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Sunday, Oct 24, 2021
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A.P.J. Abdul Kalam

Homi Sethna says I can’t comment on Pokhran-II since I don’t know physics! Well, my dear friend, who can claim to know physics in its entirety?

A.P.J. Abdul Kalam
Illustration by Sorit
A.P.J. Abdul Kalam
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

“Silent about virtue and swift to act wrongly/ A man may yet be declared good who does not slander others.” Thus spoke the great Tamil poet, Thiruvalluvar. And I quote him not because I am P. Chidambaram about to present the budget but because I am hurt. Deeply hurt. All this mud-slinging and downsizing Pokhran-II to 1.5 goes against our great tradition of exaggeration. Look at our cinema, our TV, our mythology—everything is larger than life. Then why not a bomb? This Santhanam chap—he may be a great scientist—should realise a bomb is a bomb whether its yield is 45 or 25 kilotonne. Just like they say in my hometown, Rameshwaram, a brinjal is a brinjal whether it’s 5 grams or 10. So, repeat before and after me—if one is not enough, go for one more. The same holds true for bombs. Size does not matter Santhanam—why do you think the Americans christened that thing they dropped on Hiroshima ‘Little Boy’. Also, when I was 12, I developed an ‘atom bomb’ for a crackerwallah from...

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