(Vasudha Sinha is a producer with NDTV)
"Mili! Mil! Millo!" Even "Militia "was a name that rang through the morning on the news floor at NDTV.
This 'Queen of morning shifts' spent countless hours making your breakfast bulletin the best you've ever had.
She started her day early, very early, while most of us would still be grappling with our REMs. She waltzed across from the Graphics room, which I believe was her favourite area, to the edit bay, bantering with the video editors, then into the newsroom, assuring an anxious news-in-charge that everything would make it on-air perfectly.
She would then hop to the PCR (Production Control Room) to crack a joke, pull a leg, all while keeping a keen eye on what was being broadcast. In those days of break-less shifts, breaking news, blundering mistakes, amidst the arctic environs of the PCR, she was always there, cheering us on.
I remember a recurring theme - she always asked everyone, if they had had their meals. She asked everyone, every morning, the same question. It was so warm, it felt like home, she felt like home.
It is not hard to imagine why she was also known as 'Militia' (in select journalistic circles)- she could spot a mistake with her eyes shut. Reporters were her favourite prey. She knew her news, she had an imaginative sense of design to present that news, and, most importantly, she had the required skill to lead a team to make the deadline every single day.
She was a boss' nightmare for possessing a strong will, even as she was a dream to work with; her attention to detail was immaculate.
Above all, she was a friend. Her circle of friends was large and the lives she touched are countless.
She generously lent an ear to the tiniest troubles her friends and colleagues had, offered solutions, sometimes even went out of her way to help. She was fearless in speaking her mind.
She got away with outrageous pranks sometimes; her dimpled smile helped bail her out!
Its hard to use the word 'was' for someone like Milita. She is and will always remain with us. A spirit so lively, you wish you'd have met her, only if it was once in your lifetime.
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