Fight for Former President Dr A P J Abdul Kalam’s FB and Twitter Legacy
Chennai: Just a week after the demise of beloved former president Dr A P J Abdul Kalam, a rivalry has started between his aides and long-time associate. Srijan Pal Singh was the close associate of Dr Kalam, who has co-authored books with Kalam. The issue of handing over the official social networking accounts of Kalam is now grabbing attention.
A special statement issued by Kalam's office in New Delhi restricted Srijan Pal Singh from giving statements in media and social networks in the name of Dr A P J Abdul Kalam.
"Srijan Pal Singh has already been advised to deactivate all Facebook and Twitter accounts in the name of Dr Kalam or in his memory immediately," the statement said.
Sources confirm that Kalam’s office aides are unhappy with the attention Singh receives. The tribute "Last Eight Hours with Kalam" by Srijan Pal Singh went viral and gained attention after it was posted following the demise of the missile scientist on July 27.
"The office is not against Singh sharing his experience as a student with Kalam. He has every right to do that. At the same time, he has no right to share things through Kalam's official pages in social networking sites. There is an office to take care of it," said V Ponraj, who was scientific adviser to Kalam for two decades.
However, Singh confirmed that he was only sharing his personal experience with Kalam."When he (Kalam) was alive, he authorized me to maintain his pages in social networking sites. I was happy to do that. If the office doesn't want me to do it, I am ready to deactivate them. But they can't ban me from sharing my experience with him to the people. He was my guru and mentor," said Singh, who was in Chennai to attend a function to pay tribute to Kalam.
"I co-authored two books with Kalam. We were working on the third one when he died. Kalam was everything to me. I am only talking about my experience with him on my personal capacity. As a private citizen, I think I have every right to do that. No one can stop me," he said.
Dr Kalam was provided with an office with five staff members by the government. Apart from the official staff there were other staffs working for him voluntarily and helping him in various activities.
Ponraj confirmed that Kalam’s office have no motive behind restricting Singh. "He (Singh) was a good student of Kalam. He should share his experience with students and spread Kalam's ideas to the youth. I have worked with Kalam for 20 years, and my job today is to spread his ideas and vision. We have to follow certain rules and should know what to speak and what not," he said.
When asked whether Kalam’s office was unhappy with the publicity Srijan Pal Singh is receiving, he said: "It's unfortunate. This is not the right time to comment on anything because I am at a loss," he said.