Ram Manohar Lohia: An Original thinker

Narla Venkateswara Rao

Narla Venkateswara Rao, Former editor of Andhra Prabha and Founder editor of Andhra Jyothy

After a wide-ranging talk with Ram Manohar Lohia (1910-1967) Einstein said, “It is good to meet a man; one gets so lonely’. While their conversation was still in progress in the porch of the Princeton home of that greatest scientist after Newton, he paid another compliment to Lohia by saying ‘I see that you have an independent mind’.

And he was a man with a mind of his own. Apart from being independent, he had an active, astute and analytical and above all, a bold mind. Neither ridicule nor hostility, neither imprisonment nor torture, nothing whatsoever could deflect his mind from thinking keenly, rationally and boldly and to come out with original solutions for solving the problems of mankind which has reached a point when it has to make its choice between survival and annihilation.

He was gentle at heart, highly responsive to friendship and affection, and thrilled to the very core of his being by beauty in nature, in the human form or in art. He could mingle with children to share spontaneously in their pranks and laughter. He was singularly free from all snobbery and vulgarity. If he occasionally used violent language in public debate it was primarily due to the fact that he was intolerant of hypocrisy. He was no rigid puritan and he could overlook almost every apse except hypocrisy. The one thing that always made him mad was any glaring gap between precept and practice.

When the dust of all the controversies of his lifetime finally settles down, he, it may be safely predicted, will be hailed as one who made significant contribution to socialist thought and action.

Courtesy: Ravela Somayya

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