About The Author….
Wings of Fire: An Autobiography of APJ Abdul Kalam (1999) is
an autobiography of A P J Abdul Kalam, former President of India. It was
written by Dr. Kalam .Abdul Kalam was the 11th President of India from
2002 to 2007. A career scientist turned politician, Kalam was born and
raised in Rameswaram, Tamil Nadu, and studied physics and aerospace
engineering. He spent the next four decades as a scientist and science
administrator, mainly at the Defence Research and Development
Organization (DRDO) and Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) and
was intimately involved in India's civilian space program and military missile
He thus came to be known as the Missile Man of India for his work on the
development of ballistic missile and launch vehicle technology. He also played a pivotal
organizational, technical, and political role in India's Pokhran-II nuclear tests in 1998,
the first since the original nuclear test by India in 1974. He was a very Down to Earth
Kalam was elected as the 11th President of India in 2002 with the support of both the
ruling Bharatiya Janata Party. Kalam died on 27 July 2015, during a speech at Indian
Institute of Management in Shillong, Meghalaya.
Prof. Arun Tiwari, currently chairs a committee of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)
to facilitate 'Make in India' campaign in strategic sector.
Prof. Tiwari joined Defense Research & Development Organisation (DRDO) in 1982 and worked under
dynamic leadership of Dr APJ Abdul Kalam, who then appointed him as the Program Director, to develop
civilian spin-offs of Defense Technology.
He came out of DRDO in 1997 to establish Cardiovascular Technology Institute, a division of Care
Foundation. He received the Defense Technology Spin-Off Award for his brilliant innovation in developing
India's first Coronary Stent with Cardiologist Dr B Soma Raju known as Kalam-Raju Stent leading to
creation of Care Foundation and later the Care Hospitals.
Kalam examines his early life, effort,
hardship, fortitude, luck and chance that
eventually led him to lead Indian space
research, nuclear, and missile programs.
Firstly the book tells us about the early life
of Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Kalam. His
recollections of the early days are very
suggestive of good old Magudi set up. He
remembers his parents, relatives and teachers
his most influential characters in the book.
Adding colour to the section are pictures of
that time. This segment covers all his early
learning and travels.
– The next segment is related to Kalam's further education and work
experience and his involvement with projects of military Defense
and space, primarily the SLV3. . Kalam started his career, after
graduating from Aerospace engineering at MIT (Chennai), India,
at Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and was assigned to build
a hovercraft prototype.
• This part has many scientific details and is an introduction to Defense and space
research organizations. Kalam is an ‘Aam Aadmi' at heart, this is shown in the book
in many of his narratives through his interaction with even the insignificant people
in the hierarchy like Dr Brahm prakash, Prof Satish Dhawan and Prof Vikram
• The end covers the years from 80-91 when Kalam is posted from ISRO to military
Defense labs. Where he helped to establish the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre and
pioneered the first space launch-vehicle program. During the 1990s and early 2000,
Kalam moved to the DRDO to lead the Indian nuclear weapons program, with
particular successes in thermonuclear weapons development culminating in the
operation Smiling Buddha and an ICBM Agni (missile).
Prof. Vikram Sarabhai
Dr APJ Abdul Kalam one of the few
scientists who worked with Dr Vikram
Sarabhai at the ISRO right from the start.
It was during his tenure that India
reclaimed itself as a nuclear state in 1998
and therefore Kalam is rightly called the
Missile Man of India.
- I personally found this story very interesting and inspirational as how a
small boatman’s son became the Missile Man and the 11th President of
India. Being from a small town Dr. Kalam had to make more efforts and
hard work than compared to a big town’s child. Everywhere he went he got
scholarships which made him what he is today. The book also tells us about
his love towards children. He has developed so many things and did so many
researches that he was awarded with the Padma Bhushan. Towards the end
of the book we get to know how he made speeches in universities etc to
inspire children. And how he became the 11th President of the country. In
real world also he died while doing what he loved to do which was giving
speeches free of cost to children and students so as to inspire them.
My Favorite Parts
My favorite part in the book is when he meets his old
teacher and when his teachers wife finally serves him
food by herself the second time he goes to his teachers
house after invitation. Salute to this Great personality
whose stories will always remain in each heart of our