The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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A drive back into memory

Abu Dhabi, Oct. 19: Only one person at the Higher Colleges of Technology made no mistake about A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.

While the students were confused if he was a teacher, a scientist or a philosopher, security guard Siva Perumal Samy had no trouble recognising his former employer. The President could not initially recognise his former driver till his scientist friend Professor Balakrishnan reintroduced Samy.

Kalam immediately took Samy to his present boss, college chancellor Nahayan Mubarak Al Nahayan. “He is an accomplished driver,” the President said.

Pat came the reply from the chancellor: “What is he doing here then'”

Samy was invited to be the President’s special guest at the Intercontinental Hotel. They met there in the evening.

With the students, Kalam put aside his prepared speech and urged them to dream. “You must dream. The dreams should then transform into thoughts and thoughts into concrete action.”

After the 35-minute speech, a student in the audience asked Kalam: “If you were young today, what would have been your dream'”

The President ducked a direct answer by relating his teacher’s lesson on how birds fly. “But, now, I have landed here,” he said.

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