Thursday, April 1, 2010

indian diplomats write

let me do some justice to the name of my blog, diplomatic titbits.

indian diplomats have been writing their memoirs, about their experiences, diplomatic happenings and so on. the names of KPS Menon, TN Kaul, PN Haksar, Jagat Mehta, KR Narayanan, Natwar Singh, JN Dixit, Kiran Doshi, Prem Budhwar immediately come to my mind in this regard. i have read some of their books in the course of my diplomatic functioning and education. many of the diplomats namely G. Parthasarthy, Kanwal Sibal, Salman Haidar, MK Bhardrakumar, B Balakrishnan, TP Srinivasan, KC Singh, currently contribute regularly, through their columns in the print and electronic media, on topical matters and issues pertaining to diplomacy and diplomatic interaction. i tend to read them and benefit from the educative and thought provoking articles.

today, i would like to make two small comments:

i) the memoirs 'A little work, A little play' of Hardit Singh Malik, a fighter-pilot turned diplomat have been launched recently. Hardit Singh Malik served as india's ambassador to canada and france. he was also the prime minister of the princely state of patiala. he was also a keen player of cricket and golf. why i thought of commenting on this, even without reading the book, is that Hardit Singh Malik started writing the memoirs in 1960 and finished it in 1972 ( as mentioned in the review by Rakesh Rao in the Hindu), he died in 1985, his daughter Harsimran Malik, octogenarian herself, took pains to get the memoirs published in 2010. it is a befitting tribute to the untiring spirit of Hardit Singh Malik by a worthy daughterof great Hardit Singh Malik.

ii) i did not mention above the name of Mani Shankar Ayiar in the list of diplomat writers. he is one of them. i like his writings, both the style and thought. recently, the president of india has nominated him to the rajya sabha, a well deserved position by his own right. i read some years before an opening piece in his book 'Pakistan Papers'. it was a poem in urdu by a pakistani poet Rais Amrohi which was translated into english by Mani Shankar Aiyar. i revisited the book and read the poetry of culural oneness between india and pakistan. i quote a stanza from that poem:

ऐ हिंद की बहारो , तुम को सलाम पहुंचे
बिसड़े हुए नजारो तुम को सलाम पहुंचे
भारत के चाँद तारो तुम को सलाम पहुंचे
बरसों के बाद यारो तुम को सलाम पहुंचे
यह नामा इ मोहब्त यारो के नाम ले जा
ओ हिंद जाने वाले मेरा सलाम ले जा !

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