Former KT staffer passes away in India

KJ George headed the copy desk for 10 years from 2006-'16


A Staff Reporter

Published: Thu 17 Nov 2022, 8:33 PM

Last updated: Fri 18 Nov 2022, 11:31 AM

Former KT journalist KJ George, who passed away in Kochi on Wednesday after a long illness, was a stickler for discipline and deadlines on the copy desk he headed for nine years from 2006-'15. Colleagues and friends remember him with fondness and respect as he ruthlessly edited and rewrote stories from scratch while giving them the tough love they deserved.

He was fearless and discarded flawed copy that didn't meet his lofty standards. "News must be relevant, meaningful and easy to consume for the reader; cut to the chase," his bass voice would ring out as he immersed himself in work every day at 2pm and until the wee hours the following day.

He would often be seen spending hours with reporters, debating and discussing finer details of events as he perfected their articles to make them stand out in print the next morning. This tough love with stories was worth it, they would say in praise of his effort while he maintained a stoic expression that some thought was smug. He didn't care. But that was George. He lived life on his terms, and in full, while never being swayed by compliments as he had little time for them. Friends and colleagues found him intimidating and dismissive, but in a nice way, for he wouldn't hold back his criticism while being stingy with praise for only the best stories.

His wide experience with leading media brands like The Tribune, Deccan Chronicle, Times of Oman, The Indian Express, and Gulf News made him an asset to any newsroom. He was working with The New Indian Express as Senior Assistant Editor at the time of his passing.

George's demise has come as a shock for his friends and former colleagues at KT. He had so much more to give journalism and the wider community. He was only 54 and leaves behind his wife and child. The funeral will take place on Sunday.

Gone too soon, George. You will be missed. Heaven could have waited for copy hounds like you. We know you'll edit that line out.


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