Dr. APJ ABDUL KALAM (1931-2015)
Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam was born in a Tamil Muslim family in Rameswaram. Kalam's family had become poor at his early age; he sold newspapers to supplement his family income.
Sketch of Dr Abdul Kalam
Kalam completed his schooling at Ramnad, graduated from St. Joseph's College, Trichy, and went on to study Aerospace Engineering at the Madras Institute of Technology (MIT). After that, he joined the Defence Research Development Organisation (DRDO).
- He was the \(11th \)President of India and is fondly remembered as the People's President.
- He was a recipient of several prestigious awards, including the Bharat Ratna, India's highest civilian honour in 1997.
- Kalam has written many books. Among them, very famous books are India 2020, Wings of Fire, Ignited Minds, The Luminous Sparks and Mission India.
- His outstanding work earned him the title of the 'Missile Man of India'.
Mr. VISWANATHAN ANAND
Viswanathan Anand was born in Chennai in a middle-class family. His mother was a big fan of chess and taught him to play the game when he was just five years old. She cheered and motivated him a lot, which laid the foundation for his future career as a chess player.
- He won the World Junior Chess Championship at the age of \(14\).
- He became India’s first grandmaster in \(1988\).
- Anand has won the world chess championships five times (2000, 2007, 2008, 2010 and 2012).
- He was the first recipient of the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award in 1991-92; India’s highest sporting honour.
- He received the nation’s second-highest civilian award Padma Vibushan in 2007.
Ms. S. ILAVAZHAGI
S.Ilavazhagi came from a poor family at Vyasarpadi, Chennai. Her father is a daily wage-earning auto-rickshaw driver.
- She participated in the 2008 World Carrom Championship at Palais Des Festivals, Cannes, France, and bagged her maiden women's title.
- She participated and won the Indian National Carrom Championship in the same year after beating the former World Champion Reshmi Kumari.
Mr. MARIYAPPAN THANGAVELU
Mariyappan was born at Salem in Tamil Nadu. His mother raised her children as a single mother, carrying bricks as a labourer until becoming a vegetable seller, earning about Rs.100 per day. He suffered a permanent disability in his right leg when he was young. Despite this setback, he completed secondary schooling.
In 2016, At the Rio Paralympics, he won the gold medal in the men’s high jump T-42 event, with a leap of 1.89 m.
From the above examples, you will clearly understand that people from different backgrounds facing struggling conditions were still able to achieve greater success in their lives.