89th Birth Anniversary Program of APJ Abdul Kalam

His Holiness the Dalai Lama will give an online talk followed by a question and answer session as the chief guest of the 89th Birth Anniversary Program of Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam organized by the Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam International Foundation from 9 am to 10 am (Indian Standard Time). Those interested may watch the live webcast in Tibetan, English, Chinese and other languages on the official websites and Facebook pages of the Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. People are requested to please follow their local social distancing rules while viewing the live webcast.

Swami Vivekananda’s Speeches at the World ‘s Parliament of Religions, Chicago, 1893

Friends do you know who has written this letter in the year 1898 November 23 and to whom. Jamsetji N Tata has written this letter to Swami Vivekananda asking him to take the leadership of a Research Institute for Science in India. Imagine the type of courage and vision a progressive industrialist Jamsetji had to write to a spiritual leader. This strength he derived from one important incident which took place during a voyage from Japan to USA.

At this point let me share the meeting between Swami Vivekananda and Jamsetji Nusserwanji Tata during a ship journey. It happened in 1893. A ship was sailing Japan to USA. There were hundreds of people in that ship including two significant personalities. Swami Vivekananda and Jamsetji Tata were in that ship. Swamiji asked Jamsetji for what mission he was traveling. Jamsetji said that he wanted to bring steel industry to India. Swami Vivekanda blessed him. He suggested steel technology had two components ? one is steel science and the other is manufacturing technology. What can you bring to this country in material technology ? you will have to build material science within the country. Jamsetji was thinking and thinking and made a decision. Earlier when Jamsetji went to London he asked for technology transfer for Steel Plant. UK steel manufacturers looked at Jamsetji and said that if Indians make steel, Britishers will eat it. Jamsetji crossed Atlantic Ocean, talked to Americans and brought manufacturing technology for steel. And the Tata Steel was established in Jamshedpur. He seeded and worked for the steel plant. Jamsetji is not there now, but 7 million tones per annum steel is rolling out. The visionary Jamsetji gave one portion of his asset for starting a science institute today known as Indian Institute of Science at Bangalore. The message I would like to convey to this audience, dream gives vision, Vision gives thoughts and thought leads to actions. Jamsetji brought two establishment to this country ? first one was steel plant and the other was an educational research institution. Hence have a goal, persevere and work hard to succeed.

Teachers Day 2020

My Teachers

I was always fortunate and blessed to have one or two great teachers during every phase of my educational period between 1936 ? 1957. Evolution of the oath has resulted from what I have experienced and what I have felt and grown through my teachers.

The first oath talks about the teacher loving teaching and teaching being the soul of the teacher. What is the significance of this? Here I would like to give the example of the teacher who really loved teaching.Teacher loves teachingIt was the year 1936; I recall my initiation of education at the age of 5 years in Rameswaram Panchayat elementary school.

I had a Teacher Muthu Iyer who took special interest on me mainly because I performed very well in a class exercise. He was impressed and next day he came to my house to tell my father that I was a very good student. My parents were happy and got my favourite sweet from my mother. Another important event while I was in first class, which I cannot forget. One day I did not turn up to my school. Teacher Muthu Iyer noticed my absence and same evening he came to my father to ask what the problem was and why did I not go to school and whether he can do anything to help me. On that day, I was having fever. Another important thing, which he noticed was my hand writing, was very poor. He gave a three page writing exercise and told my father that he should ensure that I do the exercise everyday regularly. By these actions of my teacher Muthu Iyer, my father told me in later years that teacher Muthu Iyer is not only a good teacher to me in teaching but he influenced and shaped me with good habits and he was a noble friend to my family.

