27 Mar : Former Indian President APJ Kalam has been chosen to receive prestigious 2008 Hoover Medal for his outstanding public service, it was announced in New York on Friday.
The citation said that he is being recognised for making state-of-the-art healthcare available to the common man at affordable prices, bringing quality medical care to rural areas by establishing a link between doctors and technocrats, using spin-offs of defense technology to create state-of-the-art medical equipment, and launching
telemedicine projects connecting remote rural-based hospitals to the super-specialty hospital.A pre eminent scientist, a gifted engineer, and a true visionary, he is also a humble humanitarian in every sense of the word, it added.
The award will be presented to Kalam at a special ceremony on 28th April.The award is administered by representatives from the American Society of Civil Engineers, American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical and Petroleum Engineers, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, American Institute of Chemical Engineers, and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.
The inspiration to establish the Hoover Medal was supplied by the devotion and dedication of Herbert Hoover and a group of engineering associates who sought to solve the problems of countries from the beginning of World War I to their reestablishment following the war.
The first medal was presented to President Hoover in 1930. Other recipients include President Dwight David Eisenhower, President James Earl Carter, and industrialists David Packard and Stephen Bechtel.
The citation said uplift of the rural population of India has always been of prime concern to Kalam.Many of the projects that Kalam launched during his career have been ingeniously designed to bring some of the advantages of the modern world to the remote and economically deprived segments of the Indian population at an affordable price.
A prime example is the key role Kalam played in the creation of "telemedicine", a system that helps connect rural hospitals with super-specialty medical centers in India and abroad.
The success of this project proved that it is indeed possible to bring cutting edge medical care to even the most isolated rural areas, it added.