The passing away of K. Balagopal brings to a close an eventful chapter in the history of human rights protection in the country. Where there was oppression, there he was, fighting almost a lone battle with untiring energy. He never waited for people to follow him nor did he look for any guidance or support. It is unfortunate that he was not recognised at the national level. It will be long before we can see another courageous soul like him.
I attended a series of lectures Balagopal gave in Hyderabad 15 years ago. He inspired each one of us in the audience to rise against injustice. No wonder, he was the voice of many who were executed in the infamous encounters of 1980s in remote, rural Andhra Pradesh. His life was one of sacrifice and justice.