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Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Swadeshabhimani Ramakrishna Pillai


Nandi Prakash

K. Ramakrishna pillai, veteran journalist of Kerala was deported a century back for his brave journalistic interventions. Ramakrishna Pillai never made compromise with scandals, allegations and journalistic ethics. He always advocated for press freedom and for the freedom of journalists. Independent thought and non-interventional enquiry only is the safeguard of objectivity in journalism. Ramakrishna pillai stood ever for such a feeling.

Born and brought up in a normal family in Neyyatinkara, Thiruvananthapuram of Kerala. He was a child of Narasimhan Potty, a clergy in a local temple and Chackiyamma, a sweeper in the same temple. Ramakrishna Pillai expressed ethical concern even in childhood days. A lot of reminiscences are available to exemplify this characteristic.

Nose for news is considered to be as the prime quality of a journalist. Young Ramakrishnan put questions and gathered information about the land and life of people who visited his native land. The character awarded him a nick name: ‘Inspector Ramakrishnan’.

First news of Ramakrishna published in Malayala Manorama was a letter to the editor on a judge who receives gifts from clients. Ramakrishnan’s letter made several discourses both in society and in his home.

He became the editor of Kerala Darpanam in his college days. After that he served several newspapers as editor and faced immense of incidents including deportation. During the period of deportation he was the editor of Swadeshabhimani. Thus he became Swadeshabhimani Ramakrishna Pillai.

The story of Swadeshabhimani Ramakrishna Pillai is narrated in simple words in a book: SWADESHABHIMANIYUDE KADHA by RATHEESH KALIYADAN. The book is published by Kerala Sasthra Sahithya Parishath. Illustration and cover is done by Prasanthan Muringery. This is the first time in the history of book publishing, a book on Swadeshabhimani Ramakrishna Pillai is appeared with such a simple narration and the backing of illustrations.The book is an excellent contribution for the children’s literature, especially for information pieces.

( Ratheesh Kaliyadan,the author of Swadeshabhimaniyude Kadha is a journalism teacher in Govt. Girls Higher Secondary School, thalassery, Kannur, Kerala and Director- Media Analysis & Research Center)

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