Kalam hosts tea party for media
NEW DELHI: With just four days left for President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam to complete his five-year term, he officially took leave of the media corps here on Friday. The President hosted the customary tea party for the media at Ashoka Hall of Rashtrapati Bhavan and took time to meet each one of the media persons personally.
“I have lived all my life as a common man, I came here as a common man and I will go as a common man. I have assignments to teach at five universities, including Anna University and the one at Gandhigram ,” Mr. Kalam said while freely interacting with the newspersons.
To a reporter, he tossed a question: “Who is a good journalist?” and went on to recall his address at a symposium in the capital where awards for excellence in journalism were presented.
“I told your editors that a good journalist works for national development and all-round economic growth of the country, highlighting positive aspects. But you people are interested only in wrongdoings and deeds of corruption. Write about positive developments also like how a fisherman got a good catch on a particular day,” said the scientist-President.
Each one of the newspersons present, including several prominent editors, were given a copy of Mr. Kalam’s two addresses to the Foundation for Unity of Religions and Enlightened Citizenship and Thursday’s address at the India Islamic Cultural Centre. And true to his character, his speech began with a quote of Swami Vivekananda: “My name should not be made prominent. It is my ideas that I want to be realised.”
Asked what he would miss the most, Mr. Kalam said he had opened the doors of Rashtrapati Bhavan to the common people and as a common person he would not miss anything. “But I am going to miss the garden and my walks here,” he said. Throughout his stay at Rashtrapati Bhavan, he had invited postmen, police constables, visually challenged school children and special children to the customary tea parties hosted by him.