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Dr Kalam addresses Bay Area Indo American diaspora

Some people hide serious thoughts behind their simplicity and Dr Abdul Kalam is one such person whose apparent straightforwardness is endearing.

india Updated: Sep 20, 2007 10:53 IST

Some people hide serious thoughts behind their simplicity and former President Dr Abdul Kalam is one such person whose apparent straightforwardness is endearing.

Addressing a gathering of over a 1000 people at the India Community Center in Milpitas in California on Tuesday, September 18 evening at a function organised by Indian Institute of Science Alumni Association of North America, the Pan-IIT alumni and TIE (The Indus Entrepreneurs), he requested one and all to collaborate and contribute to give to those less privileged.

He said that sharing knowledge and experience is as vital as other forms of giving and Indians in the Bay Area can help India and their adopted nation by sharing knowledge in various ways.

Quoting the advice of his mentor, Prof Satish Dhawan, Dr Kalam said, "The problem should not become the captain. You should be the captain and defeat the problem."

People's president APJ Abdul Kalam also spoke on the need of improving India's primary education syllabus to help the children become more creative. He opined, "Three people play a very important role in instilling righteousness in a child's life the father, the mother and the primary school teacher and all three play a very vital role in instilling and building confidence in a child. If a child becomes confident, the citizen becomes confident. If a citizen becomes confident, the nation becomes confident. His simple words were frequently interrupted by applause.

Narrating his talk with John Chambers, Cisco systems CEO, Prof Kalam said that Chambers told him that US worships best performers and people are not afraid of failure. Dr Kalam said, "a can do, risk taking attitudinal change is needed in people in India too.

On an optimistic plane, Kalam said India is ascending economically and he is confident that India can become a value based developed nation by 2020. He reiterated that a value system that is rooted in India's rich heritage is important to the inclusive definition of development. Besides natural resources and other assets, Kalam said, "ignited minds of 540 million youth are a great asset of India."

Concluding his speech with a ten point dream agenda for India, Former President said, "By 20202, I envision India will be a country where the rural and urban divide is reduced to a thin line, where there is equitable distribution and adequate access to energy and quality water." Amidst applause and a repetitive standing ovation, he added, "where quality value based education is not denied to anyone because of societal and economic reasons, where quality health care is available to all and a transparent, corruption free country that is the best destination for the most talented scholars, scientists and industrialists."

First Published: Sep 20, 2007 10:38 IST