Chennai: A large number of people have gathered at former president APJ Abdul Kalam`s house at Rameswaram to pay their last respects, a relative said on Wednesday.
"People in large numbers have assembled at Kalam`s house to pay their last respects," APJMK Sheik Saleem, the former president`s brother`s grandson told a news agency over the phone.
"All our relatives have also come to attend the last rites," he added.
The coastal town of Rameswaram, a Hindu pilgrimage centre, is located around 600 km from Chennai in Ramanathapuram district.
Kalam was born in Rameswaram and spent his young days battling poverty there.
Saleem said Kalam`s body will be kept at a location near the bus stand to enable the public to pay their last respects.
"Public can pay their homage till 8 pm today (Wednesday) after which the body will be taken to his house - `House of Kalam` at the Mosque Street," Saleem said.
According to him the last rites will be performed around 10.30 am on Thursday.
In a statement issued here Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa said at the request of the family members, the government has allotted land for burying Kalam`s mortal remains.
Security has been tightened at Rameswaram in view of the large number of people, including ministers and others, who are expected to attend Kalam`s last rites.