Even today I realize how my teacher loved teaching and took personal interest to bring up his pupils. Now let me talk about another teacher who taught me in my fifth class.Teacher encourages questions from StudentsI was studying in 5th class at the age of 10 who gave a vision for my life. I had a teacher, Shri Siva Subramania Iyer. He was one of the very good teachers in our school. All of us loved to attend his class and hear him. One day he was teaching about bird’s flight. He drew a diagram of a bird on the blackboard depicting the wings, tail and the body structure with the head. He explained how the birds create the lift and fly. He also explained to us how they change direction while flying. Nearly 25 minutes he gave the lecture with various information such as lift, drag and how the birds fly in a formation of 10, 20 or 30 etc

At the end of the class, he wanted to know whether we understood how the birds fly. I said I did not understand how the birds fly. When I said this, he asked the other students whether they understood or not. Many students said that they did not understand. Our teacher was a real teacher and very good teacher. He did not get upset by our response.In view of this, my teacher said that he would take all of us to the sea shore. That evening the whole class was in the sea shore. We enjoyed the roaring sea waves knocking at the rocks in the pleasant evening. Birds were flying with sweet chirping voice. He showed the sea birds in formation in 10 to 20 numbers, we have seen the marvelous formation of birds with a purpose and we were all amazed. And we were simply looking at the formation. The teacher showed the birds and asked us to see when the birds fly, what it looked like. We saw the wings being flapped. He explained how the birds flapped the wings to generate the lift. He asked us to look at the tail portion with the combination of flapping wing and twisting tail. We noticed closely and found that the birds in that condition flew in the direction they wanted. Then he asked us a question, where the engine is and how it is powered. Bird is powered by its own life and the motivation what it wants. All these aspects were explained to us within 15 minutes. We all understood the whole bird dynamics with practical example.

How nice it was? Our teacher was a great teacher; he could give as a theoretical lesson coupled with live practical example. This is real teaching. I am sure, many of the teachers in schools and colleges will follow this example.

For me, it was not merely an understanding of how a bird flies. The bird’s flight entered into me and created a feeling on the seashore of Rameswaram. From that day evening, I thought that my future study has to be with reference to something to do with flight. At that time, I did not realize that I have to go towards flight science.

I am telling this because my teacher?s teaching and the event that I witnessed inspired me to lead to the goal in life. Then one evening after the classes, I asked the teacher, “Sir, please tell me, how to progress further something to do with flight”. He patiently explained to me that I should complete 8th class, and then go to high school, and then I should go to college that may lead to education of flight. If I do all these things I might do something connected with flight sciences. This advice and the bird flying exercise given by my teacher really gave me a goal and a mission for my life.

When I went to college, I took Physics. When I went to engineering in Madras Institute of Technology, I took Aeronautical Engineering.Thus my life was transformed as a rocket engineer, aerospace engineer and technologist. That one incident of my teacher encouraging me to ask questions, showing the visual examples proved to be a turning point in my life which eventually shaped my profession. Shri Sivasubramania Iyer was an example for shaping not just students but igniting the youth both average and extraordinary by allowing them to ask questions and answering them till they fully understood.Teacher puts the students aheadNow I would like to discuss about my mathematics teacher Prof Thothatri Iyengar. As a young science student, I had an opportunity at St. Joseph?s College to witness a unique scene of divine looking personality walking through the college campus every morning, and teaching Mathematics to various degree courses. Students looked at the personality who was a symbol of our own culture, with awe and respect. When he walked, knowledge radiated all around.

The great personality was, Prof Thothatri Iyengar, our teacher. At that time, ?Calculus Srinivasan who was my mathematics teacher, used to talk about Prof Thothatri Iyengar with deep respect. They had an understanding to have an integrated class by Thothatri Iyengar for first year B.Sc. (Hons) and first year B.Sc. (Physics). Thus, I had the opportunity to attend his classes, particularly on modern algebra, statistics and complex variables. When we were in the B.Sc first year, Calculus Srinivasan used to select top ten students to the Mathematics Club of St. Joseph?s, whom were addressed by Prof Thothatri Iyengar. I still remember, in 1952, he gave a masterly lecture on ancient mathematicians and astronomers of India. In that lecture, he introduced four great mathematicians and astronomers of India, which is still ringing in my ears. They are Aryabhata, Srinivasa Ramanujan, Brahmagupta, Bhaskaracharya. Let me discuss one.Prof. Thothatri Iyengar explained, based on his analysis, that Aryabhata was both an astronomer and mathematician, born in 476 AD in Kusuma-pura (now called Patna). He was known to represent a summary of all Maths at that point of time. Just when he was only 23 years old, he wrote his book ARYABHATIYAM in two parts. He covered important areas like arithmetic, algebra (first ever contributor), trigonometry and of course, astronomy. He gave formulae for the areas of a triangle and a circle and attempted to give the volumes of a sphere and a pyramid. He was the first to give value of pie.

