We are shocked to learn the sudden demise of Pandit Ram Gopal Sharma (70), a veteran journalist, a writer, a poet and the former Vice-President of the Indian Federation of Working Journalists. It has come to us as a bolt from the blue. When Shri Awadhesh Bhargav, a senior journalist from Bhopal, broke this sad news to us, we could not believe to our ears.
It is very difficult to pay obituary to a person who has been so closely known to you for a long time. Pandit Ram Gopal Sharma possessed all the winsome qualities of a human being. He was an Ajatshatru, who had only friends and no foes. He had lived in extreme poverty in his childhood and had to work as an assistant of the Priest in a temple but he had very keen and strong desire for learning and education and that was how he became a Post Graduate from university and a responsible journalist/writer. He had the knack of composing extempore poems. His prose writings had also the fragrance, sweetness and the innate pleasure of the poetry.
Pandit ji, as he was popularly known because of his deep learning and religiosity, used to observe maun vrat continuously for nine days during each Navratri. He always remained anxious for the welfare, safety and security of journalists. Even when he was the Coordinating Editor of the Dainik Bhaskar he sincerely worked for safeguarding the interests of journalists and other employees. An affable and endearing and soft spoken Pandit Ram Gopal Sharma had good contacts among politicians and bureaucrats, which he hardly used for himself but for helping the journalists. He was associated with many newspapers and magazines including the ‘Working Journalist’ (IFWJ’s journal), as one of its editors.
IFWJ President B.V. Mallikarjunaiah, Vice Presidents- Vashishtha Kumar Sharma, Hemant Tiwari, Keshab Kalita and Krishna Mohan Jha, Secretaries- Siddhartha Kalhans, K. Asudhulla and Treasurer Rinku Yadav and other office-bearers of the IFWJ have expressed their heartfelt condolences at the passing away of Shri Ram Gopal Sharma. A man of simple living and high thinking Sharma ji never compromised with his principles and it was the reason that he had always emphasised for the purity of the means to achieve the lofty ends.
IFWJ has always been getting his cooperation and guidance. We believe that he would continue to shower his blessings from the high Heaven. In the words of the poet HW Longfellow: Lives of great men all remind us, we can make our lives sublime. Pandit ji has certainly left his footprints on the sands of time, which will serve as the inspiration for all of us. May his soul rest in peace.