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APJ Abdul Kalam’s inspirational message animated in web comic

, A P J Abdul Kalam

New Delhi:  Late former President APJ Abdul Kalam’s inspiring and motivational message and minimalistic lifestyle forms the basis for a new art based web comic.

A quote by the “Missile Man of India” from his 1999 autobiography “Wings of Fire” has been animated by Zen Pencils, online comic portal by Australia-based freelance artist Gavin Aung Than.

The comic begins with a depiction of a young girl whose passion for swimming is frowned at by persons of authority presumably her parents.

Than introduces Kalam’s words intended to equip at least a few young people to stand up to the authoritarianism in society.

“A characteristic feature of the authoritarianism in our society is its insidious ability to addict people to the endless pursuit of external rewards, wealth, prestige, position, promotion, approval of one’s lifestyle by others, ceremonial honours and status symbols of all kinds,” Kalam wrote.

“To successfully pursue these goals they have to learn elaborate rules of etiquette and familiarize themselves with customs, traditions protocols and so on.

“The youth of today must unlearn this self-defeating way of life,” said the country’s 11th President.

In his autobiography Kalam recounts how he, a poor country boy from the small town of Rameswaram went on to study physics, work his way through the ranks of the Defence Research and Development Organisation and then the Indian Space Research Organisation. He visited NASA and the Goddard Space Flight Centre in the United States during the height of the space race.

The scientist, aeronautical engineer and writer had during his 40 year scientific career pioneered India’s space missile and nuclear programmes.

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