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Sunday, June 12, 2011

Me and Uncle Pai

Today I was going through some old manuscripts and correspondence from the days when I was an active writer of stories for children. I was pleasantly surprised to find myself smile and laugh at stuff I had myself written: I used to be good.

I found several letters, some of acceptance, some rejection slips, from the late editor of TINKLE and the creator of Amar Chitra Katha - Anant Pai or Uncle Pai. When Uncle Pai passed away in February this year, I was so busy with some stuff going on at work, that I might not have spent more than a minute in total thinking about it. Even when my mother commented about it over phone, I only said "yes, I read". Well, such is the pace of the rat race.

Anant Pai always manually signed his letters, and sometimes added a personal note. "I have been to TVM several times" he wrote on an acceptance letter, when I was in Trivandrum, "Next time I am in TVM I will get in touch with you." On another occasion rejecting a story called 'Big Bang' he wrote "Science fiction cannot ignore well known and established scientific fact." Accepting my last story, he said that my English was very good. A couple of years into work in Bangalore I was vaguely considering doing an internship at TINKLE in Mumbai. Never got around to doing it, but I did correspond with them, and even spoke to Uncle Pai over phone!

I am sure the great man had time and words for several several people, but I feel privileged to have 'known' him through his brief notes. It was a lot of fun growing up and learning to read and write with TINKLE. I am sure the magazine will be the poorer without his sensitive touch - but I hope not.

5 Comments:

Blogger Febri said...

Nice story :D



regards
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Wed Jun 15, 09:07:00 AM GMT+5:30  
Anonymous Souradeep said...

I read the news too and felt real bad. I had met him in Mumbai when i was a class 8 in a national social sciences competition where he was the judge.I remember he giving his utmost attention to a young fellow like me.I received his signed Tinkle after that ( he apparently remembered to keep my address! ).Tinkle itself was such a cheer those days. Sad that such a personality is no more.

Sun Jun 19, 03:23:00 PM GMT+5:30  
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Anonymous bollywood news said...

I like it, Good story

Fri Feb 03, 10:32:00 PM GMT+5:30  

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