50! That’s where I am at now. Not quite the halfway mark, but enjoying the journey.
“About Me” pages often read like professional resumes, but there’s more to me. While I cannot imagine doing anything other than online journalism, it is not the only thing that defines me.
Bangalore. It’s always and still Bangalore for me. Though I live in New Delhi now, Bangalore is where I was born. Bangalore is mine. But I am a Tuluva, a Mangalorean from Bangalore. Mangaluru or Kudla is also mine, and so is Bengaluru when I can speak in chaste Bengaluru Kannada or Tulu. I like my Tulu and Kannada roots, but they are not limiting. The only sense of guilt I have is that I hardly know how to read and write Kannada. That’s where my schooling comes in. That’s where the times I lived in comes in. That’s where the utter frustration of my poor Dad comes in. I never got around to reading and writing Kannada well. But in my defence, I couldn’t learn other languages at all. Believe me, I tried. French, German and I love Spanish too, but no. I couldn’t figure them out for the life of me. But the good part is “old Bangaloreans” (and we are a special breed) did get to learn many languages. So we can more than just understand Tamil, Telugu, Hindi and even Malayalam. Shoot! You’ll see us nod, you’ll see us respond.
So for those who have bothered to read up till here, I reckon you want to know my professional pedigree. So here goes:
My journalistic experience started with the Economic Times online. I moved from ETOnline to Indya.com, a grand new experiment that assembled a great pool of talent from across the country. It was an enriching experience for all who landed up in Koramangala, Bangalore at the peak of the first dot-com boom.
Before that ship sank it dawned on me that teaching journalism was my calling, and a teaching stint at the Indian Institute of Journalism and New Media followed.
Then the journey took me to Frontline, Chennai. I learnt a great deal there and It was humbling to be part of a truly journalistic experience.
That eventful phase led me back to good old Bangalore. This time, working for AOL. The erstwhile Internet giant was setting up a portal in India. A lot of fun and hard work followed. After a two-year stint there, I bumped into the formidable Mike Magee of The Register fame where I helped set up ITExaminer.com.
My next stop was at the formidable The Economic and Political Weekly under the institution-building and amiable Rammanohar Reddy. My stint at this incredible institution involved the grand revamping of its website, making it a successful and profitable venture. I headed the digital arm of The New Indian Express for about year, back in Chennai, after that.
And then I was called to run The Hindu’s website, fulfilling my lifelong aspiration. The pinnacle of journalism, for me. It was an incredible couple of years, all too short unfortunately. But it brought me to Delhi — another incredible journey in the capital city. I’ve been the Digital Editor of the venerable Hindustan Times. That makes it helming two national dailies on the digital front.
Now it is back to setting up The India Forum for Vichar Trust under the stewardship of Ram Reddy. And waiting for the next twist in my tale.
For those who want to come back to my site, I hope I can offer something more than a blog about me. Please do visit again.