OneIndia Special: Guru Kalam’s assets, royalties to go to elder brother
Bengaluru, Aug 02: "Thinking should become your capital asset, no matter whatever ups and downs you come across in your life," so goes a famous quote by former President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam, whose sudden demise last week, has left an entire nation orphaned.
Reliable sources confirm to OneIndia that the assets of the Missile Man, now widely being referred as Guru Kalam, will be likely to be handed over to his elder brother Mohammad Muthu Meera Lebbai Maraicker, 99 years old.
He never wanted to write any will
"We reminded him a number of times the importance of writing a ‘will,' but he never gave us a proper reply. He never wrote any will and now all his assets will be handed over to his elder brother, the senior-most family member," a close aide of Guru Kalam said on Sunday.
He said Guru Kalam's largest assets were only books, which remained as his prized possession till the end.
"His materialistic needs were very limited. He has left behind books only. His famous veena (which he received as a gift many years back), a laptop, a wrist watch, two belts, a CD player and his all-time favourite blue shirt, are among his possessions," he said.
His aides have locked his room(s) at No 10, Rajaji Marg in New Delhi, waiting for the family members to come out of the mourning period.
"We have been still receiving many calls and most of them are crying over the phone," he said.
Royalties from the books flow in
Over the years, Guru Kalam emerged as one of India's best-seller writers, penning many books.
Even most of his aides and close associates too grabbed the opportunity and co-authored books with Guru Kalam.
However, none of his books could match the success of Wings of Fire. Published in 1999, Wings of Fire still remains as a run-away hit, with over a million copies sold since its release.
Dr Kalam himself was a large buyer of his own books as he distributed them to students and libraries across the globe.
His elder brother will be beneficiary of the royalties (current and future) of Guru Kalam.
The royalties are expected to surge further with the demand for books written by Guru Kalam going up across book stores in India, post his demise.
Helped most of his relatives from time to time
"He used to help his relatives often and money was given to many systematically. In the last three months he has definitely showed some urgency in ensuring that the money was distributed to his relatives," another aide of Guru Kalam said.
Guru Kalam owned a flat in Bengaluru, which was given to his brother's granddaughter in 2013.
"He always helped his relatives. He also helped many staff at his official residence in Delhi," he said.
Press Trust of India had recently quoted a member of Jamaat saying that Dr Kalam used to send every year Rs 1.10 lakh for porridge being given in the Mosque during Ramzan season.
The report had also quoted a family member saying that Dr Kalam had sent money to all his family members from his savings.
(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 APJ 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)