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President Kalam’s Greece visit

world Updated: Apr 28, 2007 01:07 IST
President Kalam’s Greece visit

Happiest moment

In his days as a lab scientists, President Kalam – with assistance from associates – had been able to use defense technology for reducing the weight of human calipers from three kilograms to thirty grams. Witnessing the tears of joy on the faces of parents whose children were using these light-weight calipers was the happiest moment of his life. President Kalam said this on Friday at Athens at a reception hosted by the Indian Ambassador in Greece Dr B Balakrishnan.

Visit to Acropolis

Towards the close of his four day European tour, President Kalam visited the historic Acropolis hill – the “sacred rocks” of Athens representing the ancient Greek Civilization dating the Neolithic age. Dr. Kalam did not miss the opportunity of teaching the young people. “Dream, inspire and act; dreams transform into action”, he was heard telling a group of young visitors. Earlier, he was accorded a ceremonial farewell at the Presidential Palace at Athens. Dr. Kalam returns to New Delhi on Saturday.

Educational quota

President Kalam cannot quite be drawn into a discussion that he does not want. The question from one among the audience at the Indian Ambassador’s lunch was: “What are your views on the educational quota demand in India?”. Dr. Kalam’s answer: Primary education in India is completely free!”.

Confluence of Cultures

President of Greece Karolos Papoulias – during his meeting with President Kalam – had a surprise item: A coin depicting the figure of King Melinda of Greek origin who ruled a part of India at one time and later became a Buddhist. “This coin is a symbol of the umbilical connect between the ancient civilizations of India and Greece”, Dr. Kalam said at a gathering of overseas Indians. These are civilizations that have been at dialogue for centuries and there is no reason that we cannot take things forward from here, the President added.

Address to Scientists

Earlier, in his address at the National Center for Scientific Research Demokritos, President Kalam called upon researchers from Greece and India to focus on seven areas: solar power, nuclear power, healthcare, HIV-AIDS, stem cell research, forecasting of earthquakes and precision forecasting of rain. Emerging technologies such as Nano, Information Technology, biotechnology and space research will be dominating the future in every field and application, he added.