Rustom Khurshedji Karanjia (1912 – 1 February , 2008) was an Indian journalist and editor. He typically signed his reports as "R. K. Karanjia". He founded the Blitz, a weekly tabloid with focus on investigative journalism in 1941, and ran it for the next four decades.
Early life and background
Karanjia began writing while still in college, and during the 1930s Karanjia was employed an assistant editor at The Times of India. He left The Times of India in 1941 to launch Blitz (newspaper), a weekly tabloid with a focus on investigative journalism. Karanjia served as a war correspondent during the Japanese Burma offensive in World War II, reporting on the action in Burma and Assam. Blitz folded during the mid-1990s and Karanjia retired from public life.
Karanjia died at his home, a seafront flat along Marine Drive, in Mumbai at the age of 95 on 1 February 2008. In a "departure from Parsi tradition, as per his wishes," his funeral was held in Chandanvadi crematorium, in south Mumbai. Karanjia was survived by one daughter, Rita Mehta, the founder and first Editor-in-chief of Cine Blitz magazine. His brother, Burjor, was also a journalist, albeit in the film industry, editor of Filmfare.
Owner editor of Blitz
Karanjia was founder and owner editor of Blitz, a tabloid weekly published from Mumbai. Kulkarni narrates that the decision to launch Blitz was taken over a cup of tea, by three patriotic journalists- B. V. Nadkarni, Benjamin Horniman and Karanjia- at Wayside Inn, a restaurant near Kala Ghoda, in Mumbai. The first issue of Blitz was published on 1 February 1941 (the same day that Karanjia died in 2008). Kulkarni calls his journalism "irreverent, investigative, courageous and a little titillating". Khwaja Ahmad Abbas, writer and film maker, and P. Sainath, Magsaysay award winning journalist, were associated with Blitz. Blitz was radical and idealist, left leaning and pro-Soviet. Karanjia attacked the Congress party, and yet was friendly with Congress leaders Nehru, Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi. Karanjia became disillusioned with communism and its anti-Hindu secularism. He became a strong sympathiser of the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Ayodhya movement. Kulkarni claims that thus P. Sainath as deputy editor was replaced with him by Karanjia.
Devotee of Satya Saibaba
- Kulkarni, Sudheendra (2008-02-02). "He launched Blitz on Feb 1, died on Feb 1-it's no coincidence". indianexpress.com. The Indian Express Limited. Retrieved 2011-07-24.
- "Veteran Journalist R.K. Karanjia Dead", News Post India, 1 February 2008, retrieved 2008-02-29.
- "Veteran journalist Russi Karanjia passes away", Rediff India Abroad, 1 February 2008, retrieved 2008-02-29.
- "R. K. Karanjia passes away", The Hindu, 1 February 2008, retrieved 2008-02-29.
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