Vinod Mubayi


Praful passed away very unexpectedly in Amsterdam of cardiac arrest a few days ago. He had gone there to attend a meeting of the Transnational Institute of which he was a member.


As a senior journalist, Praful commanded a very special place in the Indian and South Asian media. He combined a passion for the underprivileged and deprived sections of society with a keen sense of ferreting out facts inconvenient to the powerful and power-hungry. His column, which was widely distributed in leading newspapers and news journals, resonated with progressive and democratic opinion in all South Asian countries and he could be rightly called the Voice of the Left in our region. Insaf Bulletin carried many of his pieces over the last several years and we shall miss his presence deeply.  This issue carries three pieces by him including what is perhaps the last piece he wrote on India’s raid in Myanmar.


Praful was a unique combination of writer, activist, and researcher.  He was a prolific author who wrote many books on the environment, sustainable development, politics, science and society, and nuclear security. One of his main passions was opposing the insane march to nuclear weapon development in India and Pakistan that threatens all South Asia with a nuclear catastrophe.  He wrote seminal books on this subject and was a founder member of CNDP, the Coalition for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace, an umbrella of peace groups in India in 2000. For his work on this issue he was honored with the Sean MacBride International Peace Prize, 2000 of International Peace Bureau, Geneva and London, one of the world’s oldest peace organizations.  He was also instrumental years ago on the Indian side in the creation of the Pakistan India Forum for Friendship Peace and Democracy that has played a role in promoting peace and opposing the macho posturing of hawks on both sides of the border.


This writer had the privilege of being Praful’s friend and comrade for almost 45 years since the early 1970s.  I will miss his warmth, generosity and company very deeply indeed.

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