October 16, 2015
Little did Jainulabdeen and Ashiamma know that their son would grow up to become one of the most loved and respected Presidents of India. He went one step further and came to be known as the ‘People’s President.’ His contribution to India’s growth story as the country’s President and through various other roles that he played prior to and after his Presidency have made him the ‘Youth Icon’ of India. He touched so many lives and spoke to lakhs of people, mainly the youth, on his vision for India. He planted his thoughts in the minds of millions of people. His passing away was an irreplaceable loss to India, but it also turned out to be an opportunity to celebrate the man that he was and his vision for the country.
October 15 is the birth anniversary of Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam. For India, it is a day to celebrate the tremendous contribution that he made for the country. “To shine like the sun, you should first burn like the Sun” was one of his best quotes. There is no subject that Dr Kalam hadn’t touched upon, either through his books or his talks.
“Sustainable Environment” was one of his favourite topics. His vision for “Sustainable Environment” covered the entire spectrum of energy independence in India, space solar power, sustainable agriculture, and water. His pet project, of planting ten billion trees, and his personal involvement in initiatives like Carbon Free Cities, Rural Development, and sustainable environment-friendly technologies among others, is a constant source of inspiration for all Indians.
Young Indians (Yi) Coimbatore Chapter, in association with SACON and Salim Ali Naturalist Foundation (SANF), recently organized the ‘Yi Youth Dialogue’ on ‘Visioning for India’ to celebrate the birth anniversary of this great man.
U.N. Ravikumar, Former Director of the Centre for Appropriate Rural Technologies (CART), was one of the speakers.
Ravikumar, a mechanical engineer from the University of Mysore, specialized in technology and society interface work, with special reference to development of appropriate technology interventions, sustainable development practices and rural development. He was also involved in translating field research into teaching applications for the training of the youth. He has done pioneering work in rainwater harvesting, sustainable sanitation, water recycling, wetland conservation, bio-resources, renewable energy systems, and environmental education.
He delivered a presentation on how he has been tirelessly working towards saving the wetlands of his hometown Mysore city. “I see a lot of similarities between Mysore and Coimbatore. The population, size and climate of the two regions are almost the same,” Ravikumar said.
He urged those present to work towards making India a green country. Through his PowerPoint presentation he educated those present on how he has been working towards saving the lakes of Mysore from extinction. “We are blessed with enough water these days. We must all work together towards using water wisely. Recycling water in our homes and in our offices can help in bringing down the amount of water we consume,” Ravikumar said.
On the eve of the birth anniversary, he urged Coimbatorians to save trees, stop deforestation, and control soil erosion. He also encouraged and motivated those present there to work towards reviving the water bodies of the city. “Working towards saving the water bodies is a people’s movement. Till date a majority of water wars have ended in favour of the masses. We must unite and save the natural water bodies before it’s too late,” Ravikumar said.