalam wrote: “During this stage. Kalam went to Schwartz High School at Ramanathpuram from where he went to Tiruchchirapalli for his higher studies. 250/-. “ After completing his BSc from St. Vikram Sarabhai. Under his leadership India has been able to develop strategic missiles. He has already met about 40. Kalam had two options -. Satish Dhawan and Dr.Three new laboratories/facilities in the area of missile technology were established. propulsion and aerodynamics. As part of realizing his mission he decided to ignite the minds of the young. In the first phase (1963-82) he worked with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). India also acquired the ability to design various kinds of rocket systems. Dr. Dr. In November 1999 Dr. Here he was made the Project Director of the Mission for SLV-3. The nearest college was at Tiruchchirapalli. Kalam wrote : “By the time I completed my education at Schwartz. Kalam identifies his third phase with his participation with India’s mission to become a nuclear weapon state. a scientific satellite. Kalam was appointed as Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India. His fourth phase took a sudden turn. higher education simply meant going to college.range surface-to-air missile). jointly undertaken by DRDO and Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) with the active support of the armed forces. He played a crucial role in developing satellite launch vehicle technology and expertise in control. During this phase he. which taught me the crucial lesson of managing failures. Dr. Brahm Prakash.000 students. Prithvi (a surface to surface battlefield missile). as Chairman of the Technology Information. Like Nag (an anti-tank guided missile). Kalam’s contribution to India’s defence capabilities is very significant. which he himself . As he could not make it to Indian Air Force. Kalam had divided his career in four phases. While working at the Air force Directorate he got a chance to realise his dream. to join the Directorate of Technical Development and Production. This was the time of learning and acquisition of knowledge for me. and called Trichi for short. He joined the Indian Committee for Space Research (INCOSPAR).After studying in a primary school in Ramaeswaran.” The second phase of his career started when he joined the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in 1982. I have gone through many successes and failures. The decision to go in for further education was taken without a second thought. in which I learnt leadership from three great teachers—Dr. the awarness of the possibilities for a professional education did not exist. Dr. I was a self-confident boy with the determination to be successful. Dr. And thus Kalam started his much talked about career in rocket and missile technology. in those days. which is an integratied version of technology vision and India’s security concerns. I learnt from failures and hardened myself with courage to face them. or DTD & P (Air) of the Ministry of Defence or the Indian Air Force. into orbit in July 1980. medium .000 students in different parts of the country before August 2003. Akash (a swift. Forecasting and Assessment Council (TIFAC). Joseph’s college he joined the Madras Institute of Technology (MIT). At ISRO he served in various capacities. he went to Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) at Bangalore as a trainee. spelled Trichinopoly those days. the predecessor of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). This was my second stage. for studying aeronautical engineering. The SLV-3 project managed to put Rohini.

He became the President of India. Jallaluddin would talk of God as if He was his partner. He bathed in the Ganga and reveled in the purity of its waters then he walked to the Sivananda Aashram situated a little way up the hill. possesses a lot of energy. A deeply disappointed Abdul trekked down to Rishikesh. The high priest of Rameshwaram Temple Pakshi Lakshmana was a very close friend of Abdul Kalam's father. is of the two men discussing spiritual matters. but the opportunity slipped through his fingers. In 1997 Dr. (India's President) I have been reading: Wings of Fire It is an Autobiography of. I am going to share them with you. that the prayers in the temple reached the same God. whom they (Muslims) treat as the formless Almighty. while felicitating this humble and great scientist . APJ Abdul Kalam. did not have. and now first citizen. the Bharat Ratna Vigyan Prasar. Abdul Kalam went for his interview at the Air Force Selection Board. Our efforts should be to give wings to this fire and fill the world with the glow of its goodness. Abdul Kalam told Swami Sivananda about his unsuccessful attempt to join the Indian Air Force and his along cherished desire to fly. Then Swami Sivananda said in a feeble but very deep voice: Desire.perhaps did not visualize. Ahmed Jallaluddin greatly influenced the boyhood of Abdul Kalam. reciting prayers with a sense of respect towards God. Since I am impressed at the presidents ideas. as if He were standing nearby to get rid of them. a great formal education were very wise and generous. That . As young Abdul Kalam would look towards the large group of people round the (Rameshwaram) temple. We are all born with a godly fire in us. Kalam was given the highest civilian award of India. Swamiji smiled washing away all his (Abduls) pain. This book tells us about the Presidents deep involvement with India's first Satellite Launch Vehicle SLV-3. takes the pledge to fully dedicate it self to turn his Dream of transforming our country into a developed nation. The President believes that one must never feel small or helpless. One of the most vivid memories of Abduls early childhood. when it is pure and intense. Abdul believed without a doubt. His parents though. as the ones offered in the mosque. when it stems from the heart. the current President of India. Abdul Kalam was born into a middle class Tamil family. Jallaludin would present all his doubts to God.

