Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam: Former President of India
  Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam    
 
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Speeches:
ADDRESS TO THE RASHTRAPATI BHAVAN COMMUNITY, RASHTRAPATI BHAVAN, NEW DELHI
 

 

I am indeed delighted to be here in the midst of the members of Rashtrapati Bhavan community with their families. May I thank the Officers, Staffs and their families particularly the children who have given full-fledged partnership for developing the Rashtrapati Bhavan during the last five years. Rashtrapati Bhavan has been nurtured continuously and progressively in many areas by the past ten distinguished Presidents, preceding me. I have had the privilege of the partnership of all of you during the period 2002-07 in continuing this process further.

Rashtrapati Bhavan has given me many memorable events in which we have all worked together. It has been transformed into Peopleýs Bhavan, thanks to your efforts. Nearly one million people every year from all walks of life and all age groups such as farmers, sarpanches, police personnel, postmen, writers, educators, political leaders, judicial personalities, home makers, Indians living abroad, industrialists, teachers and students have enriched us with their presence. Invariably I have been getting lot of appreciation after their visit which has been due to the care and individual contribution from each one of you, be it the warm and courteous reception, catering, conducting around facilities, maintenance of the number of gardens, photography and transport. I have seen how the visitors get excited by the Childrenýs Gallery, the exhibits in the Kitchen Museum, the display of paintings and sculptures in the Marble Hall, Herbal Garden, Spiritual Garden, Tactile Garden, Musical Fountain, the bio-diversity park, artificial lake, renovated paintings in the Asoka Hall and modernized reception. The foreign dignitaries have been quite impressed by the horse display, smartness in the parade and the music by our band. While in the present environment, the security personnel are providing us with constant vigil. I am glad that their facilities have been augmented for improving their working conditions. With the modern Multi-media studio established at Rashtrapati Bhavan, we have been able to reach far corners of the country and the world.

In the health sector Rashtrapati Bhavanýs clinic is connected to major hospitals like Research and Referral Hospital, All India Institute of Medical Sciences and CARE Hospital, Hyderabad. Employees and Family Members of Rashtrapati Bhavan above the age of 40 have been examined by the team of doctors and have been treated wherever necessary. They have also been followed up in the subsequent years including provision of counseling on lifestyle changes. Special screening has been done for children for early detection of hearing problems. The Clinic has been upgraded with latest technology equipment and has become a versatile medical centre in this region.

I enjoyed meeting the staff members and families and greeting them on important festival days like Diwali, Rakhi, Holi, New Years Day and Id-ul-Fitr.

During this period, I am happy that the housing environment, estate gardens have been improved, school has been given a technological upgradation and Gymnasiums have started functioning. Rashtrapati Bhavan employees, families and their children participated with great enthusiasm in the special event of sports and other competition. I was very happy to see the Rashtrapati Bhavan School children participating in the Republic Day parade.

We were happy to have the enthralling performances of leading and upcoming artists in music, dance and theatre from various parts of the country well attended by Rashtrapati Bhavan community and distinguished guests.

During the five year period, we have had one hundred and sixty nine tours covering all the States, Union Territories and sixteen foreign countries. These tours have been planned and implemented with high degree of military precision and has enabled my interaction with millions of people.

With my personal association with you, I am sure all these facilities will be further nurtured and improved upon in years to come. I cherish my partnership with you in this beautiful environment of gardens, peacock, birds, animals nurtured by Rashtrapati Bhavan and above all the warmth, enthusiasm, co-operation, dedication and commitment shown by each one of you in every one of your activity during all these five years. My sincere thanks to all of you.

I was thinking what I can ask you at this time. Each one of you grown-ups and children can plant one tree in Rashtrapati Bhavan. These trees will be named after each one of you. The Garden will be called Family Garden. Dr. Brahma Singh will give you a programme. I am sure you will give full support to plant atleast 10,000 saplings which will definitely improve the ecology of this place. Almighty will bless you.

I am very proud of you. My best wishes to all of you in all your endeavours. May God bless you.

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