[Fsf-press] RMS meets President of India

Arun M arun@gnu.org.in
Thu Jan 29 19:12:42 IST 2004


                               PRESS RELEASE

                                                        January 29, 2004

               Richard Stallman meets the President of India 

Dr. Richard M Stallman, world-renowned software guru and founder of the
Free Software Foundation (FSF), had a meeting with His Excellency the
President of India, Bharat Ratna Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam at 2:15 pm

The meeting took place at the Rashrapati Bhavan, official residence of
the President of India. At the meeting, Dr. Stallman explained to Dr.
Kalam the ethical issues related to the use of proprietary software. The
President was impressed by the issues raised by Dr. Stallman. It is
understood that the President has instructed for the use of free
softwaree for his IT facilities. Dr. Stallman also discussed the issues
of using proprietary software in schools, which prevents children from
sharing and learning to share. Implications of IT@School project in
Kerala also got mention.

Stallman's meeting with the president took place in the backdrop of
support for free and open source software extended by the president at a
public speech recently.

Dr Stallman has been in India from January 16th. His programmes included
the World Social Forum in Mumbai from January 16 to 22, lectures at
Thrissur, Ernakulam and Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala, and meetings with
various government officials in the state regarding the use of free
software in government initiatives.

Further information on the Free Software Foundation and its Indian
chapter can be obtained from the web sites: http://www.gnu.org and

   Free Software Foundation, India.

   Press Contact 

        Email :  gnu@gnu.org.in
         Phone :  094470 34795

About Free Software Foundation of India:

The Free Software Foundation of India, an official Indian affiliate
of FSF, was formally inaugurated by Richard Stallman at the Freedom
First! conference held at Trivandrum in Kerala on 21st July 2001. FSF
India works for creating awareness of the ideals of free software
movement in India.  FSF India strives to ensure that free software is
strong in all respects, and it forms a genuine, credible, and viable
alternative to proprietary software for almost every kind of
application. It also undertakes development of free software for local
needs and promotes the development of the same in the country. 

About Free Software Foundation:

The Free Software Foundation, founded in 1985, is dedicated to
promoting computer users' right to use, study, copy, modify, and
redistribute computer programs. The FSF promotes the development and
use of Free (as in freedom) Software -- particularly the GNU operating
system and its GNU/Linux variants -- and Free Documentation for Free
Software. The FSF also helps to spread awareness of the ethical and
political issues of freedom in the use of software. Their web site,
located at http://www.fsf.org, is an important source of information
about GNU/Linux. They are headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts, USA. 

About Richard Stallman:

Richard Stallman is the founder of the Gnu Project, launched in 1984 to
develop the free operating system GNU (an acronym for ``GNU's Not
Unix''), and thereby give computer users the freedom that most of them
have lost. GNU is free software: everyone is free to copy it and
redistribute it, as well as to make
changes either large or small. Today, Linux-based variants of the GNU
system, based on the kernel Linux developed by Linus Torvalds, are in
widespread use. There are estimated to be
some 20 million users of GNU/Linux systems today.
Richard Stallman is the principal author of the GNU Compiler Collection,
a portable optimizing compiler which was designed to support diverse
architectures and multiple languages. The compiler now supports over
30different architectures and 7 programming languages.

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