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MY LIFE AND TIMES AS A JOURNALIST IN INDIA AND ABROAD!…..

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Utpal Chatterjee : Kolkata, 16th. April, 2024. My stint in journalism started with my columns in various frontline newspapers.Then I joined a National newspaper.Since the very beginning,I took my work seriously.There was,in fact,a time,around early the 1980s,when I used to go to work at 8.30 A.M.and return home around 3.30 A.M,the next morning,after the paper had gone to bed.I used to look after several sections,starting with foreign editorials,taking responsibilities as guided by then Joint Editor and the News Editor.Apart from breaking stories,I looked after other sections like the four page News investigative section,a students’ special,and interviewing people who were known for not being easily accessible,designing pages,rewriting others’ copies,missing meals more often than not…..the list can go on.Eventually,to see the pages roll out of the press in the early hours gave a different thrill.This went for nearly six years and then I was invited to cover the Stockholm Disarmament Summit as part of then Prime Minister’s Media Delegation.Having seen my work starting with churning out foreign editorials daily,the then Joint Editor of The National newspaper,my first publication where I spent 13 years,was very encouraging in his appreciation and had,in fact,made great predictions.I cannot,in all honesty,say all of them came true but,yes,after my fellowship at Oxford University (under the legendary Sir. Neville Maxwell),I have travelled quite some distance in life.There is no substitute to hard,dedicated work.True,I have attended Summits,met and interviewed 21 Heads of States,10 Nobel Laureates,great and unusual people,travelled on official assignment to so many countries well over 50 times,missed the bullet twice et all.Thank God for small mercies.On a parallel scale,there has been my life as an academic and public speaker both at home and abroad.And,my passion for public (social) service (as in Rotary).Yes,there have been honours and great recognitions that came my way both at home and abroad.My upcoming book,that may contain several surprises,ought to be a revelation.In the time of the Corona,my thoughts were getting organized.In the final reckoning,He,the Almighty,did it all for Yours Truly.How can I not be grateful? He also ensured I remained true to my conscience and always remained in rigorous pursuit of Truth.

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