G. Kasturi, moderniser of The Hindu, passes away

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G. Kasturi, former Editor of The Hindu, 1924-2012. Photo: V. Ganesan
G. Kasturi, former Editor of The Hindu, 1924-2012. Photo: V. Ganesan

We record with profound regret and grief the passing of G. Kasturi, former Editor of The Hindu and former Managing Director of Kasturi and Sons Limited, the proprietors of The Hindu Group publications. He presided over, and led from the front, the newspaper’s rapid expansion and innovative modernisation and growth on the editorial-technology-logistics fronts through the 1960s and on to the cusp of the 1990s.

The end came peacefully at 2 a.m. on Friday, September 21, at his home on Kasturi Ranga Road here. Alert and active till almost the very end, he was surrounded by loved ones. He was 87.

He is survived by his wife Kamala Kasturi, sons K. Balaji and K. Venugopal, daughter Lakshmi Srinath, five granddaughters and two great grandchildren. Mr. Balaji, Mr. Venugopal and Ms. Srinath, are whole-time Directors of Kasturi and Sons Limited.

The news was received with a sense of disbelief and anguish at The Hindu’s offices in Chennai as well as in other centres.

Son of Kasturi Gopalan, who was the second of S. Kasturiranga Iyengar’s two sons, Mr. Kasturi was Editor of The Hindu from September 1965 to January 1991 — for more than 25 years. It was the longest tenure for an Editor of the newspaper, which, as on September 20, 2012, is 134 years old. (Kasturi Srinivasan was the Editor from 1934 to 1959).

Born on December 17, 1924, he had his school and college education in Madras. After acquiring an M.A. degree from Madras University creditably, he joined the organisation in 1944. In 1959, he was designated Joint Editor.

The Hindu was his life, says N. Ram

In a tribute, N. Ram, former Editor-in-Chief of The Hindu and other group publications and Director of Kasturi & Sons Limited, said:

“My uncle, Shri G. Kasturi was a major figure in the post-independence history of Indian journalism and the newspaper industry. Along with his uncle, Shri Kasturi Srinivasan, under whom he trained as a newspaperman, he was the longest serving Editor of The Hindu. Earlier and more clearly and determinedly than most of his media contemporaries and fellow Editors, he saw the need for the newspaper industry and journalism to embrace new and state-of-the-art technology and adapt it to our conditions while preserving the core values of journalism. Many a leap in newspaper technology – offset printing, facsimile transmission of whole newspaper pages, photocomposition, full-page pagination, colour scanning – found its first Indian champion in my uncle, who was always hands-on, side by side with the technical experts. He was enthusiastic about internet journalism and digital technology and almost till the end was regularly on his iMac working on page design and photographs and savouring the best of international newspaper websites. He believed that Indian newspapers had to raise their game in terms of production values and must not take their readers for granted. Significantly, he lived to see the 134th anniversary of the founding of The Hindu on September 20 and passed away a couple of hours into September 21. The Hindu was his life.”

(This article was published on September 21, 2012)
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Posted on: Sep 21, 2012 at 11:30 IST

RIP Shri G. Kasturi. The Hindu editorials are the favorites of my grandfather and father. I live in a different hemisphere and Hindu helps me keep in touch with my home.

from:  Rajesh
Posted on: Sep 21, 2012 at 14:04 IST

I in India most of the grand parents wish of their death after seeing
their grandchildren marriages , birth and other rites de passage. As, if
sudden demise of G Kasturi after seeing the 134th anniversary, seems to
be he lived and cherished The Hindu as one of his progeny...

from:  Rohit
Posted on: Sep 21, 2012 at 14:27 IST

We learnt English and grew up with The Hindu from the late xities.
Learnt journalism only from the Great Kasturi Sirs editorials. Learnt
techniques of presentation from his innovative presentations. All in
the media world learnt more or less from him.

Today he is not amidst us but however we will always remember him for
his tireless contribution to the mediaworld.

May his soul rest in peace

from:  S. Raghunathan West mambalam
Posted on: Sep 21, 2012 at 19:10 IST

He was well entrenched in my memory. I do read Hindhu. I selute a the personality having served organisation for 25 long years. May be it his
family paper.I am more in love with Business line which is published

from:  B R V Shanbhag
Posted on: Sep 22, 2012 at 07:01 IST


After seen the rare picture and message that Hockey legend Dyan Chand visited The Hindu Office during his regime more intersting adn educative to read that article.

from:  M.S. Arasakumar BABL
Posted on: Sep 22, 2012 at 10:06 IST

RIP Shri Kasturi
Hindu was his life! (Quote: Mr. Ram)
Hindu has been, is and will be the lifeline of Indians especially
readers of Hindu publications for generations!
Aayiram karangal maraithirunthaalum Aadavan Maraivadhillai!

from:  Ramaseshan
Posted on: Sep 22, 2012 at 14:19 IST

He will be alive every day through his publications.

from:  arul
Posted on: Sep 22, 2012 at 14:41 IST

The journalistic services of G.Kasturi either on economic issues or political conflicts or social issues would always be in tune with the exploration of much concealed reality and informative proclivity as to make the readers optimally informed.The dignified stand of The Hindu on the grand values of ethical journalism was highly protected in the process of news analysis.He was a very simple person with immeasurable scholarship which ornamentally decorated the beauty of The Hindu.The Hindu readership community would desperately miss his worldly presence and of his worldly wisdom.The Hindu editorials under G.Kasturi and the write-ups of late G.K.Reddy were normatively mobilising the opinion of the nation.It is no exaggeration that editorship of G.Kasturi was of a golden era in the glittering path of The Hindu.The institution of The Hindu has lost one of its legendary personalities but it would go strengthened with the benevolence of his immaculate services in yore to it.

Posted on: Sep 22, 2012 at 15:22 IST
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