Bengaluru, Aug 6: In the middle of a controversy over the ownership of former President Dr A P J Abdul Kalam's official social media accounts, his close aide Srijan Pal Singh has termed the developments as ‘very sad.'
Speaking to OneIndia soon after the news broke out on social media over the statement put out by Guru Kalam's office warning Srijan, the young IIM Ahmedabad graduate said he would want to stay away from controversies.
"We are still mourning the death of Sir and I was shocked to receive an email from his office yesterday. I received the email around 2.20 pm and within minutes it was out in the media as well. The events have definitely saddened me a lot," Srijan said. [Kalam's office can't ban me from sharing my experience with him, says Srijan Pal Singh]
'Surprised by the move'
When asked about what triggered Guru Kalam's office to react in such a manner, Srijan said even he was surprised by the move.
"I was handling Sir's Facebook and Twitter accounts following his instructions. After his demise, I thought it was appropriate to convert it into a handle in memory of Dr Kalam so that his followers could still access it," Srijan said.
"It would have been appropriate to consult me before putting out a statement on the social media. I don't need anyone's permission to propagate Dr Kalam's vision. Like any Indian, even I am free to air my feelings. Respecting him, I decided to deactivate his Twitter account (@APJAbdulKalam) and the Facebook page.
It will take some time before the FB page is officially removed," says Srijan.
When asked why these internal issues weren't sorted among Guru Kalam's aides themselves, Srijan said even he could felt the same.
"How I wished we all worked together to promote the vision of Dr Kalam. I would have loved to spread his message all across as his humble student," Srijan added.
Srijan's statement on Facebook
Even Srijan also put out a statement on his FB page today, which reads: "As per advise of former staff members, I have deactivated the memorial social media accounts of Dr Kalam Sir. He trusted me with social media and it was a rare honor to initiate, design, develop and maintain these accounts for him. I hope I was able to do justice to his valuable faith on something so personal and sensitive.
On the 11th day of his departure and with the grief still deep I am not in a position to debate. I hope this will help us all in some way to come together and work towards larger missions of his which shall be my life's ultimate goals.
Please note the FB will take 14 days beginning yesterday to deactivate. It is a technical policy of account deletion under FB. I hope this resolves the issue and we can now focus on using our strength for Kalam Sir's missions.
I thank all those who helped in whatever ways to maintain these accounts...some of which are many years old."
It's a mourning period for us: Kalam's Executive Secretary
Speaking to OneIndia, Harry Sheirdon, Guru Kalam's Executive Secretary, who had signed the August 5-dated letter asking Srijan to deactivate the accounts, said that move was necessitated after too many versions on Guru Kalam started to appear all over the press.
"It's a mourning period and we wanted to ensure that no one went overboard. We are all part of former President's Office and are responsible of making official comments in tune with his vision," he said.
(The writer is a seasoned aerospace and defence journalist in India. He is the Consultant Editor (Defence) with OneIndia. He was instrumental in launching Dr A P J Abdul Kalam's e-paper Billion Beats as its National Affairs Editor and has been spreading the Missile Man's vision through the Inspired Indian Foundation. He tweets @writetake.)