Hyderabad: Telangana declared a holiday on Tuesday as a mark of respect to A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, while it was a working day in neighbouring Andhra Pradesh as Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu said the former president was against declaring a holiday on his death.
“Don’t declare a holiday on my death, instead work an extra day. This was his message,” Naidu said, paying tributes to Kalam at a meeting held at the state secretariat here.
The chief minister said Kalam and former Singapore prime minister Lee Kuan Yew were the great leaders who did not want their countries to declare holidays on their death.
Naidu led the officers in paying two-minute silence as a mark of tribute to Kalam. He asked government offices across the state to hold meetings to pay homage to the late president.
He said the offices of Telugu Desam Party (TDP) will also pay tributes to Kalam. Naidu asked people to dedicate their lives for nation building as was done by the former president.
Quoting from speeches of Kalam, the TDP chief said he would continue to inspire people, especially the youth.
Naidu said it was his good fortune that he also played his role in suggesting Kalam for the top post when National Democratic Alliance (NDA) was in power at the centre.
“I also advised then prime minister Atal Behari Vajpayee that Abdul Kalam will be the right choice as he will inspire youth and enhance the country’s prestige,” he said.
The chief minister said he would never forget the day when Kalam came to his office in the secretariat and shared his vision of India.
He recalled that Kalam set aside all protocol as a president to call on him when he was recovering after a bid on his life by Maoists in 2003.