During an interview with BBC, AQ Khan refused to accept that Dr Kalam was a "great scientist". He also claimed that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in 2002 elected Dr Kalam as President of India just for vote-bank politics.
AQ Khan's statement shocked everyone. During the interview, he was quoted as saying, Kalam was an ordinary scientist and I cannot recall any big inventions by him."
less than ordinary Pak scientist, arrested 4atomic smuggling, has audacity to question the competence of an extraordinary human being, kalam
less than ordinary Pak scientist, arrested 4atomic smuggling, has audacity to question the competence of an extraordinary human being, kalam— Abhishek Singhvi (@DrAMSinghvi) July 29, 2015
While Dr Kalam was known as the "Missile Man" of India, AQ Khan claimed that India developed its missile program with help from Russia.
AQ Khan's shocking statements surfaced just two days after Dr Kalam's death. The most popular former president of India passed away in a hospital in Shillong on Monday, July 27.
The 83-year-old had gone to deliver a speech at IIM-Shillong, Meghalaya. He collapsed on dais while addressing the students of the institute.
His body first was flown to Delhi and later was taken to his hometown Rameswaram, Tamil Nadu. His body will be cremated on Thursday, July 30.
Government of India announced a 7-day national mourning. Leaders across the world mourned his death. AQ Khan's comment of Dr Kalam might have surprised people of Pakistan as well.
Who is AQ Khan?
Abdul Qadeer Khan, popularly known as AQ Khan, is Pakistani nuclear physicist and a metallurgical engineer.
He is considered as the founder of high-enriched uranium (HEU) based Gas-centrifuge uranium enrichment program for Pakistan's integrated atomic bomb project.
In 2004, AQ Khan was accused of supplying crucial secrets of nuclear weapons to foreign countries (It is suspected that he had disclosed the secrets to North Korea).
He was dismissed from his job and was put into house arrest. However, Islamabad High Court in 2009 declared him a free citizen of Pakistan.
However, United States of America was unhappy with the high court's order and warned that AQ Khan still remains a "serious proliferation risk".