While addressing a gathering during the Golden Jubilee celebrations of Student Gymkhana in the institute, he said majority of the country's population resides in villages and their progress is crucial to the integrated development of the country. This is why necessary developmental programmes need to be undertaken in the villages, which is already happening, he said.
While exhorting students to "pay back the society," he administered oaths to them to use their education in the service of the nation and endeavour for a "corruption free, clean society" for the benefit of future generations. On the need for financing nuclear tests even as the country faced the challenge of poverty, he said this was a necessity to strengthen India's borders. Kalam also inspected the wind tunnel faculty of the institute and interacted with teachers on research programmes being carried out here.