Abdul Kalam

On 27 July 2015, Kalam travelled to Shillong to deliver a lecture on “Creating a Livable Planet Earth” at the Indian Institute of Management Shillong. At around 6:35 p.m., only five minutes into his lecture, he collapsed. He was rushed to the nearby Bethany Hospital in a critical condition; upon arrival, he lacked a pulse or any other signs of life. Despite being placed in the intensive care unit, Kalam was confirmed dead of a sudden cardiac arrest at 7:45 p.m. His last words, to his aide Srijan Pal Singh, were reportedly: “Funny guy! Are you doing well?”
Following his death, Kalam’s body was airlifted in an Indian Air Force helicopter from Shillong to Guwahati, from where it was flown to New Delhi on the morning of 28 July in an air force. The flight landed at Palam Air Base that afternoon and was received by the President, the Prime Minister, Chief Minister of Delhi Arvind Kejriwal, and the three service chiefs of the Indian Armed Forces, who laid wreaths on Kalam’s body. His body was then placed on a gun carriage draped with the Indian flag and taken to his Delhi residence at 10 Rajaji Marg; there, the public and numerous dignitaries paid homage, including former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Congress president Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi, and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav.
On the morning of 29 July, Kalam’s body, wrapped in the Indian flag, was taken to Palam Air Base and flown to Madurai. His body was received at the airport by the three service chiefs and national and state dignitaries, including cabinet ministers Manohar Parrikar, Venkaiah Naidu, Pon Radhakrishnan and the governors of Tamil Nadu and Meghalaya, K Rosaiah and V. Shanmuganathan. After a brief ceremony, Kalam’s body was flown by air force helicopter to the town of Mandapam, from where it was taken in an army truck to his hometown of Rameswaram. Upon arriving at Rameswaram, his body was displayed in an open area in front of the local bus station to allow the public to pay their final respects until 8 p.m. that evening.
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa will not attend Mr. Kalam’s funeral tobe held in Rameswaram, due to health reasons, T.N. Finance Minister
O. Panneerselvam and other state Ministers to attend the funeral.
On 30 July 2015, the former President was laid to rest at Rameswaram’s Pei Karumbu Ground with full state honours. Over 3,50,000 people attended the last rites, including the Prime Minister, the governor of Tamil Nadu and the chief ministers of Karnataka, Kerala and Andhra Pradesh.

THE PEOPLE’S PRESIDENT:
A.P.J. ABDUL KALAM
(1931-2015)

A.P.J. Abdul Kalam through the years
A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, the 11th President of India and a pioneer of the country’s space and missile programmes, passed away on July 27, 2015. He was awarded the Bharat Ratna in 1997, the Padma Vibhushan in 1990 and the Padma Bhushan in 1981. Here’s a detailed look at his achievements.
A.P.J. Abdul Kalam (1931-2015)
Timeline
• 1931 : Born Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam on October 15, in Rameswaram, Tamil Nadu.
• 1954 : Graduates in Physics from Saint Joseph’s College, Tiruchirappalli, in 1954.
• 1960 : Gains degree in Aeronautical Engineering from Madras Institute of Technology.
• 1969 : Transferred to ISRO from the DRDO.
• 1980 : India enters the space club by putting the Rohini satellite in the near earth orbit with the first indigenous Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV-III), developed under the stewardship of Dr. Kalam.
• 1980s-1990s:
As the chief of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme, he was responsible for the development and operationalisation of AGNI and PRITHVI Missiles.
• 1992-1999 : Works as Chief Scientific Advisor to the PM and Secretary of the DRDO.
• 1998 : India conducts the Pokhran II nuclear tests in May with Dr. Kalam as the chief project coordinator.
• 1999-2001: Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India.
• 2002-2007: President of India

Mr. Kalam through the years
A look at photos from the archives of The Hindu of the former president.
• Mr. Kalam’s recent article in The Hindu talks about neutrino research.
• Failed in my dream of becoming pilot: Mr. Kalam says in new book. Read here.
• Memorabilia of former President at his Rameswaram house attract visitors. Know more.
• Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam’s vision for the nation. A message on Teacher’s Day from the former President, exclusively for The Hindu in School.
• Abdul Kalam was an institution- and team-builder who always wanted India to be strong and self-reliant.

A teacher till the very end
If the people remember me as a good teacher, that will be the biggest honour for me, he used to say.
Pall of gloom at House of Kalam
As the news spread, people made their way to visit the grief-stricken family.
Kalam had special fondness for alma mater
He spent four years at the famous St.Joseph’s College from 1950 to complete his intermediate and graduation in Physics.
Chandipur pays tribute to ‘Missile Man’
Kalam was always accessible to everyone — from lowest contributing person to highest ranking scientist.

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