Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam (Tamil: அவுல் பகீர் ஜைனுலாப்தீன் அப்துல் கலாம்; born 15 October 1931 in Rameshwaram, Madras Presidency, Indian Empire), usually referred to as Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam, was the 11th President of India, serving from 2002 to 2007. He was elected during the tenure of the National Democratic Alliance (India) coalition government, under Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. During his term as President, he was popularly known as the People's President. Before his term as India's president, he worked as an aeronautical engineer with DRDO and ISRO. He is popularly known as the Missile Man of India for his work on development of ballistic missile and space rocket technology. In India he is highly respected as a scientist and as an engineer. Kalam played a pivotal organizational, technical and political role in India's Pokhran-II nuclear test in 1998, the first since the original nuclear test by India in 1974. He is the chancellor of Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (Thiruvananthapuram), a professor at Anna University (Chennai), a visiting professor at JSS University in Mysore, and an adjunct/visiting faculty at many other academic and research institutions across India. Political views
In his book India 2020, Abdul Kalam strongly advocates an action plan to develop India into a knowledge superpower and a developed nation by the year 2020. He regards his work on India's nuclear weapons program as a way to assert India's place as a future superpower. It has been reported that there is a considerable demand in South Korea for translated versions of books authored by him. Kalam continues to take an active interest in other developments in the field of science and technology. He has proposed a research program for developing bio-implants. He is a supporter of Open source software over proprietary solutions and believes that the use of open source software on a large scale will bring the benefits of information technology to more people. Aerospace engineer
After graduating in Physics from St. Joseph's College, Tiruchirapalli, Abdul Kalam graduated with a diploma in Aeronautical Engineering in the mid-1950s from the Madras Institute of Technology.As the Project Director, he was heavily involved in the development of India's first indigenous Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV-III). As Chief Executive of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Program (I.G.M.D.P), he played a major part in developing many missiles in India including Agni and Prithvi although the entire project has been criticised for being overrun and mismanaged. He was the Chief Scientific Adviser to the Prime Minister and the Secretary of Defence Research and Development Organisation from July 1992 to December 1999. Pokhran-II nuclear tests were conducted during this period and have been associated with Kalam although he was not directly involved with the nuclear program at the time. Awards and honors
On April 29, 2009, he became the first Asian to be bestowed with the Hoover Medal, America's top engineering prize, for his outstanding contribution to public service. The citation said that he was being recognised for: making state-of-the-art healthcare available to the common man at affordable prices; bringing quality medical care to rural areas by establishing a link between doctors and technocrats; using spin-offs of defense technology to create state-of-the-art medical equipment; and launching tele-medicine projects connecting remote rural-based hospitals to the super-specialty hospitals. It added that he was an eminent scientist, a gifted engineer, a visionary, and a humanitarian. On 13 September 2009, he was awarded the International von Kármán Wings Award. The Government of India has honored him with some of the country's highest civilian awards: Padma Bhushan in 1981
Padma Vibhushan in 1990
Bharat Ratna in 1997
for his work with the ISRO and DRDO and his role as a scientific advisor to...
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