The only regret APJ Abdul Kalam had in his life

Dr APJ Abdul Kalam, who died on Monday evening in Shillong in Meghalaya, regretted not being able to provide facilities like 24-hour electricity to his parents during their lifetime.

Last Updated: Jul 28, 2015, 17:33 PM IST
The only regret APJ Abdul Kalam had in his life

New Delhi: Dr APJ Abdul Kalam, who died on Monday evening in Shillong in Meghalaya, regretted not being able to provide facilities like 24-hour electricity to his parents during their lifetime.

Kalam's close aide Srijan Pal Singh, who was with him on his last day, said: "That is I think one regret he always had in his life”.

When asked about Kalam's last wish, Singh, who co-authored two books with Kalam, told a news agency from Shillong that the former president always wanted a billion smiles on a billion faces in the country.

"He wanted rural India to develop and also he kept on talking about youth empowerment. Now his ideas are more alive as the man who was leading it from the front is no more," he said.

Kalam, who rose from humble beginnings to become one of the India's leading scientists and later a hugely popular president, died in Shillong last evening after collapsing during a lecture at the IIM-Shillong, plunging the entire country in mourning.

Born on October 15, 1931, Kalam, who occupied Rashtrapati Bhavan in 2002-07 as India's 11 president, breathed his last at 7.45 pm at the Bethany Hospital where he was rushed to from the IIM where he was delivering a lecture on "liveable planet".

One of India's most accomplished scientists, Kalam -- widely known as India's "Missile Man" -- was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 1981, Padma Vibhushan in 1990 and Bharat Ratna - the highest civilian honour - in 1997.