IGNITE With Dr.A.P.J Abdul Kalam at IIMA (2012)

On 10th November 2012 Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam was here in Ahmedabad at IIM. Need I give any further introduction of the person? Why he was here is more important question. He was here to give away awards to children who came up with innovative ideas to solve contemporary problems. They were the ones to denied to live the problems we have accepted as part of life. You can find the details of these awards in 11th November 2012 DNA newspaper in the column by Prof. Anil Gupta. Please read it. I encourage you to read it.

Now, Coming back what I wanted to convey. I was fortunate enough to meet him in person and share with him ideas of my research work. The gleam in his eyes was as infectious as inspiring. In his words “I am the 82nd orbiter of the sun” but you cannot find a single trait of his age. The interest he shows in knowing and meeting everyone was motivating for all of us present there. Research and innovation were the directions he motivated all of us to tread. We have talked of research and innovation always, but can we even define it? We pamper a belief that research is something west must do and we will apply it. Why? I urge you all to see a video by Nirmalya Kumar on TED. The facts that he has uncovered are astonishing. He proves a point that Indians are nowhere lacking in the skills. We all will have to agree that we may be poor economically but not poor in out head. We have the intelligence. How can we so blindly accept the fact that west is ahead of us in all aspects? It cannot be. It should not be.

Another event he attended was the presentations by the students of IIM on policy matters. They were to identify the problem that are otherwise so settled in our societies but can be solved effectively by changing the policies. The problems these students identified were too good. And the solutions were equally good. Improving the 108 services, encouraging students to intellectual property rights through a course in education were some of the ideas that came down. One more idea that was shared was making rural internships compulsory for students to earn their under graduate degree. Best and feasible of these solution to policy changes will be officially drafted and presented to the authorities of Central Govt. too. Let us hope some change.

Of course all of the ideas did demand deliberation and careful proposals, but the point was youth wants to change this world. They must be allowed a chance. They can only make this place belter to live in. It is high time we learn to solve the problems rather than arguing on potential solutions and debating over the system. Only way to change this world is to set to work.

These kids and adolescent students conceived so many ideas that were simple yet impressive. They were out of the box. We all face the problems but seldom get up to solve them. Let us get working. Be the change you want to see in the world.


Article Contribution : Tadrash Shah



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