I’m ashamed. Deep down in my cynical writer’s heart, I didn’t believe he would actually do it. But he did. And I am ashamed because I’d heard of him but never took him seriously until he died.
I’m signed up on an environment e-group and had seen a press statement about Nigamanand — a Ganga-bhakt who had been on hunger strike for 68 days, who was arrested, then moved to Dehradun after poisoning fears at the Haridwar hospital.
What we do to our rivers can only be described as abuse (if this wasn’t a family newspaper, I’d use stronger language). I knew this. Yet, I thought that if a sadhu has been on fast for 68 days — if a sadhu was arrested in Haridwar! — newspapers would have written about it. My cynical side began wondering about the veracity of the press statement.Next I heard Nigamanand was in the mainstream press. He was dead. And everyone seemed to be leaning forward as if to ask: “What? Swami Nigamanand? Who?”
Read the full piece here.