#Odisha renames Bhadrak District Wheeler Island Of Odisha as Abdul Kalam Island #KalamJi #WheelerIsland
Bhubaneswar, Sep 4 (PTI) The Odisha government today renamed the Wheeler Island in Bhadrak district as Abdul Kalam Island.
“It’s a humble tribute to the People’s President. The Wheeler Island will henceforth be named as Abdul Kalam Island,” Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said.
APJ Abdul Kalam had passed away at 83 in Meghalaya last month. He had suffered a massive cardiac arrest.
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today renamed Bhadrak district’s Wheeler Island after former President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam. Mr. Patnaik hopes that it would encourage the youth to further pursue a scientific temperament. It would be Odisha’s humble homage to the legendary scientist in return for his unstinted love towards this land, he said in the statement.There was a growing demand across sections of society to rename the island after Dr. Kalam, who described the island as his ‘Theatre of Action’.
Patnaik said the association of Kalam with Odisha and the state’s former chief minister Biju Patnaik was well known.
“It was Biju Babu (Naveen’s father) who allotted this historic Wheeler Island to the Ministry of Defence on the request of Dr Kalam in the year 1993,” Patnaik recalled.
“Renaming the island as Abdul Kalam island will inspire our youngsters to work dedicatedly for the scientific research,” Patnaik said.
The island was named after an English commandant Lieutenant Wheeler.
The first successful land-to-land test of the Prithvi Missile was conducted from the mainland and it landed on the then uninhabited ‘Wheeler Island’ on November 30, 1993. PTI
More about Wheeler Island
Wheeler Island is an island off the coast of Odisha, India, approximately 150 kilometres (93 mi) from the state capital Bhubaneshwar. The Integrated Test Range maintaining a missile testing facility is located in the island.
Wheeler Island is located approximately 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) off the eastern coast of India on the Bay of Bengal and about 70 kilometres (43 mi) south of Chandipur in Odisha. The Wheeler Island is about 2 kilometres (1.2 mi) in length and 390 acres (1.6 km2). The nearest port is Dhamra Port.
Wheeler Island is the missile test facility for most missiles of India; Akash Missiles, Agni Missiles, Astra Missile, BrahMos, Nirbhay, Prahaar Missile, Prithvi Missiles, Shaurya Missile, Advanced Air Defence (AAD), and Prithvi Air Defence. Access to the test facility is by ship, as there is no bridge or airport connecting the island to the mainland. There is a small helipad, but missile airframes and all supplies, construction materials and heavy equipment arrive by ship.
In May 2013, increasing concern has been drawn to the change of the island’s topography, owing to sand erosion. Since the island is technically a shoal, seawater frequently causes sand-shifting. The situation is being monitored by geological experts from National Institute of Ocean Technology and the DRDO.
In September 2015, it was declared that the island would be renamed to honor the late Indian president, A.P.J Abdul Kalam.