He discovered that the earth takes about 365 days to orbit around the sun. Prof. Thothatri Iyengar always puts the student to take a pride in India?s contribution in astronomy and mathematics and puts the students ahead. This great teacher combined his knowledge of science with his deep insight into many aspects of our civilizational heritage. Prof. Thothatri Iyengar was an example for continuously building capacities among students and putting the students well ahead in mathematical sciences. He also injected great thoughts in the minds of students and promoted nobility in thinking and action. Now I would like to discuss about the teacher who built the capacity of working together and evolution of integrated system design even during engineering student life.Learning integrated system designWhile I was studying aeronautical engineering in MIT, Chennai, (1954-57) during the third year of my course, I was assigned a project to design a low-level attack aircraft together with six other colleagues. I was given the responsibility of system design and system integration by integrating the team members. Also, I was responsible for aerodynamic and structural design of the project. The other five of my team took up the design of propulsion, control, guidance, avionics and instrumentation of the aircraft. My design teacher Prof. Srinivasan, the then Director of MIT, was our guide. He reviewed the project and declared my work to be gloomy and disappointing. He didn?t lend an ear to my difficulties in bringing together data base from multiple designers. I asked for a month?s time to complete the task, since I had to get the inputs from five of my colleagues without which I cannot complete the system design. Prof. Srinivasan told me “Look, young man, today is Friday afternoon. I give you three days time. If by Monday morning I don?t get the configuration design, your scholarship will be stopped.” I had a jolt in my life, as scholarship was my lifeline, without which I cannot continue with my studies. There was no other way out but to finish the task. My team felt the need for working together round the clock. We didn?t sleep that night, working on the drawing board skipping our dinner. On Saturday, I took just an hour?s break. On Sunday morning, I was near completion, when I felt someone?s presence in my laboratory. It was Prof. Srinivasan studying my progress. After looking at my work, he patted and hugged me affectionately. He had words of appreciation: “I knew I was putting you under stress and asking you to meet a difficult deadline. You have done great job in system design”.Through this review mechanism Prof Srinivasan, really injected the necessity of understanding the value of time by each team member and brought out the best from the system design team. I realized that if something is at stake, the human minds get ignited and the working capacity gets enhanced manifold. That?s what exactly happened. This is one of the techniques of building talent. The message is that young in the organization, whatever be their specialization, be trained to systems approach and projects, which will prepare them for new products, innovation and undertaking higher organizational responsibilities. Teacher has to be a coach like Prof. Srinivasan


APJ Abdul Kalam appeal to students

What would you like to be remembered for? You have to evolve yourself
and shape your life. You should write it on a page. That page may be a very important page in the book of human history. And you will be remembered for creating that one page in the history of the nation – whether that page
is the page of evolution of a new technological systems, the page of innovation in a way of working, or the page of creating action oriented missions for the people or the page of triumphing over diseases which have afflicted humanity for ages, or the page of contributing towards
inclusive growth of the nation in a time bound manner

Nobel Lecture on Sustainable Agriculture

On 25th August 2020 – IGEN (The Institution of Green Engineers) in association with the KPR Institute of Engineering and Technology organized virtual conference, IGEN Nobel Laureate Lecture Series (NLLS) on Sustainable Agriculture –first of its kind in the history of Lecture series by any Institution in India & abroad. Having such a captivating idea in mind, IGEN, the non-profitable society founded by the green minded people, aimed at transferring intellectual knowledge to the research community, students fraternity, academicians and Industrialists. NLLS was aimed and designed to motivate the 50% Indian Youth’s to conquer more on wining  Nobel prize to India, thereby lifting the countries growth towards sustainability in every walk of life.

