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Wednesday, April 19, 2023

A heartfelt tribute to Dr Parasuram Ramamoorthi


Words have literally failed me for the past few days as I come to terms with the passing on of Ram [more widely known as Dr  Parasuram Ramamoorthi ] .I could not bring myself to post this till today as I would break down each time I tried to do it .

Over the past 10 years we developed a close bond that is indescribable in common terms - he was so many things to me - mentor, friend, inspiration  . Few people have influenced me in this space, and he is certainly one of them. He opened a window called “Arts” in my life and that of Nishant’s and that has changed the course of our lives.

Initially I would call him “Sir” and then “Ram Sir” …but he would get very upset and insist I should call him “Ram” as that is how he feels comfortable. It was difficult for me on two counts – his seniority and also the fact that my husband was also “Ram “ [Sriram] .However he was persistent and over time I got used to calling him “Ram”.

He was a maverick of sorts and his ideas for Drama based intervention  , his brain child – The Velvi “Art for Autism” festival changed the landscape of the intervention space for Autism . His vision was that of Autistics being honed to their full potential and his belief was that each person has an interest or ability and if we focus on that it can transform their lives. He had complete faith in his methodology and in the client and that itself led to a high impact positive change for the clients whose lives he has touched. His courage of conviction was commendable.

He liked to liken himself to the Neem tree - and like the neem tree he was sought after for his transformative abilities and wide area of shade [read support ] he provided to those close to him . He could also be perceived as a bit harsh in his approach at times as he never minced his words – with him it was WYSIWYG [What you see is what you get]. He was the master of masks, yet he wore none in real life. He was the teacher of Drama but preferred “No Drama” in his life  .

Excerpt from his poems “The Neem Tree”

A boy looked at my leaves

tasted the leaves

cried " oh bitter bitter"

A girl looked at the flowers

oh they look like beads, she said.

a woman vendor sat at my feet

oh how cool , love the neem breeze

A carpenter looked at my trunk

" not good for a table"

The crow came flying

with a mouse in her beak

sat at the farthest branch on the left

started pecking into the bowels of the mouse

"yummy yummy" the crow said

suddenly i heard a scream

" kill kill him"

a man came running

hid behind my trunk

fifteen men came running with sickles

they were looking for some one

my trunk grew large and broad

the man was totally hidden now

fifteen people passed by still shouting and screaming Kill kill him

He wants to start an industry in our village

how dare he

he is from the next village

How can he start an industry here?

They went away

the man in hiding came out

went away without even saying Thank You.”


He was also a very emotional person and experienced all the “Navarasas “with authenticity. He held those who he loved in his heart with deep feelings for them. I am privileged to have experienced that deep love and faith from him which itself gave me such energy to go forward. I have seen him do this for so many people, both facilitators and persons on the spectrum.

He had a deep love for his wife Nirmalaji and would treat her with so much care and respect. He really took to heart the loss of his close relatives and friends in the recent times, his mind was disturbed by the finality of death. He felt courted by death and literally died of a broken heart – so deep was his love.

He has left a void so deep that it will never be filled. He has also left a legacy of love and work that we all have to carry forward . He was and always be a legend. Bye dearest Ram  .see you in the ether world sometime …till we meet again ..adieu


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