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Remembering APJ Abdul Kalam: Lesser-known facts about the Missile Man

Speed News Desk | Updated on: 15 October 2015, 14:32 IST

Former president and one of India's best-loved personalities, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam was an inspiration to the young and a gift to the nation.

The man who helped turn India's space programme into a world class one was born on 15 October. Here are a few facts from Kalam's life, which stand testament to his legendary personality.

1) Kalam would regularly donate his presidential salary to charity.

2) He often refused to sit on special chairs at events.

3) As the president he did not hesitate to pay a visit to his former cobbler in Thiruvananthapuram during an official state visit in 2002.

4) In 2007, he took to Yahoo Answers to ask the question, "What should we do to free our planet from terrorism?" The question received over 31,000 answers.

5) He wanted to have the Rashtrapati Bhavan powered by solar energy.

6) He received honorary degrees from 40 universities across the world.

7) He wrote 15 books on subjects ranging from nuclear physics to spiritual experiences.

8) His autobiography, Wings of Fire, has been translated in 13 different languages.

9) The United Nations recognized Kalam's 79th birthday as World Student Day. In 2005, Switzerland

decided to observe May 26 as Science Day in honor of president Kalam's visit to the country.

10) Kalam has literally made his way into people's hearts with the Kalam-Raju stent - an affordable stent he developed along with Dr B Soma Raju.

First published: 15 October 2015, 14:32 IST
 
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