The front entrance of the memorial looks similar to India Gate, while the two domes are on the lines of Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated a memorial of former President APJ Abdul Kalam at Peikarambu here on the occasion of the second death anniversary of the 'people's president'.
After paying floral tributes at Kalam Sthal, Modi took a tour around the memorial built by the Defence Research and Development Organisation — an organisation Kalam was closely associated with for decades. The memorial, built at a cost of Rs 15 crore, has four main halls each depicting the life and times of Dr Kalam from childhood days to his last visit at Shillong where he died.
The front entrance of the memorial looks similar to India Gate, while the two domes are on the lines of Rashtrapati Bhavan. The PM also unveiled a wooden statue of Kalam playing 'veena'. A model of 'Agni' missile positioned in front of the memorial also drew the PM's attention. The memorial has about 900 paintings, and 200 rare photographs of the late scientist, who held the office of the president from 2002 to 2007.
"Rameshwaram, the sacred land, gave Dr Abdul Kalam to India. Kalam, who loved the youth, wanted to see the country developed. When we celebrate the nation's 75th Independence Day, our country should have developed in all walks of life, for which our youth should take an oath. A step forward by a single person is a 125 crore steps towards development," Modi said.
He also noted that Kalam made genuine efforts to fulfil his dream of a developed India.
Modi also flagged off the Rameswaram-Ayodhya 'Shraddha Sethu' Express train connecting Rameswaram with Ayodhya, both considered sacred by Hindus, inaugurated a road from Rameswaram to Dhanushkodi, the point from where one can the mythological 'Ram Setu', and gave away trawlers to fishermen for deep sea fishing.
"A new India is not possible without a new Tamil Nadu. That is why the central government is helping the state with funds," Prime Minister said assuring the Centre's support for the housing schemes and for loans to help the state's fishermen buy boats for deep sea fishing. He also paid tributes to late Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa saying that she is a leader "we all remember". He added that she would have been very happy and would have appreciated the works more than him.
Modi was accompanied by Tamil Nadu Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao, Chief Minister K Palaniswami, Union ministers of state Pon Radhakrishnan, Nirmala Sitharaman and NDA's vice presidential nominee M Venakaiah Naidu.