Staff Reporter

`Political system should be tailored to the requirements of development process'

  • The President describes Panampilly Govinda Menon as an `intellectual giant.'
  • Says ideal medical treatment was a synthesis of aspects of physiology and psychiatry.

    THRISSUR: President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam on Wednesday called upon politicians to imbibe values propagated by great leaders of the past and become role models for the youth.

    Inaugurating the observance of the centenary of Panampilly Govinda Menon at the Carmel Higher Secondary School at Chalakudy, near here, the President said that 540 million youth in the country, who were below the age of 25, should see these values in every action of members of Parliament and Legislative Assemblies.

    Mr. Kalam said the political system in the country should be tailored to the requirements of the development process.

    "Once every election is over, political parties should have a common mission: pushing development. Parties should strive to improve the conditions of 220 million people living below the poverty line, and remove illiteracy and unemployment. I visualise a situation in which parties compete with each other to realise their vision on development," he said.

    The President described Panampilly Govinda Menon as an ``intellectual giant.''

    "People all over the country respected him not only for his intellect, but also for the manner in which he used it for the welfare of the masses, cutting across party lines and partisan considerations. Such personalities are rare. When they arrive, they make a deep impact on society,'' Mr. Kalam said.

    The President recalled Panampilly's skills as a lawyer, orator and statesman.

    Later, addressing 300 students of the Jubilee Mission Medical College and Research Institute and 100 students of the Thrissur Government Medical College, the President said medical practice should aim at healing not just the body, but also the mind.

    He said ideal medical treatment was a synthesis of aspects of physiology and psychiatry.

    The President made the students take an oath of treating at least 20 rural patients a year at minimum cost, providing quality health care to the underprivileged, encouraging development of indigenous medical equipment and realising that medical professionals were in God's mission.

    "You should gear up to provide affordable health care to 700 million people in 6 lakh villages in the country. You must take up research in heart care, thrombosis, HIV, AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, hepatitis and eye care. Your colleges should take you for work in rural areas at least once a month. Rural medical camps should be a part of your curriculum," he told the students.

    When a student asked him about his views on Kerala, the President said that in human development index, the State was rated number one in the country.

    He made the students read a statement, "We are born with a divine fire. Our efforts should be to give wings to this fire and fill the world with the glow of its goodness."

    Fr. Francis Alappatt, director of the Jubilee Mission Medical College and Research Institute, also spoke. Governor R.L. Bhatia, Speaker K. Radhakrishnan, Revenue Minister K.P. Rajendran and Thrissur Archbishop Jacob Thoomkuzhy were among those present on the occasion.