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Monday, July 27, 2015

Dr. Kalam

Dr. Kalam was the chief guest of Tripura University convocation in 2001. Boro pishi (my eldest paternal aunt) had completed her Ph.D in Zoology. My paternal grandfather had passed away in January that year. Though we missed Grandpa on the occasion, I was elated to accompany her when the degree was conferred. It felt like an honor. We met some of her colleagues-professors of the university- one of whom exclaimed upon the similarities in our facial features. It runs in the family; we laughed.

But most of all, I remember seeing Dr. Kalam in person before he became the 11th President of India in 2002. What a humble man! You want to touch the sleeve of his coat just to know what greatness feels like. Not all politicians or leaders can command respect and admiration so effortlessly. What makes a man great? I am still trying to figure.

Boro pishi wanted me to get a doctorate when I grew up. I thought so too. Even after my MBA, I wanted to be a Doctor in Business Administration. But other things happened. I don't know if I will get a doctorate, but we share respect for a man. An educated but self-effacing man, who worked as a scientist in DRDO and ISRO. But most importantly - someone who was a genuine human being.

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