I was imparted technical education as a wannabe aeronautical engineer. we finished collectively So integrated learning and timely application can help us reach goals. me. today is Friday afternoon. your scholarship will be stopped. Abdul writes: You. 4: Former President A. who was dissatisfied with my performance. but if you ask me. he said the country could achieve goals like reducing the rural and urban divide in terms of equitable distribution. He said technocrats must apply their expertise for the welfare of the country and the world.P. making governance responsive. Aug. Dadi-Ma Nani-Ma Kalam pill for students OUR CORRESPONDENT A. I do not wish to set myself as an example to others. to help achieve your goals and realize your dreams And realize his dreams. making the country the best destination for investors. Abdul Kalam today dwelt on integrated learning. Abdul Kalam in Itanagar on Tuesday. Kalam also talked about the possibilities of taking education forward in a “borderless world”.J. said: ‘Look young man. during my study period a good five decades ago. Abdul Kalam believes that the kingdom of God is within you. I think that we should be inspired by the way the President thinks.which has been imaged will surely and certainly come to pass. Prof. saying it could be applied in a timely manner to guide the nation achieve its Vision 2020. “My team did not sleep for nights and accomplished the job by Sunday. I give you three days time. Abdul Kalam did! Abdul prayed to God in Schullers church to help him build a Research Centre at the Imarat Kancha-that would be his Crystal Cathedral.J. He also spoke on inclusive development model for villages in the Northeast like providing urban . transparent and corruption-free. Speaking on Vision 2020. We are different in the way we make our choices and make our destiny. everyone on this planet is sent free by God. Speaking at the second convocation of the North Eastern Regional Institute of Science and Technology (Nerist) at Nirjuli. eradication of poverty and crime and adequate access to energy and water. He said the sharing of knowledge among scientists and engineers from different countries signalled the emergence of a new world order and led to interesting possibilities of taking education forward in a “borderless world”. The above is what the President writes. the nation can achieve its Vision 2020 given it applies its expertise gained through knowledge in a timely manner. What I could not do as an individual. Srinivasan. Likewise. Don't you think so? With Love.P. Once my teacher. If by Monday morning I don’t get the configuration design.’ I got the jolt of my life. as scholarship was my lifeline. “As a student like you.” Kalam said. Picture by Eastern Projections Itanagar. evolving a value-based education system without social and economic discrimination.

TALKATIVE GENERALS A.amenities in rural areas.G. McChrystal from his command in Afghanistan. 9:30 IST By Team DNA | Place: Bangalore | Agency: DNA APJ Abdul Kalam. It flows from the fundamental principle of civilian supremacy over the military. among others. for speaking to the media in intemperate language. Even the university system is very traditional and most students graduating with master’s degree are not eligible in the job market.” Expressing concern over environmental pollution and global warming. Jul 31. is unhappy with the education system in India. 10 million are rejected by the job market. electricity and bio-fuel motored vehicles and should invent such transportation facilities. “Currently. The next generation should concentrate on using solar power. the chairman of Nerist board of directors.” He said that the gap between industry requirements and availability of employable graduates was huge. But. Joram Begi. Singh. We need to add value-based skills in textbooks. there is no scope for skill development.” Kalam said the global changes in environment were linked to the automobile industry and that globally. Addressing the first batch of students graduating from the Toyota Technical Training Institute (TTTI) on Friday. Even in Communist China. This tradition has been followed by India but not without serious breaches in the . and existing textbooks lack in strength. Educational institutions need to be customer-centric and aptitude-developing. and three million graduating from universities.J. Gautam Barua. “Protecting the environment is a major challenge that the automobile industry is facing now. PRESIDENT Obama's dismissal of General Stanley A. 2009. over one billion vehicles would hit the roads. NOORANI It speaks for the strength of our democratic system that it survived those generals who did much harm. of this number. is in the sound tradition of democratic governance. “Each year. Top ‘We have a textbook case of bad education system’ Published: Saturday.” Kalam said nearly 10 million people in India were rejected by the job market every year. Chairman Mao Zedong pithily prescribed that the party directed the gun. He feels there is an urgent need to add value-based lessons in textbooks at the school and university levels. 2010. 30 billion tonnes of carbon were produced every year and that by the end of 2010. He advised students to forge ahead with vision armed with a missionary zeal. “We need employment generators and not employment seekers. we have nearly seven million students passing classes 10 and 12. Kalam said. He said. Kalam said. renowned scientist and former president of India. The convocation was attended by Governor J. PTI Prime Minister Manmohan Singh with BSF and CRPF jawans in Srinagar on October 29. and its director.

