Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Vinod Sena in memoriam

Vinod Sena in memoriam

I had a very unfortunate reminder of the fragile state of each human being this week. Just after returning from India and Bangladesh, I received word that one of my key contacts and hosts had suddenly passed away.

Professor Vinod Sena was a retired professor of English literature at the University of Delhi. Visually impaired his entire life, he was a tireless advocate for the blind and visually impaired as well as a shining role model. He has been described as the pioneer of Talking Books in India, and had been campaigning for a copyright law change to make it easier to provide access to accessible books. While I was in India, I picked up the newspaper and saw that he had just received a Helen Keller award for his work.

Professor Vinod Sena and Jim Fruchterman

I know that the advocates for the blind and visually impaired will continue his work, initially with a heavy heart, but with the confidence that they are following in the footsteps of a great man.

2 comments:

Nidhi Verma said...

I was touched to read your warm rememberance of Prof Sena. I have been a student of his for 2 yrs, from 1997 to 1999. We admired his tenacity and his intellect. Almost all of us in my batch have volunteered in helping him set up the library of records. You are right about the 'heavy hearts'. He is sorely missed.
regards,
Nidhi Verma.
www.bookmeabook.com

Jim Fruchterman said...

It's great to know that the work that Vinod Sena inspired on my first visit to India is moving forward. Bookshare India is expanding rapidly, thanks to the Indian community of and for people with disabilities. Of course, it's about empowerment!