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Veteran journalist Russy Karanjia passes away

Veteran journalist Russy Karanjia, the powerful and dynamic editor of the fearless tabloid Blitz, passed away in Mumbai today.

He was father of Rita Mehta, editor of Cine Blitz, and brother of noted film journalist B K Karanjia.

Karanjia’s longtime associate and friend Olga Tellis, editor of Asian Age, Mumbai, said that Karanjia was running a fever.

Family members, however, declined to comment, saying they wanted to be left alone at this difficult time.

P Sainath, renowned journalist and author of ‘Everyone Loves A Good Drought’ was shocked when Mid-Day informed him about Karanjia’s demise. “ Oh! When?” said a stunned Sainath, adding, “I worked with him for 10 years.”

“He was the best editor in Indian journalism who really understood the profession for what it was. I’ll always remember his laughter over the phone. He will be sorely missed,” said V Gangadhar, columnist who used to freelance for the Blitz in the early 1970s.

“He was an editor who understood satire and gave me complete freedom to write what I wanted in a column that appeared in the Blitz for nearly 15 years,” added Gangadhar.

Born on September 15, 1912, Karanjia was one of the firebrand editors in Indian journalism. He was an assistant editor at The Times of India before he left in the 1940s to launch the highly successful Blitz.

The funeral will be held at Chandanwadi Crematorium at Marine Lines at 10.30 am on Saturday.

A condolence meeting will be held on February 4, at KC College Hall, Churchgate, in Mumbai, from 4.30 pm to 6.30 pm.