“The chiefs of staff are the professional heads of the armed forces. disposition and equipment of the armed forces. the Army. if only the listener had spoken to him earlier. with the Defence Minister. no less. they give professional advice to the government on strategy and military operations and on the military implications of defence policy.S. Debate in the country has been uninformed and simplistic. Consul-General in Kolkata the strength of the forces under his command – which. Presidents have not been immune to criticism. One wonders about the range of his candour if it was an Ambassador who had lent him an ear. One wonders. Infantry Division commander Major General [V.past and in recent years. the Consul- General told his bosses.K. They chafe at the law of contempt as laid down by the Supreme Court. And that. he again attended the Sindhu Darshan. when he presided over the Eastern Command. Vij and Air Vice Marshal S. revealed to the U. The position in Indian law is no different from that in British law. as A.S. (AFSPA) in crass ignorance of the law and with scant respect for its critics. organised with official aid.P. Budhwar claimed not to understand the question” (Praveen Swami.J.K. The Army remains the one institution that is not subject to criticism. the constitutional position must be borne in mind. 1958. and graced by [Atal Bihari] Vajpayee. The habit and the trait in these times are very evident. Since the records are locked up in foreign archives. dragging a section of senior officers on to expressly partisan terrain. The decision of Director General Military Operations [DGMO] N. The nuances of the principle have been ignored. Another COAS. and neither local police authorities nor Central Government may give him instructions on the operational use of the . It regards itself unaccountable and above the law. They included a former judge of the Supreme Court. how voluble must these two COAS have been in instances not known to us. Asked by a journalist whether it was appropriate for him to associate with political organisations. “The chain of command within the police stops with the chief constable.C. In 1999. LeftWord Books. page 95). In recent years. a law unto itself. few know that there was a time when a Chief of the Army Staff (COAS) discussed the possibility of a military coup in India with the British High Commissioner and. at the Minister's initiative. Large sections of the public view the armed forces with an awe that suspends judgment. [L. one Army chief successfully thwarted the government's policy on a sensitive issue with his calculated pronouncements on the eve of successive diplomatic parleys and well- advertised briefings to the media on precisely such occasions. for good measure. accentuated since Kargil. The trend is glaringly evident. it faces not only the media but an opposition party (the Bharatiya Janata Party) that is out to break all the rules in its mad craze for power.] Budhwar helped provide logistical support for the RSS- organised Sindhu Darshan festival at Leh in 1998. [George] Fernandes and Advani. which affect the size. we have heard comments by the COAS and a corps commander on the Armed Forces Special Powers Act.] Advani and ideologue Tarun Vijay were among those who attended. For. he already knew – and claimed to have told off the Defence Minister and to have wielded clout enough to change India's policy on Vietnam. yet pronounces freely on matters beyond its legitimate domain. While the bulk of the Army leadership remains avowedly apolitical. More recently. Before one considers the record on which these comments are based. Malik to brief the BJP national executive on the Kargil war on May 6 [1999] is just one example of this process. Read this: “The rise of the Hindu Right to power was anticipated by the systematic infiltration of the highest levels of the Army apparatus. When will it be arrested? And by whom? The government can go only thus far and no further. Abdul Kalam discovered. … Major questions of defence policy cannot be decided in purely military terms without reference to the government's financial and economic policies. The penchant for idolising the Army. the BJP has made methodical efforts to subvert this tradition. The Kargil War. has not helped in the discussion nor helped that splendid institution that has served the nation nobly. It strongly resents that.

