APJ Abdul Kalam Biography
APJ Abdul Kalam, popularly known as the “Missile Man of India,” was one of the most beloved and respected figures in Indian history. Born on October 15, 1931, in Rameswaram, Tamil Nadu, Kalam was a scientist, engineer, and politician who played a vital role in the development of India’s missile and space programs. However, APJ Abdul Kalam is best known for his humble demeanor, his commitment to education and youth, and his deep devotion to his country.
APJ Abdul Kalam: Early Life and Education
APJ Abdul Kalam was born to a Tamil Muslim family in the small town of Rameswaram, located on an island off the southeastern coast of India. His father, Jainulabdeen, was a boat owner and imam at a local mosque, while his mother, Ashiamma, was a housewife. Kalam was the youngest of four siblings, and his family lived in relative poverty.
Despite his humble beginnings, APJ Abdul Kalam was a bright student who excelled in mathematics and science. He studied physics at St. Joseph’s College in Tiruchirappalli and graduated in 1954. Afterward, he moved to Madras and studied aerospace engineering at the Madras Institute of Technology. In 1958, APJ Abdul Kalam earned a degree in aeronautical engineering and joined the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) as a scientist.
APJ Abdul Kalam: Career and Achievements
- Kalam’s career as a scientist began in earnest in 1965 when he joined the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
- In 1969, APJ Abdul Kalam was transferred to the Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL) in Hyderabad, where he worked on the development of India’s first satellite launch vehicle (SLV-III).
- The SLV-III was a remarkable achievement for India, as it made India the sixth country in the world to have a satellite launch capability.
- Kalam’s biggest achievement, however, came in 1983 when he became the director of the DRDO’s Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP).
- Under his leadership, the programme developed five missile systems, including the Agni, Prithvi, Akash, Nag, and Trishul missiles.
- These missiles were significant for India as they gave the country a credible deterrent against its neighbors, particularly Pakistan and China.
- APJ Abdul Kalam was widely recognized as the “Missile Man of India” for his role in developing these missile systems.
- Kalam’s contributions to Indian science and technology did not end with the missile programme. APJ Abdul Kalam also played a critical role in the development of India’s nuclear program.
- In 1998, India conducted its first nuclear tests under Kalam’s guidance, making India a nuclear power.
- Aside from his scientific achievements, Kalam was also a devoted educator and mentor to young people.
- APJ Abdul Kalam believed that education was the key to unlocking India’s potential and that every child deserved the opportunity to receive an education.
- APJ Abdul Kalam frequently spoke at schools and universities, inspiring students with his words and encouraging them to pursue their dreams. Kalam also authored several books, including his autobiography “Wings of Fire,” which became a bestseller in India.
APJ Abdul Kalam: Political Career
In 2002, APJ Abdul Kalam was elected as the President of India, succeeding K.R. Narayanan. He served as the President for five years, from 2002 to 2007, and was widely regarded as one of India’s most beloved presidents. During his presidency, Kalam focused on issues such as education, healthcare, and rural development. APJ Abdul Kalam frequently traveled across India, meeting with ordinary citizens and listening to their concerns. Kalam was known for his humble demeanor, his unassuming nature, and his deep love for his country.
APJ Abdul Kalam: The Missile Man of India
APJ Abdul Kalam, also known as the Missile Man of India, was an inspirational figure who served as the 11th President of India. Born on October 15, 1931, in Rameswaram, Tamil Nadu, Kalam had a humble beginning and rose to become one of the most respected and admired personalities in India.
APJ Abdul Kalam was the youngest of four siblings and had a difficult childhood. His father was a boat owner and had to work hard to make ends meet. However, Kalam’s parents instilled in him a love for education, and he was a bright student from a young age. He completed his schooling from Schwartz Higher Secondary School and went on to study physics at St. Joseph’s College, Tiruchirappalli. He later completed his aeronautical engineering degree from the Madras Institute of Technology.
APJ Abdul Kalam: Career Awards
APJ Abdul Kalam began his career as a scientist in the 1960s and worked for India’s civilian space program and military missile development program. APJ Abdul Kalam played a key role in India’s development of ballistic missile technology and was known for his contributions to the design and development of India’s first indigenous satellite launch vehicle, SLV-III.
In 1992, Kalam became the Chief Scientific Adviser to the Prime Minister of India and also served as the Secretary of the Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO). He was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 1981 and the Padma Vibhushan in 1990 for his contributions to the Indian space program and the military.
APJ Abdul Kalam: Interesting Facts
- Kalam was elected as the President of India in 2002, succeeding K.R. Narayanan.
- APJ Abdul Kalam was the first scientist to hold the position of President and was widely admired for his humble nature and his commitment to the welfare of the nation.
- During his tenure as President, Kalam was known for his efforts to promote education, particularly in rural areas, and for his advocacy of technology and innovation.
- APJ Abdul Kalam was a great visionary and believed that India could become a developed nation by 2020. He wrote several books on India’s development, including India 2020: A Vision for the New Millennium, and inspired a generation of young people to work towards making India a developed nation.
- APJ Abdul Kalam was also known for his humility and simplicity. He never sought power or wealth and remained grounded despite his many achievements.
- Kalam was often seen riding a bicycle or walking to his office and was known for his accessible and friendly nature.
- APJ Abdul Kalam once said, “I am not a politician, I am an ordinary citizen of India. But as President, I have a responsibility to inspire and motivate the people of this great nation.”
- Kalam was a role model for many young people in India and around the world. He believed in the power of education and urged young people to pursue their dreams and never give up.
- APJ Abdul Kalam once said, “You have to dream before your dreams can come true.”
- Kalam was also a great advocate of science and technology and believed that India could become a global leader in innovation.
- APJ Abdul Kalam believed that science and technology could be used to solve some of the world’s biggest problems, including poverty, hunger, and disease.
- Kalam’s contributions to India’s space program and military were recognized with numerous awards and honors, including the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian award, in 1997.
- APJ Abdul Kalam was also awarded the King Charles II Medal by the Royal Society, UK, in 2007, and the Hoover Medal by the ASME Foundation, USA, in 2008.
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