Sunday, February 22, 2009
Today's Indian Express (February 22, 2009) had an exhaustive list of the 100 most important Indians. It also had a sub-section on the 10 most important opinion makers. I was listed as one of them, in the company of my old friend Ram Guha and former colleague Swaminathan Aiyar.
That's very flattering but I am still intrigued--as was my son. I imagined that I have managed to cling on to the fringes of journalism because of my ridiculously archaic views and insistence that the Queen's English is there to be respected. Of course, I do get an occasional look in because of a willingness to bear the cross of the Right. But that, I always felt, was a bit of tokenism by the liberal establishment because I had attended St Stephen's College and got on well with Mani Shankar Aiyar.
In any case, I am highly flattered by this shift from the fringe to the mainstream. Maybe I can now write what I actually feel--and lose all my remaining friends--rather than what is prudent. I still go by Jack Anderson's dictum "It's better to lose an argument than lose a column."