Friday, October 16, 2015

Bharat Ratna Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam - Famous Engineer and Former President of India - Biography

Dr. Abdul Kalam breathed his last on 27 July 2015. He suddenly collapsed during a lecture at IIM Shillong, was taken to hospital and died there.

Dr. Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam: Born on 15th October 1931 at Rameswaram in Tamil Nadu.

After studying in a primary school in Ramaeswaran, Dr. Kalam went to Schwartz High School at Ramanathpuram from where he went to Tiruchchirapalli for his higher studies. Dr. Kalam wrote : “By the time I completed my education at Schwartz, I was a self-confident boy with the determination to be successful. The decision to go in for further education was taken without a second thought. To us, in those days, the awarness of the possibilities for a professional education did not exist; higher education simply meant going to college. The nearest college was at Tiruchchirapalli, spelled Trichinopoly those days, and called Trichi for short. “

After completing his BSc from St. Joseph’s college he joined the Madras Institute of Technology (MIT), for studying aeronautical engineering.

From MIT, he went to Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) at Bangalore as a trainee.  Dr. Kalam joined the Technical Centre (Civil Aviation) of the DTD&P (Air) as Senior Scientific Assistant on a basic salary of Rs. 250/-. From there, he joined the Indian Committee for Space Research (INCOSPAR), the predecessor of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). And thus Kalam started his much talked about career in rocket and missile technology.

After working for two decades in ISRO and mastering launch vehicle technologies, Dr. Kalam took up the responsibility of developing Indigenous Guided Missiles at Defence Research and Development Organisation as the Chief Executive of Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP). He was responsible for the development and operationalisation of AGNI and PRITHVI Missiles and for building indigenous capability in critical technologies through networking of multiple institutions. He was the Scientific Adviser to Defence Minister and Secretary, Department of Defence Research & Development from July 1992 to December 1999. During this period he led to the weaponisation of strategic missile systems and the Pokhran-II nuclear tests in collaboration with Department of Atomic Energy, which made India a nuclear weapon State. He also gave thrust to self-reliance in defence systems by progressing multiple development tasks and mission projects such as Light Combat Aircraft.

Dr. Kalam made significant contribution as Project Director to develop India's first indigenous Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV-III) which successfully injected the Rohini satellite in the near earth orbit in July 1980 and made India an exclusive member of Space Club. He was responsible for the evolution of ISRO's launch vehicle programme, particularly the PSLV configuration.

As Chairman of Technology Information, Forecasting and Assessment Council (TIFAC) and as an eminent scientist, he led the country with the help of 500 experts to arrive at Technology Vision 2020 giving a road map for transforming India from the present developing status to a developed nation. Dr. Kalam has served as the Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India, in the rank of Cabinet Minister, from November 1999 to November 2001 and was responsible for evolving policies, strategies and missions for many development applications. Dr. Kalam was also the Chairman, Ex-officio, of the Scientific Advisory Committee to the Cabinet (SAC-C) and piloted India Millennium Mission 2020.

Dr. Kalam took up academic pursuit as Professor, 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 high school students across the country.

Four of Dr. Kalam's books - "Wings of Fire", "India 2020 - A Vision for the New Millennium", "My journey" and "Ignited Minds - Unleashing the power within India" have become household names in India and among the Indian nationals abroad. These books have been translated in many Indian languages.

Dr. Kalam is one of the most distinguished engineer-scientists of India with the unique honour of receiving honorary doctorates from 30 universities and institutions. He has been awarded the coveted civilian awards - Padma Bhushan (1981) and Padma Vibhushan (1990) and the highest civilian award Bharat Ratna (1997). He is a recipient of several other awards and Fellow of many professional institutions.

Dr. Kalam became the 11th President of India on 25th July 2002.

His focus is on transforming India into a developed nation by 2020.

29 July 2015 Wednesday

As a tribute to APJ Abdul Kalam, 200 muslims under the leadership of Samajwadi Party's Zameer Ullah Khan marched in Aligarh under the banner "Gauraksha Sangharsh Padyatra (March for the struggle to save cows" They appealed to all muslims not to slaughter cows as the act antagonizes the majority community.
(Times of India 30 July 2015, Page 15)

Kalam's Life in Pictures

No comments:

Post a Comment