C. or the conduct of the armed forces during the Gulf hostilities….] Chaudhuri was prepared to discuss such a delicate topic shows that it is not so far below the surface in the minds of the government and of the Army. be prepared to discuss the subject with you and with anyone else who is interested when he is in London. and the like. not the government.A. And he magnanimously accepted that. Gen. significantly. the sinking of the Argentinean ship General Belgrano during the Falklands conflict in 1982. Now for the record. the line of command runs upwards from the private soldier. D.” Chaudhuri did reject the idea of a coup. Thus the Public Accounts Committee has often investigated case of excessive spending by the services” (A. Army commanders do not owe their job to the Army chief. after her death. mentioned the strength of the troops he had in his command. criticised its policy of purchasing arms from the Soviet Union for which he held Generals Chaudhuri and P. 1966.J. discussed his chances of promotion as COAS. there is no reason to believe that they would have complied with any such sordid game.) We have accordingly set in hand a rather more detailed study of the subject and hope to be able to let you have it before the High Commissioner goes on leave on 22 April. half in jest. in Madras on 17 March in which he said that if violence continued on the scale recently seen in the Punjab and Bengal. made. criticised the government's policy on Vietnam. This is not the case with the armed forces. of course. Lal was a man of strong moral fibre. he . he held that civil servants and soldiers would accomplish it. past and present. (This is confirmed by a speech made by [K. that Pakistan would have won the war if he were its Army chief. Bradley and K. Air Chief Marshal P.F. Kumaramangalam responsible.W.H. the military might conclude that democracy was unworkable and themselves take over the government. Now for the realities. But more reprehensible was his repeated claim. on October 7.D. In a talk with the U. not an unqualified one. But the tasks which are undertaken by the armed forces. That the blatant falsehood passed muster for so long reflects poorly on retired officers of the Army and indeed on our defence “experts”. that “he was so cocky. belittled the politicians' capacity to achieve a settlement. Manekshaw takes the cake. He publicly criticised Manekshaw. emphasis added throughout). the Defence Minister as well as the Army chief. Constitutional and Administrative Law. In the case of the army.police. with revealing lack of realism and the constitutional position. On April 7. During active operations many immediate decisions have to be taken by soldiers in the field. Henry Kissinger sized him up correctly after they met in 1971 and told Richard Nixon. for example. That fine soldier and gentleman Lt. It belittled the jawan. The fact that General [J. Scott of the British High Commission reported to London: “It so happens that just before your letter was received the High Commissioner had a talk with the Chief of Army Staff on this very subject.P. the government. 1971. Still less the chiefs of the Navy and the Air Force.] Kamaraj. page 376. The full range of parliamentary procedures which are available in respect of other branches of central government may be used in respect of defence and the armed forces. criticised his bosses. Ewing. whereupon she graciously conceded that he “ would” not. Since they do not owe the chief anything beyond a proper respect and obedience. Satish Nambiar is an outstanding exception. 12th Edition. that he reaffirmed it when she contested the claim. he opined freely on Kashmir and India-Pakistan relations.S. to a foreign official. General S. Consul-General in Kolkata. Not all were amused by his comment. But it was a nuanced rejection. N. The survival of India's Constitution owes nothing to the forbearance of General Sam Manekshaw. [John] Freeman [the High Commissioner] would. the Congress president. that he had told Prime Minister Indira Gandhi that he “ could” lead an Army coup. the objectives which they are set and the manner in which they carry out these tasks are matters for which the government is accountable to Parliament – whether it be the activities of the troops in Northern Ireland… the making of a controversial public speech by a high-ranking army officer. and I enclose a note of their conversation. Here is the record (see box). The government is accountable if any officer of the armed forces shoots off his mouth. Both are appointed by the same authority. through his commanding officer and higher levels of command to the Chief of the Defence Staff and the Secretary of State for Defence.

