India celebrates the 84th birth anniversary of Dr Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam, who is known as the Missile Man of India or APJ Abdul Kalam. He served as the 11th President of the country.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated a photo exhibition -- "A Celebration of Dr Kalam's Life" -- before unveiling the statue of Kalam at DRDO Bhavan in New Delhi on Thursday. He also released a commemorative postage stamp on the birth anniversary of the legendary scholar.
While paying tributes to the late scientist, who passed away in Shillong, Meghalaya, on 27 July, 2015, Modi said Kalam always looked for "challenges" and his life is a source of inspiration for all Indians.
"Kalam was a Rashtra ratan before he became a Rashtrapati," Modi said while speaking about the "People's President" during the meeting.
The other dignitaries who attended the occasion include Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, Urban Development Minister Venkaiah Naidu, Communication and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and Science and Technology Minister Harsh Vardhan.
Meanwhile, the Indian government also plans to construct a memorial for Kalam at his birth place Rameshwaram in Tamil Nadu.
Many celebrities and politicians have paid tribute to Kalam on his 84th birth anniversary.
Check out the wishes below:
M Venkaiah Naidu
Remembering the great son of the country #AbdulKalam on his Birth Anniversary. My tributes to him.
Remembering the great visionary Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam – a simple man who touched the lives of millions – eternal inspiration for us all!
Prof Anand Kumar
Today the nation, particularly the students and youth are celebrating birth anniversary of Dr A P J Abdul Kalam. He was a unique president who became more wanted after completing his term at Rashtrapati Bhawan due to freshness of ideas and view-point. He was a self made man who was neither an outstanding student nor a first rate technologist. But he was a great visionary which fired the imagination of our youth and the middle classes with his simple talks and practical wisdom. Why? There were two reasons : first, he was the only one in the community of national personalities who was selfless, simple, futuristic as well as above caste-class-region-religion framework. Secondly, his vision for India 2020 and suggestions for village India and young India made him a natural leader with a road-map for all. It is unfortunate that he could not influence our politicians or the captains of industry and commerce.
Ravi Shankar Prasad
My tribute to the former President of India "Bharat Ratna" Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam Ji on his birthday.
Shivraj Singh Chouhan
Bow my head in reverence to exceptional scientist & sagacious statesman Dr APJ Abdul Kalam on his birth anniversary.