Nana Chudasama’s banner speaks volumes about the dreams and anguish of the common man.
Former Mumbai Sheriff Nana Chudasama is celebrating his 82nd birthday today. He is known for his thought provoking banners containing slogans that mentions about the political scenario of the country. These banners hold significance in an era where 140 character tweets and instant messaging has gained prominence. People say that Chudasama was ahead of his time. The banner speaks volumes about the dreams and anguish of the common man; the words reveal feelings of most of the common citizen of this mega city.
Since last 47 years, Chudasama has been commenting on the country’s social and political affairs. He has written the book History on a Banner which was released in the year 2010. Veteran BJP leader, LK Advani has said that Chudasama can convey a message in few words and anybody who reads the book is compelled to think. His book is a compilation of more than 500 of the slogans that have appeared on the banners.
BJP spokesperson and daughter of Nana Chudasama, Shaina NC said, “My father is a fearless person who stands by his convictions and speaks on issues openly and supports causes judiciously. Mumbaikars are aware of the placards that he displays outside his home. Few months back, my father’s office was vandalised by a group of Maharashtra Navnirman Sena workers for posting the message ‘Promotion of Marathi welcomed, diktat not welcomed.” However, he remained undeterred by the act and said that he will continue to post slogans and said that constitution has guaranteed Freedom of speech to every citizen. Netizens too had come forward to support him when the incident occurred.”
“Later a banner was erected outside his office which read, “Pen is mightier than the sword. Agitate, debate but don’t vandalize” she added.
Industrialist Mukesh Ambani had said that twitter should pay royalty to Chudasama. LK Advani had written a blog titled Chudasama : Mumbai’s Original Tweets which was extensively read and appreciated by netizens. Chudasama’s messages were inspirational enough to make the common man to think about the events unfolding in the country. Mumbaikars walking on the streets on Marine Lines always have glimpse of the banners erected outside his office.
Chudasama has seen all the prime ministers of independent India. According to him Jawaharlal Nehru was the most democratic-minded PM. He was conferred with the title of Padma Shree by the President of India on March 26th, 2005.
Nana was the pioneer of the only India based social service organization Giants International which now has over hundreds of groups existing all over globe. This organization was solely started by him with service to humanity as its main objective. He has also initiated numerous awareness and educational camps in slum areas for Family Planning.
He is from a noted family of the Gondal, Dist. Rajkot, Gujarat. His father, Mansingh Chudasama, was a police commissioner. Nana was second of three brothers, his elder brother the late Mota Chudasama being a noted businessman, and his younger brother Chota being associated with Air India for many years. Nana after graduation started his career in the early 1950s as an executive in a US petroleum company in Mumbai; he also managed an apartment at Prithviraj Chambers, on Narayan Dabholkar Road in the elite Nepean Sea Road area, next door to where he lived at the time.
During his term as Sheriff he also started the Forum Against Drugs and Aids and is the President of this center for prevention of Drug Abuse and Aids. He was the pioneer in organizing Drugs Abuse Awareness, through public support and medical assistance as well as providing cure through rehabilitation programme. Nana is also the president of “I Love Mumbai” which he founded when he was Sheriff of Mumbai. The organization focuses on the greening, beautification and cleaning of Mumbai.