B. R. Haran passes away – Aravindan Neelakandan

B.R. Haran

Noted writer and senior journalist B. R. Haran died of a heart attack on Wednesday (4 July).  He suffered the attack at the Chennai Egmore railway station when he was on his way to take part in a popular drama on Subramanya Bharathi, the great Tamil poet. He was 54.

Almost everyone in the Hindutva circles of Tamil Nadu knows Haran. He wrote tirelessly in both English and Tamil. He worked with News Today, a popular newspaper. He contributed to Vijayvaani, a website run by scholar Sandhya Jain. He also contributed to Yuva Bharathi, the youth magazine of Vivekananda Kendra.

A prolific writer, he also wrote in Tamil for one of the oldest Tamil webzines, Thinnai.com, and he contributed regularly to Valam, a Hindutva literary magazine.

Haran was also active in ground work, often reporting about jihadist terrorism, fraudulent evangelical attempts at conversion, and Tamil separatist movements. He also worked on cattle protection and would be at ground zero busting cattle smugglers. Though his heart was with the cow rakshaks, he always opted for legal means.

During the police highhandedness at the time of the Aurangzeb exhibition, Haran was there, his presence adding a sense of protection to the women volunteers there. He was also involved in the temple protection movement. He wrote and strove ceaselessly for the liberation of temples. An ardent devotee of the Kanchi Sankaracharya lineage, his devotion for the Acharyas defined his life and work.

Today, the Hindus of Tamil Nadu have lost a selfless individual who worked for them—even as most of them perhaps did not even know him. He worked with no attachment to the fruits of his labour—work in itself was his reward. Serving Dharma and society through his writings was enough for him.

It is, therefore, a great loss and Swarajya shares with the people of Tamil Nadu the grief that accompanies the loss of such a wonderful and creative human being. May his dream of a Tamil Nadu vibrant in culture and spirituality become a reality, striving towards which shall be the best homage to him. – Swarajya, 5 July 2018