Dr A P J Abdul Kalam served as the Indian President during 2002-2007. He was elevated to this position during the NDA Government regime, which was primary headed by Right Wing BJP. It’s a kind of surprise, in Indian political discourse, that a person, who belongs to minority community is elevated to this prestigious political position of the Nation during a Right Wing duration. This surprised some. But, this is not a surprise to some others, who had been closely observing Abdul Kalam’s public life and Hindutva political discourse.
As he hailed from non-political background (without any affiliation to any formal political party) most of the politically vibrant sections, who knows the role of the political role of the President opposed his selection and election as the President. As a sequence to this series; Communist parties fielded an opposite candidate to him in the election, as a nominal token gesture, as they know that their candidate cannot win the election. But, the Communists fielded opposite candidate to ensure that in public life the democratic principle of opposition and contestation prevails.
Dr Abdul Kalam emerged as a preferred choice for the Right Wing headed NDA and NDA constituent partners, amidst of the allegation of anti Minority Government for lack of proper action during Gujarat Communal violence of 2002, sponsored by Hindutva forces, actively aided, supported, encouraged and promoted by the Right Political outfit, which is heading the Governments at both Gujarat and at Union level. At this particular juncture; Dr Abdul Kalam, though a Muslim never had serious faith in any particular region, and used to see in esteem even the Hindu religion and their Seers, never voiced his concerned towards the communal tensions prevalent in the nation. He used to talk and act in reverence towards the Hindutva forces. This attitude of Dr Abdul Kalam made the Right Wing to choose him as their preferred candidate, who advocates and terrifies that the Minorities of the Indian Nation should invariably acknowledge the superiority of the Hindus in public space, and their religious practices should not come in contact with the majority Hindus. And, the other constituent partners of the NDA, basically who hailed from the regional backgrounds (i.e. regional political parties) accepted his candidature, primarily, as an acknowledgement to the nation his scientific contribution (his scientific contribution to the Indian Nation is contested by many of his colleagues and others, but, Dr Kalam rejected such claims). Dr Kalam’s scientific contribution to the Nation is well acknowledged and propagated by the media and other sections of the society, without taking into consideration many of the counter allegations and arguments. He had been awarded by many sections of society as a token of gesture of recognition his scientific contribution to the Nation.
After elevated to the position of the President of India, in contract to the tradition of his predecessors, he mingled much with Media and talked much with reporters and journalists and even continued his habit of talking great about Indian Nation and giving boost to the young generation of the nation, etc. He was projected as spirit and ideal to the young generation of the Nation by the Media. As he was talking much to the media, the media took advantage and at one point of time posed him question, ‘whether he would be interested to contest as President for second tenure?’. To this his prompt reply was in negative. But, when his tenure was on the verge of completion, he expressed his desire to continue as the President for another extended tenure. There was a shift and prompt rejection and criticism against his candidature by some sections of the politicians like RJP Chief Mr Laloo Prasad Yadav. At, last, he chose not to contest and the political parties too were not in favor of him. As a result, Mrs Partibha Devi Singh Patil succeeded Mr Abdul Kalam.
I see and regard; how Dr Abdul Kalam became addicted to the political positions and privileges by expressing his strong desire to continue in the position of the President for extended second tenure!! Basically, the human nature always prefers to be at higher positions and enjoy power. And, Dr Abdul Kalam was no exception. But, the stupid Indian media never explored this angle and projected!!