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speech from the President of IndiaViews: 1331
May 26, 2006 7:02 amspeech from the President of India#

Rajesh Subramanian
Monday, April 24, 2006

A very thoughtful speech from the President of India
A very thoughtful speech from the President of India......... It's very long but worth spending 15 mins.

The President of India DR. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam's Speech in Hyderabad.

Why is the media here so negative?
Why are we in India so embarrassed to recognize our own strengths, our
achievements? We are such a great nation. We have so many amazing success
stories but we refuse to acknowledge them. Why?
We are the first in milk production.
We are number one in Remote sensing satellites.
We are the second largest producer of wheat.
We are the second largest producer of rice.
Look at Dr. Sudarshan, he has transferred the tribal village into a
self-sustaining, self-driving unit. There are millions of such achievements
but our media is only obsessed in the bad news and failures and disasters.
I was in Tel Aviv once and I was reading the Israeli newspaper. It was the
day after a lot of attacks and bombardments and deaths had taken place. The
Hamas had struck. But the front page of the newspaper had the picture of a
Jewish gentleman who in five years had transformed his desert into an
orchid and a granary.
It was this inspiring picture that everyone woke up to. The gory details of
killings, bombardments, deaths, were inside in the newspaper, buried among
other news.

In India we only read about death, sickness, terrorism, crime. Why are we
so NEGATIVE? Another question: Why are we, as a nation so obsessed with
foreign things? We want foreign T. Vs, we want foreign shirts. We want
foreign technology.

Why this obsession with everything imported. Do we not realize that
self-respect comes with self-reliance? I was in Hyderabad giving this
lecture, when a 14 year old girl asked me for my autograph. I asked her
what her goal in life is. She replied: I want to live in a developed India.
For her, you and I will have to build this developed India. You must
proclaim. India is not an under-developed nation; it is a highly developed
nation. Do you have 10 minutes? Allow me to come back with a vengeance.

Got 10 minutes for your country? If yes, then read; otherwise, choice is
YOU say that our government is inefficient.
YOU say that our laws are too old.
YOU say that the municipality does not pick up the garbage.
YOU say that the phones don't work, the railways are a joke,
The airline is the worst in the world, mails never reach their destination.
YOU say that our country has been fed to the dogs and is the absolute pits.

YOU say, say and say. What do YOU do about it?
Take a person on his way to Singapore. Give him a name - YOURS. Give him a
face - YOURS. YOU walk out of the airport and you are at your International
best. In Singapore you don't throw cigarette butts on the roads or eat in
the stores. YOU are as proud of their Underground links as they are. You
pay $5 (approx. Rs. 60) to drive through Orchard Road (equivalent of Mahim
Causeway or Pedder Road) between 5 PM and 8 PM. YOU come back to the
parking lot to punch your parking ticket if you have over stayed in a
restaurant or a shopping mall irrespective of your status identity... In
Singapore you don't say anything, DO YOU? YOU wouldn't dare to eat in
public during Ramadan, in Dubai. YOU would not dare to go out without your
head covered in Jeddah. YOU would not dare to buy an employee of the
telephone exchange in London at 10 pounds (Rs.650) a month to, 'see to it
that my STD and ISD calls are billed to someone else.'YOU would not dare to
speed beyond 55 mph (88 km/h) in Washington and then tell the traffic cop,
'Jaanta hai main kaun hoon (Do you know who I am?). I am so and so's son.
Take your two bucks and get lost.' YOU wouldn't chuck an empty coconut
shell anywhere other than the garbage pail on the beaches in Australia and
New Zealand.
Why don't YOU spit Paan on the streets of Tokyo? Why don't YOU use
examination jockeys or buy fake certificates in Boston??? We are still
talking of the same YOU. YOU who can respect and conform to a foreign
system in other countries but cannot in your own. You who will throw papers
and cigarettes on the road the moment you touch Indian ground. If you can
be an involved and appreciative citizen in an alien country, why cannot you
be the same here in India?

