Remembering Former President K.R.Narayanan
In a touching ceremony at the impressive Seventh Day Adventist Church in Washington, friends, admirers and associates of former President K.R.Narayanan paid rich tributes to him today. Among the speakers were Ambassador Ronen Sen, Former President of the Seventh Day Adventist Church, Neal Wilson, Journalist Seymour Hirsch, Author Selig Harrison and renowned oncologist, M.V.Pillai. I was also privileged to address the gathering. Mr. Steve Strength, the son-in-law of Mr.Narayanan represented the family.The leaders of the Indian community in the Metropolitan area thronged the hall to honour a former Indian Ambassador, who had won their hearts. Speaker after speaker spoke of Mr. Narayanan's wisdom, erudition, humility and charm. Padmasree Rajan Devadas, an ardent admirer of Mr.Narayanan presented a slide show.
Dr. Sambu Banik, Mr. Sunny Wycliffe and Padmasree Rajan Devadas took the lead in organising the function. It was a fitting tribute to a scholar, diplomat, statesman and, above all, a man of the masses, whose tenure in Washington remembered with affection and admiration.
I recalled how I watched his legendary career right from the days I sat at the same desk in the University College that he had graced. On the occasions I encountered the legend in flesh and blood, I realised that the legend had not done justice to the man. History, I said, would give him a place among the builders of modern India.
December 4, 2005