Mahindra Kaul, a veteran Kashmiri broadcaster of Radio Kashmir, passed away on Wednesday morning at his London residence. He was 95.
Known as the first Kashmiri to broadcast in the Kashmiri language, he had started his career in Radio Kashmir, serving as a newsreader. He was also an actor and a programme producer.
In 1955, Mahindra joined Voice of America. He created the Indian Services department on behest of the US Government on the unanimous recommendation of the Indian journalist corps. He organized the content of speeches which Vice President Nixon gave in relation to India.
Later, he joined BBC Overseas Service Radio for 5 years and shifted to it’s Asian unit, which he ran uninterrupted for almost two decades. There, he produced two weekly programmes, one of which was ‘Apna Hi Ghar Samjhiye’ (Feel at Home). The programmes were the first non-English broadcasts on BBC TV.
In 1975, after the Second World War, he received the OBE (Order of British Empire), for ‘services to race-relations’ through his BBC programmes. He was also awarded the title, Duke of Edinburgh and conferred the Community Service Award at the House of Commons.
Mahindra is well-known for starting a famous restaurant- Gaylord. His daughter, Kalyani Kaul QC, is the first Kashmiri judge in the British Court.