Jiji Thomson to Pen Memoirs

Thomson was Chief Secretary for a year and a month, and stepped down after a career spanning 36 years.

Published: 02nd March 2016 03:06 AM  |   Last Updated: 02nd March 2016 03:06 AM   |  A+A-


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Nowadays there’s almost an unwritten rule that once you step down from a top post in government, you are expected to write a book on your past life in babudom. So it comes as no surprise when Jiji Thomson, who retired as Chief Secretary on Monday, says that he is about to pen his memoirs.

He made a passing mention of his literary ambition at the farewell given him at the Durbar Hall of the Secretariat. “I’ve had quite a few experiences in my career spanning 36 years. But I won’t bore you with all those details now. They will soon reach you in the form of a book,” he said.

Thomson was Chief Secretary for a year and a month, and stepped down after a career spanning 36 years, a few of which he spent in New Delhi in key posts. Thomson has been appointed advisor to Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, so his ‘presence and sense of responsibility’ will continue to serve to protect the interests of the state in future also, Chandy, who inaugurated the function, said.

The people of Thiruvananthapuram will remember Thomson’s 13 months as Chief Secretary more for Operation Anantha, meant to open up the city’s clogged drainage system.

At the farewell, colleagues lauded him for his management skills, which he attributed not to boardroom tactics, but to a rhyme he was taught in primary school: “For the want of a horse the rider was lost/For the want of a rider the battle was lost/For the want of a battle the kingdom was lost/And all for the want of a horseshoe-nail.”

“It was taught to us by Dakshayani Amma, our teacher. My management style is based on that nursery rhyme,” he said.

Thomson also recalled his first encounter with Oommen Chandy. “I was in class X then. I saw him from afar. He had sidewhiskers shaped like chisels,” he said, triggering laughter in the audience.


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