India's former President A P J Abdul Kalam was conferred with honorary Doctorate of Laws by Queen'sUniversity Belfast in Northern Ireland. Dr Kalam, known as India's 'missile man', received the honour from Vice Chancellor of the University Professor Peter Gregson for "distinction in public service. Through Dr Kalam's outstanding abilities as a world statesman, scientist, educator and visionary, he has inspired millions in his native India and around the world. Dr Kalam's visit is a tangible example of the educational, research, business and cultural links between India and Northern Ireland.This university has produced the world's first low-cost technology to provide arsenic-free water to people in India and has been selected by the British Council to provide groundwater management trainngsin regions polluted by arsenic.
Dr Kalam is also an award-winning aerospace engineer who played a leading role in many of India's most recent technological breakthroughs, including the landing of India's first unmanned lunar spacecraft in November last year.In 2007, he was awarded the prestigious King Charles II medal of the Royal Society and in April this year he became the first Asian to receive the Hoover Medal, America's top engineering prize.