Once in an interview, the famous Ex-municipal commissioner of Bombay,
Mr.Tinaikar, had a point to make. 'Rich people's dogs are walked on the
streets to leave their affluent droppings all over the place,' he said.
'And then the same people turn around to criticize and blame the
authorities for inefficiency and dirty pavements. What do they expect the
officers to do? Go down with a broom every time their dog feels the
pressure in his bowels?
In America every dog owner has to clean up after his pet has done the job.
Same in Japan. Wil l the Indian citizen do that here?' He's right. We go to
the polls to choose a government and after that forfeit all responsibility.
We sit back wanting to be pampered and expect the government to do
everything for us whilst our contribution is totally negative. We expect
the government to clean up but we are not going to stop chucking garbage
all over the place nor are we going to stop to pick a up a stray piece of
paper and throw it in the bin. We expect the railways to provide clean
bathrooms but we are not going to learn the proper use of bathrooms.

We want Indian Airlines and Air India to provide the best of food and
toiletries but we are not going to stop pilfering at the least opportunity.
This applies even to the staff who is known not to pass on the service to
the public. When it comes to burning social issues like those related to
women, dowry, girl child! and others, we make loud drawing room
protestations and continue to do the reverse at home. Our excuse? 'It's the
whole system which has to change, how will it matter if I alone forego my
sons' rights to a dowry.' So who's going to change the system?
What does a system consist of ? Very conveniently for us it consists of our
neighbours, other households, other cities, other communities and the
government. But definitely not me and YOU. When it comes to us actually
making a positive contribution to the system we lock ourselves along with
our families into a safe cocoon and look into the distance at countries far
away and wait for a Mr.Clean to come along & work miracles for us with a
majestic sweep of his hand or we leave the country and run away.
Like lazy cowards hounded by our fears we run to America to bask in their
glory and praise their system. Whe n New York becomes insecure we run to
England. When England experiences unemployment, we take the next flight out
to the Gulf. When the Gulf is war struck, we demand to be rescued and
brought home by the Indian government. Everybody is out to abuse and rape
the country. Nobody thinks of feeding the system. Our conscience is
mortgaged to money.

Dear Indians, The article is highly thought inductive, calls for a great
deal of introspection and pricks one's conscience too.... I am echoing J.
F. Kennedy's words to his fellow Americans to relate to Indians.....


Lets do what India needs from us.

Forward this mail to each Indian for a change instead of sending Jokes or
junk mails.

Thank you,

Dr. Abdul Kalaam

Private Reply to Rajesh Subramanian

May 26, 2006 7:16 amre: speech from the President of India#

My one question to Abdul Kalam : What can he do to save this country from those idiots at the centre ????

Private Reply to Rudy

May 26, 2006 8:46 amre: re: speech from the President of India#

V Ganapathy
Here is an old joke which I hope President Kalam reads it someday:

. . .

A foreign dignitary comes visiting to India for the first time. Next day after breakfast he wanders out of his guest house and sees hundreds of people riding cycles and walking on the road.

He asks an Indian official about who these people are. So the official replies, Sir, they are the citizens of India going about their daily routine activities"

After a while the foreign dignitary sees many cars going past on the road. He becomes curious again and asks the official about who these people are going in the cars.

The official replies: " Sir they are the public servants of India"
. . .

( I was told this joke originated sometime in the 70s...oops I wasnt even born then...still enjoyable in the present time )


Private Reply to V Ganapathy

May 26, 2006 8:58 amre: re: re: speech from the President of India#

Ram Mulage
Oh! yeah I have heard lotz of such speeches by APJ once in a while...but what's the point in just talking? It's like how we talk and crib on these networks.


Private Reply to Ram Mulage

May 27, 2006 6:20 amre: re: re: re: speech from the President of India#

Biraj Valia
A very nice speech, ask him to stop reservation and be an example of being a good politician, let him prove he thinks of making our nation developed. Itís high time he dose something positive other than just giving inspiring speeches.

Private Reply to Biraj Valia

May 27, 2006 7:00 amre: re: re: re: re: speech from the President of India#

Subbarao Amirapu
Surely a very thought provoking speech that was, though he can convince the polity, can he influence the people who are ruling/governing the country?

He should use his powers & convince the bunch of 500+ jokers in the parliament to think for the country at large & not for themselves in getting re-elected again.