how else could that be achieved except through a compromise acceptable to both? Gen. things were no different in India itself. 2008. he was appalled to read in the day's papers one of Gen. soon after the Prime Minister had spoken. albeit after hearing the Army's views.J. in India. B. from NJ 9842 to the upper Saltoro range. 2005. in mid-1971. set a record. J. on October 31. Immediately thereafter. former Foreign Minister of Pakistan. evidently. the violence declined steeply. “How long shall we allow such conditions to prevail?” But.J. Manmohan Singh's visit to Jammu and Srinagar. The Army had given its views to the government. Kathpalia.J. Differences have so narrowed as to lend themselves easily to a political decision. said on November 12. A pronouncement avowedly on behalf of the Army. He had already given his views to the government. P. if any. all at the same time”. Military Intelligence. one of his recent successors. Arriving in New Delhi for talks with India's leaders. wielded alike by the security forces and the militants. Trust is a political judgment that is entirely for the political leadership to make. “We are awaiting the outcome of the talks. 2005. mediapersons asked him to comment on the Prime Minister's speech.N. a fundamental right recognised in all democracies. Frontline. “your well-being and the security of our nation would be kept in mind”. Last year. the Army disagreed with the Prime Minister and he wanted the public to know that. That very day. He tartly told mediapersons that while Pakistan was criticised in India for letting the Army shape policy. J. former Director General. on October 28 and 29. Gen. As Lt.S. December 5. J. 1988: “A soldier always over- assesses…. “Siachen is called the highest battlefield where living is very difficult. On May 20. On June 21. But even he could not resist a telling comment on one of the general's statements calculatedly timed for the occasion. it is for the civilian government to make a correct judgement and put the actions right. The dispute entails heavy loss in men and material and an environmental degradation without any strategic gain. Khurshid Mahmud Kasuri. Singh. He did not tell them that it was not his place to do so but replied all too readily. and his statements had raised high hopes. talks on the Siachen issue were resumed in Islamabad. 2005. Lt. pages 59-63). In short. But he left no one in doubt that he sought a change. Soldiers of high eminence have advocated a settlement in these last 25 years. Now the time has come that we make efforts that this is converted from a point of conflict to the symbol of peace. J. Just when the prospects seemed bright. J. he said. Singh intervened publicly and repeatedly to thwart the government's policy. Gen. Unrest in Kashmir finds expression in stone-pelting because avenues of democratic peaceful protest are banned to the youth. Singh was not one to let that happen.” He assured the jawans that in the talks with Pakistan. and reiterated that the Army wanted that Pakistan should “recognise” the new buzzword – the existing ground position. Manmohan Singh addressed the Army jawans at the Siachen base camp. 2009. was authenticated. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh pledged himself publicly to a settlement of the Siachen question. has few precedents. The virus has seriously infected others. Gen. Gen.S. is a committed friend of India who bravely incurred criticism in his country for his staunch commitment (vide his interview to the writer. If you know this character of the Army. Singh's pronouncements.J. This is not the impression which the Prime Minister would have liked her Army chief to give to the U. Jaswal told the media at Udhampur: “Violence in . Gen. Gen. On June 12. Jaswal.” They ended in failure the next day. began to voice their protests peacefully on the streets. freed from the fear of the gun. the first Prime Minister to do so. Lt. Singh said in New Delhi that India's interests would be served only when the 110- kilometre-long Actual Ground Position Line.thought he could defeat everyone in sight.” He spoke specifically in the context of the Siachen trap.J. He was familiarising himself with the realities in a constructive spirit. But not by the General Officer Commanding-in- Chief (GOC-in-C) of the Northern Command. In this regard. The young.

