Turning Points : A Journey Through Challanges
It was like any other day on the Anna University campus in Chennai. I had delivered a lecture 'Vision to Mission' and the session got extended from one hour to two. I had lunch with a group of research students and went back to class. As I was returning to my rooms in the evening the vice-chancellor, Prof. A. Kalanidhi, fell in step with me. Someone had been frantically trying to get in touch with me through the day, he said. Indeed, the phone was ringing when I entered the room. When I answered, a voice at the other end said, 'The prime minister wants to talk with you ...' Some months earlier, I had left my post as principal scientific adviser to the government of India, a Cabinet-level post, to return to teaching. Now, as I spoke to the PM, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, my life was set for an unexpected change. Turning Points takes up the incredible Kalam story from where Wings of Fire left off. It brings together details from his career and presidency that are not generally known as he speaks out for the first time on certain points of controversy. It offers insight not only into an extraordinary personality but also a vision of how a country with a great heritage can become great in accomplishment, skills and abilities through effort, perseverance and confidence. It is a continuing saga, above all, of a journey, individual and collective, that will take India to 2020 and beyond as a developed nation. Summary Of The Book This book, Turning Points: A Journey Through Challenges, takes up the story from when A.P.J Abdul Kalam became the President of India. It covers his acceptance of the post of the President of India, his term in office, his efforts to make his term meaningful, and the challenges he faced. His term from 2002 to 2007 was an eventful one. The President of India is just a titular head with minimal powers. But, the office is one of great influence and Kalam used it to best effect. He got the government and the public to focus on issues that were relevant to the country's all round growth. He initiated programs like PURA to try and integrate rural areas into the general economic and technological growth of the country. He dreamt of taking the whole of India on his vision for the country in the new millennium, and he saw no reason why the villages should be left out in this vision. Turning Points: A Journey Through Challenges is more about Kalam s vision for his country rather than about himself. He tries to provide a blueprint for development, and for reforms in the government and judiciary. Dr.Kalam is a strong advocate for the use of technology and a proponent of e-governance. Even the little bits of personal experience during his term that he gives, he links with these ideas. For instance, he mentions the controversial dissolution of the Bihar assembly for which he later offered to resign. But, he does not focus on the political or personal implications of this decision, instead, he chose to highlight his use of electronic communication in lending his approval to this move, for he was in Moscow at that time. He made the office of the President accessible to the public. He used his popularity and high visibility to inspire the youth of the country and convince them to believe in his 2020 vision for India. He urged the young people to dream big, and to believe in their country's destiny. Turning Points: A Journey Through Challenges describes the term in office of one of the most charismatic Presidents of the country.
of Prime Minister Vajpayee’s commitment to ensure that India became a developed nation by 2020, as outlined in his Red Fort address the previous year and in Parliament. At the 2005 governors’ conference, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh confirmed his government’s commitment to the task of leading India to the same objective. The impressive speeches at conferences get forgotten. However I placed great value on what was said, and continue to remember it as showing a serious commitment to faster
Pakistani army personnel across the border. There I addressed around two hundred young officers belonging to different units. After my address, before going for Bada Khana, I put a question to the young officers. Dear young officers, I said, since you have more than thirty years of service in front of you in the army, can you tell me what is the unique mission you would like to accomplish as an officer. The senior officers were silent but the younger ones lifted their hands. I chose one. After
when the flowers are in full bloom. This famous lawn was the venue for the banquet for the American president, George W. Bush, and his wife Laura, and the delegation accompanying them. The grand success of this banquet attended by famous artistes, intellectuals and distinguished personalities was a highlight of the events hosted at Rashtrapati Bhavan. It was deeply appreciated by the presidential couple. All the three terraces of the Mughal Garden along with the other gardens in the estate are
it comes to safety. There are four important aspects of safety in nuclear power plants: Structural integrity safety, thermal hydraulic safety, radiation safety and neutronic safety, and it met the requirements of all four. Later, I suggested that there should be a special PURA complex adjoining the villages around the plant which would help with education, training facilities and enabling value-added employment for the local population. I am happy to see that these measures are being
frequently disrupt the House. 2. In the administrative plane Centralization: Transfer powers for internal security from states to Centre. Decentralization: Transfer powers and responsibility for financing development programmes from Centre to states. A Central Commission to be set up to decide on devolution of all forms of Central assistance related to approved anti-poverty programmes and relate such devolution to actual physical performance. Specialized bodies need to be set up like UPSC