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Missile Man takes flight The scientist-engineer who lucidly explained economics Master of strokes He took space science to such great heights! A genius civil servant fades Brilliant Saeed saab Flute falls silent New team at the helm at TANSTIA Dr M G K Menon Music loses a maestro Tribute – Baldev Raj Big ideas, not big words, are important... A versatile legend moves on ‘Sai’ Srinivasan no more Tribute: Dr. Krishnamoorthy Srinivas He elevated B&C to its best... A statue for RV, at last! The honest Sardarji A multi-faceted leader rests in peace Father of German unification no more... How to build a nation He took Kone to great heights… R Desikan – the crusader of consumer interests is gone The Rajha of Rajapalayam... Honest civil servant A multi faceted prince is no more... Tribute - R K Baratan If only he had fastened the seat-belt... Bal Thackeray He contributed so much to the telecom revolution M Subramaniam KP is no more Colour-Chem's colorful personality Cement, calcium carbide, shipping… TSN turned these and more into gold Saeed Jaffrey The motor sportsman is no more Remembering I K Gujral… Jeppiar calls it a day Fighter-pilot turned monk... ‘Mandolin’ stops playing... This trendsetter is no more He breathed transport development When SPIC spawned star managers... A versatile, humane and efficient administrator/litterateur A Gandhian breathes his last on Gandhi Jayanthi A honest bank executive... A welcome biography on a towering CA Another Leo of real estate and education is no more ‘Hero’ rides into the sunset MSV – the King of Light Music Deora – the best networked politician.... Music Samrat!!! - TMS Remembering Chariji The ‘Q’ factor cost him Cabinet Secretary’s post Sivaraman, 100 Endearing Aachi... Samskrt loses a passionate exponent... India’s Master Builder… He was the greatest. Centurion ‘Leo’ rests in peace The Hero of bicycles rests in peace Justice Iyer, 100 Transport S Narayanan Question on Operation X VV Goes... KB Sir for all... Scientist and leader of educational reforms Dada of drip irrigation... Tribute – Ja Ra Su
 
The honest Sardarji

Call him names if you will; I am sure he enjoys being abused, but he was the most sparkling and the most honest editor of them all to have his imprint line on a newspaper or magazine published in the country. No problem identifying him, Sardar Khushwant Singh, who converted the Illustrated Weekly of India from being a castaway rag into a red rag which provoked lakhs of readers.

‘Chamcha No 1 of Indira Gandhi’ was a sort of abuse hurled upon him, but the ex-PRO of the Indian High Commission in London (who did not agree with the late Krishna Menon), a historian of the Sikhs, novelist, short story writer and essayist and some-time editor of Yojana in the Fifties, Kushwant maintained the strength of his convictions, although many said they were misplaced.

He even provided his services as consulting editor for Surya produced by Menaka Gandhi. Apart from the loyalty to the Indira family it was also perhaps a matter of a sardar helping out a sadarini – as ordained in the Guru Granth Saheb. For those not in the know, Maneka is a Sikh sired by one Anand whose bullet-ridden death is still a mystery.

Sardar Khushwant certified that Sanjay’s Maruti car was roadworthy although the test centre of the Defence Ministry at Ahmednagar did not. Being a Sikh, his motor mechanics must be sound. He remains firmly entrenched in the Indira camp. And you can have an assessment of the type of clientele he has cultivated for the Weekly; the readers’ choice of the Indian of the Year in 1976 was Sanjay Gandhi.

Some thirty years ago, the dirty Sardar wrote his own obituary. Can you beat that?  His column With malice towards one and all was widely read and loved. He died one short of what would have been a well deserved 100.

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