New Delhi: Khushwant Singh, author, journalist, commentator, wit and raconteur par excellence, died at his home here Thursday morning, in his 100th year of birth, after having led a life that, in the words of his son, “touched the stars” and left an indelible and acerbic mark on Indian journalism and contemporary writing. He would have been 100 on Feb 2, 2015. A recipient of Padma Vibhushan, India’s second highest civilian honour, Khushwant Singh authored some internationally renowned books like “Train to Pakistan”, “I Shall Not Hear the Nightingale”, “A History of the Sikhs”, “The Company of Women” and “Delhi”, and wrote over 30 books – novels, many short stories, essays and countless commentaries. His last work “The Good, The Bad and The Ridiculous” was published in October 2013.
A self-confessed lecher but honest and upright, Extremely candid, he had a sign outside his door saying: “Please do not ring the bell if you are not expected.” He was editor of The Hindustan Times and National Herald and also served as a member of the Rajya Sabha from 1980 to 1986.