IGEN serves as a catalyst to connect all professionals for building a greener world by bringing together all the professional practitioners working for creating a green community, provide sustainable environmental solutions to achieve a green world and to inspire, inform & influence the global engineering community to adopt green engineering practices in their design, product, process and systems. IGEN which specifically works for Green Technology has taken an initiative to portray and bring out the real-time outcome by connecting such organizations like renewable energy companies, customers & utilities through series of events namely ENERGATHON’20 – Asia Book of record for conducting world’s first 12 hours virtual conference, GENTRANSCON’20 exploring and connecting Generation, Transmission and Distribution. On the eve of Environmental day, in association with 20 countries connected with SDG goals,  conducted another World record event – ENVIRONTHON’ with 20 speakers from 20 Countries connecting 2000 Students with 20,000 participants from around the world aiming with 2, 00,000 views in IGEN YouTube Channel (IGENSDGPLUS) non-stop environment concerned eye-opener events.

Dr.L.Ramesh, President of IGEN, expressed his pride and gladness while welcoming the multitude. He briefed IGEN’s mission of working towards UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) (3, 4,6,7,9,11,12,13 & 17) that are represented as VIBBGGYOR – each colour representing and working on each sector of SDG’s. He also mentioned the Young Green Innovative Army (YGIA) that is been developed for encouraging younger minds to design & inculcate Innovative products which lead them to be a solution provider for sustainable greener world. Deliberating the objectives of IGEN Nobel Laureate Lecture Series (NLLS), Dr. M. Akila, the Organizing Secretary of NLLS & Principal of KPR Institute of Engineering and Technology, highlighted its mission of connecting the Nobel Laureates of the globe under one forum and whole-heartily thanked the strenuous work extended by Dr.Subashree in connecting Nobel Laureates with IGEN. She informed that NLLS strives to provide an insightful take for every responsible citizen of a country to recognize the necessity of balanced social, economic and environmental sustainability.

The inaugural ceremony of the IGEN Nobel Laureate Lecture Series got unveiled with a spectacular classical dance, showcasing the cultural heritage of the nation and welcoming the distinguished Chief Guest and honourable Governor of the Telangana, Dr. (smt) Tamilisai Soundararajan, graced the inauguration.  Under the presence of the Nobel Laureate, Sir Richard John Roberts, Chief Scientific Officer, New England Biolabs, the event gained the intellectual aura. The Guests of Honour, Padma Shri. R.M. Vasagam, Former Vice – Chancellor, Anna University and Former Project Director, ISRO, felicitated the occasion. Shri. APJMJ. Sheik Dawood, Trustee, Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam International Foundation, was a part of this fascinating event.

The visionary and the renowned, Chief Guest, Dr. (Smt) Tamilisai Soundararajan, in her inaugural address presented a bird eye view of the present scenario of Agriculturists. The Governor specified in particular the impact of natural farming and threw light upon the plight of children and women suffering from malnutrition. Having said that, she underlined the challenges faced the farmers in production, storage and distribution of crops. Further, Her Excellency emphasized the initiatives of the Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi for the progress of the farmers. She listed various schemes implemented to facilitate effective farming in India and to name a few, Soil Health Card Scheme, Farm Assessment Kit, Micro Irrigation Project and Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana. In addition, she asserted on the use of Neem coated Urea for better yield and mentioned how Sikkim has turned out to be the first state to execute organic farming at large. Dr.(smt). Tamilisai Soundararajan aptly said that “Agriculture is the culture of the country”. Referring to the words of the Prime Minister, “minimum water and maximum yield, the Governor, signposted the incorporation of technology into farming, thereby facilitating the farmers to have maximum yield”. In her concluding statement, she denoted the primordial mission of protecting the health of people and proclaimed that Sustainable agriculture would be a suitable practice to accomplish zero hunger. She appreciated IGEN and KPRIET team for initiating this series and choosing the apt topic for its first lecture ‘Sustainable Agriculture’.

