18 May, 2021

Deep Void To The Left

Praful’s death is a personal loss, but the bigger loss is to public life

Sanjay Rawat
Deep Void To The Left

The death of journalist and activist Praful Bidwai is a profound personal loss for me. But Praful himself would always have placed the political ahead of the personal. He was to my mind India’s finest political commentator and analyst from a Left perspective. Public life is poorer with Praful gone.

In the last few years of his life, Praful had been unhappy at being squeezed out of mainstream spaces, but he carried on writing his weekly column syndicated to several newspapers. Each column was methodically researched. Indeed, Praful was arguably the most methodical journalist I knew. He once told me that every morning he would cut clippings from newspapers and file them. I had joked with him if I could please inherit the clipping files. It was after the hours of reading and making clippings that Praful would start calling his friends, usually around 11 am, to discuss what is happening in the country. In the last few months, I remember many conversations about the Aam Aadmi Party. He described their victory as ‘Stalingrad’ but was also disappointed about...

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