Private Reply to Subbarao Amirapu

May 27, 2006 7:31 amre: speech from the President of India#

Leo Fernandes
yes...if he indeed feels so much for India, ask him how he can sit quiet when students are being disowned in their own country in the name of reservations. Ask him what happened to his dream of India? And what about those ignited minds he wrote about? what is the use of studying hard and putting an effort when your fate was decided the day you were born?

Private Reply to Leo Fernandes

May 27, 2006 12:50 pmSAD !! [re: re: speech from the President of India]#

Rahul Gupta

It's sad to see such an eye-opening speech receive such negative comments already!

Firstly, this is not a new speech. It's been doing the rounds for sometime now. That's besides the point anyway.

My point is: Why are there 500+ Jokers at the centre?

Because they are elected out of 1000+ Jokers who are there in politics right now.

Why are there 1000+ Jokers in politics right now?

Because you and I, who claim to have better ideas for this country, and can make changes in the 'system', would not join politics.

Why would you and I not join politics, to start making a change?

Oh, yeah... who's gonna join dirty politics...? We're better off making money, doing what we're doing right now..! Right??

Then, if you can't join politics, don't talk. If you want to make a change, then have the courage to get into politics and make that change. Because until you do that, nothing's gonna change...nothing!

Private Reply to Rahul Gupta

May 27, 2006 2:40 pmre: SAD !! [re: re: speech from the President of India]#

V Ganapathy
The President is absolutely correct is some aspects.

Just compare the speed at which Ryze members are piling up for the party at Tuscan Verve against the call for the reservation protest gathering at ChikLalBagh.


Private Reply to V Ganapathy

May 27, 2006 3:32 pmre: re: SAD !! [re: re: speech from the President of India]#

Shyam Mohapatra

Good fundamental analysis. To the point.

Though I do have observation that, crisis like this one, prompts social revolution and good things set in. Am I being too optimistic here :-)?

I would like to add a note of caution here too. Historically, our civilization has been too slow to respond to changes. Though, very good at making material progresses, we are a little lacking in putting in collective efforts in protecting ourselves from damaging forces( both external and internal). No wonder foreign miniscule forces have ruled us for good amount of time.

If we observe, India is the most progressive country among its neighbourhood, but, every now and then, we, in stead of calling the shots, appease others.


Private Reply to Shyam Mohapatra

May 28, 2006 2:21 pmre: re: re: SAD !! [re: re: speech from the President of India]#

Mukund Lele
Lots of views on this topic and I am expressing mine too!

I think the point Dr A P J Kalam makes is quite simple yet relevant to us as Indian looking to a brighter India.

Do WE (that means you and I) have it in us to make a better India?

Sure, there are a lot of things that can be corrected so it is worth thinking how can WE begin to make the difference!
Start from your house, your street, and so on.

Sure there will be lots of opposition...and when we face it, do we sit down and analyse the problem and see how to get round it or do we take that as an opportunity to make the difference.

I know its tough. But I think the choice for us - as current day Indians - is really this....ARE WE the solution seeking party or the problem posing posse?

Choice is yours and mine.

Private Reply to Mukund Lele

May 30, 2006 9:34 amHOPE... [re: re: re: re: SAD !! [re: re: speech from the President of India]]#

Rahul Gupta

Well, after reading messages posted by V Ganapathy, Shyam Mohapatra, and Mukund Lele, I can say that there's still hope .... hope for a better India.

It's never too late to start .... start a REVOLUTION.

Let's fix the holes, let's set things right. Let's do it one by one. Let's make a BETTER INDIA!

I'd like to remind that Sep 22 2006 is being planned as a NO PETROL DAY.

We hope to make the 'system' realize that it is WE who empower it... and it is WE who can disempower it!

Private Reply to Rahul Gupta

Jun 01, 2006 7:11 amre: SAD !! [re: re: speech from the President of India]#

Well said, Rahul and Ganapathy.

Let us shut the ... up, before yakking! If we cannot do anything other than complaining, then let us all have the basic courtesy of shutting up, before piling up muck on APJ.

At least he has the guts to talk to the Government on the office for profit issues and such, which none of the previous Presidents(rubber stamps) had!

I think our country will only grow, when we stop denigrating our First Citizen and not before!

Private Reply to Ramji

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