His attribution of motives is unworthy of a respected soldier like him. It is rather hard for an inanimate thing to achieve piety. Can you imagine the reaction to such a statement about Marathi-speaking people in Mumbai? After retirement.Kashmir was on the decline since 2006. coining the expression “agitational terrorism”. 2010: “Don't touch this pious document or provisions of the Act giving the similarity [sic ] to a religious book. One has heard of holy books. For. a committee to “review” the Act was set up by the BJP government on November 19. I had to interrupt him to stop the flow of his river of irrelevant rhetoric in spate in order to raise issues of the moment. 2005. 2010). Since they are before the Cabinet. Nakade. spoke recently of the AFSPA as a “pious” document. Would he care to recall Chidambaram's statement in Itanagar. “I would like to say that the provisions of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act are very pious to me and I think to the entire Indian Army” (Kashmir Times. endowed with a talent for “elegant” phrasing. All . They were explicit. Jeevan Reddy (retd) and comprised Lt. He sought to establish it with slides and tables. Union Home Ministry. GOC-in-C of the 15 Corps. a former judge of the Supreme Court? For. recommending the continuation of the present Act. It is that he had no respect for the people or their feelings. Its recommendations cannot be so restricted. a journalist. Army chief Gen. The COAS' charge of political motivation reflects arrogant rejection of reasoned discussion.R. His claim about the entire Army was perhaps not wrong. “ The Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act. should be repealed. For. Arunachal Pradesh. Frontline. the ‘agitational terrorism' was a cause for worry. insurgency is a movement. SHANKER CHAKRAVARTY Outgoing Army Chief General N. V. However. Vij (right) handing over charge to his successor. In 2005. who has been working on the amendments for nearly a year. P. He declaimed in Srinagar on June 14. Jaswal equates that with terrorism. Singh said that the “AFSPA is a misunderstood Act and all who ask for its dilution/withdrawal do so for narrow political gains. does not arise” (Part IV. and Sanjoy Hazarika. The terms of reference cited the “concerns of the people of the north-eastern region” and studiously ignored those of the people of Kashmir. V. Shrivastav. It was headed by Justice B. Gen. September 1. Dr S. The insurgent is a human. with or without amendments. Therefore. his oration was devoted to the preposterous thesis that Kashmiris are not in a majority in Kashmir. Indian Administrative Service (retd) former Special Secretary. Jaswal. The point is not that he was wildly off the mark. former Vice-Chancellor and jurist. 2010). Raghavan.” That would include presumably Union Home Minister P. June 15. another to use it against those who peacefully propagate an idea in meetings or processions. the COAS' duty is not to go public with his views but communicate them to the Defence Minister.” The AFSPA is beyond reason and discourse. November 1. motivated by an idea. with just 26 incidents of violent incidents reported this year as compared to 276 in 2006. 2000).P. Mukherjee argued his thesis in a Kolkata daily. Mukherjee. 2009). not pious ones. Gen. 1958. It is one thing to use the gun against a violent insurgent. Joginder Jaswant Singh. former DGMO.R. reflecting the depths of his disdain for Kashmiris.B.K. on June 25.C. Is the Prime Minister also politically motivated? And so also Justice Jeevan P. page 74 of the report). Gen. June 26. in Srinagar (“A report on Kashmir”. J. Chidambaram. in South Block on January 31. on April 3 this year? He said: “There was a statement by the Prime Minister that he will take steps to replace the AFSPA with a more humane law” ( Asian Age.” He admitted that “militancy is down” but “my orders are to the troops – not only fight insurgents but also insurgency because that is the root cause of the whole trouble” ( Rising Kashmir and Greater Kashmir. The committee held no hearings there. Reddy. this writer interviewed Lt. 2004.

