Govt discusses proposals for Kalam memorial in TN

A 3-D display highlighting APJ Abdul Kalam’s work to advance Indian defence technology and segments to showcase his life and achievements were part of proposals mooted today as Union Ministers met here to chalk out plans for a memorial to the late President.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had recently announced that a memorial would be constructed to commemorate the life and works of the late President, also known as India’s Missile Man, at Rameswaram in Ramanathapuram district of Tamil Nadu, where he is buried.

The meeting today was attended by Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu, Union Minister Pon Radhakrishnan, former chief election commissioner N Gopalaswamy and Culture Secretary Narendra Kumar Sinha.

Sources said that the meeting did not take the final call on these proposals, which are expected to be given a concrete shape over subsequent discussions.

A decision was also taken at the meeting to thank Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalitha for providing land for the purpose.

The Central Public Works Department (CPWD) and Tamil Nadu government had carried out surveys to identify land for the memorial earlier in August. The memorial would comprise a library, a museum and a meditation centre.

Kalam breathed his last on July 27 this year and was laid to rest at Peikarumbu in Rameswaram.

Announcing the decision for the memorial at a function at DRDO Bhavan here to commemorate the former President’s birth anniversary on October 16, the Prime Minister had said the memorial for Kalam would be built at Rameswaram to inspire future generations.

Recalling that Kalam wished to be remembered as a teacher, the Prime Minister had said that the former President was well -aware of the importance of nurturing future generations.

Modi mentioned several vital sectors where innovation was essential, including cyber-security, housing-for-all, river- linking, enhancing agricultural productivity, blue economy, and zero-defect, zero-effect manufacturing.

According to sources, Parrikar at the meeting today proposed a multi-dimensional replica display of creations, like Agni missile, which were launched under the leadership of Kalam.

Naidu proposed that the memorial have different sections to highlight Kalam’s life, contribution to science and technology, ideas on India’s cultural heritage and his role as a motivator of youths through lectures and writings.

Former Chief Election Commissioner N Gopalaswamy is learnt to have proposed a display of Kalam’s favourite books, including ‘Tirukkural’, which is believed to have been written 2,200 years back.

‘Tirukkural’, also known as the ‘Kural’ is a classic Tamil sangam literature consisting of 1330 couplets or ‘Kurals’. It was authored by Thiruvalluvar.