Sir Roberts’s 1993 Noble Prize winner informed that the Nobel Laureates call for science honesty about GMOs was conceived in December, 2013 but was formally launched in 2016. He illustrated the distinction between conventional breeding and precision breeding, pointing out the transmission of GPS system from one car to another car as an instance. In the course of his explanation, he mentioned that it is the product that is important and not the method. He also pointed out that precision breeding has Agrobacterium with DNA to shoot new gene directly so as to reduce the time for new breed production.

Affirming that 2 million people die every year due to Vitamin A deficiency, he stressed on the production of Golden Rice as a solution for the same. In continuation with the benefits of GMOs, he elucidated the technique of overcoming the Xanthomanas wilt disease of banana through transferring the genes in Sweet pepper by precision technique. He also recorded various other crops such as Casava, eggplant and papaya that could offer better yield through GMO solutions. Remarking the advantages of GMOs, he advocated that civil society, Religious leaders, Rotary Clubs and media must play an active role in voicing out its vitality.

Two impressive ideas of Sir Roberts that drives a common man are food is a luxury and not a problem in developed countries and that there is need for more science in politics and less politics in science. Bearing in mind, the challenges of understanding the concept of GMOs, Sir Richards advised on offering scientific education to young children and a platform to express their understanding in public. On that note, he concluded that accomplishing zero hunger is never a fictional theory but a factual reality that could come true through GMOs.

In relation to the Nobel Laureate Lecture series, a total of 3 Pre-Virtual Panel discussions were conducted on said topic namely, ‘Sustainability of Natural Resources’, ‘Need for Sustainable Agriculture in Academics’ and ‘Sustainable Agriculture – Ground Reality and way forward’. In addition, International Online Competitions were also organised under four heads namely, Artistic Challenge for School Students; Talent Hunt for College Students; Creative Pitch Deck for Academicians, Industrialists and Professionals and Snap ‘n’ Share for General public. Out of the massive 2000 competitors, 12 winners were awarded with medals, shield and certificate duly signed by the Nobel Laureate and 15 of them were rewarded with medals and shields for their outstanding performance.

This momentous event came to a close with the concluding remarks of IGEN ambassador Dr. Ishrat Meera Mirzana.  Further, Closing remarks were offered by Dr J.Balamurugan, Vice President IGEN and the vote of thanks was proposed by Er. Hudson Egbert, Secretary IGEN. Mr. D. Gokul, Organising Head, NLLS and Mr. Selvakumar, IGEN Member, acted as moderators for the quintessential event. Needless to say, the historical event proved to be an eye opener to the current young generation and undoubtedly IGEN has served its purpose of propagating the UN Sustainable Development goals across the globe.

Skill Development Webinar

Honourable Union Miniter Dr Mahendra Nath Pandy Ji participated webinar on Skill Development organized by APJ Abdul Kalam International Foundation.

Dr. Mahendra Nath Pandey Speech

Since 2015 Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam International Foundation has been constantly working to fulfill the vision of Dr. Kalam. The foundation is working altruistically for the upliftment of the nation and has also made contributions for the welfare of people. 

Honourable Prime Minister Shri. Narendra Modi always emphasizes on the importance of Skill Development. Even at this unsmooth situation of the pandemic (Covid 19) Modiji has motivated the countrymen and the youth towards skill development. 

Every youngster and student undoubtedly gets inspired by one name which is Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam. Dr. Kalam had dedicated his whole life encouraging people and to fill young minds with huge positivity. Today, on the advice of the Honourable Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship is also working on this same Vision. Narendra Modiji is giving utmost importance to the talent of the youth. 

Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship was previously scattered in small divisions under various departments. Compliments to Modiji that he has created this department separately and as per new countings our skill level is reaching 8% from 7%. Today the highest population of youth in the world, 30-35 lives in India. Population of youth in India is very strong.

New Education Policy has focused on skilling along with schooling. 

Adding the vision of your foundation to that of Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Government of India will work on the mission. That is how to make India capable, how to make India self sufficient, how to overcome the challenges India is facing currently, how to strengthen our credibility in the world through our innovations in the field of production. 
I would like to request the members of Abdul Kalam International Foundation to work for the progress of skill development all over the country through your institution.