Patriarch of journalism Radhika Mohan Bhagawati passes away

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GUWAHATI, Sept 30: Veteran journalist Radhika Mohan Bhagawati, editor of Dainik Asom has breathed his last at Apollo (International) Hospital in Guwahati at 9.20 am on Saturday following protracted illness.

Bhagawati was 84. He was admitted on September 17 with pneumonia.

Bhagawati began his career as a journalist as a sub-editor in Notun Asomia in 1958 and then joined the Ramdhenu (a literary magazine) to subsequently become its editor. He then served as the editor of daily Assamese newspapers Ajir Asom, Sentinel (Hindi). Presently he was working as editor of Dainik Asom.

An alumnus of Banaras Hindu University (BHU) Bhagawati was also engaged in various literary works, writing several books including Roktojoba, Bonoria Ful, Ejon Roja Asil and Asomiar Puhorot Asomiar Chari Doshokor Itihash etc.

He was the recipient of the Sahitya Akademi Award in 1991 for Assamese translation of The Story of Our Newspapers by Chanchal Sarkar.

He was also awarded with the prestigious Harendra Nath Barua Award for his journalistic work in 1990, Shiva Prashad Baruah national award in 2009, Birendra Kumar Bhattacharya award in 2009 and Shashiprabha Barbarua Sahitya Award in 2015. He also received the Sadi Journalist Award.

Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal condoled the demise of Bhagawati and described him as “a glaring example of journalistic excellence who immensely enriched the field of journalism in the state”. “I feel deeply saddened to hear the news of his demise and pray for eternal peace of his departed soul”, Sonowal said in a condolence message here.

Former governor Banwarilal Purohit mourned the death of Bhagawati and described him as a colossal figure who enriched journalism in the state through his long and dedicated association. “His death is an irreparable loss which is bound to create a void in the field of journalism. His long stint with different newspapers and his unflappable contributions towards the growth of Assamese journalism and literature would always remain as a source of encouragement for the budding journalists and would be remembered by posterity,” Purohit said in a statement here.

Pradesh BJP president Ranjeet Dass also condoled the death of Bhagawati and conveyed his deep sympathy to the bereaved family members.

Condoling the death, Journalists Association of Assam (JAA) president Dhirendra Nath Chakravartty; working president  Dalim Phukan and JAA general secretary cum National Union of Journalists India (NUJI) national secretary Bhupen Goswami said that the contributions made by Bhagawati to Assamese literature and  Journalism  would always be cherished.

Journalist Forum of Assam (JFA) president, Rupam Baruah and general secretary Naba Thakuria condoled the death of the patriarch of Assamese journalism and said his demise is a great loss for the literature and journalism of the state.

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