Last salute to a self made man-Late Gajananda Vaidya

N. P. Upadhyaya

We were known to each other since long. But yet a sort of distance we both have had maintained for a variety of reasons. Such a distance stretched for long over two decades plus. Yet we met.

We used to meet at diplomatic receptions and during some Nepali functions.

We talked and talked but never met in private for having private talks.

Neither he invited me to his office nor did I make any calls to him asking for such a private meeting. I generally ignore those who do not invite me. Sorry this is my habit. I am helpless.

In the process, some good twenty years went in vain for both of us.

He was amicable. He was flexible as well. Above all, he was a strong nationalist, at least this much I could get as and when we met on some occasions. He was also a man of action who believed in accomplishing great thing but with a different style. “Little things we do”, this he used to say which had meaning underneath.

On my part, I too was not that easy stuff who could be lured by anyone for nothing. I am flexible enough but not to the breaking point. I have charted out my own ethics which I stick to even as of today and will continue till I count my last breath. No compromise.

Yet our meeting continued.

Finally, a day came when he bluntly told me, (sic) “So many Nepali journalists drop at my office…why don’t you too make similar trips and meet me…we will have talks”.

My reply to his request was a bit arrogant one. And look what I said, (sic), “I never visit any place without having invitation…Have you ever invited me?…I will definitely honor your call”.

That was of it all.

We parted each time with such conversations. No bending. From both the sides. That was really an interesting phenomenon.

Finally, a small event brought us excessively closer.

It should have been 1998/1999, that I had accompanied the then Sri Lankan Ambassador Pamel J. Deen to Biratnagar in the capacity of the Chairman of the Nepal-SAARC Journalist Forum.

The envoy made several speeches in Biratnagar and even talked with the local media there.

Upon completion of our targeted “interaction” jobs, I together with Ambassador Pamela came to the Biratnagar airport to board a flight to Kathmandu.

Fortunately, we were only three passengers on board the aircraft.

We were seated close to the cockpit. We did not see as to who the third man was behind us. Nearly after twenty minutes of our flight, I suddenly looked behind. To my surprise he was none other than the same man with whom I used to talk and talk but had never met. Nor he had invited me at his office.

It was a pleasant surprise for us both. As a matter of courtesy, I introduced Gajananda Vaidya with the distinguished Sri Lankan Ambassador. We were flying at 12, 000 feet altitude. Both exchanged their visiting cards and became, later I knew, very very intimate friends.

I don’t know how Vaidya took the entire event happened while being in the sky but what I now feel is that Vaidya must have changed his feeling towards me. Perhaps he liked me.

Yet it took several months and years for his invitation to come to me. Finally it did and as promised I honored his telephone call.

Since then, say beginning 2006, we met several times. Each time he met me, we talked about the sorry state of our own motherland.

He was a strong nationalist, I concluded. I may have published countless of Vaidya’s articles in my paper which must have been still hanging on my website-the

(The last one I reproduced just after his death).

Very freshly, he left this material world for his heavenly abode. That he was a man of strong will power became abundantly evident that late Vaidya counted his last breath only upon listening to the happy news that his elder son, Mr. Suraj Vaidya, was declared elected as the new President of Federation of Nepalese Industries, the FNCCI.

He was suffering but yet longed to listen to this happy news. He must have struggled with death for some days.

What else remain now to talk about this super nationalist?

Rest in peace O! Ye! Great soul. We at this paper will miss you. May the Almighty provide the needed courage to bear this irreparable loss to the bereaved family members of late Vaidya.

Hope that junior Vaidyas will handle his empire with dignity.

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I agree


  • Posted on - 2011-05-07    by     sale
  • Have to give where credit is due - I am thoroughly surprised that you let my comment through - but truth needs to be told so that the soul can rest in peace and do something better in the next life. There is no use sugar coating peoples lives like we see these Chaudhary group lot trying to do these days - we know they have stumbled upon good fortune after the palace massacre and had direct access to the illegal wealth of the late Queen and King- but with no one living from the immediate family with the knowledge to claim it, the Chaudhary's who were just the bag men and arm's dealers to the royalty all through the Panchayat and later have ceased the opportunity and ceased the funds as well - why do you think they have grown from being one of the largest defaulters until 2005 to becoming a "billion dollar company" worldwide literally overnight. People do not build billion dollar (In rupees 75 arabs) empires in a couple of years from being a major defaulter. So now the Chaudhary's are running the biggest cover up in Nepal's business history by sugar coating these funds which belong to the nation - as all of the former royal's property had been trusted so too should all these international funds - but the greedy Chaudhary's keep paying people off and running a great scam. Well they know it that the soul will be restless and will end up downhill if they do not do the right thing. It's never too late - one's short life is long enough to do the right thing.
  • Posted on - 2011-04-28    by     sale
  • No doubt Baidhya had achieved much and probably bank rolled this writer and his journalist ventures for good cause. However, everyone has the good and the bad in them and it will be hypocritical like we Nepalis are normally by just talking of the good of such well known people. Let's also not forget that Baidhya started out his business ventures not unlike many other business people of his ilk doing dubious businesses including smuggling (i.e. please note smuggling these days is not taken as seriously as in the days of Baidhya's youth - smuggling items across the border seems laughable these days as all you have to do is pay off the crooked customs officer and get a clean chit but in the early days of Baidhya this was a great offence). Yes Baidhya has done good business for his family and friends but let us also not forget that a collection of people like him has contributed significantly to the corrupt nature of business in general in this nation. N.P. Upadhyaya - let's see if you have the journalistic ethics you claim to print this comment? You know it's true. Do you have those ethics tucked away somewhere as you so claim? Or as usual- is that just the usual Brahmin hot air?