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Issue No.: 577 | July 2015

My First and Last Meeting with S. V. Raju

V. Krishna Moorthy

My association with Freedom First goes back to over five decades since my college days at Mysore in the early 1960s. I thus have an emotional attachment with the family of Freedom Fist and the principles the journal stood for all these years. Having joined the State Bank Group I moved to Bombay in the early 1970s and had the occasion to meet the Founder, Minoo Masani. He asked me to review a book and that’s how my association with the journal as a contributor started. But after that, I had no occasion to write for Freedom First for the next 25 years.

After my retirement, I started writing off and on, and in the last three years, more often. That is how I came in contact with Sri S. V. Raju. I started by writing on topics of current interest – one such was on the topic of black money. Following its publication Raju asked me to review S. Gurumurthy’s book on the subject which was published in the journal. Subsequently, he e-mailed me names of three books on economics and finance, which I had to politely decline pleading that I could not adhere to his deadline. When any of my writing was found to be too lengthy, for constraints of space, he would seek my view and I invariably gave him the full authority to use his editorial scissors without mercy. The outcome in print invariably added more value to the piece; such was the quality of his editing.

Last year in November-December, I came down to Mumbai to spend some time with my son’s family and took that opportunity to meet Sri Raju. I had never met him all this while and he happily agreed offering me an open invitation to come to his office any time before 4.00 p.m. when he left for home. So, around noon on 29th November 2014, I called him up from the Jehangir Art Gallery seeking directions to his third floor office. I reached within five minutes, climbed up the classic building in that old time elevator and entered his compact office cum workstation. Though it was the first time I was meeting Raju, the welcome was such that I felt as if I have known him for decades. Soon thereafter he called his colleague Kashmira Rao and introduced me to her. We spent nearly two hours discussing various topics of current interest including the PM’s Swachh Bharat Abhiyan. While I shared my association with Freedom First narrated earlier, he shared his experiences with the founding of the Swatantra Party and his role, how he came about to handle the affairs of Freedom First and finally as its editor for over three decades. It was nice listening to him and the times he spent with the great and mighty persons like Rajaji, Masani and others and the period when the Swatantra Party had a significant number of representatives in the Parliament and the quality of parliamentary debates of that time. He complained about his eye sight and the problem of commuting these days and how he proposes to bring out the future issues of Freedom First. After nearly two hours of intimate discussion on topics of varied interest with an ace editor, it was time for me to take leave of him.

When I was about to leave, Raju offered me to pick up two books for review in Freedom First. And, I again pleaded with him that it would take time. He then gave me a parting gift – a book titled "How Businessmen Can Enrich Public Life : D. N. Patodia – Reflections” authored by him which contained a bookmark with his name and signature which I would treasure as a remembrance of a great soul. Thus ended the two hours I spent with Raju for the first and last time, not long back, and recalled it when I learnt the sad news about his sudden demise.

The last time I heard from him was on 2nd May forwarding the soft-copy edition of the May 2015 issue of Freedom First on Subhas Chandra Bose with his covering note which had a tinge of humour about his sudden sickness and feeling bad to be away from his adopted child Freedom First. Thus, the April issue was the last of his editorials in Freedom First.

Mr. V. Krishna Moorthy 
C.E.O., Parivarthan, Mysore.




Current Issue


Other Articles in this Issue


In this issue


Tribute to S. V. Raju

Truly, The Complete Man

Vivek Raju

S. V. Raju: A Political Rishi

Nitin G. Raut

Memories of S. V. Raju

Sharad Joshi

Raju Lived for a Cause

Y. Sivaji

S. V. Raju: A Personal Tribute

Minoo Adenwalla

My First and Only Meeting with S. V. Raju

Ronald Meinardus

My First and Last Meeting with S. V. Raju

V. Krishna Moorthy

Tributes from Friends


The Economy

Trouble Spots and A Way Forward

Sunil S. Bhandare

Point Counter Point : Every issue has at least two sides

Modi's Year in Power

Ashok Karnik

AAP's Ambition

Ashok Karnik

Cricket with Pakistan

Ashok Karnik

Facts and Rumours

Ashok Karnik


Life and Death

Firoze Hirjikaka


Questions Needing Answers

Ashok Karnik

Foreign Relations in the 21st Century

“Manufactured Sovereignty” in South China Sea: Sino-American Confrontation Heats Up

B. Ramesh Babu

Book Review


S. V.Raju


By Ashok Karnik

Educating Adults

Examination Reforms at the Bachelor’s Level

R. W. Desai

A Doctor In The Air: Ancient Aviator Anecdote

Cecil Parker

The History of the Swatantra Party

The Swatantra Party in Gujarat: A Shooting Star (Part III)

Usha Thakkar
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