SHILLONG, Aug 1: Shillong on Saturday paid rich tributes to former President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam.
The memorial meeting organized by ICARE was held at the Seiñ Jaiñtia Hall, Qualapatty. During the memorial meeting those present acknowledged the fact that Dr Kalam was really the “People’s President”.
John Kharshiing who had led a delegation of herbal practitioners from the state when Dr Kalam was the President of the country said that he felt that it was only yesterday that they had met him.
It may be mentioned that 20 rural traditiol healers from Meghalaya met him on June 20, 2003 at the Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Recalling about the meeting Kharshiing said that the officials of the Rashtrapati Bhavan had initially given them only 10 minutes time to interact with him but when they actually met him they spent more than a couple of hours.
He said, Dr Kalam told the traditiol healers from Meghalaya that they had traditiol knowledge but it should be combined with scientific knowledge.
It was a heartfelt moment of the memorial meeting was when SOT personnel FSA Lapang (the security personnel whom Dr Kalam thanked) stood up to pay his homage to Dr Kalam.
“When I was asked to see him (Dr Kalam) I was scared since I did not know why he called me. When we met he shook my hands and I became calm,” Lapang said.
“He told me to work and addressed me as son,” he added. Meanwhile, the Administrative Officer of Bethany Hospital, Peter Z Sailo Ryntathiang told the gathering about the dilemma of announcing to the world the death of Dr Kalam.
“How do you declare a former President dead? It was a difficult moment for every one of us,” Peter said.
According to Peter the PMO called Meghalaya Governor V Shanmugathan up and he informed that Dr Kalam was no more.
East Khasi Hills Superintendent of Police (SP) Mariahom Kharkrang he has never recollected a VVIP thanking a police personnel.