S Muthiah, journalist, writer – author and chronicler of Chennai city that used to be called Madras, passed away today, April 20, 2019. He was 89. Known for his column Madras Miscellany in The Hindu Newspaper, he also published his fortnightly newspaper Madras Musings. He is one of the three men who ideated a celebration for the city and called it Madras Day; the other two being Vincent D’ Souza and Sashi Nair.
Muthiah, born on April 13, 1930, had his schooling in Colombo, Srilanka and studied arts, Engineering and International Relations in the U.S.A. He worked with The Times of Ceylon and on returning to India he took up the job of a cartographer with TT Maps by the TT Krishnamachari Group.
Muthiah wrote his first book ‘Madras Discovered’ in 1981 and an elaborate revision and research of the history of the city of Chennai made him publish the next edition as ‘Madras Rediscovered’. He began publishing his own newspaper Madras Musings in 1990. He continued to write many books on the city.
Muthiah continued to motivate the team that celebrates Madras Day every year on August 22. The celebration that began as a day dedicated to Chennai City has now grown into a month-long celebration with around a hundred events themed on Chennai’s history and heritage.
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