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China invites India's 'Missile man' to teach at PKU

NOV . 02 2012

China has invited India's "missile man" and former President Dr A P J Abdul Kalam to teach at the prestigious Peking University here, offering him a lab of his choice to work with the students. 

 

Kalam appeared happy to receive the offer.


On his first-ever visit to China at the invitation of the reputed Beijing Forum, a Chinese government backed intellectual body, Kalam appeared happy to receive the offer to teach but said it all depends on his schedule.

Asked whether he would be visiting Beijing often to teach, 82-year-old Kalam told PTI, "I am a teacher. I teach in US and as a Professor wherever the knowledge takes me I go and share it. Particularly, I like meeting young people and I would like to contribute to their knowledge."

The invitation to teach at the Peking University was extended to Kalam by its Chairman Zhu Shanlu when he met the former Indian president Thursday night.

He was invited to teach once a year, the subject of his choice and stay as long as he wants. The subject could be science and technology or humanities, Kalam's secretary H Sheridon said, adding that the offer included setting up Laboratory of Kalam's choice.

Kalam began his career as an Aerospace engineer and later became India's top guided missile scientist heading the DRDO, which recently has come up with 5,000 km Agni V missile which brought a number of Chinese cities within its range.

Significantly, China has organized a special visit for Kalam to Chinese academy of aerospace technology Friday altering its earlier plans to take him on tour of its top aeronautical plant which manufacture its fighter planes.

Kalam himself said he is interested in teaching sustainable development and praised Peking University's recent move to open ethics department which he said is a "beautiful idea".

He is scheduled to formally address students of Peking University tomorrow and interact with the Chinese and Indian professionals at the Indian Embassy here.

Kalam said being ancient civlizations and holding 37 percent of the world population, both India and China should cooperate and jointly work for the prosperity of their people.

"There is no doubt we need harmony between two civilizations. How to do it, so I have come to the conclusion the two great civilizations should become model civilizations by coming together," he said.

"The two countries mean 37 percent of the humanity. It has got a tremendous potential if the two countries put together their joint vision. The joint effort could be for a technology mission or societal development mission or even multiple missions," he said.

"We should be partners," he said referring to the annual Strategic Dialogue between both the countries.

"So there are tremendous opportunities to the two if they come around and work for peace and prosperity," Kalam said.


Asked about critics back home who are skeptical about China and the history of hostilities between the two nations, who fought a war in 1962, Kalam said the countries of European Union came together after over 100 years of wars.

"Those who fought wars are now sitting together in EU Parliament," he said and referred to US and Russia's decision to drastically reduce their missile stockpiles.

"History is there. But the generation is changing. India has over 50 percent youth and China over 40 percent," he said, adding the two could match their respective strengths.

India is strong in software and services sectors and China is strong in manufacturing and two could be "partner", he said. "We both can join (hands) to make products for the world. (So) the technology co-operation (can) bring human cooperation."

 

Source: India Today

Edited by: Arthars