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I am a Brahmachari: Kalam

November 16, 2006 16:05 IST

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"I am innocent. I am a Brahmachari," was President A P J Abdul Kalam's reply when he was asked a question on Thursday about people becoming corrupt mainly for the sake of their children and grandchildren.

Kalam was participating in a question-answer session with senior police officials who had gathered to attend a conference on countering corruption organised by the Central Bureau of Investigation.

Additional Director General of Police Ashok Bhan, who heads Jammu and Kashmir's Anti-Corruption Wing, asked the 75-year-old President about his views on the notion that people became corrupt because they wanted to create more assets for their children and grandchildren.

"I am innocent. I am a Brahmachari and hence this does not apply to me at least," Kalam said, as the audience at Vigyan Bhavan burst into peals of laughter.

He added that corruption linked to the creation of assets depended on the conscience of an individual.

Kalam also pointed out that children could play a pivitol role in creating a corruption-free society.

He recalled an incident when a child had asked him how children could play a role in preventing corruption. He said he asked all children to boldly tell their parents, if they indulged in corruption, that they were not doing the right thing that was taught by them and in schools.

"Most of the children spontaneously responded positively and the confidence comes from them as they have love as a tool," Kalam said.


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