said on March 8. it is then for the government. That was 12 whole years ago. Krishna Pal. Asked to comment on Gen. Padmanabhan said that all the organs of the state had to work together to address the causes of the insurgency. The COAS is not bereft of rights. 2000. Ergo.P. his right to voice his fears and objections to the government in private. Kobi Michael of Ben- Gurion University of the Negev in Israel has described the grim situation there in an erudite and insightful article entitled. a licence to kill with impunity. Unless the distinction is fairly maintained. No COAS has any right to dismiss concerns about abuse of the AFSPA in the way Gen. Singh was within his rights on both occasions. 2000: “We have no magical solution to any problem of this nature. after the troubles had erupted fiercely. the military will not only assess threats but also decide on the response. In the history of mankind. he remarked “that when the security situation had improved. General S. He knew the realities having served as GOC Northern Command and as commander of the 15 Corps (1993-95) when he played an important role in resolving tactfully the crisis when militants occupied the Hazratbal dargah in 1993.such laws prescribe “reasonable use of force”. He is a military adviser. “ultimately there has to be a political solution to the [Kashmir] problem. October 6. we have brought the overall internal security situation in J&K firmly under control. Gen. said at a press conference in Srinagar on October 5. Singh commit when he reiterated in honest candour these very views in a press interview? He said: “I feel there is a great requirement for political initiatives which take all the people forward together. Padmanabhan. the State administration should have reached out. thanks to the armed forces. They are for the politicians in power to assess. was a “politico-military adviser”. Gen. A recent instance suffices to establish this since it has been a subject of comment though it falls into a settled tradition. 2010). he asserted. Greater Kashmir. On July 11.K.K. 2000). That.P. It was a turning point in the decline of the insurgency (Showkat A. Section 4(a) of the Act enables any officer of the armed forces to “ use force. The COAS. Malik defended him on a wrong notion in his interview to the BBC's Urdu Service on June 30. unheard of in any statute whether in India or abroad. Militarily. Padmanabhan said 10 years ago in 2000. then. Asian Age. Singh did. not use the peace to perpetuate its power. even to the causing of death”. On September 11. V.” He explained that “the Army's duty is to hold insurgency within acceptable levels so that the government here continues to function”. Not by the Army alone His successor. But the AFSPA contains a carte blanche. Lt. What sins. This is a juridical obscenity. of course. July 12. Malik said in Mohali. 1998. which won the reprieve. Gen.K. but instead has frittered the opportunity away” ( Indian Express. Such candour is rare. “Who Really Dictates What an Existential Threat Is? The Israeli . This is a restatement of what Gen. He is perfectly entitled to take the people into his confidence if he is asked to achieve the impossible. the new COAS. besides. The Times of India. V. He has not only a right but a duty to speak up publicly. 2010). did the present COAS Gen. Singh's statement of June 30.” adding that it was imperative “to counter the alienation of the local population” (Asit Jolly. Army chief Gen. 2000). V. June 30 and July 11. that a military solution was not possible in Kashmir and a political solution must be sought. September 12.K. V. to take advantage of it and reach out to the militants politically and thus establish peace. It bears recalling that the GOC-in-C 15 Corps in Srinagar. Israel provides warning enough. depending on the circumstances. Motta. June 30. It is another matter that his advice will have political implications. V. he is not. no insurgency has been solved by any army. Now the need is to handle things politically” (Rajat Pandit. V. Gen.

Head of GSS (General Security Service) and even (the) Minister of Defence and Prime Minister – because nobody dares to decide against the position. The meaning of this responsibility is the supremacy of the political thought from which grand strategy is derived. . the responsibility for defining existential threats and their appropriate responses is the political leadership's responsibility. Both soldier and politician collaborate to propagate the “religion of security”. Most politicians yield to both claims because they know no better and there is an “absence of alternative knowledge infrastructure” to military ones.” The military claims superior access to information and also to assessment. existential threats will be defined on the basis of conceptual systems from the world of military thought..” The public is seduced by the worst-case scenarios painted by the irresponsible opposition. Only the moral and intellectual authority of the political leadership can nip the creeping menace in the bud. pages 687-713). So does the BJP.Experience” ( The Journal of Strategic Studies. But the trend is clear and it must be arrested – now. when military strategy becomes hegemonic. Therefore. The military echelon in Israel is the ultimate knowledge authority on the definition of security threats and shaping the responses for tackling them. Amir Oren wrote in the respected Haaretz of January 24. Hence its fondness for the Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA). Joseph McCarthy used security as a political tool. It speaks for the strength of our democratic system that it survived those of the past even as it condones the trespasses of the recent ones. and worst-case scenarios. The talkative generals have done no little harm. whose weaknesses are a bias towards conservative realism. the CGS (Chief of General Staff) is still the most powerful (actor) in comparison to the Head of the Mossad. 2008: “In the dispute between the system's leaders. October 2009. “A vacuum is created and the public looks for the military's professional advice. anti- intellectualism..” Kobi Michael rightly asserts: “National security is the clear domain of political leadership. which preys on its fears.